Cognitive Etiology of MDD - XX and AG

Cognitive Etiology of Major
Depressive Disorder
Xandra Xiao
Anna Goncharova
At the cognitive level of analysis:
– Depressed cognitions
– Cognitive distortions
– Irrational beliefs
Can result in disturbances of the mood. They are
contributing factors, not the sole causes.
Cognitive style theory
• Ellis (1962) states that psychological
disturbances come from having irrational
expectations and beliefs
• “My work must be perfect” “I did not do
well on my last test” “Therefore I am
Theory based on schema
• Beck (1976) claimed that depression comes
form schema processing where schemas and
self-perception interfere with information
• Theorized the idea of a “triad”:
1. Overgeneralization
2. Non logical inference
3. Dichotomous
Supporters of the idea that cognition
and depression are linked.
• Blackburn (1988) showed that depressed
people had disturbed thought processes
• Frude (1998) used a prospective study to
support the claim.
• Alloy et al. (1999) longitudinal study
• Studies only show correlational relation not
causational relationship
• Implications: CBT (Cognitive behavioral
therapy) tries to change patient’s thinking

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