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36 people found this helpful
Useful, but not that revised
on 5 January 2006
We are in the in-between time, the DSM-IV being over a decade old, and the DSM-V being due out at some unspecified date, but giving the general publication rate of the major DSM revisions and the advance of general knowledge, it cannot be too far into the future. I have the DSM-IV, burgundy-cover edition, and have dipped into the DSM-IV-TR on occasion from the library, but have found no particular reason to need to purchase the TR silver edition for the kind of work I do.
This is a guide that is useful, indeed required, for graduate students in mental health and psychological fields, and for professionals working in those fields. As a pastoral care provider, I find it useful in many cases, but will warn that it is not a definitive tool to be used by itself in the hands of laypersons (which, in terms of professional psychology, I most certainly am). Symptoms and diagnoses are difficult to isolate, and not to be left in the hands of amateurs - to that end, I often worry about the general availability of books such as this (I have a similar fear for the PDR, the Physicians Desk Reference, whereby people try to self-diagnose and self-medicate based on their reading).
The DSM-IV is not without controversy - indeed, the whole psychological enterprise is not without controversy. However, this is the current standard by which the profession measures itself (sometimes a bit in opposition, but there are few who hold the DSM to be meaningless).
Professionals will want to have this book; graduate students may or may not need this particular revision.