321 research outputs found

    WePlay Denver: The Why and How: Background and Implementation Manual

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    WePlay Denver (WePlay and Nosotros Jugamos; see glossary) is a program providing caregiver-infant playgroups designed to teach families with young children the value of play as well as provide information and resources on topics related to child development, family wellbeing, and mental health. WePlay and Nosotros Jugamos are a collaboration between the University of Denver’s Graduate School of Professional Psychology (GSPP) and the Children’s Museum of Denver, Marsico Campus, and are based on a similar program from the Chicago Children’s Museum. WePlay offered its first playgroup in 2019, while Nosotros Jugamos began in 2020

    A Student\u27s Search for Meaning: The Creation of an Existential Therapy Models Course for Clinical Psychology Graduate Students

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    This writer explores the process of creating a models course which introduces the foundations of existential therapy to graduate students in clinical psychology programs. The first section of this paper presents the rationale for developing such a course, especially in the context of the contemporary call in the field of clinical psychology for evidence-based treatment. This author discusses how this course is pertinent specifically for the Graduate School of Professional Psychology at the University of Denver as well as necessary at large for any clinical psychology program to claim and maintain competency in psychological theory. The second section of this paper delves into the present state of research on best practice for teaching at the graduate level in clinical psychology. The current literature on pedagogy informs the philosophical and practical underpinnings of the proposed curriculum for the outlined existential therapy models course. The third section delineates the projected plan for the course, including the philosophical core of the course, goals and objectives, syllabus, required readings, additional readings, and films. Finally, in the fourth section, this writer explores the limitations of the proposed course and future directions for the teaching and incorporation of existential therapy in clinical psychology. This author presents a comprehensive foundation for faculty members and clinical directors in the field of psychology who are interested in developing a similar existential therapy models course for their programs

    Relational Frame Theory: Implications for Training Perspective-Taking and Empathy in Children with High Functioning Autism

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    Perspective-taking involves the ability to shift one\u27s visual-spatial and affective stance relative to contextual cues. Empathy responses leading to socio-emotional reciprocity depend intimately on perspective-taking processes. Deficits in perspective-taking have been widely documented in individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD), and are commonly regarded to underlie impaired interpersonal functioning in this population. The most widely used frameworks for understanding ASD derive from a cognitive science program called Theory of Mind (ToM), and from an applied behavior analytic program based on Operant Theory (OT). Recent research interest has centered on a contemporary contextual behavior analytic approach to perspective taking drawing upon Relational Frame Theory (RFT), with explicit focus on deictic relational frame training. This paper suggests that perspective-taking training leading to the development of elaborated deictic framing abilities may offer an advantage over existing modes of intervention for training perspective-taking, empathy, and ultimately improving quality of life among individuals with ASD

    Transgender Awareness Within State Hospitals: Addressing Gaps in Training

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    Individuals in the transgender ( trans ) community continue to face stigmatization, discrimination, and violence in the United States (Benson 2013; Bradford, Reisner, Honnold, & Xavier, 2013; Lombardi, Wilchins, Priesing & Malouf, 2001; Shipherd, Green, & Abramovitz; 2010). They remain underserved in many domains, including housing, healthcare, and employment (Bradford et al. 2013). This paper focus on the needs for trans-specific training within the U.S. state hospital system. Although many institutions, including state hospitals, are implementing diversity initiatives to increase the sensitivity of their employees to a broad range of identity statuses, transgender affirmative trainings are often non existent or inadequate; trans-specific issues may fall under the broad umbrella of LGBT (lesbian, gay bisexual, and transgender) awareness, and conflation of sexual identity and gender identity is prominent (Corliss, Shankle, & Moyer, 2007). This paper supports the development and implementation of transgender-specific training to foster discussion, create more supportive environments, and lay the foundation for a culture of inclusion within U.S. state hospitals. Part I examines the unique needs of and challenges facing members of the transgender community. Part II addresses specific needs and gaps in current state hospital training. An index outlining common terminology follows the manuscript. Finally, the accompanying Appendix includes a proposed training manual that could be adapted by state hospitals as a supplement to current training protocols. It is intended for general use within the hospital, and would be appropriate for staff from all specialties. The manual provides basic information related to serving members of the trans community, and is intended as an introductory guide or refresher for mental health practitioners across a wide variety of domains

    Prosocial Support Networks\u27 Influence on Offender Reintegration: Recommendations for Treatment Providers

