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Self-Compassion Depression Prevention Course (SCOPE Trial)

The Self-Compassion Depression Prevention Course is a 7-week online self-directed course for those with a past history of depression. The course is designed to stave off the progression and reoccurrence of depression. By enrolling in the free 7-week course, you are participating in the SCOPE Trial

Who is doing this research?

The Online Therapy Unit is currently assisting Dr. Shadi Beshai and his graduate student, Mabel Yu, in conducting research on the use of an online self-compassion course for preventing depression among those who have a history of depression. This research will be conducted independently by the SCOPE Trial Team using the Online Therapy website to deliver the course.

Who can take part in the SCOPE Trial?

The SCOPE Trial is open to individuals who:

  1.  are Canadian residents;
  2. are 18 years of age or older,
  3. have experienced clinical depression in the past,
  4. have access to a phone, computer and internet,
  5. are available to work through the program each week for 7 weeks and to complete a 12-month follow-up,
  6. willing to be contacted by researchers as required throughout the duration of the study, and
  7. not seeking face-to-face psychotherapy for depression, anxiety, or other mental health condition(s).


Why was this course developed?

Self-compassion is a flourishing concept in Western psychology. Evidence from scientific research shows that self-compassion is associated with positive health outcomes, such as reduced depression symptoms, enhanced well-being, and increased resiliency to stress. Self-compassion interventions have shown to be effective in treating acute depression; however, researchers have not yet tested whether these interventions can prevent future episodes of depression. Unfortunately, many people who experience one episode of depression go on to develop subsequent episodes of this debilitating illness even after receiving treatments for depression. The main objective of the SCOPE Trial is to examine whether the online self-directed Self-Compassion Reflection Program can prevent depression from recurring.

What’s involved in the course?

The Self-Compassion to Prevent Depression Course is comprised of 7 modules in total, with each module be made available to you weekly. During each module, you will be asked to complete several brief questionnaires about how you feel, think, and act in certain situations, as well as your day-to-day experiences. These questionnaires help the researchers monitor your progress.

What is the SCOPE Trial?

The main objective of the SCOPE Trial is to examine whether the 7-week Self-Compassion Reflection Program can prevent depression relapse. The SCOPE Trial is composed of four parts that span over a 12-month period, during which you will have a chance to complete the 7-week Self-Compassion to Prevent Depression Course. You will be compensated for your participation in this meaningful research. The SCOPE Trial is important because individuals with a history of depression may use the skills taught from the program to prevent experiencing depression again.

If you want more information about the SCOPE Trial, please link here

What’s involved in the SCOPE Trial?

The SCOPE Trial is comprised of 4 parts:

  • We will first ask you to read and complete our consent process, then complete a number of brief questionnaires (Part 1).
  • We will also schedule you to complete a phone interview (Part 2) during which a researcher will ask about your general mood, daily functioning, and mental health status. This interview is brief, and should take no more than 5-20 minutes of your time. Based on your responses on the questionnaires and phone interview, we will determine whether you are eligible to further continue with the study.
  • If deemed eligible, you will receive unlimited access to the 7-week online self-directed Self-Compassion Reflection Program (Part 3). The program is made up of 7 modules—you will receive one module each week for 7 weeks.
  • After completing the 7-week program, we will monitor your progress at four different check-ins (Part 4). The check-ins will occur at 3, 6, 9, and 12 months since shortly before starting the program. During each scheduled check-in, you will be asked to complete a set of online questionnaires and a phone interview with a researcher (similar to the phone interview when you sign up for the course (Part 2).

The SCOPE Trial is not recommended if you have severe problems with alcohol, drugs, mania, or psychosis, if you endorse strong thoughts of suicide, or if you are currently engaging in treatment for a mental health condition.

Who can I contact about the course?

If you have any questions about the course of the SCOPE Trial, please feel free to contact us 

How do I sign up?

If you are interested in enrolling in the course and participating in the SCOPE Trial, please click “APPLY NOW” and follow the instructions on the page.