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Behavioral Activation

  1. Samuel Hubley,
  2. Sona Dimidjian

Published Online: 30 JAN 2010

DOI: 10.1002/9780470479216.corpsy0117

Corsini Encyclopedia of Psychology

Corsini Encyclopedia of Psychology

How to Cite

Hubley, S. and Dimidjian, S. 2010. Behavioral Activation. Corsini Encyclopedia of Psychology. 1–3.

Author Information

  1. University of Colorado, Boulder

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 30 JAN 2010


Behavioral activation (BA) is a structured psychosocial treatment for depression based on the assumption that people with depression develop maladaptive patterns of behavioral responses to life's problems that reduce their ability to experience positive reward in their environments and impair effective problem solving. It is suggested both that such patterns can maintain depression over time and that interrupting such patterns can alleviate depression and reduce subsequent risk for relapse. Thus, BA is aimed at helping depressed clients activate and reengage in their environments in ways that maximize contact with positive reward and facilitate effective problem solving.