Menu

2019 Workshops

Wednesday, March 20, 2019


#1 Introduction to the Practice of Forensic Psychological Assessment

F. Barton Evans, PhD, Clinical and Forensic Psychologist, Asheville, NC

Bruce L. Smith, PhD, University of California at Berkeley

Wednesday, March 20, 8:00 am – 5:00 pm

(View Workshop Info / Close)

Workshop Information:

Forensic psychological assessment is an area of tremendous growth and opportunity for assessment psychologists. Yet, for beginning and more experienced clinical assessors, the path to developing a forensic practice may be unclear. Two experienced clinical and forensic psychologists will first discuss the question of what is forensic psychological assessment expertise and how to develop specific areas of expertise. They will discuss adding forensic practice after good clinical training and the advantages in forensic practice of having such clinical training. They will then provide practical, nuts and bolts information about how to set up a forensic practice, including developing referral networks, fee structures, and informed consent. They will discuss the specific advantage of use of personality testing, especially projective methods, in forensic practice and the advantages of developing powerful and persuasive narratives so valued by judges and juries. The presenters will provide case examples for several areas of forensic psychology practice, including personal injury, immigration, criminal, and family practice, as well as provide practical materials (e.g. informed consent statements, attorney contracts) for participants.

Goals and Objectives:

  • Discuss the opportunities for assessment psychologists in adding forensic psychological assessment to their practice and how this differs from clinical practice.
  • Explain what constitutes psychological expertise in forensic psychological assessment.
  • Describe how to develop specific expertise in different areas of forensic practice based on previous clinical training.
  • Discuss the practicalities of setting up a forensic practice, such as development of referrals, fee structures, and informed consent.
  • Describe the advantages of various evaluation methods (including interviews and psychological testing, including assessment of malingering) and the importance of obtaining collateral information, as well as writing compelling forensic reports.
  • Demonstrate the workshop principles through comprehensive sample cases.

Skill Level:

This workshop is designed for early career assessment psychologists and experienced clinical assessment psychologist who want to add a forensic psychological assessment component to their practice.

#2 Evidence-Based Applications of the MMPI-2-RF (Restructured Form) in Criminal and Civil Forensic Setting

Martin Sellbom, PhD, University of Otago

Paul A. Arbisi, PhD, Minneapolis VA Healthcare System & University of Minnesota

Wednesday, March 20, 8:00 am – 5:00 pm

(View Workshop Info / Close)

Workshop Information:

This workshop introduces the 338-item version of the MMPI-2, the MMPI-2 Restructured Form (MMPI-2-RF) to psychologists working in forensic settings. The workshop will begin with a discussion of applications of the MMPI-2-RF in both criminal (e.g., competency to stand trial, criminal responsibility, risk assessment) and civil (e.g., personal injury, disability) forensic evaluations. Evidence-based practice will be reviewed. The workshop will also emphasize discussion on how to defend MMPI-2-RF opinions in court for general purposes of use, with an emphasis on Daubert and Frye challenges. Finally, case illustrations derived from a variety of criminal and civil settings will be provided.

Goals and Objectives:

  • Become familiar with various considerations for using the MMPI-2-RF in criminal and civil forensic evaluation.
  • Evaluate the psychometric findings available to guide MMPI-2-RF interpretation in forensic settings
  • Become familiar with how to defend MMPI-2-RF opinions in court for general purposes of use
  • Know how to incorporate MMPI-2-RF findings in criminal forensic evaluations

Skill Level:

This is an intermediate workshop, with participants expected to have previous exposure to the MMPI-2-RF.

#3 Therapeutic Assessment (TA) in Clients with Personality Disorder, with a focus on the Restoration of Epistemic Trust

Jan H. Kamphuis, University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Hilde de Saeger, Viersprong Institute for the Study of Personality Disorders, The Netherlands

Pamela Schaber, Center for Therapeutic Assessment, Therapeutic Assessment Institute, Austin, TX

Wednesday, March 20, 8:00 am – 5:00 pm

(View Workshop Info / Close)

Workshop Information:

Kamphuis, De Saeger, and Schaber will share empirical research and clinical experiences re: working in TA with patients with (severe) PD and illustrate these learnings with video clips and role-plays. Accordingly, this training will be particularly useful for therapists (of all levels of experience) working with patients with significant personality pathology. In the lectures, the theoretical framework of Epistemic Trust (Fonagy, Luyten & Allison, 2015) is explicated and pertinent research is discussed alongside clinical observations. Of note, this workshop puts emphasis on the hands-on practice of the specific adaptions for working with this client group; adaptations that differ for specific types of personality pathology. Specifically, participants will practice specific adapted versions of the initial interview, and the feedback session, and discuss the design of specific interventions in the context of epistemic trust/ hypervigilance appraisals.

