BS (Social Sciences & Liberal Arts)

Faculty / School

Faculty of Business Administration (FBA)


Department of Social Sciences & Liberal Arts

Date of Award


Date of Submission



Dr. Naveen Minai, Assistant Professor, Department of Social Sciences

Project Type

SSLA Culminating Experience

Access Type

Restricted Access


When it comes to research surrounding psychotherapy, there persists a gap in Muslim countries especially Pakistan. In an attempt to fill this gap, this study aims to determine the effects of hijab (head cover) and niqab (veil) on the outcomes of psychotherapy. Earlier research identified that hijab and niqab encouraged quick judgment followed by interpersonal discomfort (Schellhaas, Everett, Earp & Hewstone, 2015). To confirm this, six therapists (2 hijabi, 2 niqabi and 2 who observed none) were interviewed to gain insight on their experiences and a comparison was drawn amongst them. The key areas of comparison being, inclusion of religion in therapy, building of rapport with clients and dealing with value conflicts. Simultaneously, thirteen undergraduate students from Institute of Business Administration (IBA), Karachi were asked to fill out an online survey in order to determine the clients’ perspectives. The survey assessed their perception towards therapy in general as well as towards a hijabi and a niqabi therapist. Responses from the students displayed hesitation towards psychotherapy itself. The overall findings from both groups revealed that hijab and niqab doesn’t affect the success of psychotherapy. Instead it depends on the therapeutic alliance which is developed from the interaction between different client and therapist factors. Future research and implications for psychotherapists working in Pakistan were suggested. The most notable one being therapists’ sensitivity towards the clients’ values.



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