CBT and Depression

Learning Objectives

  • Describe the cognitive triad typical of clients with depression.
  • Discuss the common maintenance processes of depression.
  • Develop a CBT case formulation for a client experiencing depression.
  • Identify treatment strategies for clients experiencing depression.


CBT was initially developed to treat depression. The most common presentations in therapy for CBT practitioners are depression and anxiety disorders. Students will learn to recognize the symptoms of depression and create a case formulation to aid in understanding and explaining a client’s problems.


Include a title page and a reference page. An introduction/conclusion is not necessary. Organize the answers using APA style. 

Submit a maximum of 7 pages addressing the following:

  1. Identify the cognitive triad typical of clients with clinical depression (one paragraph).
  2. Discuss the common maintenance processes of depression.
  3. Consider a hypothetical client experiencing major depression. Address the first 3 steps of the Course of Treatment in Chapter 12 on page 283 of your textbook for this client. For #3, include Activity Scheduling & Behavioural Activation and one additional early-stage cognitive strategy.

NOTE: Textbook:    Kennerley, H., Kirk, J., & Westbrook, D. (2017). An introduction to cognitive behaviour therapy – Skills and applications (3rd ed.). Sage Publications.


  • Required components: Title page, and Reference page
  • Length of Assignment: The text body of paper (i.e., not including references, title page or abstract) should consist of approximately 5 double-spaced typed pages, Times New Roman font size: 12).
  • Format: Please, format your assignment in Word (files with extension .doc or .docx), or Rich Text Format (files with extension .rtf).
  • References: Reference both videos.


Any sources used to support your written narrative should be cited using correct APA format. Although Wikipedia can be a useful starting place to gather very general information no Wikipedia references will be accepted as scholarly citations.


The following rubric indicates those areas you should be focusing on in preparing this assignment, and how the professor will weigh these components relative to one another. 

Criteria% of Assignment Grade
1. Cognitive Triad Identifies all three parts of the cognitive triad. Provides a description of each part of the cognitive triad.
2. Common Maintenance Processes Identifies common maintenance processes in depression. Provides a comprehensive description of the common maintenance processes in depression.
3. Course of Treatment: Step 1 Describes a hypothetical client suffering from depression. Identifies the initial target problem list which includes specific problems.
4. Course of Treatment: Step 2 Introduces the cognitive model to the hypothetical client. Builds a thorough case formulation. Creates a detailed account of why and how the specific problems identified in Step 1 might have developed. Creates a comprehensive analysis of the key maintaining processes hypothesized to keep the problems going.
5. Course of Treatment: Step 3 Creates a detailed plan for symptom reduction. Implements a clear plan for activity scheduling and behavioural activation. Implements a clear plan for one additional early-stage cognitive strategy.
6. Writing Style/Format (10%) The paper is in the appropriate APA format used by the institution/program (e.g., the 7th edition). Citations of original works within the body of the paper follow the appropriate version of APA Publication Manual (e.g., 7th edition) guidelines. The paper includes a Title Page that is completed according to the appropriate version of APA Publication Manual (e.g.,7th edition). A brief introduction is included letting the reader know the scope of the paper. The structure is clear, logical, and easy to follow. The thoughts are clear and include an appropriate beginning, development, and conclusion. Sentences are well constructed, complete, clear, and concise. Rules of grammar, usage, and punctuation are followed. The paper uses words and language that are inclusive, clear, and unambiguous. Spelling is correct.

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