Consensus statement on the problem of terminology in psychological interventions using the internet or digital components

Ewelina Smoktunowicz, Azy Barak, Gerhard Andersson, Rosa M. Banos, Thomas Berger, Cristina Botella, Blake F. Dear, Tara Donker, David D. Ebert, Heather Hadjistavropoulos, David C. Hodgins, Viktor Kaldo, David C. Mohr, Tine Nordgreen, Mark B. Powers, Heleen Riper, Lee M. Ritterband, Alexander Rozental, Stephen M. Schueller, Nickolai TitovCornelia Weise, Per Carlbring

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Since the emergence of psychological interventions delivered via the Internet they have differed in numerous ways. The wealth of formats, methods, and technological solutions has led to increased availability and cost-effectiveness of clinical care, however, it has simultaneously generated a multitude of terms. With this paper, we first aim to establish whether a terminology issue exists in the field of Internet-delivered psychological interventions. If so, we aim to determine its implications for research, education, and practice. Furthermore, we intend to discuss solutions to mitigate the problem; in particular, we propose the concept of a common glossary. We invited 23 experts in the field of Internet-delivered interventions to respond to four questions, and employed the Delphi method to facilitate a discussion. We found that experts overwhelmingly agreed that there were terminological challenges, and that it had significant consequences for conducting research, treating patients, educating students, and informing the general public about Internet-delivered interventions. A cautious agreement has been reached that formulating a common glossary would be beneficial for the field to address the terminology issue. We end with recommendations for the possible formats of the glossary and means to disseminate it in a way that maximizes the probability of broad acceptance for a variety of stakeholders.

Original languageEnglish
Article number100331
JournalInternet Interventions
StatePublished - Sep 2020

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 The Authors


  • Consensus statement
  • Digital health
  • Internet
  • Internet-delivered interventions
  • Psychotherapy
  • Terminology

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health Informatics


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