The journal Practical Pain Management identified CBT as an effective aid in sleep management, often giving people more restful hours.
In the article, authors quoted a study comparing CBT to drugs, stating “CBT raised the patients’ average slow-wave sleep 27 percent by the end of treatment, and had increased it 34 percent six months later.
Patients who took the sleeping pill had a big drop in the amount of slow-wave sleep. They had 20 percent less slow-wave sleep at the end of treatment, and six months later, they had 23 percent less slow-wave sleep.”
In effect, their study showed that CBT added sleep and sleeping pills actually reduced sleep.
Cheri Levinson is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences at the University of Louisville and Director of the Eating Anxiety Treatment (EAT) lab. She is also the Clinical Director of the Louisville Center for Eating Disorders, where she treats clients, and supervises and trains other clinicians and students in evidence-based treatments for eating disorders.
Dr. Levinson's research focuses on (a) understanding the high levels of comorbidity between eating and anxiety disorders and (b) applying empirically supported treatments for anxiety disorders, specifically exposure therapy, to the eating disorders, and (c) using advanced analytic tools and technology to personalize eating disorder treatment. Dr. Levinson has published more than 60 peer-reviewed manuscripts and chapters and has been the primary investigator on several national grants and awards. Dr. Levinson has conducted clinical trials on the effectiveness of using exposure therapy and perfectionism treatment for the eating disorders. She has received several awards, including the 2015 Outstanding Scientific Contribution Award, for her work from the Academy for Eating Disorders.
Dr. Levinson's clinical works focuses on treating adults and adolescents with eating disorders. She specializes in the treatment of comorbid disorders (eating disorders, OCD, and anxiety disorders) using empirically supported cognitive-behavioral techniques. Dr. Levinson has worked in all levels of eating disorder care, including outpatient, partial-hospitalization, residential, and inpatient care.
Before moving to Louisville, Dr. Levinson trained at the University of North Carolina Center of Excellence in Eating Disorders (CEED). While at CEED, she trained in cognitive behavioral therapies, dialectical behavior therapy, family-based therapy for adolescents with anorexia nervosa, acceptance and commitment therapy, and mindfulness therapies for eating disorders. Dr. Levinson was also a therapist at McCallum Place Eating Disorder Clinic and Webster Wellness Outpatient Clinic, where she treated patients using DBT, CBT, and mealtime therapy, and where she ran several groups, including a perfectionism in the eating disorders group. She also worked at the St. Louis Behavioral Medicine Institute, where she trained in intensive exposure therapy for anxiety disorders and OCD.
Prior to moving to Louisville, Dr. Levinson was a post-doctoral fellow at the Washington University in St. Louis School of Medicine Department of Psychiatry, where she developed technology-based treatments for eating disorders. She completed her clinical internship at the University of North Carolina School of Medicine. She received her Master's and Doctoral degrees in the psychology department at Washington University in St. Louis. She completed her undergraduate degree in psychology and history at the University of Kentucky.
First, we would like to know a little about your practice.
What are your personal strengths as a practitioner?
I think one of my personal strengths is the ability to empathize and understand what my patients are experiencing. Having worked in all levels of eating disorder care for several years now I have seen the entire spectrum of severity and have had many experiences where I get to hear from the patient (and family) perspective. Additionally, one of my strengths is using science to inform my practice. Because I continue to conduct research, this informs my practice and gives me a unique perspective on my patients, that is fully informed by cutting-edge research.
What "tips" can you offer to colleagues just opening a practice?
Get to know the community. This helps determine what types of services are needed and also helps build a referral base.
How do you remind your patients of their strengths during the therapy process?
I always like to point out progress. Working with eating disorders, many times the progress gets lost behind the challenges, especially because progress can sometimes be extremely slow. What may seem like a huge win to me as the provider is often not seen as a win by the patient. This is extremely important for maintaining motivation in an already low-motivation illness.
Are you involved in other types of professional activities in addition to your private practice?
I am an Assistant Professor at the University of Louisville and run a large research lab. I am also a member of the Academy for Eating Disorders Advocacy Committee and am involved with the National Eating Disorder Association.
When not practicing CBT, what do you do for fun?
Spend time with my two year old daughter, Sofia : We like to go to music class and on walks around the neighborhood.
What do you think is the single most important thing CBT can do for your clients?
Teach them that they can approach emotions and experiences that help them live the life they want.
Where do you see the field of the behavioral therapies going over the next 3-5 years?
I think we will hopefully see a huge shift toward personalized treatments, where we are using evidence-based treatments to target the most important symptoms for each one of our clients.
How do you use the local or social media to educate your community on the benefits of CBT?
