Samantha Mosier provides insights into applying for graduate schools, explaining the differences in PhD and PsyD programs, and giving us a cornucopia of tools and tricks to help you. It’s all here for you.
We also offer some useful articles to help you in the Graduate School Application process
The actual election will be held November 1–30, 2019, in an effort to encourage more participation by the membership in electing the leadership of ABCT. Those elected will begin their term of service at the November 2020 Annual Meeting of Members but will begin their orientation to ABCT governance prior to taking office. While casting your vote please pay close attention as the choices are listed in a randomized order!
As we have done in the past, the election will be held electronically with access for all full, fellow, and new member professionals to vote. If we do not have an email address, you will be sent a paper ballot that must be postmarked by November 30, 2019. To vote, you must be an ABCT member in good standing and renew your membership for 2020. If you have recently renewed your membership, please note that the electronic voting system may take a day or two to recognize you as an eligible voter. Staff will make every effort to expediate your renewal. You will receive an email with instructions on how to vote as soon as your information is processed.
You can renew on-line or you can renew at the ABCT registration area during the November 21-24 Annual Convention in Atlanta. This year, to cast light on the election process, we will have “I Voted” stickers available for your convention badge in the registration area in the ribbon board. Please be sure to pick one up!
Results of the election will be posted on the ABCT website, the list serve, and our Facebook page in early December.
We appreciate your active interest and participation in the ABCT election process. I think you will agree that we have 4 outstanding and capable members to serve you and your professional home.
To Vote for candidates and the proposed bylaws changes, please click:
Recently, I joined the faculty of the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley, part of a predominantly Hispanic community with little access to high-quality mental health care. My experiences here and starting off as the CBT representative in my department have informed my vision for ABCT-to build on our history of excellence by committing to increasing diversity in our membership to affect the greatest impact, particularly for those in our communities who have traditionally benefited the least from our collective work. I hope to do this by:
Staying focused on our core values: ABCT was founded with a focus on science; this is perhaps even more important today. It is time for us to re-imagine what this means-from providing tools for educators to encourage scientific thinking about mental health to leading current efforts for rigor and reproducibility. We need to continue facilitating communication and collaboration between researchers and clinicians, and work with funders, policymakers, journalists, and third-party payers to ensure that public discourse and policy are informed by science and that empirically supported methods reach the wide and diverse populations that need these services.
Expanding our relevance: Fulfilling our mission depends on recruiting a diverse group into the practice and study of CBT and ensuring their meaningful participation at all levels of our community. This means exploring a greater array of member benefits to enhance the value of ABCT and actively recruiting from diverse fields and in diverse settings.
Public education: Despite recently celebrating our 50th birthday, many who could benefit most from CBT know little about it. Clearly, cognitive and behavioral principles have applications far outside the therapy room. Through public education campaigns and outreach we can better realize the promises of CBT.
Increasing support to SIGs: The ability to connect with colleagues is one of the benefits I hear ABCT members cite as most important to them. Our SIGs are often where these relationships begin and they are key to our outreach efforts.
I look forward to working with you to accomplish these goals.
As a student at Virginia Tech under ABCT Past President Tom Ollendick, I joined ABCT 26 years ago and became a part of this storied CBT family. Yet, when I started my career, as the sole "CBT person" in my department, I found an even greater appreciation of ABCT. Annual meetings became personally meaningful as a place to reaffirm my professional values, to keep up with the field, to reconnect with old friends and make new ones, and to pay it forward-bringing my own students into our CBT family.
Volunteering for ABCT is a value to which I hold firm, first through service to the Child and Adolescent Anxiety SIG, the "Adult" Anxiety SIG, and more recently as a member of the Program Committee. In 2014 I became co-chair of the Women's SIG and I am currently co-chair of the board-appointed Task Force to Promote Equity, Access, and Inclusion. These positions have afforded me a greater understanding of the principles and processes that bring to fruition the mission and strategic goals of our organization.
I'm an ABCT Fellow, Beck Institute Scholar, Academy of Cognitive Therapy (ACT) member, helped to found the ABCT Neurocognitive and Translational SIG, and have served as its senior advisor since its inception. I've attended the ABCT Annual Convention for most of the past 20 years, have frequently published in the Behavior Therapist, and have been on the ABCT Program Committee a number of times. I have been honored to lead ABCT's 2018-19 translational Think Tank on bringing neuroscience methods to the clinic. I'm an associate professor in the departments of psychiatry, psychology, and translational sciences at the University of Pittsburgh, where I direct the Program in Cognitive Affective Neuroscience, have been continuously funded by the National Institutes of Health, Department of Defense, and foundation grants for the past two decades, and have over 170 publications, the first of which, as a grad student, was in the Behavior Therapist. My research is in using neuroscience to facilitate recovery from psychopathology, particularly involving augmentation of CBT with methods for personalization and response-enhancing adjunctive technologies. I see patients and supervise clinicians as part of this research.
