Examination of Clinical Psychology Paper

Topics: Psychology, Clinical psychology, Psychiatry Pages: 9 (1353 words) Published: June 6, 2015
Examination of Clinical Psychology Paper
Jamie Rucker
Mon. May 25, 2015
Dr. William Philadelphia

Examination of Clinical Psychology Paper
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 and evolving nature must be discussed. Clinical psychology is considered the most prevalent specialty area within psychology according to Plante (2011), with the “majority of psychology doctorates being awarded in clinical psychology” (p. 5). Plante (2011) expresses the focuses of what surrounds the definition of clinical psychology with noting assessments, and treatments stating “clinical psychology focuses its efforts on the ways in which the human psyche interacts with physical, emotional, and social aspects of health and dysfunction” (p. 5). Given this knowledge, clinical psychology presents a vast history of evolving nature. The evolving nature of clinical psychology in recent times portrays a movement where influences and interests conquest to better mental health. Research and statistics embraces a significant role amid the field of clinical psychology. Given the diversity and complexity of the field, Vallis & Howes (1996) states “a clear, acceptable definition is not possible.” Although, it can be said that clinical psychologist have been performing, lacking an official definition, it is safe to say that “clinical psychologist are involved in many activities” (Huey & Britton, 2002, p. 70). Clinical psychology is defined through a vast amount of focuses, engaging in assessments, treatments, and understanding of the human psyche. Plante (2011) has produced the closest and most clear description stating “the aspect of psychological science and practice concerned with the analysis, treatment, and prevention of human psychological disabilities and with the enhancing of personal adjustment and effectiveness” (Rodnick, 1985, p. 1929). Because of the non-existence of one formal definition, it portrays a hard distinction among similar practices against clinical psychology and other mental health professions. History of Clinical Psychology

Regards to an assortment of fields and school of thought, associated people pulled together collaborations and scientific advancements through history that formed the field of clinical psychology. Clinical psychology is seen to be developed from the discipline of psychology, which was derived and related to philosophy (Plante, 2011). Placing together a diverse amount of thoughts and ideas of philosophers, prominently Sigmund Freud, developed one of the most influential of many on early clinical psychology in America. Basically, the foundations of psychology can be established back to Freud. It wasn’t until 1979 that philosophy and psychology developed into two separate and distinct disciplines. During this era, the University of Leipzig in Germany, Wilhelm Wundt, a German philosopher identified in the role and founder of experimental psychology, established the first psychological laboratory ultimately establishing and forming psychology as a discipline apparent after philosophy (Plante, 2011). Correspondingly, contributing to this distinction of the two disciplines is seen in 1892, is the formation of the American Psychological Association (APA) (Plante, 2011, p. 21). Seen a few years later in March of 1896 at “the University of Pennsylvania”, Lightner Witmer created the first clinic (Watson, 1953). Witmer (1896) was “apparently the first to suggest practical work for the psychologist through training school and laboratory” (p. 332). Because of Lightner Witmer’s influences and developments, this organized the emergence in the field of psychology recognized as clinical psychology. “Today, clinical psychology is a complex and diverse field encompassing numerous subspecialties and a continuum of scientific and practitioner-focused...

References: Huey, D. A., & Britton, P. G. (2002). A portrait of clinical psychology. Journal Of
Interprofessional Care, 16(1), 69-78. doi:10.1080/13561820220104186
Rodnick, E. H. (1985). Clinical psychology. In H. I. Kaplan & B. J. Sadock. Comprehensive textbook of psychiatry (4th ed., pp. 1929–1935). Baltimore: Williams & Wilkins.
Vallis, T. M., & Howes, J. L. (1996). The field of clinical psychology: Arriving at a
definition. Canadian Psychology/Psychologie Canadienne, 37(2), 120-127. Retrieved from http://search.proquest.com/docview/614317124?accountid=166133
Plante, T. G. (2011). Contemporary clinical psychology (3rd ed.). Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley &
Watson, R. I. (1953). A brief history of clinical psychology. Psychological Bulletin, 50(5), 321-346. doi:http://dx.doi.org/10.1037/h0062847
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