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3.outline.abnormal.lsu.f.09 - CHAPTER 3 CLINICAL ASSESSMENT...

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CHAPTER 3 CLINICAL ASSESSMENT AND DIAGNOSIS I. Assessing Psychological Disorders A. Clinical assessment is the systematic evaluatipon and measurement of psychological, biological, and social factors in an individual presenting with a possible psychological disorder. Diagnosis – process of determining whether a person’s problem(s) meets all the criteria for a psychological disorder. B. The process of clinical assessment is analogous to a funnel in that it is initially broad in scope and then becomes more specific. C. Key concepts in assessment 1. Reliability is the most important requirement of assessment procedures and is the degree to which a measure is consistent. interrater reliability- consistency across two or more raters test-retest reliability – consistency across time 2. Validity is the degree to which a technique measures what it is designed to measure. concurrent or descriptive validity – comparing the results of one assessment measure with the results of others predictive validity – how well the assessment predicts what will happen in the future face validity – whether the test items look reasonable and valid at first glance 3. One can have high reliability without validity, but not validity without reliability. 4. Standardization – process by which a set of standards or norms is established for a technique to ensure its consistency across different measurements
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II. Procedures and Strategies of Clinical Assessment A. The clinical interview is the core of most clinical work and is used primarily to gather information about past and present behavior, attitudes, emotions, and a history of the person's problem(s) and life circumstances. Other important points to cover include precipitating events, family composition and history, sexual development, religious beliefs, cultural concerns, educational achievement, and social-interpersonal history. 1. To organize information obtained during an interview, many clinicians will use a mental status exam - systematic observation of a client’s behavior across five domains: a. Appearance and behavior – physical behaviors, attire, general appearance, posture, facial expression b. Thought processes - rate and flow of speech, clarity, an content of speech and ideas c. Mood and affect - is affect and mood appropriate or inappropriate? d. Intellectual functioning – does the client have a reasonable vocabulary and memory e. Sensorium - general awareness of surroundings… . 2. It is important to conduct the clinical interview in a way that elicits the patient’s trust and empathy in order to facilitate communication. Information provided by patients to psychologists and psychiatrists is protected by laws of confidentiality – communications between patients and therapists is protected as a privileged communication in most states -Therapists can only break confidentiality if they think the patient is a danger to themselves or others, and that danger is imminent.
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3.outline.abnormal.lsu.f.09 - CHAPTER 3 CLINICAL ASSESSMENT...

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