Goals and Objectives:

  • Be able to explain how principles and features of TA are specifically suited to the clinical needs of patients with personality pathology;
  • Have an understanding of how epistemic trust / epistemic hypervigilance can inform TA interventions;
  • Describe how TA can be optimally adapted for working with clients with (severe) PD;
  • Explain how PD Cluster C clients differ in needs from PD Cluster B clients;
  • Explain why multi-method assessment is especially useful with clients with personality disorder;

Skill Level:

This is an introductory workshop geared for participants of all levels; however, a basic understanding of the general principles and features of TA will be helpful in appreciating the key technical adaptations for working in TA with clients with (severe) PD.

#4 Personality Assessment Report Writing: Producing Meaningful Reports

Hadas Pade, PsyD, Alliant International University, San Francisco, CA

A. Jordan Wright, PhD, New York University Steinhardt School of Culture, Education and Human Development, New York, NY

Wednesday, March 20, 8:00 am – 5:00 pm

(View Workshop Info / Close)

Workshop Information:

This beginner/intermediate workshop presents the challenges in writing integrated and meaningful psychological reports and strategies to improve report writing skills. Particular focus is on multi-method, integrated, and person focused reports. Participants will be introduced to critical components for writing effective and integrated reports, including making assessment findings clear, individualized, specific, and meaningful for the client and other audiences. Participants will learn specific steps to better organize and integrate reports, balancing professional language with accessibility.

Goals and Objectives:

  • List the reasons psychological assessment report writing is so critical for the field
  • Describe the common challenges with respect to producing comprehensive and effective assessment reports
  • Recognize and explain core components of effective report writing
  • Select and utilize specific strategies provided to strengthen report writing
  • Revise ineffective/unhelpful written sentences/paragraphs in a more meaningful manner
  • Increase integration and individualization of all assessment data available (interview, observations, testing, etc.) into a well-written report
  • Identify strategies for making research-informed treatment recommendations

Skill Level:

This workshop is geared towards early career psychologists as well as anyone who is learning, practicing, or teaching/supervising personality assessment. Participants need to be familiar with at least some personality measures and psychological assessment process in general.

#5 The Rorschach Performance Assessment System: Overview and Case Illustration

Gregory J. Meyer, PhD, University of Toledo, Toledo, OH

Donald J. Viglione, PhD, Alliant International University, San Diego, CA

Wednesday, March 20, 8:00 am – 5:00 pm

(View Workshop Info / Close)

Workshop Information:

This workshop provides a practical introduction to the Rorschach Performance Assessment System (R-PAS), which is an approach to using the Rorschach that is based both on strong empirical support and on an appreciation of the task as providing an in vivo sample of perceptual and verbal problem-solving behavior obtained in a standardized context. The latter allows for personality inferences to be based on observed performance rather than self-description, which in turn allows valid scores to provide relevant information that complements and increments over self-report. R-PAS emphasizes scores where there is a clear link between the psychological processes associated with the perceptions and behaviors coded in the microcosm of the task and inferences about parallel psychological processes associated with the perceptions and behaviors that make up personality characteristics expressed in everyday behavior. We start the workshop by briefly describing the scientific rationale and procedures for R-PAS. We then address administration, the scoring and calculation of variables, normative referencing, a standardized format to present the results, and interpretive inferences. As time allows, we also will briefly describe the large array of free training resources that are available to R-PAS account holders. Throughout the day, we will illustrate the practical features of R-PAS by applying the system to a clinical case. Although, the workshop is largely didactic, we aim to provide time for questions, comments, and discussion with those in attendance. This workshop is focused on using R-PAS and should be helpful for practitioners, instructors, and researchers. Attendees should have some familiarity with Rorschach-based assessment and should read the first three chapters of the R-PAS Manual before attending the training (Meyer, Viglione, Mihura, Erard, & Erdberg. 2011). Participants are strongly encouraged to bring the Manual to the workshop because familiarity with how to use it facilitates administration and interpretation.

Goals and Objectives:

  • Summarize the value of "performance assessment" as a foundation for clinical interpretation.
  • Explain basic steps in calculating normed scores from raw scores.
  • Implement standardized administration to optimize the length of Rorschach protocols
  • Describe how to score R-PAS variables
  • Recognize problematic characteristics when scanning the R-PAS Profile Pages

Skill Level:

Intermediate; we assume familiarity with Rorschach-based assessment and the first three chapters of the R-PAS Manual (Meyer, Viglione, Mihura, Erard, & Erdberg, 2011).