As science and practice draw ever closer in the behavioral and cognitive therapies, ABCT remains at the forefront of potential for this integration. As President, my agenda is to facilitate Translation, Integration, and Enhancing our members (TIE):
Translation - Bringing the research and clinical worlds together and helping each to avail themselves of the newest and deepest insights from each other's worlds, e.g., by providing outlets, roadmaps, and vehicles for translation, implementation, and dissemination of insights from research labs.
Integration - Integrating ABCT's diverse stakeholders, including clinicians, researchers, industry members, and care recipients from diverse backgrounds and orientations, e.g., via strategically facilitated conversations, multi-SIG events, solicited reviews, promoting integration-focused grant mechanisms and communications with related organizations and funders (e.g., NIH), and an emphasis on ongoing positive integrative dialogues at the Annual Convention.
Enhancing our members - Working towards our members having the understanding, access, and ability to use and develop new empirically validated treatments and technologies, e.g., via paper repositories, webinars, and encouraging attention to standards (see my October tBT article for more on this point). Increasing the society's outreach and value to those we are losing or failing to recruit, particularly including underrepresented communities and the next generation of students with translational aspirations, particularly through increased value-added functions between annual meetings. A hallmark of professional societies that thrive is members that are passionate about them-the community, the shared agenda, and what they provide. I would be honored to help move ABCT towards having passionately engaged members who, in large numbers, are as proud as I am to call this society their professional home.
One core component of ABCT's ambitious mission is to globally enhance health and well-being via behavioral and cognitive evidence-based practices. I think we can all agree that if our collective goal is to truly have global impact, reduce mental health suffering, and promote human wellness, we have our work cut out for us. ABCT is a formidable organization, but to accomplish our mission, we simply will need more help.
Historically, ABCT has maintained a membership largely comprised of doctoral-level psychologists and students pursuing this degree. Achieving our goal, however, will not only require more like-minded psychologists. It will necessitate a substantially larger coalition of professional members with diverse backgrounds who are committed to expanding the reach of cognitive and behavioral principles and practices; it will also require strategic partnerships with stakeholder communities. Throughout my career, I have held the roles of educator, clinician, and researcher. Just as important, I have extensive experience with a wide range of diverse professional, student, and stakeholder communities. Finally, I have significant leadership experience with a multiprofessional organization that engaged a diverse group of providers from approximately 50 countries around the globe. Collectively, these experiences enhance my ability to understand the perspectives, experiences, and needs of both existing and prospective members, as well as the communities these individuals serve. I also understand the challenges of bringing together diverse perspectives in one organization. Taken together, I believe my experiences and my passion for ABCT will help me advance ABCT's mission and membership in the position of Representative-at-Large, Liaison to Membership Issues.
I am a professor of psychology at Trinity University, in San Antonio, Texas. I am also a licensed psychologist and board certified in behavioral and cognitive psychology. I completed my training at Swarthmore College (B.A), Rutgers University (M.S., Ph.D.), Brown University (internship), and Dartmouth Medical School (postdoc). The overarching goal of my work has been to bridge the research-practice gap and facilitate implementation of cognitive and behavioral interventions in clinical settings. After attending my first ABCT conference in 1991, ABCT became my professional home, and it has played a vital role in the trajectory of my career ever since. Indeed, ABCT served as a much-needed cognitive behavioral sanctuary when I first moved to the rather psychodynamic city of San Antonio. Over the years, I have served ABCT in a variety of ways. I am currently a member of the Membership Committee and the Editorial Board of Cognitive and Behavioral Practice. I also am a past member of the Publications Committee, the Continuing Education Committee, and the Program Committee. In addition, I formerly chaired the Obesity and Eating Disorders SIG. I also have extensive leadership experience with other organizations. For instance, I currently serve as President of the Society for a Science of Clinical Psychology, and I am a Past President of the Academy for Eating Disorders, which is the global eating disorders organization. I also currently serve as a liaison to the Coalition for the Advancement and Application of Psychological Science.
