Cognitive Factors in Behavior Therapy Techniques

  • Donald Meichenbaum
Part of the The Springer Behavior Therapy Series book series (PBTS)


Initial research on self-instructional training indicated that the likelihood of obtaining generalization and persistence of treatment effects was increased if we attended to the client’s cognitions. If operant training procedures could be improved by explicitly including in the treatment regimen a client’s thoughts and images, then perhaps other behavior therapy techniques could similarly be improved. In other words, if the Risley and Hart quote that introduces this chapter has any validity, then altering behavior therapy procedures in “reorganizing and restructuring the patient’s verbal statements” should enhance their efficacy. This hypothesis was translated into a program of treatment studies in which we assessed the efficacy of “standard” behavior therapy procedures (such as desensitization, modeling, aversive conditioning) relative to behavior therapy procedures that included self-instructional components (that is, procedures that supplemented the behavior therapy techniques with an explicit concern for the client’s cognitions). This chapter will describe this phase of our research program and summarize the available evidence for the role of cognitions in behavior therapy procedures.


Behavior Therapy Cognitive Factor Aversive Conditioning Internal Dialogue Coping Model 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1977

Authors and Affiliations

  • Donald Meichenbaum
    • 1
  1. 1.University of WaterlooWaterlooCanada

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