Game-Based Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

Presenter: Justin R. Misurell, PhD

View the webinar’s corresponding slide presentation here

View this webinar

Game-Based Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (GB-CBT) was originally developed to make the therapeutic process more palatable for children and their families who have been impacted by abuse and trauma and has since been expanded to address a wide variety of behavioral difficulties. Justin Misurell discusses how the games and activities included in the GB-CBT model can be easily used by clinicians to address anxiety, compulsive behaviors, tics and disruptive behavior disorders.


  1. Earley Ullrich says:

    Thanks, I found the slides. I am curious if we can get copies of the questions for each of the games that were described?

  2. KelleyT says:

    Can you recommend any additional books that deal more with game-based CBT activities for more general issues (and less specifically with treating child sexual abuse)

    • Justin Misurell says:

      Currently, there are no other books on GB-CBT. We are in the process of writing a second book that will include games and activities for other populations beyond abuse and trauma. However, the current book contains a ton of useful games and activities for enhancing social and emotional learning skills, which are applicable to all children.

  3. KelleyT says:

    Can GB-CBT be administered without parent involvement in the session?

    • Justin Misurell says:

      GB-CBT can be administered with children alone – however, the best approach contains significant caregiver involvement.

  4. KelleyT says:

    What ages are best suited for GB-CBT?

    • Justin Misurell says:

      GB-CBT can be used with children as young as 4 and teens up to 18 as well as their parents. However, the games and activities discussed in the current book as well as in the webinar are aimed at elementary and middle school age children.

  5. KelleyT says:

    I am a practitioner and want to learn how to do GB-CBT. How can I get trained in the model?

    • Justin Misurell says:

      Currently, there are a number of GB-CBT trained professionals in the NYC metro area. The best way to start would be to reach out to me via email: Justin.Misurell@nyumc.org and I will do my best to point you in the right direction.

  6. KelleyT says:

    Your book is about GB-CBT for child sexual abuse. Is the book relevant for professionals who do not work in the area of abuse and trauma?

    • Justin Misurell says:

      Absolutely! Many of the games, particularly in the beginning of the book are used to enhance coping skills, emotional expression skills and social-emotional learning skills that are valuable to all children and families. Additionally, the methods utilized in the book including the Super Check and Star Awards reward systems and other techniques can be directly used with other client populations.

  7. KelleyT says:

    Has it ever happened that a child presents with anxiety issues and during therapy it becomes evident that there was some abuse trauma at the root of the anxiety? What happens then?

    • Justin Misurell says:

      It has happened where a child initially presents with anxiety and other emotional/behavioral difficulties, and then later it emerges that there is a history of abuse. When abuse is first disclosed, it is imperative for the clinician, as a mandated reporter, to contact the state child protective service agency. In NJ, that agency is the Division of Child Protection and Permanency (DCP&P) formerly DYFS. Child protective services and perhaps even law enforcement may need to get involved. It is important at that point, for the clinician to coordinate services so as not to interfere with the investigation. Once, the situation is stabilized, the clinician should re-assess the treatment plan to address the newly emerged abuse allegations. It should be noted that if clinicians do not have prior experience working on a child abuse case, they should seek out peer supervision from another colleague who has.