Goal Achievement and Goal-related Cognitions in Behavioral Activation Treatment for Depression

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Knittle , K P , Gellert , P , Moore , C , Bourke , N & Hull , V 2019 , ' Goal Achievement and Goal-related Cognitions in Behavioral Activation Treatment for Depression ' , Behavior Therapy , vol. 50 , no. 5 , pp. 898-909 . https://doi.org/10.1016/j.beth.2019.01.005

Title: Goal Achievement and Goal-related Cognitions in Behavioral Activation Treatment for Depression
Author: Knittle, Keegan Phillip; Gellert, Paul; Moore, Clair; Bourke, Natalie; Hull, Victoria
Contributor organization: Social Psychology
Research Group of Nelli Hankonen
Date: 2019-09
Language: eng
Number of pages: 12
Belongs to series: Behavior Therapy
ISSN: 0005-7894
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.beth.2019.01.005
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10138/305484
Abstract: This study investigates the extent to which achieving goals during behavioral activation (BA) treatment predicts depressive symptom improvement, and whether goal-related cognitions predict goal achievement or treatment response. Patients (n = 110, mean age 37.6, 54% female) received low-intensity cognitive behavioral therapy for depression, which included setting up to three behavioral goals in each of three BA-focused sessions (i.e., 9 goals per patient). Patients completed items from the Self-Regulation Skills Battery to assess goal-related cognitions and goal achievement for these goals, and depressive symptoms were assessed weekly with the PHQ-9. Multilevel models investigated the relationships between goal-related cognitions, goal achievement and depressive symptoms. Depressive symptoms improved curve-linearly during treatment (B = 0.12, p <.001), but were not predicted by contemporaneous or time-lagged goal achievement. While cumulative goal achievement predicted end-of-treatment depressive symptoms (r= -.23; p <.01), this relationship became nonsignificant after controlling for depressive symptoms at baseline. Readiness, planning and action control predicted greater goal achievement, whereas greater goal ownership predicted less goal achievement (all p <.05). Motivation and outcome expectancy were related to subsequent, but not contemporaneous, improvements in depressive symptoms (all p<.05). This study indicates the importance of goal-related cognitions in BA treatments, and future research should investigate potential moderators of the relationships between goal-related cognitions, goal achievement, and improvements in depressive symptoms.
behavioral activation
goal achievement
5144 Social psychology
Peer reviewed: Yes
Rights: cc_by_nc_nd
Usage restriction: openAccess
Self-archived version: acceptedVersion

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