Encyclopedia of Couple and Family Therapy

2019 Edition
| Editors: Jay L. Lebow, Anthony L. Chambers, Douglas C. Breunlin

Cognitive Behavioral Couple Therapy

  • Donald H. BaucomEmail author
  • Melanie S. Fischer
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-49425-8_106

Name of Model

Cognitive-Behavioral Couple Therapy (CBCT).


Behavioral couple therapy (BCT); Behavioral marital therapy (BMT); Cognitive-behavioral marital therapy (CBMT)


Cognitive-behavioral couple therapy (CBCT) evolved during the early 1980s, drawing heavily upon its theoretical foundations from behavioral couple therapy (BCT), individual cognitive therapy (CT), and basic cognitive and social psychology research on information processing. In early formulations of BCT, principles of social learning and social exchange theories were applied to help couples achieve a more satisfying balance of positive to negative behaviors. That is, relationship distress was defined largely by an excess of negative and deficit of positive behavioral exchanges between partners. Patterns of reinforcement and punishment of desirable and undesirable behaviors were assessed with systematic functional analyses, and partners were trained in communication and problem-solving skills as...

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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of North Carolina at Chapel HillChapel HillUSA

Section editors and affiliations

  • Brian Baucom
    • 1
  1. 1.University of UtahSalt Lake CityUSA