The Classic Work
More than 100,000 in print!
Cover Graphic

Cognitive Therapy of Depression

Aaron T. Beck, A. John Rush, Brian F. Shaw, and Gary Emery

December 4, 1979
ISBN 9780898620009
Price: $85.00
425 Pages
Size: 6" x 9"
February 4, 1987
ISBN 9780898629194
Price: $49.00
425 Pages
Size: 6" x 9"

This bestselling, classic work offers a definitive presentation of the theory and practice of cognitive therapy for depression. Aaron T. Beck and his associates set forth their seminal argument that depression arises from a “cognitive triad” of errors and from the idiosyncratic way that one infers, recollects, and generalizes. From the initial interview to termination, many helpful case examples demonstrate how cognitive-behavioral interventions can loosen the grip of “depressogenic” thoughts and assumptions. Guidance is provided for working with individuals and groups to address the full range of problems that patients face, including suicidal ideation and possible relapse.

“Provides a model for future therapy books....”

Contemporary Psychology

“This book is the most important book ever written in the field of cognitive therapy. Clearly written, informative, helpful to beginning and advanced clinicians, it is a classic. For anyone interested in learning how to conduct cognitive therapy, this book is simply required reading.”

—Robert L. Leahy, PhD, Director, American Institute for Cognitive Therapy, NYC

“My students loved it! They appreciate its readability. They find they sit down with it and end up reading more than I assigned....It has been a great teaching tool.”

—Pattey Fong, California State University, Fresno

“A classic.”

—Archibald D. Hart, Fuller Theological Seminary, Graduate School of Psychology

“An excellent text for students of psychotherapy. It provides the therapist with an organized, practical, theoretically based treatment approach.”

—William P. Sacco, PhD, University of South Florida

“This volume is essential reading for clinical students and mental health professionals at all levels of experience.”

—Donald K. Granvold, PhD, University of Texas at Arlington

Table of Contents

1. An Overview

2. The Role of Emotions in Cognitive Therapy

3. The Therapeutic Relationship: Application to Cognitive Therapy

4. Structure of the Therapeutic Interview

5. The Initial Interview

6. Session by Session Treatment: A Typical Course

of Therapy

7. Application of Behavioral Techniques

8. Cognitive Techniques

9. Focus on Target Symptoms

10. Specific Techniques for the Suicidal Patient

11. Interview with a Depressed Suicidal Patient

12. Depressogenic Assumptions

13. Integration of Homework into Therapy

14. Technical Problems

15. Problems Related to Termination and Relapse

16. Group Cognitive Therapy for Depressed


Steven D. Hollon and Brian F. Shaw

17. Cognitive Therapy and Antidepressant


18. Outcome Studies of Cognitive Therapy

Appendix: Materials

*The Beck Inventory

*Scale for Suicide Ideation

*Daily Record of Dysfunctional Thoughts

*Competency Checklist for Cognitive Therapists

*Possible Reasons for Not Doing Self-Help


*Research Protocol for Outcome Study at Center

for Cognitive Therapy

*Further Materials and Technical Aids

About the Authors

Aaron T. Beck, MD, is the founder of cognitive therapy, University Professor Emeritus of Psychiatry at the University of Pennsylvania, and President Emeritus of the Beck Institute for Cognitive Behavior Therapy. Dr. Beck is the recipient of awards including the Albert Lasker Clinical Medical Research Award, the Lifetime Achievement Award from the American Psychological Association, the Distinguished Service Award from the American Psychiatric Association, the James McKeen Cattell Fellow Award in Applied Psychology from the Association for Psychological Science, and the Sarnat International Prize in Mental Health and Gustav O. Lienhard Award from the Institute of Medicine. He is author or editor of numerous books for professionals and the general public.

A. John Rush, MD, holds the Betty Jo Hay Distinguished Chair in Mental Health in the Department of Psychiatry and is Vice-Chairman for Research at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas, Texas.

Brian F. Shaw, PhD, is a Professor in the Departments of Psychiatry and Public Health Sciences at the University of Toronto, and a member of the graduate faculty in the Institute of Medical Science, University of Toronto.

Gary Emery, PhD, is director of the Los Angeles Center for Cognitive Therapy and Assistant Clinical Professor in the Department of Psychiatry at UCLA.


Mental health professionals.