Post a substantive response

Week 5

Post a substantive response; respond to the following in a minimum of 175 words: 

  1. The Beck Depression Inventory and other brief assessments of symptoms have their uses and limitations. How can a brief assessment be used repeatedly during the course of treatment? How can the issues of practice effects and other factors related to repeating testing be addressed to get the most utility out of the test?


Respond to classmate posts in a minimum of 175 words must be a substantive response: 


As our peers have said, a brief assessment that is used repeatedly during the course of treatment can be a source of monitoring progress for not just the client, but also the counselor. According to Sommers-Flannagan & Sommers-Flannagan (2014), “obtaining information about client’s problems and goals, the clients themselves, and the client’s current situation is essential (p. 228).” By repeatedly using an assessment like the Beck Depression Inventory, it gives the therapist some insight into what the client is feeling at the current moment. Of course, throughout sessions, client’s feelings will fluctuate, and therefore for a counselor to know what is happening in the present, this is where repeated brief assessments can come in handy. There can be some limitations when it comes to these tests. One of the issues is that the client might not be honest in what they are feeling when they are taking the test. If that happens, during the interview process with the client, they may act differently than what they have indicated on the test. In order to get the most utility out of the test, it is important that counselors inform the client that they need to be very honest in their answers of the test. Otherwise, the correlation between the test results and the counseling process will be very skewed.

Sommers-Flannagan, J., & Sommers-Flannagan, R. (2014). Clinical Interviewing (5th Ed.). Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons Inc.


Assessments such as these have the benefit of keeping track of progress from start to finish of therapy or treatment plans. The assessment, when given throughout the treatment period, can let the therapist know as to how the client is coming along with the treatment, if there are changes in how they feel and act as far as behaviors are concerned. This will let the counselor know if anything needs to be adjusted or maybe another approach to treatment should be tried versus whatever they are currently working with. The assessments can also show regression. If the client becomes worse, it will show on the assessment. I suppose a limitation might be whether or not the client is being honest in their answers to the assessment and questions that they answer on their own. It would take some skill to identify if an assessment and questions are being thrown together just to get by or to try and rush progress to get out of treatment. These require honesty and accuracy in order to provide the best treatment possible.

Summers-Flanagan, J. & Summers-Flanagan, R. (2014). Clinical Interviewing (5th ed.)

John Wiley & Sons, Inc: Hoboken, NJ