I am passionate at helping increase the impact of ABCT through the effective dissemination and implementation of evidence-based behavioral, cognitive, and biological practices, especially through innovative means such as technology. As the Representative-at-Large liaison for Membership Issues, some of my goals would be:
to help think through how ABCT can support its members during professional transitions, especially those with diverse career trajectories and training who are committed to ABCT's mission.
to increase our outreach and collaboration with partners and organizations. I have pursued this in my own work in coordinating with industry and managing partnerships with community and professional organizations.
to ensure ABCT is an organization that is deeply committed to supporting diversity and inclusion in our members. We need to help create and support a community capable of meeting the diverse needs of those who could be helped by behavioral, cognitive, and biological evidence-based principles.
I am thrilled at the opportunity to further extend my service and involvement with ABCT by running for Representative-at-Large. Since becoming an ABCT member in my third year of graduate school, ABCT has always been the organization I consider my professional home and November is always circled on my calendar to attend the Annual Convention. I've enjoyed numerous opportunities to serve and learn more about the workings of ABCT, including serving on the Membership Committee from 2012-2016, the Awards Committee from 2018-2019, and participating in the inaugural ABCT Think Tank on Digital Technologies to Provide Evidence-Based Care in 2017 and 2018. I have participated in the ABCT Social Media "Rotating Curation" program to help support ABCT's social media presence and am an active member in the Dissemination & Implementation Science (DIS) SIG and the Technology and Behavior Change SIG. In the spirit of my "can't get enough of ABCT" attitude, I look forward to the chance to contribute to ABCT in a new way.
Stephen Schueller, Ph.D., is an Assistant Professor of Psychological Science at the University of California, Irvine and an Adjunct Assistant Professor of Preventive Medicine at Northwestern University, Feinberg School of Medicine. He received his BA from the University of California, Riverside, his Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania, and completed his internship and postdoctoral fellowship at the University of California, San Francisco, as part of the Public Service and Minority Cluster at San Francisco General Hospital. His research focuses on expanding the accessibility and availability of mental health services through technology. In this work he leads PsyberGuide.org, a project that identifies, evaluates, and disseminates information about digital mental health products in the hopes of empowering consumers and providers to make informed decisions and find quality products. PsyberGuide's mission is strengthened through partnerships with various organizations, including ABCT. He has served on the Board of Directors and as the Treasurer of the International Society for Research on Internet Interventions since 2016. In the free time Stephen has he enjoys running, which helps keep him in shape to chase after his 4-year-old triplets-Griffin, Ella, and Rylee.
Stefan Hofmann and Michael Addis join Meghna Chakrabarti on WBUR’s On Point to discuss anxiety, especially from a male perspective. They provide a lively back and forth roundtable with callers, exploring the perceived extra difficulty males might have in even admitting it, as well as those long-standing, unstated expectations many males might have. It’s an enjoyable and informative 45 minutes, with additional excellent accompanying text, some of which have previously also been featured on this site.
The Couples and Intimate Relationships Lab, located at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (UNC) Department of Psychology and Neuroscience, is directed by Don Baucom, Ph.D.
Doctoral Student Lab Members
We asked each of the Couples and Intimate Relationships Lab's ABCT student 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?
Kimberly Pentel, M.A.
My research focuses on developing and evaluating couple-based treatments for relationship distress and individual psychopathology. I especially enjoy tailoring empirically supported therapies for specific disorders and populations and critically examining treatments to ensure they are sensitive and accessible for historically underserved groups. For my dissertation, I am developing and pilot-testing a culturally tailored couple therapy for same-sex female couples, drawing upon the cognitive behavioral couple therapy (CBCT) model and sexual minority stress literature. As a next step, I aim to develop a broader framework for clinicians to strategically tailor empirically supported therapies for underserved couples.
Fundamentally, ABCT is my professional home. Through SIG membership, I have found networking opportunities and developed a few collaborations. Through the SIGs, I learn about ABCT programming most relevant to my interests, and can strategically design a convention agenda to learn about cutting edge updates in those areas. The annual convention is a valuable opportunity to present at a national forum and learn how to communicate one's work to a broader audience. I enjoy asking questions to leading scholars and connecting in-person even if we live in different states or countries. Finally, in addition to the more traditional programming, I appreciate ABCT's professional development programming (e.g., focused on internship, postdoc, work-life balance, women in leadership).
I highly recommend joining one to two SIGs, including joining their email list and annual SIG meeting at the convention. It is also incredibly valuable to seek out experience in various speaking roles at the ABCT convention, including serving as symposium speaker, symposium chair, roundtable moderator, or poster presenter. If opportunities arise, chairing a symposium or moderating a roundtable may be especially rewarding since this includes determining the learning objectives and scope, pulling together presenters, and really taking the lead in a certain content area.
