Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy National Conference

7th Edition
Resilience and Trauma
16-17 June 2022
Online Exclusively

Cognitive Therapy for PTSD

Prof. Dr. Anke Ehlers, PhD.

University of Oxford & Oxford Health NHS Foundation Trust, UK

Treatment guidelines recommend trauma-focused cognitive behavioural treatments as treatments of choice for posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Cognitive Therapy for PTSD is a version of these treatments that has been shown to be highly effective and acceptable to patients and is strongly recommended by APA (2017), NICE (2018) and ISTSS (2019). Treatment builds on Ehlers and Clark’s (2000) cognitive model, which suggests that people with PTSD perceive a serious current threat that has two sources:

  • excessively negative appraisals of the trauma and / or its sequelae (i.e., excessively negative personal meanings of the trauma about the self or the world) and 
  • characteristics of trauma memories that lead to reexperiencing symptoms. 

The problem is maintained by unhelpful coping strategies (such as thought suppression, rumination, safety-seeking behaviours, social withdrawal) that are intended to reduce the sense of current threat, but maintain the problem by preventing change in the appraisals and trauma memories, and / or lead to increases in symptoms.

Cognitive Therapy for PTSD has three goals. First, the idiosyncratic personal meanings are identified and changed. Therapeutic techniques include guided discovery, identification of hot spots during the trauma and associated meanings, socratic questioning, and behavioural experiments. Second, the trauma memory is elaborated.  Idiosyncratic personal meanings of the trauma are updated with information that corrects impressions, predictions and meanings at the time. In trigger discrimination training, the patient learns to discriminate triggers of reexperiencing symptoms and their context from the stimuli that were present during the trauma. Third, the patient experiments with dropping maintaining behaviours.

The workshop will introduce the treatment model followed by discussion and video illustration of three core techniques:

  • Developing a personalised version of the treatment model with patients
  • Updating trauma memories
  • Trigger discrimination

For further information and free training videos see (free registration).

Radu Șoflău


Esther Deblinger


Amy Chisholm


Steve A. Johnson

preconference Workshop

Anke Ehlers

Keynote / Workshop

Ruth Malkinson


Andrada Neacșiu


Daniel David


Lia Oltean


For any information related to the conference, don’t hesitate to contact us at

This Event was organized with the support of the Cluj-Napoca Local Council and its Office for Social and Medical Care