Component Analysis for Motivational Interviewing

The safety and scientific validity of this study is the responsibility of the study sponsor and investigators. Listing a study does not mean it has been evaluated by the U.S. Federal Government. Read our disclaimer for details. Identifier: NCT01642381
Recruitment Status : Completed
First Posted : July 17, 2012
Last Update Posted : September 12, 2016
National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA)
Information provided by (Responsible Party):
Jonathan Morgenstern, Northwell Health

Brief Summary:
The purpose of this study is to investigate the critical components of motivational interviewing (MI), a psychotherapeutic intervention, in reducing heavy or problematic drinking. The study will disaggregate MI into its component parts and test full MI compared to MI without its directive strategies. This study will test whether the directive elements of MI are critical or whether MI effects may be attributable solely to its Rogerian, non-directive components. For more information, go to

Condition or disease Intervention/treatment Phase
Alcohol-Related Disorders Alcohol Use Disorders Alcohol Drinking Alcoholism Alcohol Abuse Behavioral: Full Motivational Interviewing ("FMI") Behavioral: Spirit Only Motivational Interviewing ("SOMI") Not Applicable

Detailed Description:

Project Motion is a clinical research study for people seeking to reduce, but not stop their drinking. Individuals who qualify will receive a comprehensive assessment and brief individual psychotherapy at no cost. The study is being conducted by a team of scientists at Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons and the New York State Psychiatric Institute and is funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Our offices are located next to Columbus Circle and we offer convenient hours for appointments.

The purpose of our study is to understand how brief psychotherapy helps people reduce alcohol consumption and drinking problems. For example, we know that some people can reduce drinking with little or no treatment, whereas others benefit from one-on-one psychotherapy. However, we do not know why this happens. Individuals who qualify and decide to participate will be assigned by chance to one of three conditions. Individuals assigned to the first two conditions will receive brief psychotherapy, beginning the first week of their participation in the study. Individuals in the third condition will receive feedback on their drinking and be asked to reduce their drinking with the aid of telephone self-monitoring for a period of 8 weeks. Individuals in the third condition will then receive psychotherapy as well. The delay of 8 weeks will allow us to understand how the psychotherapy works compared to how people change without counseling.

Study Type : Interventional  (Clinical Trial)
Actual Enrollment : 139 participants
Allocation: Randomized
Intervention Model: Parallel Assignment
Masking: None (Open Label)
Primary Purpose: Treatment
Official Title: Component Analysis for Motivational Interviewing
Study Start Date : May 2012
Actual Primary Completion Date : April 2016
Actual Study Completion Date : August 2016

Resource links provided by the National Library of Medicine

U.S. FDA Resources

Arm Intervention/treatment
Active Comparator: Psychotherapy Behavioral: Full Motivational Interviewing ("FMI")
Relational and technical technical (directive) strategies in counselling sessions to significantly increase commitment strength to reduce drinking.
Behavioral: Spirit Only Motivational Interviewing ("SOMI")
Empathic and non-directive counselling based on Rogerian psychotherapy model.
No Intervention: Self-Change Control ("SCC")
SCC participants will be told that they should attempt to reduce their drinking over the course of 8 weeks. (If unsuccessful, they will be offered Full Motivational Interviewing therapy sessions.)

Primary Outcome Measures :
  1. Time Line Follow Back [ Time Frame: 36 weeks ]
    Calendar-based method of recording drinking patterns. Data will be aggregated into summary variables including sum of standard drinks, mean drinks per drinking day, and percent days heavy drinking at multiple time points.

Information from the National Library of Medicine

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Ages Eligible for Study:   18 Years to 65 Years   (Adult)
Sexes Eligible for Study:   All
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   No

Inclusion Criteria:

  • Primary current diagnosis of Alcohol Use Disorder
  • Meets DSM-IV criteria for inability to control or cut down on drinking
  • Have an average weekly consumption of >24 standard drinks for men and >15 standard drinks for women
  • Show no evidence of significant cognitive impairment
  • Are willing to reduce drinking to non-hazardous levels
  • Not seeking to quit drinking
  • Agree not to seek additional substance abuse treatment during treatment period
  • Fluent in English

Exclusion Criteria:

  • Have a current DSM-IV diagnosis of drug dependence (other than nicotine/marijuana)
  • Have a serious psychiatric illness (e.g., psychotic disorder, bipolar disorder, major depression) or substantial suicide or violence risk
  • Have clinically severe alcoholism as evidenced by a history of significant medical problems associated with drinking, seizures or severe withdrawal symptoms, or an inpatient treatment episode for drinking
  • Legally mandated to receive substance abuse treatment
  • Sufficiently socially unstable as to preclude completion of study requirements (e.g., homeless)

Information from the National Library of Medicine

To learn more about this study, you or your doctor may contact the study research staff using the contact information provided by the sponsor.

Please refer to this study by its identifier (NCT number): NCT01642381

United States, New York
North Shore LIJ Health Systems
Great Neck, New York, United States, 11021
Sponsors and Collaborators
Northwell Health
National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA)
Principal Investigator: Jonathan Morgenstern, PhD North Shore LIJ Health Systems

Responsible Party: Jonathan Morgenstern, Principal Investigator, Northwell Health Identifier: NCT01642381     History of Changes
Other Study ID Numbers: AA 020077-01A1
First Posted: July 17, 2012    Key Record Dates
Last Update Posted: September 12, 2016
Last Verified: September 2016

Keywords provided by Jonathan Morgenstern, Northwell Health:
Alcohol Problems
Moderation-Oriented Treatment
Controlled Drinking
Reduced Drinking
Heavy Drinking
Problematic Drinking
Non-Abstinence-based Drinking

Additional relevant MeSH terms:
Alcohol Drinking
Alcohol-Related Disorders
Pathologic Processes
Substance-Related Disorders
Chemically-Induced Disorders
Mental Disorders
Drinking Behavior