Lec 6 Assessment
• Doctors take about 12minutes to make an assessment
• Psychological assessment takes 3 hours minimum
• Relationship between psychologist and client is required for most effective
o Conduct an interview
o Observe patient
o Psychological testing Unique to psychology
Testing: Comparison to statistical data
• Triage Seen by nurse to determine severity of the disorder then appoint a
specialist (aka referral)
o Gives us clues on clients:
Understanding of problem
What are the problems
What individual is willing to do
o Sources: Referral given by
Court system – If participate, less punishment
o Take basic symptoms and if they deviate from norm, provide referral to
o Referral provides therapist with orientation of the major problems
o Referral includes information on an orientation of the major problems.
o This information includes the primary symptoms, the duration, the onset
and medical status.
o Medical status can mimic, complicate, or mask psychological disorders
o Referral can cause observer bias, leading to error in validity.
o Malinger Do not have disorder, but do have symptoms
• Observation is most common assessment for children
• Interview most common in adults
o Picking up a certain behaviour and a note of it.
• Observer picks up what is expected
• Theoretical practice person is trained in causes bias Only looking at behaviour at one point in time in an artificial
o General appearance
Can indicate how client things of themselves
o Gestures and Expressions
Can be subtle Experience required to use this
Pay heavy attention, particularly in first meeting
o Motor Acts
Gross, large movements
Fine motor acts
Watch out for physiological disorders
Both hyperactive and underactive could be indicators
What and how things are being said
How: Does it comply with age, intelligence, socioeconomic status
• Neologism Making up words
• Incoherent Speech using words in sentences that do not
• Tangential speech Rambling about subjects that are not
o Questions asked are driven from theoretical perspectives.
o Formal observation with purpose of collecting data and gathering rapport.
o Generates hypothesis for diagnosis
o 3 types of information:
Identify data Provides context
• name, age, rapport, education level, background and origin,
language, residence, work, etc.
The presenting problem
• What does the client think the problem is?
• Many disorders have a genetic component.
o 2 Types of interviews
• Interviews that have been used many times, structured over
a long period of time
• High degree of accuracy
• Does not miss anything • Exhaustive Does not miss anything however can become
tedious to client.
• However does not develop rapport (psychologist and client