Cognitive Behavioural Therapy in a Nutshell, Second Edition is a concise introduction to one of the most widely-practiced approaches to counselling and psychotherapy.

Leading authors, Michael Neenan and Windy Dryden, explain the model and the core techniques used during the therapeutic process to:

elicit and examine negative automatic thoughts; uncover and explore underlying assumptions, rules and core beliefs (schemas); and; maintain gains from therapy.

For newcomers to the subject, this revised and updated edition of Cognitive Therapy in a Nutshell provides the ideal place to start and a springboard to further study.

Assessment and Conceptualization

Assessment and conceptualization

A CT assessment collects relevant information about the client's presenting problems and from this information is distilled a parsimonious case conceptualization which informs the treatment plan. An initial assessment may take a couple of sessions or more to complete but, in practice, assessment continues throughout therapy as additional information continues to refine the conceptualization.1 Assessment helps clients to obtain a better understanding of their problems and possible solutions to them. Assessment is where a therapeutic relationship starts to build. Westbrook et al. (2007) suggest that assessment in CT consists of three components:

  • A description of the presenting problem (s).
  • An account of why and how these problems might have developed.
  • An analysis of the key maintaining processes hypothesized to perpetuate ...
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