Chapter

1 Diagnosis and Classification

Clinical Psychology

I. PSYCHOPATHOLOGY

  1. Thomas A. Widiger PhD1,
  2. Cristina Crego BA2

Published Online: 26 SEP 2012

DOI: 10.1002/9781118133880.hop208001

Handbook of Psychology, Second Edition

Handbook of Psychology, Second Edition

How to Cite

Widiger, T. A. and Crego, C. 2012. Diagnosis and Classification. Handbook of Psychology, Second Edition. 8:I:1.

Author Information

  1. 1

    University of Kentucky, Department of Psychology, Lexington, Kentucky, USA

  2. 2

    University of Kentucky, Department of Psychology, Lexington, KY, USA

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 26 SEP 2012

Abstract

This chapter provides a discussion of the diagnosis and classification of mental disorders. It begins with a consideration of the rationale for having an official, authoritative classification of mental disorder. It then traces the history of the development of an official mental disorder classification, from just prior to the first edition of the American Psychiatric Association's Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Disorders (DSM), through each edition, from DSM-I through the current edition, DSM-IV-TR, noting the particular contributions and controversies of each edition. Following this history, the authors discuss fundamental and significant issues that concern the construction of the forthcoming edition, DSM-5, including the definition of mental disorder, the empirical support for proposed revisions for the official nomenclature, the impact of culture and values on a mental disorder diagnosis, the shifting of the nomenclature from a categorical to a dimensional model of classification, and the shifting of the nomenclature and the profession of psychiatry to a neurobiological model. The chapter concludes with a recommendation for the construction of future editions of the diagnostic manual.

Keywords:

  • DSM-IV-TR;
  • DSM-5;
  • diagnosis;
  • classification;
  • nomenclature;
  • mental disorder