Basics and Beyond in Clinical and Diagnostic Interviewing

  • Daniel L. SegalEmail author
  • Andrea June
  • Marissa Pifer


The ability to conduct an efficient and effective clinical and diagnostic interview is arguably one of the most valued skills among mental health professionals. It is during the interview that the clinician learns about the difficulties and challenges experienced by the client and begins to form the foundations of a healing professional therapeutic relationship. Although the metaphor is not a novel one, the job of the interviewer may be likened to that of a detective trying to collect enough data and organize the clues to “solve the mystery,” in this example, the presenting problem and diagnosis of the client. The most important aspect of this detective metaphor is that effective interviewers (detectives) are served well by their natural curiosity (truly wanting to understand all aspects of the client’s experiences, no matter how painful or uncomfortable) and the thoughtfulness of their approach (being guided by strategies and principles for gathering data while also forming an emotional connection with the client).


Interviewing Diagnosis Strategies Confidentiality Diversity 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PsychologyUniversity of ColoradoColorado SpringsUSA
  2. 2.Department of PsychologyCentral Connecticut State UniversityNew BritainUSA

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