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Keywords:

  • cognitive therapy;
  • depression;
  • mechanisms of change;
  • psychotherapy research;
  • scientist–practitioner gap

Therapists providing psychological treatments routinely pose and test hypotheses about mechanisms of change, including mechanisms of change in cognitive therapy for depression. When they use systematic, objective, and scientific methods to do these tasks, clinicians can simultaneously provide quality care and contribute to the field's understanding of the mechanisms of therapeutic action. This article presents evidence supporting these assertions and offers examples of data collected in routine clinical practice that answer important questions about the process of change in cognitive therapy for depression.