Date of Award


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy



First Advisor

Dr. C. Richard Spates

Second Advisor

Dr. Galen Alessi

Third Advisor

Dr. Lester Wright

Fourth Advisor

Dr. Rita Kenyon-Jump


The comorbidity of depression and PTSD has been shown to be relatively prevalent. Researchers have found a 70% lifetime prevalence o f comorbid PTSD and depression among combat veterans. This study examined the effectiveness of a behavioral activation (BA) group treatment when administered to combat veterans with comorbid depression and PTSD in the residential treatment program at the Battle Creek Veteran Affairs Medical Center. Forty-five veterans participated in the study. Twenty-four veterans participated in a BA treatment group while in the treatment program. Twenty-one veterans attended the treatment program, but did not participate in the BA treatment group and served as a comparison group. All o f the participants completed a battery of assessments upon admission, at discharge, 1 month after discharge, and 2 months after discharge. It was hypothesized that veterans participating in the BA group would evidence a greater reduction in depressive and PTSD symptoms than those in the comparison group at the posttreatment and two follow-up assessments. Veterans in the BA group evidenced mild reductions of depressive symptoms, but no changes in PTSD symptoms. The comparison group evidenced no reductions in depressive or PTSD symptoms. Factors associated with changes in symptoms were also explored.

Access Setting

Dissertation-Open Access