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July 1970

Assessment of Individual Functioning Through Classroom ObservationThe Clinician in the Preschool Setting

Author Affiliations

From the Division of Clinical Psychology and Psychiatry, Institute for Juvenile Research, Chicago. Dr. Thanaphum is now in Bangkok, Thailand.

Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1970;23(1):16-19. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1970.01750010018005

THE Work of the child psychiatrist focuses primarily upon the direct observation of children's behavior in 1:1 interviews or play sessions. Recently, with increasing interest in community psychiatry and the emergence of consultative relationships with schools, there is greater need for rapprochement between the insights afforded by the clinical interview and those arrived at through observation of classroom behavior.

Can clinicians develop economically feasible methods for assessing the psychosocial functioning of large numbers of school children? Such methods, if they are to have wide applicability, must be relevant to educational settings, and must facilitate interdisciplinary communication between clinicians and educators.

The present study was initiated to begin answering the question posed above. It was conducted in a research preschool whose primary mission was the study of factors which bear upon the development of competence in inner-city black children. Over the last four years, experience has led us to focus on

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