I give a talk to the community/professionals on eating disorders about once a month. I also teach a class on evidence-based interventions to clinical psychology PhD students and supervise a team of PhD students learning evidence-based treatments for eating disorders and anxiety disorders.
How long have you been a member of ABCT?
I have been a member of ABCT since my first year of graduate school! I haven't missed a single conference since my second year of graduate school.
How has ABCT helped you professionally?
ABCT helps remind me that there is a whole body of professionals who use and support evidence-based treatments.
2018 Presidential Address
CBT in the Digital Age: Enhancing Effectiveness and Reach of Research and Psychotherapy
Tom Ollendick talks pediatric anxiety treatments, and especially his early work with one-session treatments that had success rates as high as 75% and long-term success even at 4 years.
The Mood and Personality Studies (MAPS) Lab, located at the Ohio State University (OSU) Department of Psychology, is directed by Jennifer Cheavens, Ph.D.
Doctoral Student Lab Members
We asked each of the MAPS Lab's graduate student ABCT members:
What is your area of research interest?
How has ABCT been helpful to you?
If a student were thinking about joining ABCT, what activities would you recommend they get involved in?
Erin Altenburger, M.A.
My research interest lies in therapist behavior, specifically validation, and client outcomes. I am interested in how client characteristics, namely borderline features and depressive symptoms, influence therapist behavior. I am also interested in the factors that influence treatment-seeking behavior among depressed populations.
ABCT has contributed further to my education in clinical psychology. It has also served to connect me with researchers in the field and facilitate collaborations.
I would recommend they both attend and present at ABCT conventions and join a SIG of interest to them to give them a more in-depth experience in that subfield.
Kristen Howard, M.A.
I am interested in interpersonal and emotional functioning in Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD). In particular, I am interested in how individuals with BPD regulate their emotions with the help of members of their social network (i.e., interpersonal emotion regulation), as well as how members of their social networks may relate to functioning in individuals with BPD.
ABCT has been a valuable outlet to present my research. Attending conferences has been extremely rewarding, and I've enjoyed the opportunity to attend talks from leaders in the field.
I would encourage students to attend and present their work at ABCT conventions. I would also encourage them to apply to the various awards associated with ABCT.
Sara A. Moss, M.A.
I am interested in the intersection between psychopathology and behavior change, goal pursuit, and emotion regulation in both younger and older adults.
ABCT has given me opportunities to network and disseminate research findings. I also enjoy reading the Behavior Therapist to learn about the conversations currently dominating the field.
I would recommend attending ABCT conventions to really bring the principles and debates surrounding evidence-based treatments alive. Download the conference app and pre-plan which talks, networking sessions, and events you want to attend.
Matt Southward, M.A.
I'm interested in translating basic findings on emotion regulation flexibility to better personalize and optimize treatments (e.g., DBT) for Borderline Personality Disorder.
ABCT has been an amazing organization to connect me with new colleagues, new friends, and potential mentors. As a member of the ABCT Twitter team, I've been lucky to meet outstanding young researchers and practice more effective science communication. Going to the annual conference has also exposed me to new theories and methods (e.g., GIMME, network analysis) that has helped me further develop my own lines of research, and it's where I presented my first national talk!
I would highly recommend getting involved in ABCT's social media committee (Facebook or Twitter). It's an awesome group of people who are invested in supporting members and the broader mission of ABCT. It also lets you get a sense for how to navigate social media as a young academic and it connects you to a vibrant community of folks online doing great research and clinical work.
Anne Wilson, M.A.
I'm interested in better understanding how different emotion-regulation strategies impact our emotions and behavior, and in translating these findings into clinical practice.
Being a member of ABCT has helped me to build and maintain connections with colleagues and mentors, stay up to date on the latest research, advance my development as a researcher and clinician at each stage of my career.
I would highly recommend presenting at the ABCT convention. It's a great way to meet people with similar research interests and spark ideas for future research projects.
Other students in the OSU MAPS Lab:
David Cregg, M.A.
Jennifer S. Cheavens, Ph.D.
Dr. Jennifer Cheavens is an Associate Professor and Director of Clinical Training in the Department of Psychology at the Ohio State University (OSU). She earned her Ph.D. in clinical psychology at the University of Kansas, after completing her internship year at Duke University Medical Center.
Dr. Cheavens directs the Mood and Personality Studies (MAPS) research group at OSU, where she conducts investigations aimed at characterizing and improving treatment for disorders of emotion dysregulation, including borderline personality disorder and depression. She also studies ways to incorporate client strengths into treatments. Additionally, she directs and provides supervision in the Dialectical Behavior Therapy clinic.
