Psychology and Education @St. Thomas

June 13, 2013

Diagnostic & Statistics Manual, 5th edition (DSM5) on Psychiatry Online (and the ICD-10)

Filed under: Databases,Research Topics — merriealynn @ 8:01 pm

DSM5 coverWell, if you have anything to do with psychology, counseling, or diagnosing psychiatric disorders, you probably know that the new DSM5 has been published. And published amid a lot of hullaballoo. (We have the DSM5 online through Psychiatry Online. Have fun reading through it!)

The director of NIMH, Dr. Thomas R. Insel, announced that grants would preferentially go to researchers who decided against using the DSM5 to categorize their participant pool. Instead, he encourages researchers to look at biological markers that distinguish among participants. NIMH backpedaled a bit later, stating that the DSM was the best resource we have at the moment.

Many researchers, counselors, and therapists have responded with whole-hearted delight. They are  hoping that the definitions of mental illnesses will be based on research, especially genetic and other biological information, rather than on what people feel are similar disorders. But they also want these disorders to be seen as social/spiritual/interpersonal issues. Insel’s statement fails to address this aspect of the DSM.

Social/spiritual interpretations of mental illness defeat chemical definitions because the DSM5 has sunk their boat

By Don Piraro at

I think this is quite interesting. My feeling has always been that once the causes of a psychiatric illness are determined to be biological, that disease is generally considered a neurological, rather than psychiatric disorder. So Alzheimer’s is now considered a neurological disorder. It’s given more respect as an illness, and generally taken from the purvey of psychiatrists and given to neurologists to treat, though they are still listed in the DSM.

On the other hand, “disorders” that we don’t find a biological or genetic marker for will probably be considered to be social or psychological in origin and not a real illness. But as my adviser in grad school said, anything experienced will imprint in some way on the brain. A biological marker doesn’t necessarily mean an etiology. Of course, it’s cyclical — a change in the brain affects the emotional state of the owner of the brain.

Anyway, have fun with the DSM5. Earlier versions are also posted on Psychiatry Online, so you can easily compare the DSM IV-TR with the newer version.

Mental health providers will be reporting using the ICD-10 classification. The ICD used to be published on PsychiatryOnline, but I can no longer find it there. However, we’ll be getting books on using the ICD-10 online in a few weeks. So you’ll be able to find all the information and help you’ll need on the library’s website. (The DSM5 does list the ICD-10 codes next to their own codes.)

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid website has a lot of help for providers and others for transitioning to the ICD-10.

Let me know if you need anything. I’m here to help!


September 8, 2010

Your Ethical Will

Filed under: Research Topics,Surprising Sources — merriealynn @ 5:07 pm

10Q LogoTonight is the beginning of Rosh Hashanah and the High Holy Days. Most of you probably know, the next couple of weeks is a time when Jewish people review their year and decide how to make a better (more just, more righteous) life.

When Viktor Frankl reflected on his experience during the Holaucaust, he concluded that the people who survived through the concentration camps had found a reason for their life. From this he developed his Logotherapy, assisting psychotherapy patients find meaning in their life.

Nicola Behrman realized that she knew only the outer life of her grandmother. She could find almost nothing of her inner life at her death. She wished forsomething of an ethical will, to help her understand who her grandmother really was. So for the High Holy Days, she and friends of hers devised the 10Q. 10 questions that encourage you to reflect on your year and your life.

You sign up at the website. Each day during the High Holy Days you answer 1 question about the past year and your interpretation of it. At the end of the period, your questions are put into a virtual vault. Next year your answers are emailed to you. Do the answers still make sense? Did you just write a lot of BS?

A wonderful legacy for your family and a great way to take a moment to reflect on your life and your future.

February 15, 2010

DSM-V: Proposed changes

Filed under: Reference,Research Topics — merriealynn @ 10:46 pm

You might have heard that the American Psychiatric Association published its proposed changes to the DSM-IV-TR, its proposals for the DSM-V.

The APA invites responses to its proposal. Included on the site are changes to definitions of disorders, proposals for elimination of certain disorders, and additions of other disorders. Each change is accompanied by a rationale, including research studies. Monographs detailing the work of committees is are available for purchase.

