Diagnostic Interviewing in Mental Health Field

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Diagnostic interviews are central to the diagnostic process, allowing a mental health specialist to explore the patient’s concerns, background, and current situation. The goal of this method is to identify symptoms and problems to develop objectives for an action plan and determine treatment options (Sue et al., 2019). It is worth noting that cultural differences play an important role in the clinical interviewing of patients from various backgrounds. Therefore, as a counselor, I will consider several cultural factors when completing a diagnostic interview with diverse clients.

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During the process of diagnostic interviewing, I would pay attention to the overall cultural context of my clients since it can affect their mental health, therapy outcomes, and behavior. In this regard, I would begin by collecting demographic information about the individual. Furthermore, I would take into account such factors as the client’s primary language and English proficiency level since they impact communication and, in turn, therapy outcomes. Another important aspect to consider is the degree of association with certain ethnic groups (Sue et al., 2019). This factor can significantly affect one’s behavior and approach to life, as well as provide context for me as a counselor to consider the effects of stigma, concerns, and barriers that diverse clients face.

Finally, I would consider my client’s association with cultural traditions and values, as well as adherence to religious beliefs, practices, and moral thoughts. According to Giebel (2017), these factors can affect one’s self-coping and help-seeking tendencies, which are crucial to therapy outcomes. Therefore, it is essential to take into consideration the cultural context of the client. A diagnostic interview can provide valuable insight into cultural factors affecting the mental health of diverse clients.


Giebel, C. (2017). Identifying cultural issues in diagnostic assessment: The Cultural Formulation Interview. National Elf Service. Web.

Sue, D. W., Sue, D., Neville, H. A., & Smith, L. (2019). Counseling the culturally diverse: Theory and practice (8th ed.). John Wiley & Sons.