The OSU MAPS lab is involved in two primary lines of research. First, we work to optimize treatments for emotion dysregulation, focused on borderline personality disorder and depression. We use a translational science framework in which we rely on, among other things, behavioral laboratory paradigms and social network assessments to characterize emotional and interpersonal difficulties, process research to identify potential mechanisms of change and maintenance, and outcome research to determine the efficacy of treatments. Second, we study ways to incorporate constructs associated with flourishing (e.g., hope, gratitude) as well as client-specific strengths into treatments for disorders of emotion dysregulation.
How do you stay current with developments in the field, both research and practice?
Serving as an Associate Editor, on editorial boards, and as an ad hoc reviewer helps me to stay current with developments in the field. Additionally, I rely on alerts, both from journals and Google Scholar, to let me know when something new and relevant has come out. Finally, I often find out about interesting and relevant developments through involvement in list serves, attendance at meetings, and discussions with colleagues and students.
How often and why do you attend the ABCT convention?
I have attended the ABCT convention annually, with a few exceptions, since I was an advanced graduate student. ABCT has always been my "scholarly home" and attendance at the conference serves many functions for me. First, I always learn something new, and it is a great way to hear about innovative and interesting developments in the field relatively early on. Second, it is a terrific time to reconnect with friends and colleagues at other institutions. Third, I think the ABCT convention provides tremendous training opportunities for my students and I like to experience the conventions with them as they are developing their professional identities.
How long have you been a member of ABCT?
For a little over 20 years; definitely since it was AABT.
How has ABCT helped you/your lab professionally?
In addition to providing an opportunity to share our work and stay connected with the work others are doing in the area, ABCT has helped my students and I develop relationships with other people doing similar work. It is such an important organization for those interested in evidence-based assessment and intervention in clinical psychology; in addition to highlighting the scholarly and empirical advances being made, ABCT provides the occasion to learn from some of the most skilled treatment developers and providers in our field. Further, we have benefitted from access to the ABCT affiliated publications and teaching, clinical, and research resources available through the website.
Does your lab have any traditions? Does your lab do anything together for fun?
We do all sorts of fun things together! It is important to us to celebrate the wins so we try to plan fun outings to celebrate papers being accepted, grants being awarded, and internship matches occurring as well as celebrations of personal events or accomplishments.
What advice would you give prospective trainees?
I think that learning as much as you can about the graduate training trajectory, starting with the application process and moving all the way through to your first job, is really important. In order to make good decisions about graduate school, it is important to know where you are trying to go professionally and how to get there. Finding the right match, both in terms of a mentor and a program, is an essential step in your professional development and career.
David F. Tolin
2019-2020 President Elect
Amie E. Grills
2019-2022 Representative-at-Large Elect
Gift of Membership
Need the perfect gift for your student or recent grad, want to see them succeed, want to put them on the path to professional fulfillment? You've come to the right place, where all your wishes are granted.
Download this form, it'll take all of 2 minutes, and welcome your student or recent grad into the halls where Wolpe, Salter, Lazarus, Azrin, Franks, and others tread.
photo courtesy of Geralt
The Clinical Directory and Referral issues committee is highlighting the large number of SIGs that cover racial and ethnic diversity within ABCT:
This award recognizes outstanding individuals who are not members of ABCT but who have shown exceptional dedication, influence, and social impact through the promotion of evidence-based interventions and who have thereby advanced the mission of ABCT.
Visit our Champions page for full details on how to nominate and for a full listing of champions
Call for Papers: Special Issue of Behavior Therapy
The impact and treatment of sleep disorders
Sleep disorders are a significant public health problem in general, and are particularly elevated among psychiatric populations. This Special Issue aims to highlight cutting-edge research on the treatment of sleep disorders as well as work that makes significant contributions to our understanding of how sleep disorders impact the treatment of comorbid psychological disorders. Some of the essential questions that this special issue will seek to address include:
1. What is the efficacy or effectiveness of cognitive-behavioral therapies for sleep disorders, including traditional and eHealth interventions?
2. How do sleep disorders impact the treatment outcomes of comorbid psychological disorders?
3. What are the mechanisms that may explain the connection between sleep disorders and other psychological disorders, and how can this inform treatment planning?
This is not an exhaustive list, but instead illustrates the type of research questions of interest. Studies that assess sleep disorders using interview or polysomnography methods are encouraged. Papers for this special issue must highlight the clinical value of the findings. In addition to original research, review articles, short reports, brief commentary, case reports, and meta-analyses are invited.