#6 Using a Collaborative/Therapeutic Assessment Model in Diagnosing Adults with an Autism Spectrum Disorder

Dale Rudin, PhD, Center Therapeutic Assessment, Austin, TX

Wednesday, March 20, 8:00 am – 5:00 pm

(View Workshop Info / Close)

Workshop Information:

This workshop will address how to utilize a Collaborative/ Therapeutic Assessment approach in the assessment of adults who present with behaviors and concerns that are consistent with an Autism Spectrum Disorder. It will cover differential diagnoses, useful assessment tools, and how to involve clients as collaborators in the assessment process. A key message will be that clinical judgment is essential in making a diagnosis of an ASD. Points will be illustrated with videos of actual clients, and participants will be actively involved in the workshop.

Goals and Objectives:

  • Summarize the diagnostic criteria in making a diagnosis of ASD.
  • List differential diagnoses to be considered when assessing for an ASD.
  • Describe 3 assessment tools that can be useful in making an ASD diagnosis with adults.
  • Utilize a process that formalizes clinical judgment in making an ASD diagnosis.
  • Discuss ways in which to involve clients collaboratively in the assessment process.
  • Define Theory of Mind. 7. state the underlying values of Therapeutic Assessment. 8. explain whether clients with ASD demonstrate empathy.

Skill Level:

The workshop will be relevant for both inexperienced and experienced professionals. It is an interactive workshop and participants' different levels of expertise, with both Autism and Therapeutic assessment, will add to the experience.

#7 Personality Assessment in Juvenile Justice: Settings

Lindsay E. Ayearst, Toronto, Canada

Wednesday, March 20, 6:00 pm – 9:45 pm

(View Workshop Info / Close)

Workshop Information:

As budget cuts continue to impact community and school-based mental health treatment options for youth, the burden for treatment is falling on the juvenile justice system. As many as 70% of youth who have offended meet criteria for a mental health disorder compared to 20% in the general population. In this workshop we will review current screening and assessment procedures being used in juvenile corrections settings. The dangers of treating youth as adults will be explored as well as the roll assessment plays in these decisions. The importance of including personality assessments in juvenile justice settings as part of a best-practice model will be discussed through a case study using the Jesness Inventory-Revised (JI-R) and Conners Comprehensive Behavior Rating Scales (Conners CBRS). Gaps in current procedures will be identified and discussed. Ways to refine and improve assessment efforts will be suggested while acknowledging obstacles.

Goals and Objectives:

  • Describe current mental health screening and assessment practices in juvenile correctional facilities
  • Discuss ways to refine and improve current practices while acknowledging obstacles
  • Describe the JI-R and Conners CBRS and demonstrate how to use them in combination

Skill Level:

This is a beginner's level workshop, but some background in psychometrics and personality assessment would be helpful.

#8 Establishing a Successful Forensic Psychology Practice

Marvin W. Acklin, PhD, Independent Practice

Nancy Kaser-Boyd, PhD, Geffen School of Medicine, UCLA

Wednesday, March 20, 6:00 pm – 9:45 pm

(View Workshop Info / Close)

Workshop Information:

This half-day workshop, presented by two experienced board-certified psychologists, and facilitators of the SPA Forensic Interest Group, will present information to psychologists who wish to develop a forensic psychology practice, including marketing, skills development and education, processes for report preparation, testimony, and the scientific, ethical, statutory, and professional standards framework for successful practice.

Goals and Objectives:

  • Participants will identify and select strategies for establishing a forensic psychology practice
  • Participants can identify their core skills and areas needed to establish a forensic psychology practice
  • Participants can describe professional practice standards
  • Participants can identify and select methods and processes to produce forensic psychology reports

Skill Level:

All levels of skills-graduate student to advanced clinicians.

#9 Personality Assessment Consultation Opportunities with the Federal Aviation Administration: An Orientation to FAA Practices and Standards

Chris M. Front, PsyD, ABAP, Federal Aviation Administration

Wednesday, March 20, 6:00 pm – 9:45 pm

(View Workshop Info / Close)

Workshop Information:

Personality assessment is an essential element in pre-employment and fitness for duty evaluations for a variety of public safety-sensitive positions. Many psychologists specializing in personality assessment have developed consultation relationships with police and other public safety agencies. Fewer have become consultants for the FAA, which relies on psychologists skilled in personality assessment to conduct thorough evaluations of pilots and air traffic controllers. The FAA is actively recruiting psychologists who are skilled in personality assessment to join its team of consultants, particularly for performing pre-employment evaluations of Air Traffic Control Specialist applicants. The workshop will begin with a brief review of the legal and ethical issues involved in conducting pre-employment and fitness for duty evaluations. An orientation to the unique psychological demands inherent in the aviation environment and the standards necessary for aviation safety will follow. The main focus of the workshop will be on the special considerations required for pre-employment and fitness for duty evaluations conducted with pilots and air traffic controllers for the FAA, including published and unpublished normative test score patterns for those populations, the safety relevance of subclinical conditions, and the differences between DSM-5 diagnoses and FAA regulatory standards. A discussion of test data, psychosocial history, clinical interview, MSE, and collateral information to guide and support decisions will follow. Case examples will be provided to illustrate assessment practices and FAA standards.

