October 31, 2006
For immediate release
Dr. Steven R. Smith and his research team at UC Santa Barbara’s Gevirtz School made three presentations at the annual conference of the National Academy of Neuropsychology in San Antonio the last week of October. The National Academy of Neuropsychology, founded in 1975, is a professional society that includes clinicians, scientist-practitioners, and researchers interested in the study, evaluation, and treatment of known and suspected brain disorders using the methods of psychology.
The major two presentations by Smith’s team essentially focused on re-thinking the clinical “bedside manner” in the process of psychological testing. There is surprisingly little literature on what constitutes best practice for clinical interviewing techniques and providing test feedback to patients. Furthermore, neuropsychology often relies on a detached “clinician-as-expert” approach throughout the evaluation where the patient is seen as a passive recipient in the assessment process. The information presented by Smith and his colleagues fostered consideration of collaborative interview and feedback techniques for clinicians interested in enhancing the therapeutic impact of their current neuropsychological assessment protocol.
Members of Smith’s team also presented a poster, “Validity of the Comprehensive Trail Making Test,” that examined the psychometric properties of a new measure of planning and organization. The first group to study this new test, they conducted their research using data from UC Santa Barbara’s Psychology Assessment Center.
Dr. Steven R. Smith joined the faculty of the Gevirtz School as a member of the Department of Counseling, Clinical and School Psychology in July 2004. He directs the Psychology Assessment Center, a clinical research center that provides neuropsychological and personality assessment services to area children and adults. The Center serves as a research and clinical base from which to explore the psychometric correlates of various clinical disorders, both neurocognitive and psychological. Smith earned his B.A. from Beloit College and M.A. and Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from the University of Arkansas. He completed an internship and post-doctoral fellowship at Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH). Following his post-doc, he stayed at MGH for two years, serving as Director of Consultation Neuropsychology and as a staff psychologist in the department of Child Psychiatry.Dr. Smith’s research team includes Gevirtz School graduate students Amanda M. Servesko, Jordan A. Edwards, Grace A. Gengoux, and Jennifer G. Green. Chauntel M. Wiggins, a former UCSB undergraduate student, is now at an internship at the Devereux Foundation in Philadelphia. Tad Gorske is a colleague at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine.
[Dr. Steven Smith is available for interviews; contact George Yatchisin at 805 893 5789.]