Danielle Weber, M.A.
Broadly, I am interested in how we better understand and improve the functioning of committed romantic relationships. Within this broad field, I am particularly interested in couples wherein one partner is experiencing significant psychopathology and the role that partners play in the maintenance or alleviation of those symptoms. I am also broadly interested in how emotions are experienced within couples; more specifically, how partners may sometimes be an asset and at other times a detriment to how individuals recover from emotional distress in the moment. I am also interested in couples undergoing significant environmental stressors, such as being separated geographically (long-distance relationships) or experiencing discrimination and prejudice (same-sex couples).
ABCT has allowed me to expand my knowledge base by attending engaging and innovative research presentations at the conventions, refine my own skills in presentations by affording me the opportunity to present my research at conventions, and expand my professional network at these conventions.
I think that presenting as part of a symposium and presenting posters have been an invaluable part of my professional development. Presenting in a symposium is a wonderful way to inform people studying similar work and can really help get your work out there in a meaningful way. Presenting a poster is also a wonderful opportunity to learn how to describe your research concisely and to interact with your audience. I've had people help me think about my research in different ways based on these discussions. I've also started a collaboration with a person presenting a poster a few posters away! I also have had a great experience being a part of the Couples SIG at ABCT and getting to know more people within my specific field. I also serve as a graduate student member of a committee so have the chance to interact with researchers in different areas and levels of their careers. So, in summary, I recommend presenting in whatever way you can, joining the SIG that most closely matches your interest, and joining a committee if you can.
Alexandra Wojda, B.A.
I am interested in the ways in which environmental stressors play a role in relationship functioning. My primary areas of focus include acute and chronic stressors, including relationship traumas (e.g., intimate partner violence) and poverty. With respect to both, I am curious to understand the extent to which these stressors affect interpersonal processes (e.g., emotion co-regulation, dyadic coping), overall relationship health and resilience, and treatment gains within couple therapy. Over the course of my career, I look to broaden my work from basic research to the realm of treatment development, and test new and existing culturally sensitive interventions that target relationship distress and mental health in low-income communities.
ABCT has shaped my work as a graduate student researcher in terms of content and process. With respect to content, my attendance at conference events and engagement in intellectually stimulating discussion with colleagues have made me think deeply about the applications of others' work to everyday clinical practice. Inevitably, it has also inspired additional research questions and considerations, exposed me to new research and clinical methodologies, and encouraged me to continue to consider intersectional issues in my own clinical work and research. Comparatively, with respect to process, presenting my own research at ABCT (and observing the presentation styles of others) has allowed me to hone my oral presentation skills and learn effective ways to convey scientific findings. Ultimately, I have found both sets of skills to be invaluable in the formation of my own independent research program.
First, as students consider their areas of research interest, it might behoove them to join Special Interest Groups (SIGs). Within these, they may have opportunities to build their professional networks and attend pre-conference events. Some of these events might even present opportunities to receive brief mentorship from researchers at different stages of their career as well as chances to give a brief talk on their own research. Second, students might want to present a poster: Doing so will offer further opportunities to engage in intellectually stimulating discussion with others, exercise presentation skills, and perhaps even initiate collaborations with other colleagues. Finally, I encourage students to attend symposia that might fall outside of the purview of their primary research interests-you never know what might spark another enthralling research question! Thus, taken together, I believe all of these wonderful opportunities at the ABCT convention can support a young researcher's intellectual and professional growth.
Emily Carrino, B.A.
My main interest centers around understanding how sociocultural factors (i.e., gender, sexuality, and minority stress) influence psychopathology and relationship functioning. Specifically, I am interested in intervention development for underserved couples, with an eye towards LGBTQ+, long-distance, and low-income dyads. I am also broadly interested in dissemination of evidence-based couple therapies, including expanding the reach and modalities of therapist training and supervision.
ABCT has been invaluable to my development as a clinical scientist thus far, both in inspiring me to share my research and engage with others' work in a collaborative, engaging way and in building a scientific community. When I first attended ABCT's annual convention as a post-baccalaureate member, I had the privilege of meeting many scholars whose work I had admired from afar-an experience that energized me to think from new perspectives, contextualize my research ideas, and increase my sense of belonging as a psychological researcher.
