Behavior and Cognitive
Behavior Therapy
Skinner: Radical Behaviorism
Bandura, Ellis, Beck
Meicheanbaum
1
Skinner:
Radical Behaviorism
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Placed primary emphasis in the role of the
environment in producing behavior
Applied learning principles to psychology
Developed theory primarily working with rats
in an experimental laboratory
Books
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
1948
1953
1971
Walden Two
Science and Human Behavior
Beyond Freedom and Dignity
2
Behavior/
Cognitive Behavior Theory
Classical Conditioning
 Operant Conditioning
 Social Learning Approach
 Cognitive Interventios

3
Classical Conditioning

If you pair a conditioned stimulus to a
natural stimulus, after time, the conditioned
stimulus produces the same response as the
natural one: Learning by association
Pavlov discovery (1900)
1. Meat (us) >>
Salivation (ur)
2. Bell (cs)>>Meat (us) >>Salivation (ur)
3. Bell (cs) >>
Salivation (cr)
4. Bell (cs) >>
Extinguished
response
4
Wolpe: 1950

Applied classical conditioning to treat anxiety
by pairing stimulus that causes anxiety
(taking an exam) with a state of relaxation,
to break the connection between the stimulus
and the anxious response
Exam (us)>>>Anxiety (ur)
Relaxation> Images Exam>Anxiety>Relaxation
(cs)
(us)
(ur)
(cr)
Images Exam (us)>>> Relaxation (cr)
Real Exam
(us)>>> Relaxation (cr)
5
Operant Conditioning

Focuses on actions that operate on the
environment to produce consequence

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If the environmental change brought about
by the behavior is reinforcing,
probabilities that the behavior will be
repeated increase
If the environmental changes produce no
reinforcement or a punishment,
probabilities that the behavior will be
repeated decrease
6
Environmental Consequences

Reinforcement Increases the behavior

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
Punishment
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Positive R
Negative R
Adds a pleasant consequence
Eliminates aversive stimulus
Decreases the behavior
Adds an aversive consequence
Take away a positive stimulus
Lack of consequence Decreases behavior
7
Bandura: Social Learning
Approach

Psychological functions involve a reciprocal
interaction between:
Environment
<><><>
Behavior
<>
<>
<>
<>
<> Cognitive Process <>
8
Cognitive Behavior Therapy

Emphasizes cognitive processes and private
events (such as client’s self-talk) as
mediators of behavior change
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Rational Emotive Therapy
Ellis
Cognitive Therapy
Beck
Cognitive Behavior Modification Meichenbaum
9
Behavior Therapy Today
1/2

Person is product and producer of his/her
environment

Uses a systematic and structured
approach to counseling

Emphasizes changing overt behaviors and
solving specific problems versus gaining
insight
10
Behavior Therapy Today

Clients are expected to assume an active
role in therapy

Emphasizes the assessment of
effectiveness of interventions

Applied Behavioral Analyses: assessment
of environmental contingencies of
behaviors
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Applied Behavioral Analysis:
Functional Assessment Model

Examine the antecedents and consequences
of problem behaviors

Conduct a functional assessment using interviews
and direct observations (e.g. keeping a diary) to
identify the internal\external conditions
contributing to the behavior of interest
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Applied Behavioral Analysis:
Functional Assessment Model

