Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) for OCD: Optimizing Exposure for Children and Adolescents

Thursday, April 5: 9:30 AM  - 11:30 AM 
Master Clinician Session 
Exhibit Level 
Room: Lincoln 2 
Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) is a transdiagnostic evidence-based intervention that can be used to support inhibitory learning in exposure-based treatment. Thus, this workshop will address how clinicians may incorporate ACT into ERP to support inhibitory learning; namely, through shaping curiosity, willingness, and flexibility in the presence of fear and anxiety. Specifically, the speaker will a) present an overview of exposure-based treatment and inhibitory learning research and applications; b) give a brief overview of ACT and its' evidence-base; and c) demonstrate how to incorporate specific ACT interventions into exposure to strengthen and contextualize inhibitory learning. Clinical examples will be used to illustrate therapeutic techniques, in addition to the workshop's didactic content.

Learning Objectives

1. Attendees will learn how to describe the ACT model, in particular, the mindfulness and acceptance processes and the commitment and behavior change processes
2. Attendees will be able to explain OCD, anxiety, and ERP in behavioral terms, including inhibitory learning processes
3. Attendees will conduct Exposure/Response Prevention incorporating elements of ACT such that they enhance inhibitory learning through supporting curiosity, willingness, and flexibility 


Lisa Coyne, PhD, OCD Institute, McLean Hospital, Harvard Medical School

Audience Level



Children & Adolescents


Diversity - Yes


120 minutes


Obsessive Compulsive Disorder

Treatment Approach