I recommend attending and immersing yourself in the annual ABCT convention as an early researcher, if possible. Special Interest Groups (SIGs) are also a great way to meet people in your research areas, forge connections and collaborations, and start to build a scientific community for yourself.
Don Baucom, Ph.D.
Don Baucom is Distinguished Professor of Psychology and Neuroscience at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (UNC). He currently is in his 44th year as a faculty member in academia and continues his passion for the multiple domains of his professional life: conducting research on couples, training and supervising doctoral students and other professionals around the world in conducting couple therapy, teaching classes on both the graduate and undergraduate level, and being an active clinician himself.
Our Couples and Intimate Relationships Lab engages in the "full life cycle" of understanding, treating, and disseminating knowledge regarding relationship distress. This involves conducting basic research in the laboratory and real world regarding functional and dysfunctional couple interaction patterns (e.g., difficulties regulating high levels of emotion); based on these findings and clinical observation, developing and evaluating new couple-based interventions for couples in numerous contexts (e.g., relationships in which one person has psychopathology, same sex couples, etc.), and disseminating efficacious treatments to clinicians in the real world through writings, extensive workshops, and ongoing clinical supervision.
How do you stay current with developments in the field, both research and practice?
As behaviorists, we believe there is no substitute for actively engaging fully in what you want to understand. Therefore, all members of the Couples and Intimate Relationships Lab engage in research and clinical activities with couples in an integrated fashion on an ongoing basis. We run a couple clinic for UNC; this includes all of us in the lab who are doctoral students and beyond, where our lab members are trained clinically at an intensive level, develop important research questions for formal inquiry, and train and supervise other therapists as well. We believe it is crucial to learn from others, so we collaborate in our research and clinical training with investigators from several other universities in the United States, as well as many other countries. These collaborations keep us open to recognizing the diverse ways that couples conduct their lives throughout the world and beyond the walls of academia. Of course, we read the current research and clinical literature, and believe these written accounts come to life and have meaning most clearly when we are immersed in the real-world phenomena on an ongoing basis.
How long have you been a member of ABCT?
I joined ABCT in the early 1970s while a graduate student and have attended the conventions regularly since that time.
How often and why do you attend the ABCT convention?
I attend ABCT every year, missing only once since joining in the early 1970s. Outside of my own university, it has been my academic home where I continue to learn, share ideas, and get together with old friends and develop new relationships. ABCT has become a major gathering place for couple researchers from around the world, so attending the convention provides a unique opportunity to gather with top people in the field and listen to and learn from younger scholars as they expand our thinking. Whereas the formal program is excellent, much of the value of the convention happens outside of the established agenda. It is an annual time to meet with colleagues from around the world and to reconnect with former students in a real, three-dimensional space, not on a flat screen. And it is what I would call an "intellectual jam session" where we play with new ideas, move current projects along, and almost always develop new collaborative efforts.
How has ABCT helped you/your lab professionally?
In addition to the above, the ABCT conference is a place where students meet and interact with their future colleagues from other labs and meet former lab members from UNC; have an opportunity to share ideas and pick the brains of other established researchers; take the lead in developing symposia and round tables, and presenting their own ideas through giving talks (after passing the lab presentation practice at home where the fine points of presenting years of work in a 12 minute presentation are mastered!). Being part of a top-notch CBT organization allows us to step back, put our work in perspective, recognizing where our work fits into the field, hopefully feeling affirmed in the process and energized to continue to grow and move forward with our thinking.
Does your lab have any traditions? Does your lab do anything together for fun?
In all reality, I think we have fun every time we gather. I believe academia, research, and clinical work are demanding, so if it isn't fun, I don't think we can continue it for decades. So fun is a way of interacting and approaching all we do. In addition, we do plan special activities outside of our meetings, and much of it seems to include food! So we have lunch together at a lovely dining facility on campus, dinners at my home and also hosted at the homes of students. This year we have initiated a fall retreat day locally where we will "think great thoughts" and play; we're also planning to initiate retreats in the mountains of North Carolina. And the ABCT convention is one of those fun times as well, including an annual lab dinner. The fun is the people, and that can happen any time, any place.
What advice would you give prospective trainees (in general, or to those applying to your lab specifically)?
Recently our clinical program had a lunch speaker who had been our former Director of Clinical Psychology at UNC and had continued to become Department Chair, Dean of Arts and Sciences, Provost, and finally President of a major university. When asked for her advice, she responded, "I have no nuggets." I believe most broad, generic nuggets are like fool's gold and not worth much. I've learned only to give advice to individuals when they actively seek it, and then we'll figure it out together - 'til then!
