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Beck Depression Inventory (BDI) is a psychological measure that is utilized to assess depression among clients over the age of 12. The tool is in the form of a questionnaire comprises of 21 questions. the BDI was developed in 1961. It has been revised several times, with the most recent version, BDI-II published in 1996, it is a self-reporting inventory (Smarr, 2019). Therefore, the answers to the 21 questions are provided by the client rather than being observed by the provider.

The development of BDI was established on the concept that an individual’s cognition leads to depression. According to this model, intrusive cognition can sustain a state of depression. For instance, a student who has negative thoughts about her appearance may end up depressed over issues such as weight, height, and appearance.

The BDI comprises 21, each representing various items (Smarr, 2019). These items are grouped into two major components. First is the somatic or physical component, which refers to physicals factors that depict the state of depression; examples include lack of appetite, tiredness and fatigue and changes in sleeping patterns (Smarr, 2019). Secondly the affective component. These refer to emotional aspects that describe the presence of a depression state. The affective components include pessimism, feelings of guilt, self-loathing and indecisiveness. These items are rated on a scale of 0 to 3 (Reis, et al., 2019). An item that represents a severe case of depression is given a score of 3 while cases that depict minimal evidence of depression are provided a score of 0.

Mental health providers and researchers mainly use BDI. The instrument is mainly useful in the clinical setting. Professional therapists utilize the BDI as a measurement for diagnosing depression (Smarr, 2019). BDI is also popular in the research field and widely used by scientists who study depression.

The device is also used in academia and workplaces to evaluate employees and students. In these settings, the BDI is administered by counselors and other paraprofessionals in the medical field to diagnose depression (Reis et al, 2019). The BDI measure is easily administered; however, a qualified provider is needed to interpret the outcome of the test, especially in items concerning self-harm and helplessness. Clients who are diagnosed with depression will be referred to a licensed mental health provider for treatment and therapy.

According to (Reis, et al. 2019), BDI has excellent psychometric properties as it has demonstrated high internal consistency, high validity, excellent construct, and test-retest reliability. However, the BDI system has limitations. The possibility of getting exaggerated results is one of the limitations that are associated with the BDI tool. Since the BDI measure is a self-inventory, there is a possibility of the client being evaluated, will give inaccurate information.

The second limitation the measures use physical signs that are present in other illnesses (Reis, et al. 2019). Example disrupted pattern of sleep, fatigue and loss of appetite can be ambiguous, these symptoms are present in other numerous diseases. This depression inventory can be self-scored. The scoring scale is at the end of the questionnaire.


Beck, A.T., Ward, C. H., Mendelson, M., Mock, J., & Erbaugh, J. (1961) An inventory for measuring depression. Archives of General Psychiatry, 4, 561-571.

Dutton G and Jones G. (2019). Validation of the Beck Depression Inventory. Journal of Psychological Assessment. 17 (1): 110- 114

Reis, D. J., Namekata, M. S., Oehlert, M. E., & King, N. (2019). A preliminary review of the Beck Depression Inventory-II (BDI-II) in veterans: Are new norms and cut scores needed? Psychological Services.

Smarr K. (2019). Measures of Depression and Depressive Symptoms. Journal of Arthritis & Rheumatism. 49 (5): 134- 146

Wheeler, K. (Ed.). (2014). Psychotherapy for the advanced practice psychiatric nurse: A how-to guide for evidence-based practice (2nd ed.). New York,

Christian JimenezPosted Date:June 8, 2021 11:28 PMStatus:Published


Exceptional interviews have been the basis of standard diagnostic assessment in psychiatry, primarily in data analysis and in everyday clinical work. Poor acquisition of information can lead to misdiagnosis, poor professional relationships, and avoidance of care. One of the main goals of a psychiatric interview is to determine patients’ complaints, present condition and formulate goals that will result in diagnostic classification and mental health care decisions. Studies showed that the importance of proper communication could lead to better outcomes, satisfaction among clients and mental health care providers  (Mendez, 2019)

On the other hand, poor communication has led to misdiagnosis, an increase in malpractice suits, and the abandonment of patients from the practices or health organizations. Outstanding communication also benefits relationship in the educational and academic settings. In the educational environment, adequate information leads to an excellent open connection between teachers and students. In the academic area, the interaction between peers and superiors enhances their communication skills such as empathy, negotiation, limit setting, and decision making. All of these communication benefits lead to improving the patient care spectrum (Mendez, 2019).

Psychiatric Interview basic components

The patient’s presenting complaint is the first component of a psychiatric interview. The patient’s chief complaint ideally should be from his or her own words. Some examples include “I’m depressed” or “I feel a lot of stress.” The second factor is the history of present illness. It is the orderly description of the evolution of symptoms relating to the current condition. Sometimes the clinician should assist the patient in describing the situation adequately, identifying presence and source of stressors, troubles at home, work, school, and legal issues. Lastly, psychiatric history should be obtained throughout the patient’s lifetime, including symptoms and treatment. Management and outpatient visits, such as psychotherapy, day treatment or partial hospitalization, and electroconvulsive therapy, should also be considered (Boland & Verduin, 2022).

Young Mania Rating Scale

The Young Mania Rating Scale (YMRS) was developed using the descriptions given for the primary symptoms of mania. The scale assesses the severity of mania symptoms according to the patient’s report of their clinical state and the mental health provider observation’s during the assessment. The optimal YMRS threshold of 25 can be classified as severely ill. In this category, patients are highly susceptible to experience psychotic symptoms, admission rates are higher, and increased substance abuse and dependence (Mohammadi, Pourshahbaz, Poshtmashhadi, Dolatshahi, Barati, & Zarei, 2018).

The Young Mania Rating Scale (YMRS) is a clinical assessment scale to assess the severity of the manic state, which is then used for research. The accurate evaluation of the severity of the abnormality helps in the continuous assessment of manic symptoms and enables the provider to monitor and manage the client on time (Suppes, 2021).


Boland, R., & Verduin, M. (2022). Examination and diagnosis of the psychiatric patient. Kaplan & Sadock’s: Synopsis of Psychiatry (12th edition., pp. 5-7) Wolters Kluwer

Mendez, M. (2019). The mental status examination in adults. UpToDate. Retrieved from

Mohammadi, Z., Pourshahbaz, A., Poshtmashhadi, M., Dolatshahi, B., Barati, F., & Zarei, M. (2018). Psychometricproperties of the young mania rating scale as a mania severity measure in patients with bipolar 1 disorder. Practice in Clinical Psychology. Retrieved from

Suppes, T. (2021). Bipolar disorder in adults: Assessment and diagnosis. UpToDate. Retrieved from

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