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Clinical Interviewing and Assessment


Admission requirements

This course is only open to Master students Clinical Psychology.


Students develop clinical interviewing and diagnostic skills, using semi-structured interviews, mental status examination and standardized interviews, e.g. the MINI. The course provides exposure to psychopathology syndromes via clinical interviews with trained actors. Theoretical and practical issues in assessment and diagnostics will be discussed. Oral and written reporting of findings is also covered. The focus of this part of the course is on Axis I disorders, however issues regarding Axis II will also be discussed.

Course objectives

This course aims to prepare you for conducting diagnostic interviews during your clinical internships. At the end of this course, your knowledge and skills of diagnostics, interviewing and reporting should be at a level required for the initial phase of your internship. Another aim is the further development of your professional attitude.

Specific aims are to:

  • Increase knowledge and skills regarding clinical diagnostic interviewing. Assessment of psychiatric signs and symptoms; psychosocial interview; mental status examination

  • Learn how to report data from diagnostic interviews in letters to general practitioners. Learn the advantages and limitations of various interviewing methods, in particular a clinical interview versus a standardized clinical interview

  • Increase knowledge and skills regarding assessment of symptom dimensions

  • Increase knowledge of MMPI-2

  • Further development of a professional attitude


Clinical Interviewing and Assessment (2010-2011):

Mode of instruction

Seminars, plenary instruction meetings, demonstration videos. Students will practice skills and techniques in roleplays and with trained actors.

Plenary instructions will be in English. Seminars with only Dutch students will be in Dutch.

Assessment method

Active participation during the meetings, case reports, videotaped interviews, final exam.

From January 1, 2006 the Faculty of Social Sciences has instituted the Ephorus system to be used by instructors for the systematic detection of plagiarism in students’ written work. Please see the information concerning fraud .


Information on

Reading list

  • Morrison, J. (2008). The first interview (third ediction). New York: Guilford Press.

  • Syllabus with articles. Available at Servedesk, second floor.


Introduction and enrolment for courses of the first semester will take place on 2 September 2010. Introduction and enrolment for courses of the second semester will take place on 27 January 2011. More information will be available at the website of the Institute of Psychology.

NB: Exam registration will take place via uSis, and will be open between a month and a week before the (re)exam. Students who haven’t registered, cannot participate in the exam.

Contact information

Mw. Dr. B.M. Elzinga
Room: 2A05a
Telephone: 071 527 3745