Aaron Beck – information-processing/ cognitive schemas

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Aaron Beck – information-processing/ cognitive schemas

– Cognitive theories were pioneered by Beck
– Beck’s Information processing model implicates three aspects of cognitive functioning in depression:
1. Depressed individuals are believed to engage in systematic biases or errors in thinking which lead to idiosyncratic interpretations of situations and events – that is “negative automatic thoughts”
2. Depressed individuals are believed to exhibit negative cognitive schemas which are viewed as internal structures that guide information processing and stimulate the self-critical beliefs characteristic of depression.
3. Depression is associated with the negative, Cognitive Triad or a tendency to possess negative perceptions of the self, world and future – that is view of the self as worthless or inadequate, view of the world as a mean or unfair place, and of the future as hopeless.

– The cognitive theory maintains that these cognitive styles heighten one’s susceptibility to depression, especially when activated by external stressors
– because the rigid nature of cognitive schemas renders them highly resistant to change, depressed individuals maybe vulnerable to persistent difficulties.

Source: Mash & Barkley (2003)

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