The Effectiveness of Homework in CBT

Last Updated on November 1, 2020 by Marilyn Walker

Most studies investigating the effectiveness of homework in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) have focused on the relationship between completing homework and treatment outcome. One of the important studies on this subject was the meta-analysis study of 27 studies. These studies stated that homework had a significant positive effect on the outcome of therapy. They investigated the number and quality of homework within the framework of cognitive behavioral therapy for 10 weeks. 94 patients partake in the study. As a result of the study, the quality and number of homework assignments had a decisive role on anxiety &depression. The results of this study revealed the importance of homework in CBT.

In addition,the study also stated that behavioral homework, such as planning and exposing pleasant activities, were the most important types of homework for depression and quality of life. In a study homework assignments had used in cognitive behavioral treatment for depression. It was examined in 2 different patient groups. Patients who completed their homework regularly at the end of 12 weeks showed more improvement than those who did not do their homework or less. In a meta-analysis of 23 studies conducted by Mausbach. (2010) in this area, he said that there was a significant relationship between homework compliance and treatment outcomes. Studies revealed that the compliance with homework given in CBT treatment was positively related to post-treatment fear and worries.

Other Studies

In a study examining the effect of completing homework on the outcome of treatment in 123 patients receiving CBT therapy. It was stated that completing homework predicted less cocaine use during treatment in patients who were highly prepared for change. In the same study, researchers found that early compliance with homework results in better treatment continuation. The researchers stated that it supports the use of homework during CBT treatment in patients with substance use disorder. In a recent study, the number of quality of homework assignments and exposure was more determining factor for treatment results than psychoeducation and self-observation (Cammin-Nowak et al. 2013). For this reason, the effect of homework assignments and time of application should be taken into consideration.

Another Study

In the study, which evaluated the effectiveness of cognitive behavioral group therapy on 37 patients with obsessive-compulsive disorder. The study stated that homework assignments such as filling the scales ’,‘ cognitive distorting record keeping ’and exposure were effective in the therapy. The patient group received 14 sessions of cognitive behavioral group therapy lasting 90-120 minutes per week. The study also stated that 8 patients discontinued treatment for group reasons. And 29 patients completed group therapies during group therapies.

Cindy Brown
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