NPR discussed the proposal, its transparency, and the DSM on Friday, February 10, 2010 on Talk of the Nation. The description of the change in definitions and stereotypes of people with Schizophrenia (from docile white woman to hostile black man) was fascinating. However, they failed to discuss the pain and suffering that mental illness can bring to a person. It’s all about the pharmaceutical companies and insurance. The assumption is that a diagnosis mean medication, not enlightenment.

Here’s a link for articles from Academic Search Premier on the DSM-V diagnostic criteria. I can’t give you a link to directly to articles in PsycINFO. Our vendor doesn’t let you do that, but there are many! Just type in (dsm-v) and (revisions or trends). PubMed also will lead to a good many articles.

April 1, 2009

John Hope Franklin made History for All of Us.

Filed under: Books,Research Topics,Uncategorized — merriealynn @ 9:37 am

My mother once told me she didn’t enjoy history in school, because she could never find herself in her history books. We’re Eastern European Jews and back when my mom was a kid, you couldn’t find us anywhere.

Then came John Hope Franklin, whose great scholarship made history inclusive. After a long struggle, folks recognized that American history is fragmentary if limited only to white, Anglo-Saxon, Protestant men. Even though Prof. Franklin lived to the old age of 94, he still died too young. But he made the world a much better place for the rest of us.

His obituary from the Washington Post.

Here is a link to his books that we have at St. Thomas.

And list of some of them:

In search of the promised land : a slave family in the Old South
John Hope Franklin, Loren Schweninger.
Author: Franklin, John Hope 1915-
Published: New York : Oxford University Press, 2006.
UST-OSF Stacks E444 .F825 2006     

Mirror to America : the autobiography of John Hope Franklin
John Hope Franklin.
Author: Franklin, John Hope 1915-
Published: New York : Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2005. 
 UST-OSF Stacks E444 .F825 2006

Tributes to John Hope Franklin : scholar, mentor, father, friend
edited by Beverly Jarrett.
Published: Columbia : University of Missouri Press, 2003. 
 LIBRARY WEST General Collection E175.5.F73 T75 2003    

From slavery to freedom : a history of African Americans
John Hope Franklin, Alfred A. Moss, Jr.
Author: Franklin, John Hope 1915-
Published: New York : A.A Knopf, 2000.
UST-OSF Stacks E185 .F825 c.3    

Runaway slaves : rebels on the plantation
John Hope Franklin, Loren Schweninger.
Author: Franklin, John Hope 1915-
Published: New York : Oxford University Press, 1999.
UST-OSF Stacks E447 .F7 1999    
The color line legacy for the twenty-first century
John Hope Franklin.
Author: Franklin, John Hope 1915-
Published: Columbia, Mo. : University of Missouri Press, c1993.
  UST-OSF Stacks E185.615 .F69 1993

Essays. Selections
Franklin, John Hope, 1915-2009
Baton Rouge : Louisiana State University Press, c1989.
UST-OSF Stacks E175.5.F73 A25 1989

February 9, 2009

Data Altered on Autism and MMR link

Filed under: Research Techniques,Research Topics,scholarly communication — merriealynn @ 4:18 pm
Tags: , ,

The Times of London reported that the original study suggesting a link between vaccinations and autism used questionable data. Well, not just questionable, but really altered data.

Andrew Wakefield published a study stating that 8 of 12 children who were sent to him with autism had developed it autism within 24 hours to 2 weeks after the MMR injection. However, the investigation by The Times describes medical records showing that all but 1 child had already been treated or tested for brain disorders.

He apparently also told at least one parent that the measles virus was found alive in the child’s tissue. Three other labs in America found no virus. Apparently, Wakefield already knew this from studies in his own lab done before the paper was published, according to papers found by Brian Deer, the journalist who broke the story.

Fudging data to make one’s point: it’s a temptation for many researchers. But this appears to be bad, unethical science done for money from legal services and to sell a new vaccine for the same diseases.

May 13, 2008

No Health Without Mental Health

Filed under: Research Topics — merriealynn @ 1:28 pm

September 4, 2007 NPR reported on both the unequal distribution of mental health services around the world and the good results gained when treatment for depression is provided. Their “I’ll shock you awake” statistic: “in Africa, there’s one psychiatrist for every 2 million people; while in Europe, there’s one for every 10,000.”

