The Reliability and Validity of the DSM

Goes through issues surrounding problems with the DSM, is it reliablie? is it valid?

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Stinchfeild studied the diagnosis of pathological gamblers they used a questionnaire
taking criteria from the DSM and were able to sort the non-gamblers from the gamblers.
Suggesting the DSM is reliable.
Brown looked at the DSM IV, following anxiety and mood disorders in the USA. Took
place in an outpatient's clinic. Two independent interviewers used anxiety disorder
surveys and found much agreement between the two interviewers, only disagreeing on
people were survey or had symptoms long enough to be diagnosed. Suggesting reliability
of the DSM
Goldstein looked at the effect of gender on the diagnosis of schizophrenia. She
re-diagnosed people using the DSM, and got a random sample of 8 and got other experts to
diagnosis, removing the history from their notes. She found a high level of agreement with
re-diagnosis, suggesting the reliability of the DSM.
Rosenhan Can you diagnosis a sane person insane? Can you diagnose an insane person
sane? How are patients treated in an asylum? Rosehan found that with the use of pseudo
patient's experts made very wrong diagnoses, suggesting the DSM is unreliable.
Kirk and Kutchins
Kirk and Kutchins did a review of all the studies that looked at the
reliability of validity of the DSM. They suggested there were
methodological problems with the study:
Studies often used methods such as interviews and questionnaires,
within these the researcher lacked training and commitment and there
wasn't enough supervision. Therefore inaccurate.
Studies took place in specialised clinics; therefore results are not
generalizable to normal clinics.
if unreliable, K&K suggest it is therefore also invalid.

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Goldstein didn't use interviews or questionnaires. She
used other people's research, secondary data and
found reliability k&k doesn't apply to all studies.
Brown's study was conducted in an outpatient's clinic.
Stinchfield's study of gamblers took place in a
gamblers clinic these studies are ecologically valid so k&k
doesn't apply to all studies.
validity "is it measuring what it said it is measuring?"
Lee tested used the DSM for diagnosis of ADHD in Korean children.…read more

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Reliable valid
Consistent diagnosis valid
Takes into account cultural boundaries and edits the
DSM accordingly valid
What type of validity does the DSM have?
CONSTRUCT mental disorders must be operationalized; lists of symptoms and
behaviours clearly defined making the disorder measurable.
ETIOLOGICAL if a group of people have been diagnosed with the same disorder they
must all have the same symptoms and same cause for the disease (like generalizability,
has to be the same throughout). E.g.…read more

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Reductionist The DSM looks at the different parts of the
problems rather than the problem on a whole.
Self-fulfilling If you are looking for a problem and
symptoms you will try and fit them into a category and wrongly
Plan for an essay on reliability and validity of the DSM?
Intro, what the DSM is how it is used?
Reliability: Rosehan found it unreliable
Goldstein found it reliable
Brown found it reliable
Stinchfield found it reliable
BUT K&K found this is not the case...…read more


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