International Journal of Cognitive Therapy
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The relationships between cognitive products (e.g., self-perception) and cognitive structure (or organization) in clinically depressed adolescents and nonpsychiatric controls (average age = 14.68) were examined. Adolescents with major depressive disorder showed significantly higher scores than did controls on the Young Schema Questionnaire domains of Disconnection, Impaired Autonomy, and Impaired Limits. These individuals also demonstrated poorer self-concept than controls on scholastic abilities, social acceptance, athletic competence, physical appearance, job competence, behavioral conduct, and global self-worth, as well as perceptions of limited social networks. The organization of self-referent adjectives was more tightly interconnected for negative content and less interconnected for positive content in depressed adolescents than in nonpsychiatric controls. Specificity of cognitive organization to themes of interpersonal and achievement beliefs/self-perceptions was also found, particularly for positive content. Implications of the findings for the cognitive vulnerability model of depression and future directions are discussed.