The Lancet launched a series on Global Mental Health, describing the poor coverage of mental illness all over the world, but of more extreme concern in middle and poorer countries. The panel also impressed on the journalists the concept of “No Health without Mental Health” by describing the difference in physical health treatment of mentally healthy and mentally ill persons. The press briefing, including questions and answers from journalists to the panelists, is available online at the Lancet.

The World Health Organization also reports on its research into the disparities in mental health care around the world.

NPR interviewed a Chilean psychologist, Roberto Araya, who found that poor persons with depression failed to be treated because health professionals blamed their depression on poverty. However, Araya found that treatment could alleviate depression even if poverty still existed. This allowed previously debilitated individuals return to their work, caring for and providing for their families, becoming contributing members of their communities.

RSS feed from PubMed on disparities in mental health care in developing countries.

How to do Library Research on Alternative Medicine

Filed under: encyclopedias,Research Techniques,Research Topics — merriealynn @ 1:19 pm
Tags: ,

My sweet puppy, quite afraid of thunderstorms.

My sweet puppy, quite afraid of thunderstorms.

Choose a Topic that interests you.

Walking in the dog park the other day, I started thinking about the different treatments I’d been hearing about for my friends’ dogs’ fears of thunder and lightening storms. No one seemed to want to use boring, old (time-comsuming) desensitization techniques. (Letting their dogs listen to soft thunder sounds and giving them treats for the moments they were calm. Then increasing the sounds and adding flashes of light as they were able to maintain their calm.)

Gotta show you a picture of my chubby beagle-mix, Audrey Hepburn, who is quite afraid of thunderstorms.

No, my friends suggested using flower essences, cloth wraps, TTouch, message, acupuncture. Things that only my nutty friends used in California during the 1970's. Many of these techniques have now integrated into regular medicine. How has this happened? Massage therapy was never covered under insurance of old. Now acupuncture is covered by most insurance. Why and how has this happened?

2) Find Background Information from Subject Specific Encyclopedias

To find background information and to get a theoretical perspective on the issues involved, look in the index of the encyclopedia, The Blackwell Encyclopedia of Sociology.

Now, since this is an encyclopedia of sociology, each of the 56 articles you find slant the topic from a sociological viewpoint — not psychological, not medical. Just what you want for a sociology class and for your question. Cool beans.

Use the first article, Complementary and Alternative Medicine, by Hans Baer to help you

  • find references to other articles and books that were seminal to the work on your topic
  • researchers who started the work on your topic
    • Hans Baer
    • Mike Saks
  • keywords that researchers use to describe your topic
    • alternative and complementary medicine
    • holistic medicine
    • professionalization
    • biomedicine
    • medical pluralism
  • other questions that interest you
    • How have economics contributed to the increase of acceptance of alternative therapies by conventional medicine?
    • Is the rise of alternative medicines related to or parallel to the development of other practicing professionals (nurse practitioners, midwives, physicians assistants) within conventional medicine?
  • other encyclopedia articles that relate to your topic
  • social theories that explain or define your topic
    • professional dominance

3) Find Books in the library catalog

Next, you can look for the books and articles at the end of the article in our library catalog. Hans Baer’s book is there.

4) Find Articles in subject databases

A couple of different databases may help you find articles that interest you. The Sociology Subject Guide lists several different databases, including Sociological Abstracts, PubMed, and Web of Science. Sociological Abstracts includes journals particularly from a sociological point of view, so that’s a good place to start.

Use the terms from the encyclopedia article:

(complementary medicine OR alternative medicine OR medical pluralism OR holistic medicine)
AND professionalization

If you use the thesaurus, the results will mostly hit right on topic!


Thesaurus search for alternative medicine

Now what can you do? Read through these abstracts and see which really answer your question and which are off topic.

If they look good, click on the Find It At UF and follow the instructions for getting e-journals.

5) You might check out PubMed. Included are journals directed at bioscientists and physicians, so there should be interesting material here. Do similar sorts of searches. You might want to look at these as primary sources, as the object of research — analyze some of the articles from a sociological perspective.

