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Science and Pseudoscience in Clinical Psychology, First Edition 1st Edition

4.8 out of 5 stars 12 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-1593850708
ISBN-10: 1593850700
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Editorial Reviews


"As a text for students, this book effectively illustrates the importance of becoming an evidence-based practitioner. It inoculates aspiring clinicians against the bandwagon appeal of 'fashionable' interventions and the seductive claims of pseudoscientific treatment studies."--Allen Rubin, PhD, School of Social Work, The University of Texas at Austin

"This unique and timely book may avert the advent of the Dark Ages into which the discipline of psychotherapy seems to be heading. By clearly articulating the fundamental differences between 'science' and 'pseudoscience,' it forewarns that anecdotes are not evidence, and demonstrates how to separate fact from conjecture. I cannot think of anyone who would not benefit from a thorough perusal of its contents, but it is particularly essential reading for those conducting any form of counseling or psychotherapy."--Arnold A. Lazarus, PhD, ABPP, Distinguished Professor Emeritus of Psychology, Rutgers University

"At last--a book that pulls no punches, names, and isn't afraid to portray junk science for what it is. This will be invaluable reading for anyone in the mental health professions and an essential reference for students."--Harrison G. Pope, Jr., MD, Department of Psychiatry, Harvard Medical School

"This superb volume is an instant classic and one of the most important books published in the last 20 years in psychology or law. These well written and exhaustively documented chapters provide a much needed antidote to the epidemic of pseudoscience that has too often stained the integrity of the mental health and legal systems. Mental health professionals, lawyers and judges should all view these chapters as essential information for basic professional competence."--R. Christopher Barden, PhD, JD, LP, psychologist, attorney, expert witness, legislative consultant; President, National Association for Consumer Protection in Mental Health

"Represents a most welcome attempt to separate the wheat from the chaff in mental health practices....Engaging, incisive, and illuminating."
(Journal of the American Medical Association 2004-07-28)

"[An] excellent and important book."
(APA Review of Books 2004-07-28)

"This is clearly a text that should be read by every social worker and social work student."
(Journal of Social Work Education 2004-07-28)

About the Author

Scott O. Lilienfeld, PhD, is Associate Professor of Psychology at Emory University. He has authored or coauthored approximately 100 articles and book chapters, serves on the editorial boards of several major journals, and is founder and editor of The Scientific Review of Mental Health Practice. Dr. Lilienfeld is past president of the Society for a Science of Clinical Psychology and a recipient of the David Shakow Award for Early Career Contributions to Clinical Psychology from Division 12 (Society for Clinical Psychology) of the American Psychological Association.

Steven Jay Lynn, PhD, is a licensed clinical psychologist and Professor of Psychology at the State University of New York at Binghamton. A former president of the American Psychological Association's Division 30 (Psychological Hypnosis), he is a recipient of the division's award for distinguished contributions to scientific hypnosis. Dr. Lynn is a fellow of many professional organizations and an advisory editor to a number of professional journals. He is the author of 11 books and more than 200 articles and chapters.

Jeffrey M. Lohr, PhD, is Professor of Psychology at the University of Arkansas-Fayetteville. He has been a licensed psychologist in Arkansas with a part-time independent practice since 1976. Dr. Lohr's research interests focus on anxiety disorders, domestic violence, and the efficacy of psychosocial treatments.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 474 pages
  • Publisher: The Guilford Press; 1 edition (July 26, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1593850700
  • ISBN-13: 978-1593850708
  • Product Dimensions: 9.2 x 6.3 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.5 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #200,395 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This edited volume contains chapters which provide critical analysis of a variety of important subjects in clinical psychology. Lillienfeld et al take a hard look at general issues such as diagnosis and treatment as well as specific issues including New Age treatments for psychological disorders and tests and personality measures. It also examines other subjects such as controversial interventions for ADHD, trauma and autism. The book will spark a great deal of argument and some outrage, since there are a lot of oxen and sacred cows being gored therein. But it is long past time that the yawning chasm between science and clinical practice was addressed, and this volume does an admirable job. I recommend this book to all thoughtful clinicans, as well as general readers with an interest in clinical psychology.
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Format: Hardcover
As a psychologist who is aware of some of the questionable research and clinical practices in psychology I read this book with interest. Many of the chapters were interesting and the criticisms valid. I was disappointed, however, that a book that claims to debunk pseudoscience seemed to have a major blindspot. For example Waschbusch and Hill's chapter examines treatments for ADHD without reference to the controversy that exists about the validity of ADHD as a neurobiological syndrome. There is debate about the unscientific manner in which groups of nonspecifc behaviours are named as syndromes, in the absence of any physical evidence. Discussing treatments for these "disorders" without mentioning this at all seems a glaring oversight in a book that devotes so much attention to issues of diagnosis and assessment and claims to expose pseudosicence. It hardly takes courage or insight to criticise the fringe elements, but what about blatant pseudoscientific practices carried out by mainstream psychologists?
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Format: Paperback
Although largely aware of the plethora of pseudoscientific nonsence that besets the field of mental health, it is very refreshing to have this collation of information brought together in one volume. As a clinical psycholgist I am confronted daily by people who have been referred to purveyors of unscientific, and often damaging, "interventions". All too frequently, these people have been referred to such snake-oil sellers by mental health professionals - psychologists, psychaitrists, medical doctors etc. This book, and hopefully further editions of it, should be compulsory reading for everyone seeking to work in the mental health and forensic fields. Only by truly embracing scientific methodology and an unremitting scepticism can we hope to move forward in understanding mental health and criminal problems. Our patients, their families, and the public deserve no less.

Alex Montgomery

Clinical Psychologist

Victoria, Australia
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Lilienfeld has edited a profoundly important a book. Although psychology aspires to the status of a science too many people both within the profession and representing ideas as supposed psychological science are actually proffering pseudo or junk science. Sadly this includes offerings in the area of psychotherapy, psychological assessment, as well as important topics affecting most of society such as memory which is misunderstood and yet the common assumptions may influence legal decisions.
Among other topics the book clearly addresses the problems with professional judgment that to often mislead therapists and others making important decisions. While there is hope for psychology, it will depend on people understanding a scientific approach to understanding. Unfortunately this is all to often missing in professional education.
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By A Customer on March 15, 2003
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I am finishing my Ph.D. in psychology this year, and this is a definate read for anyone in the field, espececially those who are considering persuing a career in psych. This book has confimed my long-standing fears as a graduate student: That there is much non-science in the field of psych and the profession is openly hostile to those that say so, while at the same time donning the semantically garb of "scientist". The truth is there is very little science in psych these days, and it is psychology's "dirty little secret".
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Format: Paperback
Having just finished this book, and based on some of the reader reviews Ive seen here, I feel the need to inject this little comment. This book is a wonderful, long-teaching essay in the practice and importance of critical thinking. This book is NOT a "debunking" of the need for treatment of several widely diagnosed diseases, discussed in the book (ADHD,Autism or addiction/substance abuse) or a denial of the need for effective treatments for these diorders. The widespread misapplication or non application of sound practice in diagnoses, and treatments of arguably questionable effectivenss are the targets of Lilienfelds critical thinking.Many people who read this book should first become familliar with the "10 commandments" of critical thinking that Lillienfeld begins his courses with.

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