Efficacy of prosocial behavior as an adjunct to short -term psychotherapy in treating clinically depressed college students

Risa Amy Mason, Pace University

Abstract

The efficacy of prosocial behavior as an adjunct to short-term psychotherapy in treating clinical symptoms of depression in college students was investigated. Participants included 40 students who presented at the College of Charleston's Counseling and Substance Abuse Services Center and scored at least one standard deviation above the mean on the Brief Symptom Inventory at intake. Twenty-four students participated in the treatment group (therapy + adjunct prosocial behaviors) and 16 students formed the comparison group (therapy alone). Depression change scores were measured with the Brief Symptom Inventory following a course of short-term psychotherapy. ^ The results indicated that although students tended to report very slightly fewer symptoms of depression at posttest the more time they spent engaged in prosocial behavior, this relationship did not reach a level of statistical significance. ^ Three specific relationships were investigated: (1) level of depression at pretest and subsequent hours spent engaged in prosocial behavior, (2) hours spent in therapy and depression score at posttest and (3) hours spent engaged in prosocial behavior and depression score at posttest. A significant positive correlation was found between pretest depression score and hours spent engaged in prosocial behavior. Contrary to prediction, a significant positive correlation was found between hours spent in therapy and depression score at posttest. The expected negative correlation between depression score at posttest and hours spent engaged in prosocial behavior was not found. Finally, implications for the field of school psychology is discussed. ^

Subject Area

Education, Guidance and Counseling|Psychology, Clinical

Recommended Citation

Risa Amy Mason, "Efficacy of prosocial behavior as an adjunct to short -term psychotherapy in treating clinically depressed college students" (January 1, 2004). ETD Collection for Pace University. Paper AAI3108842.
http://digitalcommons.pace.edu/dissertations/AAI3108842

Share

COinS

Remote User: Click Here to Login (must have Pace University remote login ID and password. Once logged in, click on the View More link above)