Complementary Medicine[MeSH] AND “medical pluralism”

6) Perform a Citation Search; Find Related Records using Web of Science

Choose an older, pertinent article from your previous searches. Then see who has written a more recent article on a similar topic and cited that article.

Another technique is to search for articles in Web of Science and then to look for Related Records.

  • I searched for an article using the same terms as above: “complemetary medicine” AND “medical pluralism”.
  • I found the article
    Kaptchuk, T.J. and Eisenberg, D. M. (2001). Varieties of healing. A taxonomy of unconventional healing practices. Annals of Internal Medicine, 135 (3). 196-204.

When you click on the link, you get this record.  On the right hand side of it, you see a link to “Related Records.” I’ve circled it in red and marked it with a red arrow.


If you click here, you’ll get other articles that share the same references and so probably are on the same topics. The articles at the top will share the most references — they should be the most closely related.

I clicked on the red circle and got the following results:


The articles that share the most references appear at the top of the list. Lots of these articles are on the topic you’re interested in.

Clicking on the purple circle, I got more recent articles that cited this one:


Keep reading and thinking. Soon you’ll be writing and turning in your paper.

Come visit me, email, or call any time you need help!

April 18, 2007

Virginia Tech

Filed under: Library Services,Research Topics — merriealynn @ 12:36 pm

What happened at Virginia Tech? What do we know about such murders? murderers? recovery?

Last Monday I was working on Ask a Librarian when a student IM’ed me asking, “Have you heard about what happened at Virginia Tech?”

Being in librarian mode, I said, “Yes. Did you want more information about it?”

“No,” the student said. “I just wanted to make sure you all did.” Then we continued to talk about the events at Virginia Tech and what we’d heard. Apparently he was on his computer when he heard and needed to talk to someone about it, so he IM’ed us at Ask a Librarian.

You might want to find out what we’ve learned about school shootings, those who shoot their fellow students, and how communities can try to recover from these traumatic events. We have several resources:

Compass Sociology Guide on School Shooting

Ramsland, Katherine. (2005) Inside the Minds of Mass Murderers: Why They Kill. p cover. Westport: Greenwood eBooks.

Staub, Ervin. (2003). The psychology of good and evil : why children, adults, and groups help and harm others Cambridge, U.K. : Cambridge University Press.
short excerpt
LIBRARY WEST — — BF789.E94 S83 2003

Staub also discusses how we can work on making us more giving and altruistic towards others and how to make it through these horrible experiences.

Douglas, Johns and Olshaker, Mark. (1999) The anatomy of motive : the FBI’s legendary mindhunter explores the key to understanding and catching violent criminals. New York: Scribner.
LIBRARY WEST — HV7911.D68 A33 1999 [Regular Loan]

Kelleher, Michael D. (1997).Flash point: the American mass murderer. Westport, Conn.: Praeger.
LIBRARY WEST — — HV6529 .K45 1997 [Regular Loan]

Lavergne, Gary M. (1997). A sniper in the Tower: the Charles Whitman murders.
Denton, Tex.: University of North Texas Press.

Webber, Julie A. (2003). Failure to hold : the politics of school violence. Lanham : Rowan & Littlefield.
EDUCATION LIBRARY — — LB3013.3 .W43 2003

There are several different databases that would be helpful:


for psychological information on the shooter, the families left behind, the students who are friends and those who are hurting, grieving, frightened and angry just by living on campus. And the rest of us, feeling the same things because we live in the same world and are affected by knowing that such things can happen.

mass murderers

Another article in the Journal of Primary Prevention discusses (and this is a simplification of the argument) the limited ethical development in the family, restricted social interaction with his peers which doesn’t allow further development, and then a school that is competitive, frustrating to a not completely competent person. It is quite interesting.
Thompson, Stephen and Kyle, Ken. (2005).Understanding Mass School Shootings: Links between Personhood and Power in the Competitive School EnvironmentJournal of Primary Prevention. 26,(5). 419-438.

Education Full Text

for information on schools and education, including higher education.

Criminal Justice Abstracts

as it sounds, for information on criminology and criminal justice. This includes both forensic psychology, legal research, and sociological research.

Sociological Abstracts

for information about our society, violence, schools, alienation, community, globalization, etc.

