Catch It is a Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) based app aimed to help users deal with feelings of anxiety, depression, anger and confusion. The app has three sections. In the first section (“Catch It”), users record their mood, i.e. what mood they have experienced (e.g. anxiety, anger), how strong the mood was (on a scale of 1-5), when the mood occurred and in what setting. Users provide a narrative description of what happened when the mood occurred, and what ‘automatic thoughts’ they had at the time. In the second section (“Check It”), users are encouraged to look at the situation in a different way by taking a moment to reflect on their mood entry. In the third section (“Change It”), users describe what a more thoughtful or helpful way to approach the situation would be. They are also asked if the strength of the mood has changed by again rating their mood on a scale of 1-5. When the three sections are complete, the mood is added to the user diary and a short recommendation is provided, based on whether or not the user’s mood has changed. The app is free and is available for iOS and Android.
Overall Score: Questionable
Does the policy describe the information storage and sharing procedures related to user entered information OR state that user information is stored locally?: No/Can’t Tell
Does the app provide the option of a pin entry or log-in process to view and enter user data?: Yes
Available for: iOS 6.0 or later (iPhone, iPad, iPod touch), Requires Android 4.0 or later
Developer: University of Liverpool
Type of Treatment: Cognitive Behavioral Principles
Targeted Conditions: Mood disorders, PTSD, Stress & Anxiety
Target Audience: Adults
Designed to be used in conjunction with a healthcare professional: No
Languages Available: English and German
Get it on: iTunes, Google Play
Research on this App
Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) has good evidence as a psychological intervention for a wide range of mental health problems. (e.g. Hoffman et al., 2012). While this app has not been investigated in an RCT, data from 285 individuals participating in an online course who downloaded the app and consented for their data to be shared show promising results (Kinderman et al., 2016). There was a significant reduction in severity of negative moods from people’s initial entry to their second entry and information entered into the app was largely consistent with CBT principles as classified by expert independent coders.
• Hofmann, S., Asnaani, A., Vonk, I., Sawyer, A., Fang, A. (2012). The efficacy of cognitive behavioral therapy: a review of meta-analyses. Cognitive Therapy Research, 36, 427–40.
• Kinderman, P., Hagan, P., King, S., Bowman, J., Chahal, J., Gan, L., McKnight, R., Waldon, C., Smith, M., Gilbertson, J., & Tai, S. (2016). The feasibility and effectiveness of Catch It, an innovative CBT smartphone app. British Journal of Psychiatry, 2 (3) 204-209.