top-rated free essay

Clinical Psychology

By peeteybug Jun 03, 2013 1071 Words
Examination of Clinical Psychology

“Clinical psychology is defined by focusing on the assessment, treatment and understanding of psychological and behavioral problems and disorders” (Plante, 2011, p.5). Clinical psychology is not a specialty within psychology as much as it is an application of psychology that deals with emotional and behavioral problems (Plante, 2011). In order to understand clinical psychology, it is important to understand the history and evolving nature, the role of research and statistics, and the differences between clinical psychology and other mental health professionals including social work, psychiatry, and school psychology. History of Clinical Psychology

In 460-377 B.C., there were many people that influenced the early development of what would become to be known as clinical psychology. Hippocrates was one of the first to suggest that biological, psychological, and social factors contribute to the physical and emotional well being of individuals. After Hippocrates came up with the early perspectives that he had, Aristotle, Plato and Galen built upon them (Plante, 2011).

In the Middle Ages, (500-1450 A.D.) the relationship between health, illness, mind, and body became important again. In 1490-1541, a Swiss physician name Paracelsus developed treatments that were important in the biological foundations of mental illness. Then Juan Luis Vives (1492-1540) and Johann Weyer (1515-1588) a;sp began to bring attention to mental illness as being more about behavior and they too started believing treatment was right for the mentally ill (Plante, 2011).

During the Renaissance Era, Giovanni Battista Morgagni (1682-1771) discovered during an autopsy that a diseased organ could cause illness and/or death. This lead to many other discoveries, such as the discovery in the nineteenth century by Louis Pasteur where he found that diseases and illnesses could cause problems with the cells in the body. A psychological approach to mental illness came to light at this time, it was called moral therapy. All of these things lead to Theodor Fechner in 1860 to publish the book “Elements of Psychophysics” and for Wilhelm Wundt to publish the “Principles of Physiological Psychology”. After this the first laboratory of psychology was developed by Wundt in Germany 1879, this was the beginning of psychology that keeps evolving to this day (Plante, 2011).

Clinical psychology is constantly evolving, things change in the world and with that, clinical psychology needs to be constantly updated to make sure that all the research is consistent with what is happening in the world now. Nothing stays the same and if clinical psychology does not evolve with the present, therapy that practitioners use would not be very helpful to their clients (Plante, 2011). Role of Research and Statistics

Research is important in the field of clinical psychology because it lays the foundation for understanding the relationship between psychological factors and mental issues. It also helps in guiding practitioners in understanding in understanding the assessment and treatment of individuals. Research is very important in establishing reliability and validity, which then helps in clinicians knowing the right treatments and interventions that are effective in therapy (Plante, 2011).

It is important to do research to better understand diagnosis, treatment, and human behavior. Without research it would be impossible for a practitioner to have a starting point for their clients. Within this research, while some researches will have better statistics than others, there needs to be reliability and validity and it is important to have these with none or minimal errors. Differences in Clinical Psychology and other Mental Health Professionals

While all mental health professionals are important in the jobs that they do, they are not all considered the same. Clinical psychologists and Psychiatrists are important and while both conduct psychotherapy and research, there is a difference between the two professions. One big difference is in education experience, psychiatrists have a degree in medicine and clinical psychologists have a doctoral-level degree in psychology (Cherry, 2013). Psychologists get graduate training in psychology and go for either a Ph.D. or a Psy. D. in clinical or counseling psychology. Most doctorate programs usually take 5 to 7 years to get and some states will usually require a 1 to 2 year internship to be able to get licensed (Cherry, 2013). Psychiatrists are physicians that receive training specifically in assessment, diagnosis, treatment and prevention of mental illness. After receiving an undergraduate degree, individuals will then attend medical school to receive their M.D. After this, an additional 4 years of residency is required. Another major difference is that psychiatrists can prescribe medications; psychologists (in most places) cannot prescribe medications (Cherry, 2013).

The difference between clinical psychologists and social workers is the degree, instead of the doctoral degree; social workers get a Master’s Degree in Social Work, or M.S.W. An individual with a M.S.W. will also train with individuals to work with a different client group. Social workers tend to be more involved with an individuals everyday life, even going to the clients home, school and work where as a psychologist tends to do their therapy in an office setting (CU-Boulder, 2013).

