A 57-year-old man with a history of heavy drinking is frequently sad, angry, and anxious. His...

A 57-year-old man with a history of heavy drinking is frequently sad, angry, and anxious. His work performance has suffered—he is forgetful, disorganized, and low in energy. The man’s doctor wonders if the drinking has impaired his cognitive abilities; his wife wonders if he is simply very depressed. The man feels that he has lived his life for everyone but himself.

List and discuss relevant assessment tools you would utilize. Your assessment should respond to the concerns of the client, his doctor, and wife. Provide justification and resources that support your decision. Discuss with your learning colleagues the similarities and differences in your responses. Think of this as a 'meeting of the minds' to assess the client!

Note: Sample psychological assessments tools: (a) controlled observations in clinic or laboratory; (b) naturalistic observations in office, home, school, (c) logs kept by parents, friends, the client; (d) structured interview and unstructured interview; (e) objective personality tests (Rorschach, TAT, sentence-completion, draw-a-person); (f) self-report inventories (MMPI-2, Beck Depression Inventory); (g) Wechsler’s tests (WAIS-III, WISC-III, WPPSI-III); and (h) Neurological tests (CT and PET-scans, EEG, MRI, fMRI)

Homework Answers

Answer #1
  • Naturalistic observations would assess how he acts/reacts to his environment and if his alcohol problem and his performance are hindering/impairing his social interactions and/or work performance because of the environment or other stimuli.
  • Self-Report Inventories (the Beck Depression Inventory) because the wife’s main concern is if he is very depressed (he is a candidate for depression because of his alcohol dependency and mood swings).
  • Unstructured interview would address the man’s concerns because one could discover his thoughts on certain triggers or topics to determine his personality and thoughts.
  • Tactile Performance Test would address the doctor’s concerns because it tests cognitive abilitiesand if it is a cognitive impairment (from the alcohol).
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