Volume 22, Issue 4 (Winter 2021)                   Advances in Cognitive Sciences 2021, 22(4): 46-55 | Back to browse issues page

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Vaezi S, Akbarnataj Bisheh K, Kazem Fakhri M. Effectiveness of group acceptance and commitment therapy on emotion regulation, psychological capital and coping strategies of students. Advances in Cognitive Sciences 2021; 22 (4) :46-55
URL: http://icssjournal.ir/article-1-1169-en.html
1- PhD Candidate of Psychology, Department of psychology, Sari Branch, Islamic Azad University, Sari, Iran
2- Assistant Professor of Psychology, Department of Psychology, Sari Branch, Islamic Azad University, Sari, Iran
Abstract:   (2262 Views)
Introduction: University is a challenging environment provoking different reactions in students. Inadequate emotional responses in the face of stress (resulting from entering a new environment such as a university), such as feelings of sadness and inadequate emotion management strategies, cause short-term emotional distress among students. Emotion regulation refers to the processes by which we influence what emotions we experience, when we experience them, and how we express them. On the other hand, the lack of emotional, psychological, and social skills and abilities makes students vulnerable in the face of problems and exposes them to various psychological, social, and behavioral disorders. Under these circumstances, people with high psychological capital can more easily cope with these pressures. Psychological capital is a person's ability to face the expectations and difficulties of everyday life.
On the other hand, financial and educational problems, future career prospects, emotional attachments, beliefs, and mental challenges are some of the problem's students face and seek coping strategies to solve.  Coping strategies are a set of cognitive, emotional, and behavioral efforts used to change, interpret, and correct stressful situations to alleviate suffering. Among the new psychological therapies, acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT) is one of the new therapies that plays an essential role in individuals’ psychological well-being and integrating acceptance, commitment, and mind interventions. Awareness helps patients to achieve a lively, purposeful and meaningful life. Therefore, according to the above, the purpose of this study was to study the effectiveness of group therapy based on acceptance and commitment to emotion regulation, psychological capital, and students' coping strategies.
Methods: The present study was quasi-experimental with a pre-test-post-test design and a follow-up period with a control group. The study’s statistical population included all female students of Amol universities studying in the academic year 1397-98. Among these students, 50 were selected as a sample using the available method, then randomly assigned to two groups of 25 experimental and control. The study’s inclusion criteria were 1) during the intervention period, not undergo simultaneous treatment and training or other medication; 2) no acute psycho-personality disorder; 3) interest in participating in research and intervention sessions 4); and no family or professional barriers. Exclusion criteria also included 1) unwillingness to continue cooperation, absence of more than two sessions, and participation in parallel sessions. The acceptance and commitment therapy group were held once a week, 90-minutes12 sessions for the experimental group, but the control group did not receive any intervention. Ethical considerations were observed for subjects who received information about the research could leave the study at any time. They were assured that all information would remain confidential and would only be used for research purposes. For privacy reasons, the subjects' details were not recorded. In the end, all of them received informed consent. Short-form emotion regulation questionnaire (Garnefski and Kraaij, 2006), psychological capital questionnaire (Luthans et al., 2007), and coping strategies questionnaire (Folkman and Lazarus, 1988) were used to collect data. Data were analyzed using multivariate analysis of covariance.
Results: The results revealed that the intervention based on acceptance and commitment effectively regulated emotion, psychological capital, and students' coping strategies (P<0.0001), and this effectiveness in the follow-up phase also affected all three variables. Remained (P<0.0001). It can be said that the intervention based on acceptance and commitment led to the improvement of emotion regulation, psychological capital, and coping strategies in students.
Conclusions. Considering the significant effect of group therapy based on acceptance and commitment on emotion regulation, psychological capital, and students’ coping strategies, using these appropriate methods is recommended to all counselors and practitioners of psychological therapy and officials.  One of the critical limitations of the present study is the use of self-report questionnaires, so to ensure more results, it is recommended to use other tools such as interviews and psychological tests along with the questionnaire to add to the richness of the findings.
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Type of Study: Research |
Received: 2020/08/20 | Accepted: 2020/09/28 | Published: 2021/01/21

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