Cognitive, Behavioral, and Psychodynamic Therapies

Converging or Diverging Pathways to Change?
  • Hal Arkowitz
  • Mo Therese Hannah


Although the origins of cognitive therapy can be traced back in the history of philosophy and psychology (see Ellis, Chapter 1, this volume), it is still a relatively new arrival on the psychotherapy scene. Nonetheless, there already exists some very promising data for its effectiveness, particularly in the treatment of depression (e.g., Beckham & Watkins, Chapter 4, this volume; Elkin, Shea, Watkins, & Collins, 1986; Hollon & Beck, 1986). The recent proliferation of books, articles, and conferences on cognitive therapy, along with its inclusion in the NIMH Collaborative Study on Depression (Elkin, Parloff, Hadley, & Autry, 1985) point to the wide and rapidly growing acceptance of this approach. Given this, it seems particularly timely to consider the relationship between cognitive therapy and other major forms of psychotherapy. In this chapter, we will compare cognitive therapy with behavioral and psycho-dynamic therapies in an attempt to determine commonalities and differences among them. * In addition, we will present a formulation of change in psychotherapy based on factors that we believe are present in all three of these therapies. The argument will be advanced that the favorable outcome data for cognitive therapy may not be due to any particularly unique or novel elements but may instead be due to a more efficient and explicit use of factors that are present in these other forms of psychotherapies as well.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1989

Authors and Affiliations

  • Hal Arkowitz
    • 1
  • Mo Therese Hannah
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of PsychologyUniversity of ArizonaTucsonUSA

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