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dc.contributor.authorMcEvoy, Peter
dc.contributor.authorErceg-Hurn, D.
dc.contributor.authorSaulsman, L.
dc.contributor.authorThibodeau, M.
dc.identifier.citationMcEvoy, P. and Erceg-Hurn, D. and Saulsman, L. and Thibodeau, M. 2015. Imagery enhancements increase the effectiveness of cognitive behavioural group therapy for social anxiety disorder: A benchmarking study. Behaviour Research and Therapy. 65: pp. 42-51.

Emerging evidence suggests that imagery-based techniques may enhance the effectiveness of traditional verbal-linguistic cognitive interventions for emotional disorders. This study extends an earlier pilot study by reporting outcomes from a naturalistic trial of an imagery-enhanced cognitive behavioural group therapy (IE-CBGT, n=53) protocol for social anxiety disorder (SAD), and comparing outcomes to historical controls who completed a predominantly verbally-based group protocol (n=129). Patients were consecutive referrals from health professionals to a community clinic specialising in anxiety and mood disorders. Both treatments involved 12, two-hour group sessions plus a one-month follow-up. Analyses evaluated treatment adherence, predictors of dropout, treatment effect sizes, reliable and clinically significant change, and whether self-reported tendencies to use imagery in everyday life and imagery ability predicted symptom change. IE-CBGT patients were substantially more likely to complete treatment than controls (91% vs. 65%). Effect sizes were very large for both treatments, but were significantly larger for IE-CBGT. A higher proportion of the IE-CBGT patients achieved reliable change, and better imagery ability was associated with larger symptom change. Outcomes compared very favourably to published group and individual treatments for SAD, suggesting that IE-CBGT may be a particularly effective and efficient mode of treatment delivery.

dc.publisherElsevier Ltd
dc.titleImagery enhancements increase the effectiveness of cognitive behavioural group therapy for social anxiety disorder: A benchmarking study
dc.typeJournal Article
dcterms.source.titleBehaviour Research and Therapy
curtin.departmentSchool of Psychology and Speech Pathology
curtin.accessStatusOpen access

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