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Marleen Rijkeboer

Marleen Rijkeboer

Marleen Rijkeboer is full professor of clinical psychology at Maastricht University. For 25 years her research is focused on schema therapy. Examples are the international study into the Reformulated Theory underlying Schema Therapy, which she leads together with prof. dr. Arnoud Arntz, and the trials into schema therapy for dissociative identity disorder, which she runs together with prof. dr. Rafaele Huntjens and dr. Nathan Bachrach. She has been board member of the ISST, and president of the Dutch Association of Schema Therapy, and she was granted a life-time honorary membership of both associations.
Level of ISST membership
Life-time Honorary Member
ISST Certification Level
Certified Trainer, Supervisor & Advanced Therapist

  • Do the effects of ImRs on the target memory generalize to related memories in the emotional memory network?


    ImRs is an effective technique for processing traumatic memories. These episodic memories are linked to other memories through certain characteristics (e.g., emotion; encapsulated belief), thus forming a network of related memories. When a memory in a network is activated, related memories are also activated to a certain extent, depending on the strength of the relationship between them. But what happens when characteristics of one of these memories are changed due to ImRs? Does the target memory lose its connection to other memories in the network? Or do related memories in the network change as well, this change being moderated by the strength of the relationship with the target memory? To address these questions the Emotional Memory Network Assessment interview was administered to 150 participants (18-60 yrs) with aversive memories of social situations. The target memory and up to 3 related memories were identified, and of each memory a) emotionality, b) believability of the encapsulated belief, and c) perceived strength of its relationship to the target memory. Next, participants were randomly allocated to a session of ImRs or a control session (browsing a magazine on birds). After the session characteristics of each memory were assessed again. Data were analyzed using multilevel regression analysis. The results indicated that ImRs significantly reduced the emotionality and believability of the target memory, but its relation to the network remained intact. In the ImRs condition characteristics of related memories were also affected, which was moderated by the perceived relationship of each memory with the target memory. No such effects were found in the control condition. To conclude, the effects of ImRs on the target memory potentially generalize to other memories in the network, but the extent of this spreading effect depends on the strength of the association between memories. Clinical implications are discussed during the presentation.

    Target Audience

    Beginners, intermediate, and advanced-level participants

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