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Practical Aspects of Assessment and Diagnosis

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What kinds of issues might arise when you are engaged in systemic assessment and diagnosis? How would you describe the process by which a counselor arrives at a diagnosis? What is the range of influences that must be considered?

All of these issues are intertwined in the concept of diagnosis. Reflect on the following list of areas of influence:

•Caregiver's history and attachment style.
•Socio-economic level.
•Culture or religion.
•Diversity and exceptionality.
•Societal impacts.

Select the area from this list that attracts your attention as being more potent than the others. Identify a research article that addresses this area of influence, and explain how you see the influence creating its impact. Attach/add link where the research literature you researched can be found.

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This solution discusses aspects of assessment and diagnosis when faced with diversity.

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(1) What kinds of issues might arise when you are engaged in systemic assessment and diagnosis?

In assessing family types, Walsh (1996) utilized a resilience model which includes looking at normal family functioning, and interactional processes that occur within the family. For instance, he asserts that challenges may range from issues involving normal life-cycle transitions such as: (a) retirement, (b) divorce, or remarriage, (c) a sudden job loss, (c) untimely death of a key family member, (d) the prolonged strains of migration, or (e) inner-city violence. He emphasizes that how a family deals with such challenges is crucial for individual and family recovery.

Of particular interest in assessment is what meaning do family members make of their lives? Walsh (1996) poses the question as to whether the family has the ability to withstand and rebound from crisis and adversity. He further asserts that it is the resiliency of the individual that provide him or her with the ability to forego crises. For instance, he suggests that "Resilience has been viewed as residing within the individual, with the family often dismissed as dysfunctional".

On this basis, Walsh (1996) presents a systemic view of resilience in ecological and developmental contexts based on the concept of family resilience, and focused on the interactions that take place among members of the family. Within this process Walsh suggests a number of changes take place such as (1) the understanding of normal family functioning is expanded, (2) a new framework is initiated to identify the interaction taking place; and (3) families are strengthened to go beyond crises and persistent stresses to develop resistance. Therefore, through shared beliefs, cooperation, and collaboration families can be shown how to deal with rapid social ...

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