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MALADAPTIVE SCHEMAS, IRRATIONAL BELIEFS, AND THEIR RELATIONSHIP WITH THE FIVE-FACTOR PERSONALITY MODEL

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This paper examined the relationship between the Five-Factor model of personality and some maladaptive schemas and irrational beliefs as suggested by the Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT) framework. Data were gathered from 154 undergraduate students who completed four measures: DECAS Personality Inventory (a Romanian validated instrument for the Five-Factor model of personality), YSQ – L2 (Young Schema Questionnaire), ABS-2 (Attitudes and Beliefs Scale 2), and GABS-SV (General Attitudes and Beliefs Scale – Short Version). Emotional stability and agreeableness were negatively related to maladaptive schemas and irrational beliefs. While emotional stability was negatively associated with almost all schemas and irrational beliefs, agreeableness was inversely linked with schemas involved in externalizing psychopathology, such as mistrust, abandonment, entitlement and domination.

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RELATING COPING, FEAR OF UNCERTAINTY AND ALEXITHYMIA WITH PSYCHOLOGICAL DISTRESS: THE MEDIATING ROLE OF EXPERIENTIAL AVOIDANCE

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The present study tests the mediating role of experiential avoidance (EA; Hayes, Wilson, Gifford, Follette, & Strosahl, 1996) to account for the relations of avoidant coping, fear of uncertainty, and alexithymia with negative psychological outcomes. Participants were 177 adults (51 males and 126 females; mean age = 34.5). Measures of EA (Acceptance and Action Questionnaire, AAQ), avoidant coping (Brief COPE scale), fear of uncertainty (Temperament and Character Inventory), alexithymia (Toronto Alexithymia Scale), and psychological outcomes (Behavior and Symptom Identification Scale) were obtained from standardized, self-administered questionnaires. Regression analyses were performed to test for mediation models. Results show that the effect of avoidant coping and fear of uncertainty on emotional distress and other negative outcomes decreases when controlling avoidance scores, whereas the latter predicts psychological outcomes. Findings suggest that EA may represent a generalized mechanism through which both avoidant coping and fear of uncertainty take on psychological significance. Results did not support, however, the mediating role of EA for explaining the relations between alexithymia and psychological outcomes.

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MET AND UNMET NEEDS OF PATIENTS WITH SCHIZOPHRENIA – BRIEF RESEARCH REPORT OF A ROMANIAN SAMPLE

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The objective of the study was to translate and adapt the Romanian version of the Camberwell Assessment of Needs, and to assess its inter-rater reliability in a sample of patients diagnosed with schizophrenia. Fifty-eight schizophrenic patients were assessed using the 22 domains of the Romanian version of the Camberwell Assessment of Needs. The kappa coefficient was used to assess inter-rater reliability. For 21 domains the inter-rater reliability was almost perfect to total (range: 0.86 to 1.0). The domain with the lowest agreement was companionship. The inter-rater reliability of the Camberwell Assessment of Needs was similar to what has been found in previous studies. The use of standardized instruments to assess needs of care in Romania will contribute to the assessment of the effectiveness of treatment and to the planning of individualized care for individuals with mental illnesses.

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MOTIVATIONAL/SOLUTION-FOCUSED INTERVENTION FOR REDUCING SCHOOL TRUANCY AMONG ADOLESCENTS

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The objective of this study was to assess the efficiency of a package of motivational stimulation techniques in reducing school truancy rates among adolescents. The program was carried out between March and June 2007 and it comprised 8 group counseling sessions per week, each session lasting one hour. The techniques used combined intrinsic motivational stimulation strategies, motivational interviewing and solution-focused counseling, with strategies focusing on extrinsic methods, such as successive approximation of behavior, behavior contracts and reinforcement techniques. Participants were adolescents, aged 16-17 years, divided into two groups, 19 students in the experimental group, and 19 in the control group. Our data indicated a 61% decrease in truancy rates for the experimental group, a significant difference compared to the control group, where no drops in truancy rates were observed. The results of this non-randomized pilot study suggest that group interventions such as the one described here can prove to be useful in reducing adolescent truancy, and deserve further investigation in controlled randomized studies.