Larry Cohen, LICSW
Social Anxiety Help at the National Social Anxiety Center
Mr. Cohen has provided cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) services in Washington, DC, since 1990. His CBT clinic specializes in helping people with social anxiety, other anxiety-related disorders, mood disorders, relationship and career problems, and LGBT concerns.
He co-founded and co-chairs the National Social Anxiety Center, with 18 regional clinics around the country, including his own in DC.
He has conducted several professional training workshops and webinars on CBT for social anxiety through the Anxiety and Depression Association of America. He has also led many dozens of free educational workshops on social anxiety and CBT for consumers.
He received his Master of Social Work (MSW) degree from the University of Michigan in 1987. He is a Licensed Independent Clinical Social Worker (LICSW) in the District of Columbia, Maryland, and Virginia.
He has been extensively trained in CBT, group psychotherapy, and crisis intervention. He is a Certified Diplomate in Cognitive Therapy through the Academy of Cognitive Therapy. He is also a Diplomate in Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy, the highest credential offered by the National Association of Cognitive-Behavioral Therapists. He is certified in Trial-Based Cognitive Therapy, which utilizes role-playing exercises to facilitate attitude change. He is a Certified Group Psychotherapist, and a founder of the National Registry of Certified Group Psychotherapists. Washingtonian magazine included him in their most recent list of "Top Therapists" in the DC area.
He has worked for several years at the Whitman-Walker Clinic in Washington, DC: one of the nation's largest health centers for HIV and AIDS, and for the lesbian, gay, bi and trans (LGBT) community. He served as their first Mental Health Services Director, as well as their first Volunteer Resources Director. He has a 40-year history of volunteer work in varied human services and social justice issues.
He has a special interest in therapy groups and support groups as a means of helping people with common concerns empower each other. He has led 94 social anxiety therapy groups (20-weeks each), as well as many other therapy groups for depression, relationships, self-esteem, coming out, and AIDS. He has also led many support groups on a variety of issues, and supervised a team of Whitman-Walker Clinic support group leaders for seven years.
First, we would like to know a little about your practice.
What are your personal strengths as a practitioner?
I have a very practical approach to cognitive-behavioral therapy: helping clients learn, practice and apply concrete skills and strategies to clients overcome personal problems and achieve their personal goals. It is my goal to help clients become their own person therapist, so that they can continue using these skills and strategies on their own after our work is over in order to make further progress in their lives, as well as to prevent relapse. I specialize in helping people with social anxiety disorder and related problems, and lead frequent CBT groups for social anxiety. I also specialize in serving the LGBT community.
How do you remind your patients of their strengths during the therapy process?
After every behavioral experiment the client conducts in session or as self-chosen therapy homework, I help clients identify ways they helped themselves during the experiment. I also guide clients in the use of a "Pride and Gratitude Log," in which they daily identify positive things they have done, and their underlying qualities and strengths that these things exemplify.
Are you involved in other types of professional activities in addition to your private practice?
I lead frequent educational workshops on social anxiety for consumers, as well as professional training workshops on CBT for social anxiety for other psychotherapists.
We are also interested in some of your views of CBT.
What do you think is the single most important thing CBT can do for your clients?
Effective CBT doesn't just help people recover or achieve a goal. Effective CBT helps clients master key strategies and skills that they can continue using after therapy is over to help them prevent relapse and continue making progress on their own.
How do you use the local or social media to educate your community on the benefits of CBT?
I participate in a blog and Facebook page on social anxiety through the National Social Anxiety Center, which I cofounded.
Finally, we would like to know your opinions about ABCT.
How long have you been a member of ABCT?
What services do you consider the most valuable from ABCT?
Rebecca Sachs, PhD, ABPP, is a clinical psychologist specializing in the assessment and treatment of individuals on the Autism spectrum who also experience difficult co-occurring disorders, such as Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) and severe anxiety. She works with individuals across the lifespan, and loves to talk, lecture, and train others about Autism and common complicated co-morbidities. She is board-certified in Behavioral and Cognitive Psychology and brings warmth, sensitivity, and a strong sense of humor to her work as a licensed clinical psychologist. As a member of Spectrum Services, Dr. Sachs maintains a private practice there in Manhattan as well as South Slope in Brooklyn. She was recognized as a rising star by the Anxiety and Depression Association of America (ADAA), receiving their Career Development Leadership Award in 2015. She received her Bachelors degree, and PhD from New York University and Hofstra University, respectively, and completed a postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Miami.
What are your personal strengths as a practitioner?