Please direct inquiries and submit proposal abstracts to Carmen McLean (email@example.com) no later than February 1, 2019. If invited to contribute, final papers will be due July 1, 2019. Papers not considered for the special issue are of course still welcome for submission to the journal as an author initiated manuscript.
ABCT is delighted to announce a new partnership with PsyberGuide.
Please watch these pages for an expanding list of CBT-relevant apps being reviewed by the staff at PsyberGuide and the editors at Cognitive and Behavioral Practice.
PsyberGuide (PsyberGuide.org) is a non-profit website reviewing smartphone applications and other digital mental health tools. Its goal is to help people make responsible and informed decisions about the technologies they use for management of mental health. PsyberGuide is committed to ensuring that this information is available to all, and that it is free of preference, bias, or endorsement.
PsyberGuide is funded by One Mind, a leading non-profit organization supporting collaborative brain research to provide patients who suffer from brain disease and injury better diagnostics and treatment. With over 325,000 emerging digital health technologies, and an estimated 15,000 of those designed for mental health, One Mind recognized the lack of advice or guidelines to help people navigate the expanding marketplace of mental health apps. Thus in 2013, One Mind established PsyberGuide to address this growing problem.
In 2017, One Mind welcomed Dr. Stephen Schueller as Executive Director. Dr. Schueller is an Assistant Professor of Psychological Science at University of California. Irvine. His work focuses on expanding the accessibility and availability of mental health services through technology.
PsyberGuide & ABCT established this partnership with the aim of disseminating reviews of digital mental health tools to a broad audience of researchers, psychologists, psychiatrists and other mental-health practitioners who are interested in using these tools in their practice of behavioral, cognitive, and biological evidence-based principles.
In the coming months, app reviews from both PsyberGuide and Cognitive and Behavioral Practice will be integrated on both sites to expand the reach of information on available apps. ABCT will be developing a dedicated app review page which will host a sample of relevant PsyberGuide reviews. PsyberGuide will also link to C&BP reviews on their site, where relevant.
PsyberGuide Executive Director, Dr. Stephen Schueller, said "ABCT has been a leader in advancing the use of innovative behavioral and cognitive treatments. Technological behavioral and cognitive treatments will play a role in the future of mental health care and we're excited to team with ABCT to ensure researchers and practitioners are equipped to effectively use technology to help improve people's lives."
Cognitive and Behavioral Practice's apps are reviewed with the idea of providing guidance to clinicians in choosing apps that allow them to best serve the needs of their clients. Reviews will often cover cost, targeted clients, basic purpose, the research data behind them, as well as quick overviews of their utility.
To see Cognitive and Behavioral Practice's review apps, click on the app that most interests you:
MMFT Review Summaries
Anxiety Coach is an app for iOS devices ($4.99 at time of publication; Mayo Clinic, 2016) marketed as a self-help program for anxiety for children and adults. The primary focus is to help individuals understand and identify anxiety symptoms, create a hierarchy, and develop plans for exposure tasks. The program was designed by clinical researchers with expertise in CBT for anxiety. There is potential to support ongoing therapy, such as to allow patients to provide real-time data when reviewing between-session anxiety and exposure details with a therapist. Whiteside and colleagues (2014) have published case studies and reported feasibility/acceptability data which are promising. Our expert reviewer felt that the focus of the app on helping users conduct exposure tasks is unique and valuable, and the program had good navigation and an easy to follow user interface.
SuperBetter is an iOS app and website that is marketed to help users pursue goals, which can include mental health goals. The app was developed using game theory and mechanics that mimic "behaviors and techniques that have been clinically shown to give individuals more control over their thoughts and feelings" according to the developer, Jane McGonigal, who has authored books on the subject of leveraging gaming to increase well-being. There are video-game features like "power-ups," "quests," "Power Packs" and a "Community" where individuals can join in to engage in forums or play together as "Allies." Our reviewer found a strong development team and breadth of content, but felt the overall quality of the content lacking in terms of potential to promote clinically significant levels of improvement without active or guided practice with real-world behavior change. Preliminary RCTs have shown feasibility, though attrition rates continue to be a concern. Our reviewer recommends caution if considering this as a stand-alone option for depression or as an adjunct to face-to-face therapy without further data on effectiveness and further development of human safety plans.
Sleepio is a 6-week treatment program for insomnia delivered online and through mobile app. The program includes evidence-based components including psychoeducation, relaxation techniques, cognitive thought challenging sleep scheduling and sleep tracking compatibility (with other wearable trackers). Our reviewer felt the navigation was easy to use and the platform engaging. The program has been tested in a large RCT and smaller trials with promising results. The program is more costly than online competitors ($300 for a 1-year subscription). Our reviewer felt it was a good option as stand-alone first-line intervention and a model internet-based CBT intervention.
