Electronic Theses and Dissertations



Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy



Committee Chair

Jeffrey Berman

Committee Member

J. Gayle Beck

Committee Member

Amy R. Murrell

Committee Member

Nicholas W. Simon


Acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT) is a transdiagnostic, third-wave behavioral therapy that is cast as differing from traditional cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT). Despite large evidence bases for both ACT and CBT, there are barriers to interpreting each set of findings due to between-study differences (e.g., length of treatment, study setting, experience level of therapists). The aim of the current meta-analysis was to provide clarity about the relative effectiveness of ACT and CBT by examining only randomized controlled trials in which both ACT and CBT are evaluated within the same study. A total of 43 relevant studies were identified using three search strategies (PsycINFO, Association for Contextual Behavioral Science randomized controlled trial database, and reference lists from articles and meta-analyses). A standardized measure of the relative effectiveness of ACT compared with CBT at posttreatment and follow-up was calculated for each outcome measure reported in the identified studies. Analyses compared these relative treatment outcomes and assessed therapist, client, treatment, and study variables as potential moderators at both posttreatment and follow-up. Results failed to demonstrate a difference in the overall relative effectiveness of ACT and CBT at posttreatment or follow-up. Further, results generally did not suggest therapist, client, treatment, or study variables moderated the relative effectiveness of ACT and CBT.


Data is provided by the student

Library Comment

Dissertation or thesis originally submitted to ProQuest.


Open Access