The sense of humor that I bring to therapy (or I'd like to think so!), along with my expertise in ASD and OCD, and my passion and dedication to collaborating with patients to create a more meaningful and successful life.
What "tips" can you offer to colleagues just opening a practice?
Get out of the office! The best way to build a practice is to have a community of other professionals to network and collaborate with. The same advice applies to practicing therapy. All of our CBT techniques, such as behavioral activation, problem-solving, exposure therapy, cognitive restructuring, are powerful tools, but they can be even more powerful when put into use in real life. It is sometimes challenging to replicate or connect to real life when sitting on a coach, so I find getting out the office and into my patients' lives can be transformative.
Are you involved in other types of professional activities in addition to your private practice?
I'm actively involved in other professional organizations that are dedicated to increasing understanding and bringing evidence-based treatments to individuals with Autism, OCD, and Anxiety. Additionally, I have the privilege of serving as an examiner for the American Board of Behavioral and Cognitive Psychology (ABBCP), which is part of American Board of Professional Psychology (ABPP). As part of the examination process, I have particularly enjoyed seeing how many people are passionate and take seriously the practice of CBT. Also, selfishly I have had the opportunity to meet individuals who work with patients very different than mine and thus have had a first-hand window into seeing how CBT can be delivered to such a wide array of groups.
Who was your mentor?
Luckily, I have had a lot of wonderful mentors along my journey; some have fallen in my lap and others I have sought out. I have been mentored not only as a clinician but also as a business woman, and I do think mentorship is critical to being a successful professional and successful therapist. Because of this I am dedicated to "paying it forward," and believe mentorship is something we as a profession should be doing a lot more of at every step of training and professional development. I think a lot of individuals from less typical groups get discouraged from applying or finishing grad school or pursuing academia/private practice and it's to the detriment of how CBT is practiced and who it effectively reaches.
When not practicing CBT, what do you do for fun?
I love to travel! While I can't just hop on a jet plane every weekend, luckily I live in a phenomenal city (Brooklyn!!!) where I can easily play tourist with my daughter and my friends.
How do you use the local or social media to educate your community on the benefits of CBT?
I find social media, when used properly, can really be an effective tool to let people know about CBT and how robust it is. I'm active on twitter and find there is a wonderful community of pro-CBT practitioners, pro-science doctors, and people from all backgrounds - including autistics and those with OCD who are sharing good information and support. I'm also part of several parenting and mommy groups on Facebook, and have found just chiming in that I'm a psychologist who would be happy to chat with parents struggling goes a long way. Sometimes our conversations are about anxiety and understanding how it's different from developmentally appropriate "stress" and other times it's explaining in very lay terms the nuts and bolts of behaviorism and how it can be easily applied to parenting. I can't tell you how many people breathe a sigh of relief to understand about "functions of behavior," extinction burst, and how star charts really can be used to help kids be more flexible (especially when the proper reinforcer is identified and implemented)!
We, your publishers, love coming to the ABCT Annual Convention. Like everyone who attends, we are here to network and to learn, and in our case - we hope - to inform. We get to meet existing authors, prospective authors and editors; and we get to show readers and potential readers both the latest releases as well as established classics and publications that ABCT members and others have created. We aim to showcase the best of ABCT for ABCT.
Unlike online stores, where you may have to search through millions of products, in the ABCT convention exhibit hall attendees can see carefully curated selections of books, journals, and other information resources that are relevant for your professional development. Some may even be a bit of fun. You can pick them up, browse them, compare them with other publications to get the one that is right for you and/or your clients.
Another great thing is that you can usually choose whether to buy and take your favorite book with you to read straight away - or have it shipped home for free.
And our meeting discounts save you money as well. Just a couple of examples: New Harbinger is currently offering a 30% discount online, with a meeting discount of 30% and free shipping. Or you can save over $10 on $30 books in Hogrefe's Advances in Psychotherapy series with the meeting discount and "4 for 3" offer.
Another neat thing is that many of our authors like hanging out at their publishers' booths, so if you're lucky you may even be able to chat with this expert in the exhibit hall - if you've not already attended a talk or symposium.
The select band of publishers that continue to support ABCT help make the exhibit hall educational and professionally informative. So come by your favorite publishers' booths at the Annual Convention: delve into great publications and choose the right one(s) for you, to read right now or later, save money, and chat with the experts who've written them - or maybe even discuss your own ideas with your favorite publishers.