TicHelper.com is an 8-week online treatment program for Tic Disorders in youth (8-adolescence) based on the empirically-supported Comprehensive Behavioral Intervention for Tics (CBIT) protocol and developed in collaboration with experts who developed and tested CBIT. The program includes evidence-based components including psychoeducation, training in developing competing responses and multiple videos to illustrate concepts. There is also some parent-focused content. Our reviewer felt the program was age-appropriate, appealing and easy to navigate. While the online program does not offer the tailoring allowed in face-to-face individual therapy, there are branching structures which allow some tailoring of content. There is pilot feasibility data on the prototype but no research trials published at the time of this review. Our reviewer notes that the strengths outweigh the weaknesses and the program is unique in the market of targeting this condition and using evidence-based treatment components.
Triple P Online is an online self-help parent training program aimed at reducing child behavior problems through evidence-based "positive parenting practices." The program is available through the website, www2.tripleponline.net, at time of review for $79.95. The program is comprised of 8 video-based modules. Our expert reviewer found the program to include high-quality content with relevant and easily locatable resources, and felt the navigation was easy-to-use and appealing. The program's main weakness lies in its lack of monitoring and adaptation to the user's state (e.g., child's and parent's behaviors), and real-time reminders for desired actions. Overall the program was found to be a valuable parent training resource for addressing child behavior problems by our reviewer.
Psychotherapy.net is an online magazine and video library and production company targeting clinicians, educators, and clinical trainees. At present, the website offers two video steaming subscription plans for individual use: 1) a "Choice plan", which allows access to 2 monthly videos for a fee of $39 each month; and 2) an "Unlimited plan" for $79 monthly, which allows unlimited access to the full online library of over 200 training videos. The primary strength of the website is the breadth of available psychotherapy training videos, which cover several major theoretical orientations, modalities, and clinical populations. However, our expert reviewer notes that the resource is limited by the current absence of information related to evidence-based practice recommendations.
Awards Ceremony: Friday, 5:30-6:30 p.m., Delaware A & B
Washington Marriott Wardman Park
Linda Carter Sobell, Ph.D., ABPP, Nova Southeastern University
Mark B. Sobell, Ph.D., ABPP, Nova Southeastern University
Ricardo Muñoz, Ph.D., Palo Alto University
Shannon Wiltsey Stirman, Ph.D., National Center for PTSD and Stanford University
Outstanding Service to ABCT
Former Behavior Therapy Editors Richard G. Heimberg, Ph.D., Temple University; Thomas H. Ollendick, Ph.D., Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University; and Michelle G. Newman, Ph.D., Pennsylvania State University
Distinguished Friend to Behavior Therapy
Joel Sherrill, Ph.D., Division of Services and Intervention Research, NIMH
Anne Marie Albano Early Career Award for Excellence in the Integration of Science and Practice
Joseph McGuire, Ph.D., Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine
Virginia A. Roswell Student Dissertation Award
Gabriela Khazanov, Ph.D., University of Pennsylvania
Leonard Krasner Student Dissertation Award
Eric Lee, M.A., Utah State University
John R. Z. Abela Student Dissertation Award
Joanna Kim, M.A., University of California, Los Angeles
Student Research Grant Recipients
Laurel D. Sarfan, Miami University (Ohio), "Using the Approach Avoid Task: Testing the Relation Between Implicit and Explicit Experiential Avoidance and Social Anxiety Symptoms"
HONORABLE MENTION: Daniel P. Moriarity, Temple University, "Reward Sensitivity, Stress Reactivity, and Mood Psychopathology"
ADAA Travel Awards
Shannon Blakey, M.S., University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
Martha Falkenstein, Ph.D., McLean Hospital/Harvard Medical School
Elsie Ramos Memorial Student Poster Awards
Emma Brett, Oklahoma State University
Jonah Meyerhoff, University of Vermont
Kristen E. Frosio, Oklahoma State University
Student Travel Award
Lillian Reuman, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
ABCT weighs in on the effects on children of being separated from their parents
Members consulted the literature on this, and posted results from the literature. Needless to say, the findings don't paint pretty pictures. Studies included refugees in Christmas Island, survivors of natural disaster in Australia, left behind children in China, and more.
Detention is not good for children; children in detention handle it better if with their parents; Chinese children left behind as their migrant parents work fair worse than children who accompany their migrant parents even though the living conditions are tougher; foster care, when parents are alive, is sometimes a source of confusion.
Problems are detailed in our posting, with full coverage here
Call for Papers has gone out and registration is open.