Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) is based on the concept that behavior change may be achieved through altering cognitive processes. The assumption underlying the cognitively based therapeutic techniques is that maladaptive cognitive processes lead to maladaptive behaviors and changing these processes can lead to behavior modification. According to Mahoney (1995), an individual's cognitions are viewed as covert behaviors, subject to the same laws of learning as overt behaviors. Since its inception, cognitive-behavior modification has attempted to integrate the clinical concerns of psychodynamic psychotherapists with the technology of behavior therapists (Mahoney, 1995). Cognitive-behaviorists have demonstrated an interrelationship among cognitive processes, environmental events, and behavior, which is conveyed in the context of one's social behavior. Psychotherapists in North America endorse cognitive-behavioral interventions as the second most widely used treatment approach (i.e., with an eclectic approach being endorsed as first) (Bongar & Buetler, 1995).
The cognitive processes that serve as the focus of treatment in CBT include perceptions, self-statements, attributions, expectations, beliefs, and images (Kazdin, 1994). Most cognitive-behavioral based techniques are applied in the context of psychotherapy sessions in which the clients are seen individually, or in a group, by professional therapists. Intervention programs are designed to help clients become aware of their maladaptive cognitive processes and teach them how to notice, catch, monitor, and interrupt the cognitive-affective-behavioral chains to produce more adaptive coping responses (Mah...
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Kazdin, A. E. (1994). Behavior Modification in Applied Settings. Brooks/Cole Publishing Company, Pacific Grove, CA.
Mahoney, M. J. (1995). Cognitive and Constructive Psychotherapies. Springer Publishing Company, New York, NY.
Martin, G., & Pear, J. (1999). Behavior Modification: What it is and How to do it. Prentice Hall, Upper Saddle River, New Jersey.
Meichenbaum, D., & Cameron, R. (1974). The clinical potential of modifying what clients say to themselves. Psychotherapy: Theory, Research, and Practice, 11 (2), 103-117.
Meichenbaum, D., & Goodman, J. (1971). Training impulsive children to talk to themselves: A means of developing self-control. Journal of Abnormal Psychology, 77, 115-126.
Meichenbaum, D. (1977). Cognitive-Behavior Modification: An Integrative Approach. Plenum Press Publishing Corporation, New York, NY.
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