Dorothy Smyk, Foreign rights Director (New Harbinger)
Cory F. Newman, Ph.D., University of Pennsylvania, Center for Cognitive Therapy
Outstanding Training Program
Jesse R. Cougle, Ph.D., Director, Florida State University's Clinical Psychology Ph.D. Program
Outstanding Service to ABCT
Carmen McLean, Ph.D., National Center for PTSD
Distinguished Friend to the Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies
Rod Holland, D.Clin.Psych., WCCBT and EABCT
Philip Tata, D.Clin.Psych., WCCBT and EABCT
President's New Researcher
Jessica L. Schleider, Ph.D., Stony Brook University
Anne Marie Albano Early Career Award for the Integration of Science and Practice
Jami M. Furr, Ph.D., Center for Children and Families, Florida International University
Virginia A. Roswell Dissertation Award
Amy R. Sewart, M.A., UCLA
Leonard Krasner Dissertation Award
Michael Best, M.Sc., Queen's University
John R. Z. Abela Dissertation Award
Natalie Rodriguez-Quintana, M.P.H., Indiana University
Student Research Grant
Colin M. Bosma, M.A., University of Maine
Honorable Mention: Shirley Wang, B.A., Harvard University
Student Travel Award
Poppy Brown, University of Oxford
Beliefs About the Self and Others in Paranoia
Elsie Ramos Memorial Student Poster Awards
Abel Mathew, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, "Evaluating the Role of the Approach Avoidance Training on Action Tendencies in Individuals With Skin Picking Disorder"
John McKenna, Suffolk University, "Sexual Assertiveness as a Predictor of Consent Attitudes and Beliefs Among LGBTQ+/Non-Binary Young Adults"
Oliver G. Johnston, University of Connecticut, "Identifying Intervention Targets for Oppositional Defiant Disorder Symptoms in College Students"
Spotlight on Mentors
Elise M. Clerkin, Ph.D., Miami University
Genelle K. Sawyer, Ph.D., The Citadel
Norman B. Schmidt, Ph.D., Florida State University
ADAA Travel Awards
Christal Badour, Ph.D., University of Kentucky
Nicholas Jacobson, M.S., Massachusetts General Hospital/Harvard Medical School
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
Are you planning to attend the ABCT Convention in Atlanta this November?
Are you bringing your children along with you? Or do concerns about childcare coverage create barriers in your attendance or participation? Would childcare support you in presenting your talk or attending a special dinner with colleagues or the Friday Night SIG Poster Expo?
ABCT recognizes that many of our members have children, and we seek to demonstrate our values around supporting members in forging integrated lives and creating inclusive professional experiences. We have worked this year to offer childcare at our ABCT convention, and we need your help in assuring the word gets out to those who may appreciate its offering.
We currently have 3 families signed up to engage in this service, and we need a total of 12 children to enroll by October 24th in order to assure the services are offered. Even a single 2-hour minimum window for one child will get us towards these numbers.
Parents who require child-care services during the convention may make arrangements with KiddieCorp.
Child care will be available during the following hours:
8:00 a.m. - 10:00 p.m.
8:00 a.m. - 10:00 p.m.
8:00 a.m. - 10:00 p.m.
8:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. (Convention concludes at 12 noon)
Services are located in the Marriott Marquis hotel, International Level, International A&B. The age range offered is between 6 months through 12 years old. There is a 2-hour minimum.
The hourly rate for the first child is $12, $8 for the second child, and $5 for the third child. The fee can be paid by credit card or check in advance. Cash can be accepted on-site provided that there is still space available.
Late Charge: If parents do not pick up their children at the end of the day, they will be charged a late fee of $5.00 per child for every 5 minutes thereafter.
Refund Policy: Parents may cancel registration on or before September 26 with no charge.
Cancellations made between September 27 and October 10 will incur a charge of $3 per hour per child.
Cancellations received after October 10 will incur a charge of $6 per hour per child.
Please pass this information along widely to help us reach our goal of serving at least 12 children this year at the convention. As an active ABCT member and mother, I have enjoyed sharing the convention with my family and modeling the possibilities of working parenthood for students that I have had the honor of working with over the years. My daughter was the unofficial mascot of the Women's SIG during my tenure as Chair, and carried our table sign around the Friday night poster session. I hope that this service enables more of you to attend and to enjoy special moments with (and while on a break from) your children!
Alyssa Ward, Ph.D. 2019 Program Chair
David F. Tolin
2019-2020 President Elect
Amie E. Grills
2019-2022 Representative-at-Large Elect
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:
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.
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
click below for more helpful material, organized alphabetically