Diagnostic Learning Assignment

.  Diagnostic Learning Assignment 8-10 pages  40% of final grade, due 11/20

The purpose of this assignment is to provide you an opportunity to deepen your knowledge of a selected mental disorder of interest to you.  You are to select a mental disorder from the DSM5 and then develop a paper that addresses the following content areas. 

Assignment Headings and Components

1. APA Style Paper (Cover page, Abstract, Introduction, Body of text (headers and sub- headers), and References page)

2. Minimum of 15 scholarly references on the selected Disorder (including the required text and



3. Headings include: Abstract, Introduction; Overview of the Disorder; Importance of the Assessment Process, Across Systems Impact; Evidence-Based Practices for Interventions of the Disorder; and Conclusion and Recommendations. (See more descriptive information below)

You will be graded on how in depth you discuss your selected disorder under each of the heading components:

1. Cover Page  include all APA information for a standard Cover Page. For the name of this assignment please use: 760 Signature Assignment: Major Depressive Disorder or whatever Disorder you selected (this is an example only)

2. Introduction prepare the reader for the purpose of the paper 

3. Overview of the Disorder  Identify and discuss the selected mental disorder.  Discuss the essential features of the mental disorder, including its prevalence in general as

well as within any particular population.  Include diversity features (e.g., race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, disability, or social class) that impact how the disorder presents or how it might be interpreted in assessment (differences in

children, adolescents, and/or adults).  While this section of the paper should reference the DSM5, you should also demonstrate additional depth of knowledge through

review and citation of the literature about the mental disorder.

4. Importance of the Assessment Process  Identify the presenting symptoms involved in assessing clients who have for the selected mental illness. If you were serving as a social worker on an interdisciplinary team or multidisciplinary team (such as one agency with multiple staff members involved in the clients overall treatment process, medical team, hospital setting, hospice center, criminal justice system setting where other positions might dictate outcomes for diagnosis, treatment, etc.), what would be the unique social work focus you would bring to the assessment process?  Explain how the client’s biopsychosocial history informs the assessment information gathered (consider how the complete history of the client will inform the assessment sections entirely especially the family dynamics; substance abuse; history of trauma and other abuses; employment history; spirituality; as well as previous mental health)? How would an empowerment, humanistic, biological, psychological or sociocultural perspective influence your approach to assessment? The goal here is to identify the behaviors, signs and symptoms clients would be experiencing with their selected disorder.

5. Across Systems Impact  Address the impact of the chosen mental disorder from a

systems perspective (i.e., the impact of the disorder on the individual relative to his or her family system (impact on the family system including any predispositions or generational impacts), the broader community and social systems (church or spiritual system, social and peer system, vocational rehab, etc.), and the organizational/institutional systems (alcohol and drug commissions (inpatient,


outpatient, rehab systems, hospitals, etc.), criminal justice systems (monitoring, punishment, rehabilitation, reform, etc.) with which the person would likely interface.

6. Evidence-Based Practices for Interventions  Review empirical studies that collectively

point toward practice theories and methods that are congruent with evidence-based intervention with individuals who have the selected mental disorder. If intervention methods have changed over time, address those changes (for example in treating depression, alternative medications used or components of DBT). Also, address pertinent elements of social work ethics and diversity that would differentially impact intervention methods. This component of the paper should clearly demonstrate your understanding of the research literature and its influence in directing evidence-based practice relative to the selected mental disorder. 

7.Conclusions and Recommendations Here you can be specific about what the research says about the selected disorder (future implications, research, treatment, medications, practice, etc.); if you were a policy or legislative social worker, what changes would you propose to help classify and/or treat those with your selected disorder? You can also include here your summary of what you learned about the disorder you selected.

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