Goals and Objectives:

  • Describe the unique psychological demands of working in the aviation environment.
  • Describe the most salient ethical and legal issues in conducting pre-employment and fitness for duty evaluations for public safety-sensitive positions.
  • Utilize normative score patterns (e.g., MMPI-2 means and S.D.s for pilots and Air Traffic Control Specialist Applicants) when conducting test interpretation.
  • Discuss the differences between DSM-5 diagnoses and FAA regulatory standards.
  • Explain the safety relevance of subclinical conditions in the aviation work environment.

Skill Level:

Participants with intermediate to advanced skills in personality assessment will benefit most from this workshop.

#10 Innovations in Brief Psychotherapy: A Demonstration of One-Session, Assessment-Based Psychotherapy

Richard Levak, PhD, Independent Practice

Philip Keddy, PhD, Independent Practice

Wednesday, March 20 6:00 pm – 9:45 pm

(View Workshop Info / Close)

Workshop Information:

This workshop will demonstrate assessment-based brief psychotherapy that integrates different therapeutic strategies. Dr. Keddy will discuss some of the issues found when teaching this model to students and how this approach is also consistent with motivational interviewing. Three of Dr. Keddy's graduate students from the Wright Institute in Berkeley, California who have had extensive therapy contact with their respective clients will role-play these clients discussing the assessment-based feedback with Dr. Levak. Integrating psychodynamic, cognitive-behavioral, and emotionally-focused modalities in the immediate interaction, Dr. Levak will demonstrate interventions that: 1) Anticipate, manage and utilize client resistance 2) Use empathic assessment-based feedback to elicit cathartic and healing responses in the client-actor 3) Link current maladaptive defenses with past conditioning experiences in order to promote self-compassion and insight 4) Utilize cognitive-behavioral approaches to counter maladaptive self-talk and to promote self-soothing.

Goals and Objectives:

  • Participants will see the demonstration of a therapeutic interaction with unscripted client-actors.
  • Participants will develop the ability to use test findings to formulate therapeutic feedback.
  • Participants will be able to create their own therapeutic responses utilizing the client "resistance" and working with the idea that "the client is never wrong."
  • Participants will be able to predict some of the typical issues that arise when teaching this model to students and be able to list the ways this approach is consistent with motivational interviewing.

Skill Level:

Some familiarity with reading MMPI-2 and other personality test results would be helpful but is not required.

#11 Rorschach Interpretation Focused on the Response Process

Joni L. Mihura, Ph.D, University of Toledo, OH

Wednesday, March 20 6:00 pm – 9:45 pm

(View Workshop Info / Close)

Workshop Information:

The primary goal of this workshop is to deepen participants’ understanding of using the response process when interpreting psychological assessment results. The response process that occurs when providing responses to the Rorschach is an essential component of interpretation for the Rorschach Performance Assessment System (R-PAS). The response process method of interpretation is also used in other performance tests that use behavioral tasks such as cognitive and neuropsychological tests. This workshop will start by explaining the rationale for using a response process focus to interpreting tests, followed by applied examples. The bulk of the workshop is focused on using the response process in Rorschach interpretation. Numerous illustrative examples will be given that link the response process to the coding and the interpretation of the scores. Brief vignettes of clients are provided as a context to understanding how the response process is relevant to the interpretation for each client. On a broader scope, this type of interpretation is similar to what has been referred to as ‘sequence analysis.’ The ultimate goals of the workshop are to help participants understand what is meant by the response process in interpretation, how to apply it, and its significance to making valid interpretations. Although the main focus will be on the Rorschach, examples with other tests will also be provided. Although test interpretation is clearly relevant for practitioners and students in clinical training, understanding the response process in tests is also crucial to designing meaningful research. Therefore, personality researchers are also encouraged to attend. Participants with basic R-PAS knowledge will most easily benefit from this workshop; however, those with only Comprehensive System training should be able to easily understand the majority of the content without much knowledge of R-PAS

Goals and Objectives:

  • Describe the response process in test interpretation
  • Apply the response process approach to interpretation to Rorschach responses
  • Use the response process to shape more valid interpretations in practice and inform research methodology and design in personality research.

Skill Level:

Intermediate skill level with basic knowledge of either CS or R-PAS administration and coding.

