Essay on The Strengths and Weaknesses of the Scientist Practioner Approach

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The Strengths and Weaknesses of the Scientist – Practioner Approach

The scientist-practitioner model was a term coined within the realm of American psychology. A conference held in Boulder, Colorado in 1949 concluded that clinical psychologists should be incorporating both a scientific and practical approach within their framework and training model.
In his applied scientific theory, Shappiro (1985) viewed research and practice as being integrated, not dichotomised. He outlined the three features of what he believed to make up the scientist-practitioner role:
1. All findings of general psychology should be applied to the field of mental health.
2. It is imperative that all methods of assessment used are scientifically validated and
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Even with the presence of the above stated limitations, the strengths of the scientist – practitioner approach far outweigh the weaknesses. Having an integrated model provides many benefits to the field, a scientific theory provides a framework for practice. Effective methodologies result from theories; they facilitate the success or failure of hypotheses and interventions (Latham & Crandall. 1991). Scrupulous methodological regulation and empirical testing is what differentiates psychology from other socially driven areas such as the arts or journalism. Solutions can be generalised with its theoretical grounding providing a deeper understanding into science (Drenth, )
The scientist – practitioner approach creates a basis for understanding and predicting scientific theory. Theories can be validated externally on the basis of this approach through the facilitation of practice. Hypotheses can be tested within the settings of the laboratory or field and through this consequent testing; they can either be discarded, modified