The thermal behavior of a spherical gas bubble in a liquid excited by an acoustic pressure signal is investigated by constructing an iterative solution of the energy balance equations between the gas bubble and the surrounding liquid in the uniform pressure approximation. This iterative solution leads to hierarchy equations for the radial partial derivatives of the temperature at the bubble wall, which control the temporal rate of change of the gas pressure and gas temperature within the bubble. In particular, a closure relation for the hierarchy equations is introduced based on the ansatz that approximates the rapid change of state during the collapse of the bubble from almost isothermal to almost adiabatic behavior by time averaging the complex dynamics of change of state over a relatively short characteristic time. This, in turn, leads to the desired reduced order gas pressure law exhibiting power law dependence on the bubble wall temperature and on the bubble radius, with the polytropic index depending on the isentropic exponent of the gas and on a parameter that is a function of the Peclet number and a characteristic time scale. Results of the linear theory for gas bubbles are recovered by identifying this parameter as a function of the Peclet number based on the Minnaert frequency. The novel gas pressure law is then validated against the near-isothermal solution and against the results of the numerical simulations of the original energy balance equations for large amplitude oscillations using spectral methods. Consequently, an acoustic cavitation model that accounts for phase change but that neglects mass diffusion is constructed by employing the reduced order gas pressure law together with the Plesset-Zwick solution for the bubble wall temperature and the Keller-Miksis equation for spherical bubble dynamics. Results obtained using variable interface properties for acoustically driven cavitation bubbles in water show that the time variations of the bubble radius and the bubble wall temperature lie between those obtained by the isothermal and adiabatic laws depending on the value of the Peclet number and the characteristic time scale.& nbsp;(C) 2021 Author(s).