The Strengths and Weaknesses of the Scientist Practioner Approach

1241 Words Feb 13th, 2009 5 Pages
The Strengths and Weaknesses of the Scientist – Practioner Approach

The scientist-practitioner model was a term coined within the realm of American psychology. A conference held in Boulder, Colorado in 1949 concluded that clinical psychologists should be incorporating both a scientific and practical approach within their framework and training model.
In his applied scientific theory, Shappiro (1985) viewed research and practice as being integrated, not dichotomised. He outlined the three features of what he believed to make up the scientist-practitioner role:
1. All findings of general psychology should be applied to the field of mental health.
2. It is imperative that all methods of assessment used are scientifically validated and
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The infrequency of clinicians conducting research was empirically investigated by Pfeiffer, Burd and Wright( 1992) ,they established that the reasons for a clinicians minimal involvement with research was mainly due to the lack of funding, the inadequate availability of time and more specifically, research was not a specification within their job description. Gale (1985) also emphasised the difficulty of conducting research within a clinical context, expressing that the competing demands of time the ability to plan and manage projects was a challenging and complex task as the capacity to devote attention to others, especially clients, was often affected.
In 1998, Milne and Paxton found that even if clinicians were examining the research literature, often they only focused on findings and attended to information that was harmonious to their own world views. This could be stemmed to the modal means of publicised research findings; there has always been a consistent reporting that the modal frequency of publication amongst clinical psychologists is zero. Potential reasoning for this may be due to the fact that the majority of research articles written are solely for other researchers and not clinicians. The observed problems with the inadequate utilisation of the empirical literature may be pinpointed to the fact that
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