Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is a psychological treatment that has a strong scientific support of effectiveness for several psychiatric disorders, primarily anxiety disorders. However, at present there is no overall agreement on what counts as ‘CBT’. One reason is that CBT is commonly perceived as including a broad range of treatments, from those primarily focusing on cognitive techniques to change thinking patterns to treatments primarily focusing on behaviors. The purpose of the present study was to explore practicing therapists’ perceptions of CBT. Three hundred fifty members of two interest groups for CBT in Sweden participated. Mean age was 46 years, 68% were females, 63% psychologists and mean number of years of professional experience was 12 years. Participants completed a web-based survey including questions covering various aspects of CBT practice. Overall, therapist perceptions of the extent to which a variety of psychological treatment techniques and procedures were consistent with CBT were in line with well-established CBT treatment protocols and practice guidelines, as were therapists’ application of the techniques and procedures in their own practice. A majority of participants agreed that quality of life or level of functioning were the most important outcome measures for evaluating treatment success. Eighty percent of therapists believed that training in CBT at a basic level was a requirement for practicing CBT. Implications for CBT training, quality assurance, and the effectiveness of CBT in clinical practice are discussed in the paper.
Read the full paper: Bohman, B., Santi, A., & Andersson, G. (in press). Cognitive behavioral therapy in practice: therapist perceptions of techniques, outcome measures, practitioner qualifications, and relation to research. Cognitive Behaviour Therapy. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/16506073.2016.1263971