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THOUGHT SUPPRESSION, DEPRESSIVE RUMINATION AND DEPRESSION: A MEDIATION ANALYSIS

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The present study is an investigation of the relationship between depressive rumination and thought suppression in predicting clinical depression. While there is significant amount of data supporting their role in depression, no attempts have been made so far to study the relationship between these two types of mental control strategies and emotion regulation in clinical depression. Depressed patients completed a battery of questionnaires including measures of thought suppression, depressive rumination, and depressive symptoms. Results show that both thought suppression and depressive rumination are related to depression, and that the impact of thought suppression on depression is completely mediated by depressive rumination (as an ironic effect of thought suppression). The roles of thought suppression and depressive rumination in depression, potential mechanisms and implications are discussed.

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TEACHER IRRATIONAL BELIEF SCALE – PRELIMINARY NORMS FOR ROMANIAN POPULATION

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The purpose of this study is the adaptation of the Teacher Irrational Belief Scale – TIBS (Bernard, 1988). The scale was administered to a sample of 242 teachers from 4 high schools and 4 general schools. Our results are, on the whole, consistent with those obtained in earlier normative studies conducted on Australian population. The internal consistency coefficients (Cronbach’s Alpha) for the three beliefs and the global score ranged from .48 to .74, which are adequate for using the scale in reliable conditions. The factor analysis revealed 3 principal factors for the Romanian population, related to 3 core irrational beliefs (low frustration tolerance, self –downing and other demandingness). These results are different from those reported on Australian population, where 4 factors were found – low frustration tolerance, self-downing, authoritarianism and demand for justice, but authoritarianism and demand for justice seem to describe Ellis’s major irrational belief – other demandingness. The scores of TIBS are related to the scores of the Attitudes and Beliefs Scale 2 (ABS 2).

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AN UPDATE ON THE COGNITIVE BEHAVIOR THERAPY OF OBSESSIVE COMPULSIVE DISORDER IN ADULTS

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Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is a chronic anxiety disorder with an estimated lifetime prevalence in adults of 2–3 %. Our aim is to provide an overview of the development of effective psychological treatments for OCD, together with a systematic literature review of the latest research in the field. An extensive literature search was performed to identify relevant articles in several databases including MEDLINE, PUBMED and PsycINFO, using the following keywords: obsessive–compulsive disorder, cognitive-behavioural therapy, exposure, response prevention, cognitive therapy. Controlled trials have demonstrated that cognitive- behavioral therapy (CBT) is an effective treatment for OCD. CBT is at least as effective as medication and shows good benefits at follow up. Nevertheless, more studies are still needed, mainly focusing on long-term follow-up, group-treatment and the combined use of CBT with SSRIs. A prefrontal cortico-striato-thalamic brain system is involved in the mediation of OCD symptoms. Recent research has demonstrated that CBT for OCD can systematically modify cerebral metabolic activity in this cortico- subcortical circuit in a manner which is significantly related to clinical outcome.

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VIRTUAL REALITY IN THE REHABILITATION OF ATTENTION DEFICIT / HYPERACTIVITY DISORDER. INSTRUMENT CONSTRUCTION PRINCIPLES

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Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is one of the most prevalent psychiatric childhood disorders. Good clinical practices are therefore needed regarding both assessment and therapy. In which assessment is concerned, valid instruments are available, one of the last developments in the field being the virtual reality guided assessment (VirtualClassroom). Regarding intervention, the multimodal, cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) oriented approach is the most frequently employed. However, this approach has some limitations, one of them concerning ecological validity. Our VR-based intervention addresses this issue, by providing a high ecological validity therapeutic tool. We do not propose a new therapeutic paradigm. We instead move the intervention from the clinician’s office into the virtual classroom, where we still use cognitive restructuring and the behavioral techniques of the classic intervention. This paper highlights the implementation of the psychotherapeutic principles of ADHD therapy in the VR environment. The different features of this instrument are designed to address specific cognitive-behavioral modifications involved in the therapeutic process.

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