clinical psychology

What is clinical psychology: history, functions, and objectives

What is Clinical Psychology? What do clinical psychologists do? It is not easy to answer this since there is a wide variety of definitions and opinions. However, there are a number of aspects that occur in almost all definitions of clinical psychology.

Do you want to know the history and functions of clinical psychology? So, we recommend you read this article from Psychologyorg. In addition, we will describe in depth the objectives of this very interesting branch of psychology.

What is clinical psychology?

Clinical psychology is a specialty of a broader discipline in psychology. In general, clinical psychologists are dedicated to the study and understanding of behavior and to helping people who have psychological problems.

More specifically, objective psychology makes an evaluation, diagnosis, prevention, and therapeutic intervention for people who suffer from some affectation or mental disorder, with the aim of finding well-being and psychological balance.

clinical psychology

History of clinical psychology

Clinical psychology is a relatively young field and is still full of conflicts and concerns about its identity and its action.

History of Psychology

Psychology focused on the study of human behavior through research, using observation and experimentation as a method. Thus, the origin of psychology begins with Wundt’s psychology laboratory at the University of Leipzig in 1879 and is identified with experimental psychology.

This experimental psychology research has transferred its empirical evaluation methodology to the functions of clinical psychology and has developed an attitude of self-analysis in clinical psychologists. In the late 19th century, Granville Stanley Hall founded the American Psychological Association (APA), which is today the profession’s premier organization.

At that time, most of the research focused on perception processes to find scientific evidence about behavior problems in people. Lighter Witmer opened the first psychological clinic in 1907, at the University of Pennsylvania. In 1914 only in the United States, there were already 26 more clinics.

In Europe, one of the great precursors of clinical psychology was Sigmund Freud, the father of psychoanalysis and one of the first neurologists who began to study therapeutic interventions for people with psychological problems. Freud held that a person’s behavior was profoundly determined by repressed thoughts, desires, and memories formed in childhood.

Origin of clinical psychology

Clinical psychology has long focused on the study and evaluation of people. However, after World War II, many people were psychologically affected and the need arose to provide resources to the field of clinical psychological science not only for evaluation but also for treatment. They opened faculties of psychology and consultations dedicated to treating mental problems. By the end of the 1930s, the field of what would become modern Clinical science had already been organized, and clinical psychologists began to work both in clinics and hospitals and in prisons, with both adults and children.

objective psychology as a profession was founded on psychological assessment and as a field that was completely dependent on psychiatry. But it has evolved over time towards a more psychological approach accompanied by psychotherapy as a treatment measure.

This generates its diagnoses and processes with a less psychopathological (psychiatric) vision with the function of helping to overcome the difficulties that arise in daily life, enhancing qualities, abilities, and competencies for it.

  • Some of the great authors and precursors of clinical psychological science have been: Carl Gustav Jung, Carl Rogers, Albert Ellis, Aaron Beck, Lev Vygotsky, Jean Piaget, BF Skinner, Abraham Maslow, and Albert Bandura.
clinical psychology

Functions of clinical psychology

The main functions of objective psychology are the promotion, prevention, evaluation, diagnosis, and treatment of mental problems. More specifically, a clinical psychologist must:

  • Identify psychosocial risk factors.
  • Make the diagnosis of mental disorders and affectations.
  • Prepare and develop an intervention program using psychotherapeutic techniques and procedures.
  • Provide advice and liaison with other professionals and services.
  • Recognize and interfere in individuals, families, and society in crisis situations.
clinical psychology

Clinical psychology and its goals

The objective of clinical psychology is the development and application of theoretical principles, methods, and instruments to observe, understand, predict, explain, prevent, and treat all types of mental disorders, cognitive, emotional, and behavioral disorders, and disorders. As well as the promotion of the health and well-being of people.

Read Also: 10 Ways to Deal with Negative People Psychologyorg


Q: What is clinical psychology?

A: Clinical psychology is a specialty of a broader discipline in psychology. In general, clinical psychologists are dedicated to the study and understanding of behavior and to helping people who have psychological problems. It involves the application of psychological principles and techniques to understand, prevent, and alleviate psychological distress or dysfunction.

Q: What is the history of clinical psychology?

A: The history of clinical psychology dates back to the late 19th century when it emerged as a distinct discipline within psychology. The field gained recognition and prominence in the early 20th century with the establishment of psychological clinics and the growth of psychoanalysis. Over time, objective psychology has evolved and incorporated various therapeutic approaches, research methodologies, and treatment modalities to address a wide range of mental health issues.

Q: What are the functions of clinical psychology?

A: clinical psychology serves several important functions, including:
Assessment: Clinical psychologists conduct comprehensive evaluations to assess individuals’ psychological functioning, diagnose mental disorders, and identify contributing factors.
Treatment: They provide evidence-based interventions and therapies to help individuals manage and overcome psychological difficulties.
Research: Clinical psychologists engage in research to advance the understanding of mental health, develop effective treatments, and improve diagnostic techniques.
Consultation: They offer professional advice and guidance to individuals, organizations, and communities on psychological matters.
Prevention and advocacy: Clinical psychologists work towards preventing mental health problems and promoting mental well-being through education, awareness campaigns, and advocacy efforts.

Q: What are the objectives of clinical psychology?

A: The objectives of scietific psychology include:
Promoting mental health: Clinical psychologists aim to enhance mental well-being and prevent mental health problems through various interventions, support systems, and community initiatives.
Assessing and diagnosing mental disorders: They strive to accurately assess and diagnose individuals experiencing psychological distress or psychiatric conditions.
Providing effective treatment: Clinical psychologists aim to provide evidence-based therapies and interventions to help individuals manage and recover from mental health issues.
Conducting research: They conduct research to expand knowledge about psychological phenomena, develop new treatment approaches, and contribute to evidence-based practices in the field.
Advocating for mental health: Clinical psychologists advocate for policies and practices that support mental health, reduce stigma, and ensure access to quality mental health care for all individuals.

If you want to read more articles similar to What is clinical psychology: history, functions and Objectives, we recommend that you enter our Psychology category.

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