Types of Homework in CBT

What is Homework in Psychotherapy

Psychotherapy homework is often allocated to patients as part of their therapy. Homework activities are incorporated in this way to practice techniques taught in therapy, to enable people to adapt the skills they have gained in therapy to real-life circumstances, and to strengthen the particular issues experienced in therapy. For example, in one therapy session, a patient with social skills deficits might practice and rehearse acceptable social skills, and be expected to complete homework assignments before the next session applying those newly acquired skills (e.g., going to a social engagement or greeting five people each day). In this article, we will talk about Homework Types in CBT

types of homework in cbt

Thought and Behavior Rating Scales

Such homework is essential in the treatment of patients with cognitive distortions. These tests, which provide clinical information and are for self-report (self-rating) scales, also work as a self-report criterion to observe the patient’s mood changes during post-session homework or sessions. The use of such scales helps provide feedback from the patient during or towards the end of therapy. Beck Depression Inventory and Beck Anxiety Inventory are among the scales frequently used in this type of homework. The Beck Depression Inventory can work either as a group or as an individual by grading oneself or verbally, while the Beck Anxiety Inventory can be administered individually by grading one’s self.


In the self-monitoring homework, patients keep records of their cognitive and behavioral status related to their main problems. This homework technique helps the therapist to get a clearer idea about the nature of the patient’s problem. This may also be useful for patients whose symptoms have spread throughout the day, have become habitual, and have difficulty describing these symptoms. However, therapists should be aware that self-monitoring in anxious patients can provoke anxiety. During this activity, the therapist asks the patient to concentrate on automatic thoughts and beliefs during the interaction with the family members.

Event Planning Phases

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Source: @culturalkinks

With this technique, patients first make a list of what they have to do. Then select one of them to determine which steps they should take to achieve this. . The therapist should ensure that these steps are large enough for the patient to cope with. After identifying the steps, the patient can rehearse the subject and write down the possible difficulties he may face. And think about what he can do about these steps. In this process, the therapist tells the patient: “Start the practice from the first step and ignore the other steps. Focus on what you’ve accomplished, not the things you have to do waiting for you.”

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For the CBT to be effective, the client should apply confrontation exercises as an assignment at home, on the street, or in public transport. The confrontation treatment evaluation consists of three stages; explaining the rational treatment-making the graded confrontation list and determining the reaction prevention rules. 

Last Updated on December 10, 2022 by Lucas Berg


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