Riding the waves: A functional‐cognitive perspective on the relations among behaviour therapy, cognitive behaviour therapy and acceptance and commitment therapy

Jan De Houwer, Yvonne Barnes‐Holmes, Dermot Barnes‐Holmes
Published Online:
28 May 2015
Volume/Issue No:
Volume 51 Issue 1

Additional Options

Different types of therapy explain psychopathology and the effects of psychotherapy differently. Different explanations are, however, not necessarily mutually exclusive. Based on the idea that functional and cognitive explanations are situated at different levels, we argue that functional therapies such as traditional Behaviour Therapy (BT) and Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) are not necessarily incompatible with Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT). Whether a functional and a cognitive therapy actually align depends on whether they highlight the same type of environmental causes. This functional‐cognitive perspective reveals various differences and communalities among BT, CBT and ACT.

© 2015 International Union of Psychological Science