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By John Sommers-Flanagan

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Extra resources for Clinical Interviewing

Sample text

What this series of articles demonstrates, aside from intellectual controversy surrounding multicultural issues, is that cultural and ethnic issues are inherently emotional. The implication for clinical interviewers is that individual clients’ cultural roots need to be explored and understood on an emotional level. More specific guidelines for multicultural interviewing are provided in Chapter 13. 2 Discovering Your Personal Biases We suggest that you and your classmates take time to consider your own cultural, religious, and political biases.

The therapist may not have taken time to listen to strategies the client has already employed to solve the problem. Consequently, he or she may suggest a remedy that the client has already tried without success. The therapist’s credibility is thereby diminished. A clinical interview may produce less-than-positive effects. Negative effects often result from misguided, inappropriate, or premature efforts to help clients. This is why interviewers carefully listen to and evaluate clients, establishing reasonable and mutual treatment goals, before implementing specific change strategies.

For example, the secretary at your seven-year-old daughter’s school telephones your office, indicating your child is ill and needs to be picked up from school. This interruption may require five minutes for the interviewer to contact a friend or family member who is free to pick up the child. In this situation, the interviewer should inform the client that a short break from their session is necessary, apologize, and then make the telephone calls. ”), and then try, as smoothly as possible, to begin where the interview had been interrupted.

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