Download Introduction to Psychopathology by Alessandra Lemma PDF

By Alessandra Lemma

I used to be such a lot inspired through the author's thoroughness in scripting this ebook. She turns out to go away no stone uncovered... [this is] a piece which may still turn into a need for all counsellors, counselling psychologists, psychiatric nurses and psychotherapists... this can be a e-book to which i'll make reference time and time back, and one that will occupy a favourite position in my library' - Counselling, The magazine of the British organization for Counselling `An precious guide for college kids of psychotherapy and an exceptional reference for confirmed therapists... i like to recommend that each one therapists have a replica of this e-book on their shelf' - Psychology, wellbeing and fitness & medication Assessmenp and refer

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Example text

As Fonagy so aptly put it, 'history is not destiny' ( 1 992: 3). 3 Assessment What is a 'good' assessment? Assessment has been described as an 'art' (Coltart, 1 993). A good assessment is clearly not just about following a set of guidelines or covering specific areas of functioning during the consultation. It relies on other less specific, non-quantifiable ingredients which can neither be prescribed nor formally taught. A 'good' assessment is one which identifies the needs of a client so as to maximise the chance of having these needs met through an appropriate intervention.

Or, a s some authors have put it, o n a study o f the 'roads not taken' (Masten and Coatsworth, 1 995). In any examination of risk factors for psychopathology, it becomes apparent that there are also 'protective' factors that function as buffers against the risks and which need to be borne in mind when predicting outcome. Protective factors promote adaptation to one's environment. Many of these are essen­ tially the polar opposites of the risk factors outlined earlier and would thus include parental mental health, warmth and nurturance and effective parenting to name but a few.

How does the client relate to the therapist? How does the client describe her experiences? What feelings are triggered in the therapist during the interview? The answers to such questions are as important as, and often far more informative than, the biographical information we collect. They focus on how the client tells her story rather than on what the client says; on the form as opposed to the content of what the client communicates. They carry information about the client which is 'live'. An assessment interview should therefore not be carried out in a mechanistic manner where the gathering of facts about a client's life can overshadow consideration of the actual process of assessment.

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