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From The CriticsReviewer: Gary B Kaniuk, Psy.D.(Cermak Health Services)
Description: This is the third edition of a complete reference guide to the art of interviewing. It describes the interviewing process, suggesting strategies in order to develop questions which will result in good differential diagnoses. The first edition was published in 1985 and the second in 1994.
Purpose: According to the editors, the purpose of the third edition was to update the material from the first two editions. The purpose from the first edition seems applicable to this book as well: "...to providing a clear outline for the student in tackling a large variety of patients in the interview setting." The book meets these worthy objectives.
Audience: The book is written for student trainees, as the editors explain, "We are particularly concerned that in the clinical education of our graduate students, interviewing continues to be given short shrift. Considering that good interviewing leads to appropriate clinical and research targets, we can only underscore the critical importance of the area." I agree with the editors that graduate students in clinical psychology are the target audience. The editors and contributors are credible authorities.
Features: The book covers the interview process, including the mental status examination and neuropsychological factors. It goes to great lengths to talk about interviewing with specific DSM-IV disorders in mind. It also includes interviewing techniques with special populations. This book is excellent because it contains a great amount of information, provides clinical examples, and gives "dos and don'ts." It is well written and applicable to clinical situations. The editors want this book to be a practical guide to interviewing and I believe they achieved their goal.
Assessment: I was very pleased with this book. It is practical, easy to read, and contains interviewing information regarding many DSM-IV categories. The case examples are of great value to learning the art of interviewing. The book emphasizes the importance of knowing about psychopathology and specific DSM-IV criteria. The editors and contributors have produced a work they can be proud of and which will add to the training of the next generation of clinicians. The updated material in this third edition does justify replacing the previous two editions, especially given the almost 10 years between editions.