#12 MCMI-IV and Millon Evolutionary Theory: The Dimensional View

Seth Grossman, PhD, Private Practice, Cooper City, FL

Wednesday, March 20 6:00 pm – 9:45 pm

(View Workshop Info / Close)

Workshop Information:

With dimensional personality constructs now at the fore in discussions about the future of personality assessment, the time is perhaps overdue to examine potential contributions of the Millon Evolutionary Theory and its instrumentation (chiefly, the MCMI-IV). Largely believed to be anchored exclusively to categorical constructs, the theory on which all Millon instruments are based is, at its core, fully dimensional, significantly overlapping with recent dimensional DSM proposals. This workshop will review current MCMI-IV methodology, but will emphasize dimensional aspects usually overlooked in common use. It will then introduce an emerging clinical dimensional methodology based in extant Millon theory, currently in development by the presenter, and compare its tenets to recent proposals such as the DSM-5 Alternative Model.

Goals and Objectives:

  • Examine current methodology commonly used in MCMI-IV assessment and interpretation.
  • Explore extant dimensional constructs of Millon’s Evolutionary Theory.
  • Compare dimensional aspects of Millon’s theory to recent field proposals (e.g., the DSM-5 Alternative Model).
  • Organize a deductively-based dimensional personality assessment model from Millon’s theory.

Skill Level:

Intermediate: Some prior knowledge of objective personality assessment in general, and the MCMI-IV in particular is recommended; extensive familiarity is not necessary.



Thursday, March 21, 2019


#13 Advanced Topics in Personnel Selection for High-Risk Occupations

Ray King, PsyD, JD, Federal Aviation Administration

Thursday, March 21, 8:00 am – 11:45 am

(View Workshop Info / Close)

Workshop Information:

This workshop is a follow up workshop to the one that has been offered by Dr. Chris Font over the past eight years addressing assessments needed by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) for entry into the Air Traffic Control Specialist (air traffic control) career field. Topics to be considered include common errors in all assessments for high-risk occupations; understanding the military veteran who is seeking high-risk civilian employment and specifically assessing disabled veterans; when to use re-administration instruments and when not to do so; dealing with recalcitrant defensiveness, to include a discerning between impression management and self-deceptive enhancement; and an examination of who is the client in an assessment for employment in a high-risk occupation. The special problem of advocacy will be discussed and its role in problematic employment assessments will be explored. Finally, the requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act will be reviewed. The workshop will use a lecture format supported with PowerPoint slides as well as case studies and live/filmed demonstrations of employment interviews.

Goals and Objectives:

  • Participants will be able to describe the requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act in conducting a personality assessment post job offer.
  • Participants will be able to list techniques to use when a person being assessed is being defensive and to describe the types of defensiveness (impression management versus self-deception enhancement).
  • Participants will be able to articulate who the client is in an assessment for entry into a high-risk occupation.
  • Participants will analyze the unique characteristics of military veterans who are seeking employment in high-risk civilian occupations, particularly focusing on those deemed to be disabled.

Skill Level:

Completion of Dr. Front's Orientation to FAA Practices or similar workshop is strongly recommended as the skill level of this workshop is moderate to advanced.

#14 SCOR(S) Some Knowledge: An Introduction to Scoring and Clinical Applications of the Social Cognition and Object Relations Scale-Global Rating Method (SCORS-G)

Michelle B. Stein, PhD, Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical Center

Jenelle Slavin-Mulford, PhD, Augusta University

Thursday, March 21, 8:00 am – 11:45 am

(View Workshop Info / Close)

Workshop Information:

There continues to be a growing need in the psychology field to create measures that quantify qualitative data in dynamically rich and meaningful ways. Within the personality assessment and psychotherapy process and outcome empirical literature, the Social Cognition and Object Relations Scale-Global Rating Method (SCORS-G) has become one of the most commonly used clinician-rated measures to code object relational content via narrative material (i.e., TAT, early memory, clinical interviews, and psychotherapy narratives). This INTRODUCTORY workshop will teach participants how to score narratives using this measure and introduce them to innovative approaches for incorporating the SCORS-G into the clinical process. The first portion of this workshop will focus on scoring and providing a comprehensive review of the dimensions and associated anchor points (nomothetic approach). This assists those interested in learning how to rate this measure for research purposes. The second part of this workshop will be more qualitative (idiographic) in nature and will introduce novel ways that the SCORS-G dimensions can be applied to the initial intake, psychotherapy, and supervisory process as well as formal psychological assessment. Overall, this will be an interactive seminar and applicable to a wide range of specialties within the field of psychology.