Facilitate Behavioral Change

Behavioral treatments are devised to replace
problem behavior(s) with more adaptive
behavior(s) using reinforcement and extinction
strategies
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Behaviorism: Therapy
Techniques 1/3
1.
Systematic Desensitization
•
•
2.
3.
Aversive Counter Conditioning
Exposure Techniques
•
•
4.
Relaxation training
Anxiety hierarchy
In vivo desensitization
Flooding (in vivo, imaginary)
Modeling
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Behaviorism: Therapy
Techniques 2/3
5.
Assertiveness Training
•
•
•
•
Information
Examination of beliefs and self-talk
Role playing
Behavioral rehearsal
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Behaviorism: Therapy
Techniques 3/3
6.
Behavioral Modification Programs
•
•
•
Reinforcement
Extinction
Token economy
Time out, loose privileges,
punishment
Stimulus control Changing environmental
antecedents
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Behaviorism: Therapy
Techniques 3/3
7.
Self Management Programs – active coping
behaviors
a.
b.
c.
d.
e.
Identify goal
Express goal in behavioral terms
Self Monitoring- Behavioral assessment
Develop plan for change that includes
Self-Reinforcements
Evaluation of action plan - results
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Cognitive Behavior
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
Theory
Distressing emotions are typically the result of
maladaptive thinking
Mental disorder seen as a disorder of thinking in
which a client distorts reality, including:

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Specific misconceptions
Unrealistic expectations
Maladaptive attributes
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Cognitive Behavior

Theory
Therapy’ aims are to identify and change

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Faulty patterns of thinking
Faulty premises and attitudes
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Rational Emotive Behavior
Therapy: (REBT) Albert Ellis

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Stresses thinking, judging, deciding, analyzing,
and doing
Cognitions <> Emotions <>Behaviors
have a reciprocal cause-and-effect relationship
Teaches that our emotions stem mainly from
our beliefs, evaluations, interpretations, and
reactions to life situations
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RET: Human Nature

We are born with a potential for both rational and
irrational thinking

We have the biological and cultural tendency to
think crookedly and to needlessly disturb ourselves

We learn and invent disturbing beliefs and keep
ourselves disturbed through our self-talk

We have the capacity to change our cognitive,
emotive, and behavioral processes
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RET: The
ABC Theory
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RET: Therapy Process

Therapy is seen as an educational process

Clients learn
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To identify and dispute irrational beliefs that
are maintained by self-indoctrination
To replace ineffective ways of thinking with
effective and rational cognitions
To stop absolutistic thinking, blaming, and
repeating false beliefs
23
Aaron Beck’s
Cognitive Therapy (CT)

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Insight-focused therapy
Emphasizes changing negative
thoughts and maladaptive beliefs
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Aaron Beck’s
Cognitive Therapy (CT)
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Theoretical Assumptions
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People’s internal communications are
accessible to introspection
Clients’ beliefs have highly personal meanings
These meanings can be discovered by the
client rather than being taught or interpreted
by the therapist
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Beck’s Cognitive Therapy 1/2
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Basic theory:

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To understand the nature of an emotional
episode or disturbance it is essential to focus
on the cognitive content of an
individual’s reaction to the upsetting
event or stream of thoughts
Automatic thoughts: personalized notions
that are triggered by particular stimuli that
lead to emotional responses
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Beck’s Cognitive Therapy 2/2

Goals:

To change the way clients think
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Identify clients’ automatic thoughts
Reach the core schemata and
Schema restructuring
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CT: Human Nature

Cognitive structures or schemas
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Confirmatory bias
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function as implicit assumptions or premises that
influence what one attends to and how one
interprets events
Selectively attend to events that confirm our own
initial beliefs
Schemas and Disorders


Anxiety
Depression
Threat and danger
Social rejection and failure
28
CT’s Cognitive Distortions
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
7.
Arbitrary inferences
Selective abstraction
Overgeneralization
Magnification and minimization
Personalization
Labeling and mislabeling
Polarized thinking
29
Ct’s Therapy Process

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Socratic dialogue collaborative an interactive
process to:
Teach clients to recognize, observe and
monitor "automatic" thoughts and assumptions
Subject their automatic thoughts to reality
testing
Substitute realistic and accurate
interpretations for the biased cognitions
30
Beck’s Approach to
Depression: Cognitive Triad
1.
Have a negative view of themselves and
attribute setbacks to themselves w/o looking at
the environment
2.
Interpret experiences in a negative manner,
screening out positives
3.
Have a gloomy vision and projections about
the future
31
Ellis Vs. Beck


