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By Patricia Waldygo Anne S. Walters, PhD, ABPP, Consultant Clinical Psychology


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Introduction: What Is Psychology? �������������������������������������� 6 Chapter 1: Clinical Psychology in America ���������������������� 10 Chapter 2: Humanistic Psychology Breaks Away from Tradition �������������������������������������������������� 26 Chapter 3: Family Systems Therapy, Positive Psychology, and Related Schools of Thought �������������������� 42 Chapter 4: Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy: The Swiss Army Knife of Treatments ������������������������������ 58 Chapter 5: “Third Wave” Approaches in Psychotherapy ��������������������������������������������� 74 Series Glossary of Key Terms ���������������������������������������������� 90 Further Reading & Internet Resources ������������������������������ 93 Index ��������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 94 Author’s Biography & Credits ��������������������������������������������� 96 KEY I CONS TO LOOK FOR : Words to Understand: These words, with their easy-to-understand definitions, will increase readers’ understanding of the text while building vocabulary skills. Sidebars: This boxed material within the main text allows readers to build knowledge, gain insights, explore possibilities, and broaden their perspectives by weaving together additional information to provide realistic and holistic perspectives. Educational Videos: Readers can view videos by scanning our QR codes, providing them with additional educational content to supplement the text. Text-Dependent Questions: These questions send the reader back to the text for more careful attention to the evidence presented there. Research Projects: Readers are pointed toward areas of further inquiry connected to each chapter. Suggestions are provided for projects that encourage deeper research and analysis. Series Glossary of Key Terms: This back-of-the-book glossary contains terminology used throughout this series. Words found here increase the reader’s ability to read and comprehend higher-level books and articles in this field.

What Is Psychology? When we look up the meaning of the word psychology , we learn that it comes from two Greek words—“psyche,” which means “mind,” and “logia,” which means “the study of.” Hence, psychology is “the study of the mind.” (Merriam-Webster.com) Essentially, psychology aims to study and better understand emotions, thoughts, and behaviors, with the goal of benefiting society. Those who choose to study psychology generally have a strong urge to help others, though the definition of “others” can vary across concentric circles of influence, from the individual to the family and then on to broader systems such as a school, neighborhood, or society. That urge to help and understand people and their behavior is perhaps the most basic motivator that leads an individual to want to pursue the study of psychology. Some describe psychology as a “hub science” to depict the way that it links to the social sciences, the natural sciences, medicine, and the humanities. In university settings, however, psychology is considered a social science. Social sciences deal with the study of human behavior in its social and cultural aspects. They include fields such as anthropology, sociology, political science, history, education, and economics. These fields are certainly diverse, and yet one can see the commonality: these disciplines all teach us more about how the individual and society interact and influence each other. Another important distinction is the one between psychology and psychiatry. Simply put, psychologists pursue


Clinical Psychology

graduate level degrees (master’s or doctorate) in psychology, whereas psychiatrists complete medical school prior to specializing in psychiatry. After medical school (and receiving an MD degree), there are three years of psychiatry training to become an adult psychiatrist. If they want to specialize further (such as in child and adolescent psychiatry or forensics), there is additional training in this specialty field for several years and then they must take a board examination to become certified in their specialty area. Psychiatrists can prescribe medication, and psychologists cannot (although in some rural or underserved areas this is an option for psychologists). Psychiatrists are also uniquely suited to understand biological or medical contributions to mental illness. On the other hand, some day-to-day practices of psychiatrists do not look that different from those of psychologists. What does studying psychology entail? There are so many options! Within psychology, there are multiple fields of study. Some of them you will learn about in these volumes, but it would take far too many volumes to cover all of them. If you’re interested in exploring more about psychology beyond this series, you might consider developmental psychology, cognitive psychology, and comparative psychology. Developmental psychology is the study of development throughout a person’s life, from infancy through old age. Some of the more famous developmental psychologists have been Jean Piaget, who identified stages for the development of cognition in children, and B. F. Skinner, who studied the process of learning and taught us about the concepts of operant and classical conditioning. Another field, cognitive psychology, studies human thought: one famous psychologist in this field is Noam Chomsky, who studied the development of language. Comparative psychologists study animal behavior, and in this area Konrad



Lorenz studied the process by which baby geese “imprint” on the first object they see after birth. If you Google Professor Lorenz, you may see pictures of goslings following him around the yard. Although there are many ways to cluster the various subfields of psychology, one common distinction is between clinical and nonclinical applications, sometimes also referred to as applied psychology vs. basic research . Clinical or applied psychology focuses on understanding and treating psychiatric disorders that challenge day-to-day functioning. Treatment is derived from an evidence base that assesses outcomes or the ways that a treatment is effective. Establishing an evidence base is an important aspect of the work of a psychologist. Some devote their careers to this work, which can overlap with nonclinical or research applications. Researchers use scientific methods to advance knowledge in the field in a variety of topics. These psychologists work in academic settings as well as industry and organizations. Why would you want to become a psychologist or even to study psychology? The field of psychology has countless applications to everyday life, and as such, it can be a jumping off point for many careers. The reader will learn about different psychology careers in these volumes. What’s more, as a major in college, psychology can be applied to a variety of careers outside of psychology, such as human resources, teaching, criminal justice, and many others. For those who have the option to take an elective psychology course in high school, it can be a wonderful opportunity to get a jump start on the weighty decision of what to major in and to see whether the subject matter interests you. In writing this introduction, I can give you a window into a personal choice. I am a child clinical psychologist and have devoted my career to helping children and their families. I work


Clinical Psychology

in an academic medical center, which means that although I do clinical work, I also teach and supervise psychology students at many phases of their career. In addition, I write for various venues and conduct applied research into the outcomes of the treatment we provide. I am also an administrator, and as such I attend to aspects of psychology as a “business”: hiring and training those who do the work in our setting and tracking our budget, to name a few examples. One of the best things about this career is that every day is different, and yet the common experience is of helping others. In producing this series, we hope that we can provide a window into the varied choices you can make with a degree in psychology. From professor to therapist, working with toddlers or the elderly, teaching business psychology or conducting family therapy, there is likely at least one application of the subject of psychology that will appeal to you. I hope the exploration is rewarding!

