Counsellors Respond to the DSM-IV-TR

  • Tom Strong
  • Joaquín Gaete University of Calgary
  • Inés N. Sametband
  • Jared French
  • Jen Eeson
Keywords: DSM, psychiatric discourse, situation analysis


The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-IV-TR) is an administrative fact for many counsellors. This psychiatric approach to formulating client concerns runs counter to those used by counsellors of many approaches (e.g., systemic, feminist). Using an online survey of counsellors (N = 116), invited contributions to a website blog, and in-depth interviews of 10 counsellors, we sought to better understand how the DSM-IV-TR infuenced counsellors' practice, and their responses to its expected use. From our situational analyses, we relate our findings to tensions experienced by counsellors when practicing from non-psychiatric approaches to practice.

Author Biographies

Tom Strong
Joaquín Gaete, University of Calgary
Clinical Psychologist and an Associate Professor of the School of Psychology at Universidad Adolfo Ibáñez. PhD Student at the University of Calgary
Inés N. Sametband
Jared French
Jen Eeson
How to Cite
Strong, T., Gaete, J., Sametband, I. N., French, J., & Eeson, J. (2012). Counsellors Respond to the DSM-IV-TR. Canadian Journal of Counselling and Psychotherapy, 46(2). Retrieved from
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