Goals and Objectives:

  • Explain the theoretical framework behind the conceptualization and development of the SCORS-G.
  • Rate narratives using the SCORS-G at a beginner level.
  • Apply the eight SCORS-G dimensions to clinical material at a beginner level. This includes: psychotherapy, formal assessment, and supervision.
  • To apply the SCORS-G dimensions to the initial intake interview at a beginner level.

Skill Level:

This is an introductory lecture.

#15 Using the MMPI-2-RF for Pre-Surgical Psychological Evaluations of Bariatric Surgery Patients

Ryan J. Marek, PhD, University of Houston

Thursday, March 21, 8:00 am – 11:45 am

(View Workshop Info / Close)

Workshop Information:

The MMPI-2-RF is used in medical settings to assess patients and design effective treatment strategies based on personality and behavioral characteristics that may impact patient care and surgical outcomes. This workshop aims to discuss the use of the MMPI-2-RF in pre-surgical evaluations of bariatric surgery patients. This half-day workshop will begin with an overview of the empirical research supporting use of the MMPI-2-RF in the pre-surgical evaluation of bariatric surgery patients and provide interpretative strategies for using the MMPI-2-RF for this purpose. Case examples will also be presented.

Goals and Objectives:

  • Become familiar with the empirical research on using the MMPI-2-RF in bariatric surgery evaluations.
  • Describe how MMPI-2-RF scale scores map onto problem domains typically assessed for during pre-surgical psychological evaluations of bariatric surgery patients.
  • Learn how to interpret MMPI-2-RF scales and integrate such information for pre-surgical psychological evaluations of bariatric surgery patients.

Skill Level:

This workshop will be taught at an intermediate level and previous knowledge of the MMPI-2-RF will be assumed.

#16 Introduction to the MMPI-A-RF and Its Use in Juvenile Justice Settings

Tayla T.C. Lee, PhD, HSPP, Ball State University

Richard W. Handel, PhD, Eastern Virginia Medical School

Thursday, March 21, 8:00 am – 11:45 am

(View Workshop Info / Close)

Workshop Information:

This workshop introduces the 241-item adolescent version of the MMPI-2-RF, the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory – Adolescent – Restructured Form (MMIP-A-RF) to psychologists working in juvenile justice settings. The first half of the workshop will provide an overview of the MMPI-A-RF. Topics covered in the overview will include the rationale for, as well as methods used, to develop the instrument, intended uses of the instrument, review of the psychometric properties of MMPI-A-RF scales, and interpretative recommendations. The second half of the workshop will focus on the use of the MMPI-A-RF in juvenile justice context (e.g., disposition evaluations, delinquency/violence/sexually abusive behavior risk evaluations, mental health screenings). Research supporting the use of MMPI-A-RF scale scores for assessing self-presentation, as well as personality, psychopathology, and behavioral variables of relevance to forensically-related assessments will be reviewed. Interpretation of MMPI-A-RF scale scores within these contexts, as well as integration of this information, will be illustrated through several case examples.

Goals and Objectives:

  • Describe the rationale and methods used in developing the MMPI-A-RF
  • Explain with whom and when the MMPI-A-RF should be used
  • Discuss psychometric foundations of the six validity and 42 substantive scales of the MMPI-A-RF
  • Describe how MMPI-A-RF scale scores can be used in evaluations for adolescents involved with the juvenile justice system
  • Interpret scores from MMPI-A-RF profiles and integrate interpretations with other sources of information

Skill Level:

This workshop is intended for advanced graduate students, researchers, and practicing clinicals with a basic understanding of psychometrics and conducting assessments in juvenile justice settings.

#17 Female Offenders: Psychopathy, Assessment & Treatment

Jason M. Smith, PsyD, BOP, Morgantown, WV

Thursday, March 21, 8:00 am – 11:45 am

(View Workshop Info / Close)

Workshop Information:

Female offenders are a growing population in the United States. Therefore, clinicians need to understand the similarities and differences with this population compared to male offenders. The main goals of this workshop are to provide participants’ an understanding of psychopathy within female offenders and ways to assess this population to help with treatment and management. A brief review of the similarities and differences between male and female offenders will be provided in relation to psychopathy. Female offender data with the Rorschach Inkblot Test (CS), PCL-R and Personality Assessment Inventory (PAI) will be presented. Interview recommendations will be provided. A female offender treatment program will be outlined, and a case example will be discussed to highlight the topics discussed.

Goals and Objectives:

  • Explain how female psychopathy differs from male psychopathy.
  • Discuss female offender data on the PCL-R, Rorschach and PAI.
  • Describe caveats in assessing female offenders.
  • Discuss a treatment program for incarcerated female offenders.

Skill Level:

Advanced graduate students, researchers, and practicing clinicians with a basic understanding of forensic clients.

