Malin Elisabeth Olofsson

Academic interests

  • Process-outcome research

  • Psychological treatments for eating disorders

  • Qualitative methodology

  • Cognitive Semantics

  • Language and psychotherapy


Eating disorders (EDs) combined with childhood trauma is debilitating and difficult to treat. A Cognitive Behavioural Therapy approach to EDs focuses on techniques that are traditionally employed in transdiagnostic evidence-based treatments. However, a recent contribution to ED treatments is Compassion Focused Therapy, which more specifically targets emotion regulation and compassion. The patients themselves are an important source of knowledge that is scarcely utilized. Consequently, this project aims to investigate patients’ conceptualization of their illness and experiences of change in two separate treatment models currently offered at Modum Bad, Norway. Female inpatients are interviewed post-treatment on two separate occasions. Interview 1 aims to capture a) the subjective experience of the illness, and b) overall experiences of change during treatment. In interview 2, the patient is subjected to video-taped therapy sessions to capture changes during treatment on a micro level. A thematic analysis allows us to discover variation and common features, and to systematize the subjective experiences of what factors help or hinder psychotherapeutic change. By advocating the first-person perspective we can understand the phenomenology of this particular comorbidity, and therapeutic change processes. Building on our findings, we hope to contribute to the development of new treatment models that are especially called for as regards this subgroup of ED sufferers where existing treatments are still lacking.



2006-2011 Master of Science in Psychology, Örebro University, Sweden

2004-2008 Master of Arts in Swedish, Örebro University, Sweden

2002-2005 Master of Arts in English, University of Gothenburg, Sweden/University of Sussex, England

Work experience

Aug 2015-  PhD-student, Department of Psychology, Oslo University

2014-2015 Clinical psychologist, Modum Bad Eating Disorder Unit, Norway. CBT-E and Compassion-focused Therapy for eating disorders (CFT-E)

2012-2014 Clinical psychologist (outpatients), Helgelandssykehuset, Norway

Tags: Clinical psychology


Scientific publications

Olofsson ME, Boersma K, Engh J, & Wurm M. A Psychometric Evaluation of the Swedish version of the Responses to Positive Affect Questionnaire. Nord J Psych. 2014;64. 1-6.

Olofsson, M.E., Wurm, M., & Boersma, K. (in press). Do responses to positive affect influence mood reactivity? Exploring cognitive response styles through a mood induction procedure. Nordic Psychology.


Olofsson, M.E. & Engh, J. (2012). Do cognitive responses to how we feel really matter? A psychometric evaluation and experimental extension of the Responses to Positive Affect questionnaire (RPA). Master thesis. Örebro University: School of law, psychology, and social work.

Olofsson, M.E. (2007). En kognitiv semantisk analys av partikelverbet ’gå upp’: Conceptual Metaphor Theory (CMT) kontra Principled Polysemy Approach to Meaning Analysis. Master thesis. Örebro University: School of humanities, education, and social sciences.

Olofsson, M.E. (2005). The Verb-Particle Construction ‘make up’: how can its different meanings be explained in terms of Embodiment and a Principled Polysemy Framework?

Master thesis. University of Gothenburg/University of Sussex: Department of languages and literature.

  • Olofsson, Malin Elisabeth; Oddli, Hanne; Vrabel, KariAnne & Hoffart, Asle (2020). «In solitude is safeness»: a patient perspective on eating disorders in the context of multiple childhood trauma. Nordic Psychology. ISSN 1901-2276. doi: 10.1080/19012276.2020.1762714. Full text in Research Archive
  • Olofsson, Malin Elisabeth; Oddli, Hanne; Hoffart, Asle; Eielsen, Hanna Kristine Punsvik & Vrabel, Kari-Anne (2019). Change Processes Related to Long-Term Outcomes in Eating Disorders With Childhood Trauma: An Explorative Qualitative Study. Journal of Counseling Psychology. ISSN 0022-0167. doi: 10.1037/cou0000375.
  • Olofsson, Malin Elisabeth; Wurm, Matilda & Boersma, Katja (2016). Do responses to Positive Affect Influence Mood Reactivity? Exploring Cognitive Response Styles through a Mood Induction Procedure. Nordic Psychology. ISSN 1901-2276. 68(4), p. 220–232. doi: 10.1080/19012276.2016.1149092.

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  • Olofsson, Malin Elisabeth; Oddli, Hanne; Vrabel, Kari-Anne & Hoffart, Asle (2018). "In solitude is safenss": a patient perspective on eating disorders in the context of childhood trauma".
  • Olofsson, Malin Elisabeth & Vrabel, Kari-Anne (2017). Medfølelse for spiseforstyrrelser. Tidsskrift for Norsk Psykologforening. ISSN 0332-6470. p. 1184–1187.

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Published Mar. 17, 2016 2:55 PM - Last modified Nov. 4, 2016 1:23 PM