Date of Paper


Type of Paper

Clinical research paper

Degree Name

Master of Social Work (M.S.W.)


Social Work

First Advisor

David J. Roseborough


Social Work


The military veteran population has received national attention for the struggles some of its members have had with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Currently, PTSD is treated within the VA using a number of pharmacologic and/or psychotherapeutic interventions in residential and outpatient settings. The purpose of this research project was to learn more about PTSD treatment by conducting a program evaluation of therapies offered in a VA PTSD program. A non-probability sample of 124 veterans who participated in a VA residential PTSD program in the mid-western United States between 2006 and 2009 was used to determine the effectiveness of Cognitive Processing Therapy (CPT), Prolonged Exposure Therapy (PE), and Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing Therapy (EMDR) on PTSD and depression symptoms over time. Each therapy provided resulted in decreased symptomotology of PTSD and depression from pre- to post-treatment, with no therapy showing greater efficacy over the others. However, at 6- and 12-month follow-up measurements, PTSD and depression symptoms increased to approach pre-treatment values for all therapies examined in this project. The future direction of research, practice, and policy surrounding PTSD treatment must be further examined to consistently provide competent, effective care to every veteran served by the VA.

Included in

Social Work Commons