The effects of cognitive behavior therapy, meditation, and yoga on self-ratings of stress and psychological functioning in college students

Shannon Burton Moss


Stress may have many deleterious effects on psychological and physiological functioning. Interventions such as cognitive behavioral therapy, meditation, and yoga have demonstrated some effectiveness in reducing stress and improving psychosocial distress; however, no studies to date have compared these interventions. The purpose of this study was to compare cognitive behavioral techniques, yoga, and meditation and determine whether these techniques were differentially effective in improving psychosocial distress and reducing stress during final exam week. Results of this study indicated that participants in the yoga group had significantly decreased global anxiety following participation. Both yoga and meditation participants displayed significant decreases in state anxiety following group sessions, compared to participants in a control group. Hypotheses regarding participants' functioning during finals week were not supported.