The Diagnostic And Statistical Manuals

3005 Words Sep 16th, 2014 13 Pages
The Diagnostic and Statistical Manuals (DSMs) have long provided diagnostic guidelines for both clinical and research use in psychiatry and psychology all around the world. The tension between categorical and dimensional conceptualisations in assessing psychiatric syndromes and disorders is reflected in debate. Despite the ongoing concerns, recent discussions have argued for the implementation of a dimensional classification system, the categorical approach continues to dominate the field of psychology and psychiatry linked to clinical practice. This essay will present a comparison between categorical and dimensional approaches to the diagnostic of psychosis by highlighting advantage and disadvantages to each approach with respect to psychosis disorders.

Categorical Pros
The classification schemes in common usage are based on separate categories of disorder schemes of which - the patient is either positive (has the disorder) or negative (does not have the disorder). Categorical measures involve one with two or more discrete non-ordered responses. Those who propose a categorical approach regard mental disorder as qualitatively different from variation across the normal range of expression in the population. While research suggests that clinicians are in favour of categorical diagnoses and researches are inclined to dimensional ones, this is not entirely true (Kraemer & O’Hara, 2004).

* categorical classification facilitates clinical utility.
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