Ellis is more directional and confrontational
in pointing out and refuting irrational
thoughts
Beck helps clients discover their distorted
patterns of thinking
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Collaborative empiricism
Guided discovery

client and therapist examine and evaluate beliefs and
modify and correct client’s misconceptions
32
Meichenbaum: Cognitive
Behavior Modification
Is primarily a self-instructional therapy that
focuses on helping clients

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become aware of their self-talk, and
acquire practical coping skills to deal with
problematic situations
Process of Change

1.
2.
3.
Self Observation
Starting a new internal dialogue
Learning new skills
33
Coping Skills Program:
Stress Inoculation
Teaches clients stress management
techniques to be applied to present and
future problems
Consists of three phases


1.
2.
3.
Conceptual Phase
Skills acquisition and rehearsal
Application and follow-through
34
Conceptual Phase
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Collaborative relationship
Didactic presentation of role that cognitions
and emotions play in stress
Guided discovery to identify their own selftalk and how it creates stress
Systematic observation and monitoring of
maladaptive behaviors and their related selftalk
35
Skills Acquisition and
Rehearsal

Giving clients behavioral and cognitive
coping techniques to apply to stressful
situations
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Rehearsing new self-statements
Relaxation training
Social skills training
Time management instruction
Making changes in their everyday lives
36
Application and FollowThrough Phase
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Arranging for transfer and maintenance of
change from therapy to the real world
Clients practice in homework assignments of
increasing complexity
Results of these assignments are carefully
evaluated
Follow-up and booster sessions are
scheduled in 3-, 6-, and 12 months intervals
37
Contributions and Limitations
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Focus on short-term behavioral goals
Emphasis on evaluation of therapy outcomes
Empirical evidence of positive results
May lead to symptom substitution because
underneath causes are not addressed
Too much power and control from therapist
Lack of attention to relationship issues
No processing of emotions and feelings
Focus only on cognitive issues
38
Multimodal Therapy

Comprehensive approach to behavior
modification
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Developed by Arnold Lazarus
Technical eclecticism
Based on social learning theory
Therapy is guided by what is best for
the client
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Basic Concepts

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Experience includes: moving, feeling,
sensing, imagining, thinking, and relating to
one another
Humans are the product of: genetic
endowment, physical environment, and social
learning history
People vary in the aspects of experience they
emphasize
Framework for assessment
and therapy

Dimensions of human experience
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B–
A–
S–
I –
C–
I –
D–
behavior
affective processes
sensation
imagery
cognition
interpersonal relations
physiological aspects
Behavior Change
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Most problems arise from faulty social
learning
Therapist-client relationship similar to a
trainer-trainee relationship
Homework assignments to facilitate
transfer of learning
Therapy starts with comprehensive
assessment of BASIC ID dimensions
Interventions
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Behavior


Affective processes

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Extinction, counter-conditioning, reinforcement;
behavioral assessment
Owning and accepting feelings; catharsis
Sensation

Tension release, relaxation exercises
Interventions

Imagery
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Cognition
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Cognitive restructuring; irrational thoughts;
Interpersonal relation
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Systematic desensitization; coping imagery
Social skills, assertive training; modeling; role
playing;
Physiological aspects

Referrals; addiction treatment
Cognitive/Behavioral vs
Psychodynamic vs Existential


Richard’s recounting of the loneliness
in his childhood Therapists possible
responses?
Talks at length about his loneliness;
when questioned about evidence,
states he is not lonely at all Possible
meaning?
45
Cognitive/Behavioral vs
Psychodynamic vs Existential

Feels lonely on Saturday – call the list
of friends – is this a good solution?
“Wife took everything from me” Beck
– “lets check the evidence to see if it
is true” – Other possible responses?
 Need a woman to be happy- Beck –
disputed the belief

46