#18 Forecasting Violence: Recalibrating the Role of Personality

Henry Richards, PhD, University of Washington, Seattle, WA

Arnold Bruhn, PhD, Private Practice, Chevy Chase, MD

Thursday, March 21, 8:00 am – 11:45 am

(View Workshop Info / Close)

Workshop Information:

This is a half-day workshop that follows logically from and incorporated content from Dr. Bruhn's proposed workshop on Early Memory Interpretation, although that workshop is not a prerequisite for the workshop proposed here. This workshop will describe the prevailing framework for violence assessment in forensic practice and how personality traits and personality disorder diagnoses are considered within this framework. The presenters will primarily address the assessment of sexual offenders, including understanding precipitating factors in serial homicide perpetrators. Research findings and clinical practice outcomes will be reviewed which suggest narrative assessment methods as a promising source of information with potential for incremental predictive value over prevailing violence assessment methods. Early Memories (and other salient autobiographical memories) are shown to be the royal road to formulating highly individualized and specific predictions of conditions likely to precipitate states and behaviors which have previously resulted in violent acts. Participants will practice using EMs and other autobiographical memories in formulating behavioral signatures which have direct applicability to both risk assessment and interventions with violence-prone individuals.

Goals and Objectives:

  • Participants will be able to list the major components of the most widely employed model of risk assessment for violence as described by the presenters. 2.Participants will be able critique the prevailing model of risk assessment by referencing the history of the changing role of personality factors and clinical judgment in risk considerations 3.Participants will be able to explain how the assessment of motives, goals, situation-matching and schemas as assessed via narrative assessment methods (Early Memories, Thematic Apperception Tests) can add incremental validity to the assessment of dangerousness and increase the specificity and effectiveness of treatment. 4.Participants will be able to use narrative assessment information, particularly Early Memories, to write concise descriptions of individualized behavioral signatures for violence potential.

Skill Level:

Participants should be familiar with case formulation within one or more major theoretical or practice paradigms, such as cognitive-behavioral, psychodynamic, behavioral etc.



Sunday, March 24, 2019


#19 Introduction to the SPECTRATM Indices of Psychopathology

Mark A. Blais, PsyD, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA

Sunday, March 24, 8:00 am – 11:45 am

(View Workshop Info / Close)

Workshop Information:

The purpose of this workshop is to introduce the SPECTRA Indices of Psychopathology (SPECTRA TM) a new psychological inventory for adults. The SPECTRA is a 96-item self-report measure psychopathology and psychological functioning. Development of the SPECTRA was guided by the emerging literature on Quantitative Models of Psychopathology. The SPECTRA has twelve clinical scales, three supplemental scales and two profile validity indicators. The twelve clinical scales provide a balanced hierarchical measurement of psychopathology capturing clinically important low-order constructs (symptoms and disorders), higher-order dimensions of psychopathology (Internalizing, Externalizing and Reality Impairing), and the overarching global dimension or p-factor. This workshop will cover the theoretical and empirical foundation of Quantitative psychopathology measurement models. It will review the SPECTRA development process, psychometric characteristics, and validity data. The SPECTRA’s hierarchical interpretation approach will be detailed and illustrated using clinical material. Additional features of the SPECTRA, validity indicators and supplemental scales, Cognitive Complaints, Psycho-social Functioning and Suicidal Ideation, will be discussed. The workshop will also demonstrate how integrating Quantitative Model measurement can enhance traditional approaches to psychological assessment. Disclaimer: Dr. Blais receives royalties from SPECTRA sales.

Goals and Objectives:

  • Review the empirical and theoretical foundation for Quantitative Models of Psychopathology.
  • Describe the SPECTRA development and validation process.
  • Illustrate a model for interpreting SPECTRA data consistent with the Quantitative Model literature.
  • Demonstrate how SPECTRA findings can enhance standard approaches to clinical assessment.

Skill Level:

This workshop is suitable for graduate students and psychologists with a general knowledge of clinical psychological assessment.

#20 Social Cognitive Personality Assessment: New Methods and a Case Illustration

Walter D. Scott, PhD, Washington State University

Sunday, March 24, 8:00 am – 11:45 am

(View Workshop Info / Close)

Workshop Information:

Although social cognitive theory has strongly influenced cognitive behavioral models of psychopathology and treatment, it has had less influence on approaches to clinical personality assessment and case conceptualization. This workshop will present a case conceptualization procedure informed by social cognitive personality assessment. In this workshop, you will learn how to a) assess social cognitive personality structures, b) identify if-then personality signatures, c) map personality structures to if-then personality signatures, and d) integrate social cognitive personality assessment data to form an evidence-based case conceptualization. A case illustration of a depressed and anxious client will be used to illustrate the procedure. In addition, new directions in social cognitive personality assessment procedures will be described.