Anne S. Walters, PhD, ABPP Clinical Director Children’s Partial Hospital Program Clinical Professor Alpert Medical School of Brown University



When people think of psychotherapy, they often remember scenes with therapists on TV.


Psychopathology: Also called abnormal psychology ; the science of studying mental and behavioral disorders. Sanguine: Having a positive, optimistic outlook. Choleric: Hot-tempered, angry, grumpy. Phlegmatic: Calm, reliable, showing few emotions. Null hypothesis: A statement that people assume to be true unless there is enough statistical evidence against it.


Clinical Psychology in America

When most people think of psychotherapy, they remember scenes with therapists in Crazy Ex-Girlfriend , The Sopranos , and Grey’s Anatomy , among other TV series. Yet, all three of the therapists in these productions are psychiatrists using psychoanalytic methods based on Sigmund Freud’s theories. Numerous other forms of therapy have emerged in the 100-plus years since Freud developed “talk therapy.” Most modern psychotherapists practice newer types of therapy, all grouped under the umbrella term clinical psychology . One good example of the interaction between therapist and patient would be in the film Good Will Hunting . Its main character, Will, is a genius with a photographic memory, but demons from his past keep him from achieving his potential. After getting in trouble with law enforcement, he is court-ordered to undergo therapy. He figures out how to


control and reject two therapists in the first session, but the third therapist uses techniques of self-disclosure and mirroring Will’s language to gain the youth’s trust. The therapist describes beatings by his own alcoholic father to get Will to open up about his childhood abuse. By talking about his relationship with his deceased wife, the therapist conveys the importance of emotional risk-taking and intimacy in a healthy relationship. As a result, Will learns to show vulnerability to his girlfriend and overcome his childhood traumas. What Is Clinical Psychology? Clinical psychology is a science that combines theories, scientific techniques, and research-based knowledge. It aims to discover what causes anxiety, depression, bipolar disorder, psychosis, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, anorexia and bulimia, autism, and all of the other mental and emotional problems people suffer from. It assesses and treats mental illness and behavioral disorders and promotes well-being and personal growth. Clinical psychology studies people through observation and experimentation to help themmake beneficial changes in life. Lightner Witner founded the first psychological clinic in 1896 to diagnose and treat children with learning and behavioral problems. He introduced the term clinical psychology in a 1907 paper and defined it as “the study of individuals, by observation or experimentation, with the intention of promoting change.” Beginnings G. Stanley Hall was a man of many “firsts.” He was the first American to earn a PhD in psychology (at Harvard University). In 1883, he built the first psychology lab in the United States at Johns Hopkins University. He established the American Journal of Psychology in 1887, and in 1892 he was elected the first president of the American Psychological Association (APA). Hall was most


Clinical Psychology

Check out this “Map for a Meaningful Life.”

interested in childhood development, aggression in adolescence, and evolutionary psychology. He laid the foundation for the field of psychology in America and its future psychologists. By 1914, there were 26 more clinical psychology clinics in America. The American Association of Clinical Psychologists (AACP) was founded in 1917, motivated by a need to create professional standards for administering the Binet intelligence test. Back then, the test was given to students by schoolteachers with no psychological training and by academic psychologists who had no clinical experience. The AACP merged into the APA as its Clinical Section in 1919, then disbanded in 1937 due to disagreement with APA restrictions. It reformed again as the Clinical Section of the new American Association for Applied Psychology (AAAP). In 1945, the AAAP and the APA merged, with

Chapter 1: Clinical Psychology in America


the Clinical Section becoming APA Division 12 (initially named the Division of Clinical and Abnormal Psychology). In 1935, the American Psychological Association (APA) defined clinical psychology as a branch of psychology that attempts to assess someone’s abilities and behavior by analyzing, measuring, and observing that person. It uses scientific methods to test people with psychological disorders and makes recommendations on how to help them. During World War II, the U.S. government asked clinical psychologists to treat returning soldiers suffering from “shell shock”—now called post-traumatic stress syndrome (PTSD). The demand for psychologists led to the creation of many doctoral level training programs. By 1950, more than half of all PhDs in psychology were earned in clinical psychology. Today, clinical psychology is a hugely popular subfield that employs more people than any other area of psychology. The “Boulder” and the “Vail” Models Although at first, clinical psychologists focused on science and research, graduate programs soon began emphasizing psychotherapy. In PhD programs for clinical psychology, this is called the Boulder or scientist-practitioner model, because it was ratified at a 1949 conference in Boulder, Colorado. American psychologist David Shakow (1901–1981) developed this model, which guides graduate students to build a foundation consisting of research methods, field work, and scientific procedures to improve their future practice. Shakow is known for his research on schizophrenia and working to humanize people with this disorder. Before his time, schizophrenic patients were viewed as a danger and impossible to treat. Shakow’s dissertation, The Nature of Deterioration of Schizophrenia , is a classic in the field’s literature. In general, he stressed having a “therapeutic attitude,” meaning that a


Clinical Psychology

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