If you’d like to know about what other material we have that can help us understand or help you try to help other people, let me know and we can look for information together. Remember to take care.

April 6, 2007

Communication Problems and School

Filed under: Research Topics — merriealynn @ 2:15 pm

Finding a Social Space for Folks with Asperger’s Syndrome

“Merrie, I’d like to do my paper on kids with Asperger’s Syndrome/dyslexia/stuttering and school. Is there anything on that?”

Every time I talk to Communication Science and Disorder classes, at least 3 or 4 students want to study interaction between children and adolescents with asperger’s and their classmates. Honestly, it’s been relatively easy to find remediation studies to increase kids’ social skills or to look at social interactions in a reductionist way. But larger studies that look at how kids interact in school have been hard for me to find.

Then the other night, Nightline showed a program on Asperger’s Syndrome, Bullying, and a school in New Jersey. The school teaches students what Asperger’s is, gets them involved with each other and teaches them how to be friends with each other. It’s “heaven” one of the kids with Asperger’s says.

I tried to find articles about bullying, teasing and harrassing of kids with Asperger’s. Though several make mention of it, as if it’s well known and first-person narratives include it, I couldn’t find studies of bullying per se. It’s the terms “bullying” (in British writing) or “victimization” (in American writing) that help find these articles for us. Yay! And especially in PsycInfo! So, here is one search from PsycInfo:

(autism OR asperger*) AND (bullying OR victimization)

Try other searchers in ERIC, Lingustics and Language Behavior Abstracts, PubMed, and Education Full Text. They’ll all show you something a bit different.

Books we have on Asperger’s — just search in the catalog using the second box. Change the dropdown menu to “Subject.” Type in Asperger Look at all the possible subject heads there are. (You won’t be able to link to the library catalog from here, though 😦

23 Asperger’s syndrome[LC Authority Record]
2 Asperger’s syndrome — Case studies
1 Asperger’s syndrome — Congresses
1 Asperger’s syndrome — Education — Great Britain
1 Asperger’s syndrome — Fiction
1 Asperger’s syndrome — Handbooks, manuals, etc
1 Asperger’s syndrome — Juvenile fiction
1 Asperger’s syndrome — Patients — Care

4 Asperger’s syndrome — Patients — Education
1 Asperger’s syndrome — Patients — Education (Higher)
1 Asperger’s syndrome — Patients — Education (Higher) — United States
3 Asperger’s syndrome — Patients — Family relationships
1 Asperger’s syndrome — Patients — Life skills guides
1 Asperger’s syndrome — Patients — Vocational guidance
2 Asperger’s syndrome — Popular works
1 Asperger’s syndrome — Social aspects
2 Asperger’s syndrome — Treatment

March 22, 2007

Through Deaf Eyes

Filed under: Research Topics — merriealynn @ 2:52 pm

Watch the History of Deaf People on PBS March 29th at 9:00pm

Last night people all over the country watched a great film, Through Deaf Eyes, on the history of Deaf people in America. Unfortunately, in Gainesville it was pre-empted by Suze Orman’s financial advice during pledge week. WUFL will broadcast it here next week, Friday, March 30 at 9pm. But you can browse through their website now and even read the transcript if you’d like.

The larger documentary includes clips of films by Deaf filmmakers, available on the website. But I wish the transcript had some videos of the interviews in sign, instead of all of them in translation.

I wish they spoke more about life outside of school and the educational institutions. Almost all of the pictures on the PBS website is of students practicing speech, getting audiograms, and hitting drums to listen to sounds. I love just seeing Deaf people together playing canasta or enjoying their bowling. A 1/2 second on the Black schools and segregation in the South.

On the other hand, there were Deaf people living everyday lives, just being. Having friends, brothers, wives, husbands, and co-workers. Lots of the stories spoke to the heart. It was so exciting just to know that Deaf kids can’t imagine a Gallaudet University with a hearing president. What a change in less than 20 years. (And it’s been that long since the Deaf President Now protest!)

The love of American Sign Language and the community afforded Deaf people is palpable in the film. It’s clear what Veditz (the NAD President in 1910) was talking about when he told Deaf people that “Sign Language is the greatest gift that God has given to the Deaf.”

(We have ordered the DVD. PBS says it will be shipping in May.)

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