Journal of Psychopathology and Behavioral Assessment

, Volume 25, Issue 4, pp 251–256

Depression and Anxiety: Integrating the Tripartite and Cognitive Content-Specificity Assessment Models

  • Richard Beck
  • Bradley Benedict
  • Angie Winkler


The cognitive content-specificity hypothesis proposes that depression and anxiety can be discriminated on the basis of unique cognitive profiles. Alternatively, the Tripartite model suggests that, although depression and anxiety share a general distress factor, anhedonia is a characteristic of depression with anxious arousal a characteristic of anxiety. Past research devoted to integrating these two models has been limited in a number of ways. To remedy these limitations, this study attempted to assess the complete Tripartite model and used a multidimensional cognitive assessment tool to handle the heterogeneity of anxious cognitive content. Results on data collected from 411 clients seeking services at a university counseling center suggested that a one-to-one mapping between Tripartite dimensions and cognitive content was possible. Further, variables from each model simultaneously explained unique variance in depression and anxiety ratings.

depression anxiety cognitive content-specificity tripartite model assessment 


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Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  • Richard Beck
    • 1
  • Bradley Benedict
    • 1
  • Angie Winkler
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of PsychologyAbilene Christian UniversityAbileneTexas

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