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    This paper will cover the relevant research regarding offender rehabilitation and review interpersonal, i ntrapersonal , and external factors contributing to criminal recidi vism. Several treatment models utilized in offender reintegration treatment are discussed including cognitive behavioral approaches, social learning theories, and relapse prevention strategies. As explored in this paper, these approaches are believed to be missing two key elements: an emphasis on prosocial support networks and the ability of the therapeutic relationship to create these prosocial networks. Clinical case examp les are presented to demonstrate the role of the therapeutic relationship in encouraging, modeling, and establishing prosocial support networks to bolster successful offender reintegration

    Perspectives on Personality Assessment of Children with Limited Cognitive Ability

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    Personality assessment can be an important part of diagnosis and treatment planning with children and adolescents. Consequently, research in personality assessment with children and adolescents has received attention; however, there is still limited research in this area with children of below average cognitive capacity. In order to gain better understanding of the current practice of personality assessment of children with below average IQ, this interpretative phenomenological study explores expert psychologists\u27 experience and recommendations for future practice. Structured interviews were conducted with four clinical psychologists with an expertise in personality assessment with children, including children with below average intelligence. Five themes emerged from participant interviews, including: difficulties with and subsequent adjustments to typical administration of personality tests with children of low IQ, special considerations and adjustments to interpretation of personality assessment with children with low IQ, an added emphasis on multi-method assessment, the importance of developing specific training with this population, and the need for more research with this population. Limitations and suggestions for further research are discussed

    Apples and Oranges: An Argument for Psychopathy as a Formal Diagnosis

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    When one thinks of the psychopath, an image of one of the notorious serial killers of the 1980s generally pops in their head- Ted Bundy, J effrey Dahmer, or the Green Rive r Killer. While still rare, psychopaths encompass much more than just serial killers, and they have a unique presentation that lies outside the confines of any current diagnosis. Characteristics such as lack of empathy, impulsivity, grandiosity, and poor behavioral controls are included in various personality disorders. The Narcissist will show lack of empathy and grandiosity while the Borderline will have poor behavioral controls and impulsivity, for example. However, the construct of psychopathy is more complex, including the above traits but also callousness, malipulativeness, superficial charm, and lack of guilt. These unique characteristics, when appropriately identified, are detrimental to society, resulting in extreme financial loss, overwhelming hurt, and even death, which is why labeling as such is important

    Understanding Gender Differences in Sports-Related Concussions Among High School Athletes: Implications for Diagnosis, Treatment, and Management

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    Growing research on both the immediate and long-term effects of sports-related concussions (SRCs) in professional athletes has called attention not only to understanding the impact of concussions in high school athletes, but has also focused on understanding how SRCs may impact female athletes differently than male athletes (Covassin & Elbin, 2011; Kirkwood, Yeates, & Wilson, 2006). There are many studies that have highlighted the neurocognitive, academic, and socioemotional implications of these brain injuries on developing youth, but there are few studies that focus on gender differences in adolescent athletes (Daneshvar, Nowinski, McKee, & Cantu, 2011; Kirkwood, et al., 2006). Understanding how sports-related concussions impact males and females differently can be crucial in approaching diagnosis, treatment, and recovery. The purpose of this paper is to give an overview of these issues, outline considerations for the field, provide recommendations for treatment providers, and share some case illustrations

    Understanding Change in a Therapeutic Community for People with Severe Mental Illness: An Interpretive Phenomenological Study

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    In order to gain better understanding of how therapeutic communities instigate change, this interpretative phenomenological study explores the recognized agents of change as reported by current and recent community members of a particular therapeutic community. Four superordinate themes were discovered: the structure of the program, engagement in the community, intentionality/mindfulness, and applied knowledge. While the results from this study are similar in several ways to the current literature, they also expand the literature about therapeutic communities in one important way. The change agents reported as leading to healing strongly resemble current best practice for the treatment of trauma. Limitations and suggestions for further research are discussed

    Giving in to Group Pressure: The Impact of Socialization and Risk on Perceived Outcomes

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    The current study applies the perspective of decision theory to understanding how choices are made in an in-group setting involving social pressure and risk. Two hundred sixty-one undergraduate students provided assessments of consequences associated with illegally consuming alcohol in different environments with differing degrees of risk. In addition, size of the social group was varied as three, four, or nine. In order to determine the moderating effects, if any, of susceptibility to social influence, a measure of socialization was included. Results provide strong support for socialization as an explanation for how individuals interpret risk-related social situations
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