What is it about?

Though the DSM has changed over the years, psychologist attitudes toward it have remained remarkably consistent. Although more than 90% of psychologists report using the DSM, they are dissatisfied with numerous aspects of it and support developing alternatives to it—something that psychologists over 30 years ago supported, as well.

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Why is it important?

The finding that almost all psychologists use the DSM despite serious concerns about it raises ethical issues because professionals are ethically bound to only use instruments in which they are scientifically confident. The fact that psychologists are open to alternatives to the DSM is important for those developing such alternatives.

Perspectives

I hope this article helps psychologists think about the role of the DSM in clinical practice.

Dr. Jonathan D. Raskin
State University of New York at New Paltz

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This page is a summary of: DSM-5: Do Psychologists Really Want an Alternative?, Journal of Humanistic Psychology, July 2016, SAGE Publications, DOI: 10.1177/0022167815577897.
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