Psychopathology in children and adolescents can be an enormous source of concem because of interference with the developmental process in the growing child. Understanding of the nature and causes of child and adolescent psychiatric disorder, accompanied by increases in therapeutic efficacy, can help to enlarge the power of effective prevention and intervention (Rutter, 1988). In endeavors to expand knowledge of the nature and causes of emotional and behavioral disorders in children and adolescents the diagnostic process plays an important role. The diagnostic process comprises two essential elements, assessment and taxonomy. In the assessment process, distinguishing features in behaviors and emotions of individuals are identified. Various instmments and procedures can be used in this process to identify the distinguishing features of each individual case. The grouping of these cases according to their distinguishing features (similarities and differences) is accounted for by the concept of taxonomy. In the taxonomic process constmcts are generated by grouping distinguishing features on hierarchical levels of defining characteristics such as individual problems (symptoms), symptom aggregates (syndromes) or etiological factors.

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F.C. Verhulst (Frank)
Erasmus University Rotterdam
Erasmus MC: University Medical Center Rotterdam

Kasius, M. (1997, May 21). Interviewing Children: Development of the Dutch version of the Semistructured Clinical Interview for Children and Adolescents (SCICA) and testing of the psychometric properties. Retrieved from