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Addictions professionals can choose from many types of tools

Addictions professionals can choose from many types of tools. Addictions assessments are divided into screening and assessment tools. Addictions screening tools are meant to determine if an addiction might be a possibility; they are not intended to diagnose. Addictions professionals use them to gain a basic idea of an individual’s orientation to an addiction. Addictions assessment tools are typically geared toward detecting dependence on or addiction to a specific, identified substance or behavior. These tools are broader in scope and often take special training and considerable time to administer.

The difficulty often is not in finding a tool to use with a client, but rather in choosing the most effective and appropriate tool from a wide variety. Though choices of screening and assessment tools is often made by the organization in which an addictions professional works, many considerations including cost, time to administer, training, and accuracy enter into the selection of the right test for each individual with a potential substance or process addiction. Thus, it is important that addictions professionals be familiar with the tools available to them and understands the effectiveness of these tools in assessing what they are intended to assess.

In this Assignment, you select one assessment tool from several well-known addictions assessment tools and research and provide an evaluation of its purpose, administration, and efficacy.

To prepare:

Review the Learning Resources, including the following:

  • “Brief Intervention in College Settings”
  • “Ethics in Psychological Assessment”
  • “Assessing Addiction: Concepts and Instruments”

Assignment Directions:

Select one of the following assessment tools, found in this week’s Learning Resources:

  • Substance Abuse Subtle Screening Inventory-3
  • The Michigan Alcoholism Screening Test
  • The Addiction Severity Index

Research and select two articles of your choice on your chosen addictions assessment tool.

Submit by Day 7 a 2- to 4-page critique of the addictions assessment tool you chose. Include the following:

  • Brief purpose of the assessment
  • Reliability of the assessment
  • Validity of the assessment
  • Type of normative data the assessment assesses
  • Time of administration
  • Cost
  • Reading level, if known
  • Any special administration considerations (e.g., need for a computer or special training)
  • Benefits and limitations
  • Overall utility of the test in an addictions assessment

References:

McLellan, A. T., Luborsky, L., O’Brien, C. P., & Woody, G. E. (1980). An improved diagnostic instrument for substance abuse patients, The Addiction Severity Index. Journal of Nervous and Mental Diseases, 168, 26–33.

Miller, G. A., Roberts, J., Brooks, M. K., & Lazowski, L. E. (1997). SASSI-3 user’s guide. Bloomington, IN: Baugh Enterprises.

Seltzer, M. L. (1971). The Michigan Alcoholism Screening Test: The quest for a new diagnostic instrument. American Journal of Psychiatry, 127, 1653–1658.

 

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