This paper (a) makes the argument for conceiving Acceptance and Commitment Training (ACT), when applied to the enhancement of well-being, as a positive psychological intervention, and (b) supports this view by reviewing evidence for ACT’s impact on university student well-being. Searches of the literature identified five randomized experiments that measured improvements in university student well-being as a function of ACT interventions relative to control conditions. A meta-analysis revealed a significant, small pooled effect size on well-being (d = 0.29), providing initial evidence of ACT’s role as a positive psychological intervention among university students. Strengths and limitations of the extant literature are discussed, as are implications of, and future directions for, this area of study. It is concluded that research, theory, and application within well-being scholarship may be facilitated by recognizing ACT’s application to the enhancement of well-being.
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Levin et al. (2016a), among others, have argued that the word ‘training’ is more applicable than ‘therapy’ when acceptance and commitment interventions are applied to non-clinical samples; given the current focus on ACT as a positive psychological intervention applied to university students, we adopt this convention herein.
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Howell, A.J., Passmore, HA. Acceptance and Commitment Training (ACT) as a Positive Psychological Intervention: A Systematic Review and Initial Meta-analysis Regarding ACT’s Role in Well-Being Promotion Among University Students. J Happiness Stud 20, 1995–2010 (2019). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10902-018-0027-7
- Acceptance and commitment training
- Positive psychology
- University students