The main difference between clinical psychology and school psychology is the work and education; school psychology requires a 4-year undergraduate degree and a graduate degree that usually takes 2 to 3 years for a Master’s Degree. School psychologists also usually work in a school but will sometimes also have private practices but will do consulting work with schools (Cherry, 2013).

While there are many different things that involve clinical psychology, it is important to understand why we use clinical psychology and how we use it. Between the researches that shows validity and reliability to the differences between clinical psychology and other mental health professions. Clinical psychology, although has some similarities to other mental health professions, differs because of the educational requirements that is needed to become a clinical psychologist. It is a very important part in society and it is important to make sure individuals understand how to use it to help clients get the best therapy possible.

CU-Boulder. (2013). Graduate Study in the field of psychology. Retrieved January 28, 2013 from K. Cherry. (2013). What’s the difference between a psychologist and a psychiatrist. Retrieved January 28, 2013 from Plante, T. G. (2011). Contemporary clinical psychology (3rd ed.). Hoboken, NJ:

John Wiley & Sons.

Cite This Document

Related Documents

  • Clinical Psychology

    ...Clinical Psychology Melissa Barrow PSY 480 May 9, 2013 Joshua Stoick Clinical Psychology Clinical psychology has evolved into a thriving field. The early origins of psychology took place during the late 1800s and early 1900s. During this time the foundation fo...

    Read More
  • Clinical Assessment

    ...Clinical Assessment PSY270 June 23, 2013 Elizabeth Cole Clinical Assessment Mr. and Mrs. Lawson brought their 4-year-old adopted daughter, Clara, to see Dr. Mason, a psychiatrist. Clara was polite in greeting Dr. Mason, but did not smile and kept her gaze down as she took a seat. Mr. and Mrs. Lawson sat next to Clara and began explaining ...

    Read More
  • Career in Psychology

    ...evidence recorded in history on the subject of psychology dates back to 1550 B.C. where a form of clinical depression was noted. In 460 B.C. those who were mentally ill were thought to have spirits or be demon possessed. By 50 to 123 A.D. doctors were still simply dabbling in the field and "treated" patients by leaving them in the dark, restra...

    Read More
  • Experimental Psychology Research Paper

    ...modalities currently termed `therapy' would in fact be classed as types of `counselling', including those modalities of family therapy which aim to engage clients at the level of conscious behaviour change and restructuring. Consideration of how new professionals are trained lends support to a continuum, with short-term, problem-focused consci...

    Read More
  • Living through the trauma

    ... Living Through the Trauma Post-traumatic Stress Disorder and its most efficacious treatments Eva Garritsen 4030974 Introduction to Psychology 04-12-2013 Words: 2312 Introduction A traumatic experience is able to leave behind an intense impression on the brain. Our brain is luckily sufficient enough to digest certain traumas...

    Read More
  • The Practice of Clinical Psychology Worksheet

    ...Practice of Clinical Psychology Worksheet Answer the following questions. Your response to each question must be at least 150 words in length. 1. What are at least two legal issues associated with clinical psychology? Provide an example of a situation that could be legal but unethical. Explain your response. Confidentiality and ethical ...

    Read More
  • Examination of Clinical Psychology Paper

    ...Examination of Clinical Psychology Paper Jamie Rucker PSY-480 Mon. May 25, 2015 Dr. William Philadelphia Examination of Clinical Psychology Paper Introduction Understanding the world of clinical psychology, the path and journey endures complex dedications. To precisely express its description and functions, a deeper look into the history ...

    Read More
  • Application of Clinical Psychology

    ... Application of Clinical Psychology Angel Palmer, Amanda Ungurean, Solangel Conway and Vincent Depietro PSY/480 June 1, 2015 Kristin Merritte Application of Clinical Psychology When it comes to the field of mental health, there are several parts to look at. There are the different cases, some famous and some not of people in time who have...

    Read More

Discover the Best Free Essays on StudyMode

Conquer writer's block once and for all.

High Quality Essays

Our library contains thousands of carefully selected free research papers and essays.

Popular Topics

No matter the topic you're researching, chances are we have it covered.