Goals and Objectives:

  • List the 4 steps in conducting a social cognitive personality assessment.
  • Identify the three major personality structures assessed in social cognitive personality assessment.
  • Apply social cognitive personality assessment procedures to a case example.
  • Utilize a social cognitive personality assessment to recommend therapeutic strategies/interventions.

Skill Level:

The workshop assumes no knowledge of social cognitive personality theory or applications.

#21 Clinical and Forensic Assessment of Psychosis: Recent Developments

Ali Khadivi, PhD, ABAP

James Kleiger, PsyD ABPP, ABAP

Sunday, March 24, 8:00 am – 11:45 am

(View Workshop Info / Close)

Workshop Information:

Establishing an accurate diagnosis of psychosis and identifying the presence of psychotic symptoms are essential in clinical and forensic psychological examinations. Numerous changes have been made in diagnostic criteria of psychotic disorders. These changes are both conceptual as well as empirical. They include changes in the definition of psychotic symptoms, as well as new research indicating that psychotic-like symptoms are not as uncommon as once thought.

The purpose of this intermediate workshop is to 1) critically review the contemporary perspectives and literature on psychotic phenomena, 2) examine key issues in clinical and forensic assessment of psychosis, and 3) demonstrate practical and effective methods for assessing psychosis in clinical and forensic contexts. For clinical evaluations, we review the assessment of dimensions of psychotic phenomena, discuss the effects of medication on psychotic symptoms, and demonstrate methods for assessing the degree of awareness or insight the subject has regarding his/her disordered thinking or disturbance in reality testing. When evaluating subjects in a forensic context, we review the literature on evaluating feigned psychotic symptoms and discuss how to effectively use psychological testing in assessing psychosis in different types forensic evaluations. In addition, we discuss assessing violence and suicide risk in psychosis.

The workshop will examine three different methods of assessing psychosis; clinical interview, self-report personality measures (PAI, MMPI-2, and MMPI-2RF) and The Rorschach (CS and R-PAS). A conceptual model to assess disordered thinking, impaired reality testing, and negative symptoms on the Rorschach, self-report measures, and clinical interview will be presented. Brief clinical and forensic case examples of adults and adolescents with will be used throughout the workshop. Two detailed cases are presented and discussed with participants to demonstrate clinical and forensic decision-making when diagnostic questions concern the presence, degree, and implications of psychotic symptomatology.

Goals and Objectives:

  • List characteristics of feigned psychosis in forensic settings.
  • Demonstrate a method for testing the limits of thought disorder responses on the Rorschach to determine the degree of awareness and insight.
  • Describe key scales and profile configurations in major personality inventories that identify psychotic phenomena.
  • Demonstrate best clinical interviewing techniques to assess three core psychotic symptoms.
  • Describe how effectively use psychological testing in assessing psychosis in a forensic context.

Skill Level:

#22 Conducting Psychological/Parental Capacity Evaluations

Alan J. Lee, PsyD, Alan J. Lee & Associates, LLC

Brian E. Eig, PsyD, Alan J. Lee & Associates, LLC

Janet W. Eig, PsyD, Alan J. Lee & Associates, LLC

Sunday, March 24, 8:00 am – 5:00 pm

(View Workshop Info / Close)

Workshop Information:

This full-day workshop will provide a foundation to conducting psychological "parenting capacity evaluations". This will include an overview of guiding principles and best practices in conducting such forensically-oriented evaluations to assist child-protection agencies or trier of fact (family court judges); discussing common areas of assessment; review of commonly-used assessment procedures; reporting of findings; and common pitfalls in such evaluations. This will include discussion of strengths and weakness of common assessment procedures; as well as in report writing. Common cultural and other idiosyncratic considerations will be reviewed. This presentation will include at least one case presentation to exemplify the concepts discussed.

Goals and Objectives:

  • Describe "best practices" in conducting psychological/parenting capacity evaluations and related ethical considerations
  • List common areas of assessment in parenting capacity evaluations
  • Design appropriate assessment battery to address referral questions with consideration of issues of reliability and validity
  • Effectively integrating test findings, collateral information, and other sources of information
  • Apply effective reporting of findings and appropriate treatment/management recommendations

Skill Level:

Participants should have familiarity with general clinical and forensic assessment, but no advanced experience or skills in topic area is required.

#23 Using the Inventory of Problems – 29 (IOP-29) to Evaluate the Credibility of Mental Illness Complaints

Luciano Giromini, PhD, University of Turin

Donald J. Viglione, PhD, Alliant International University

Sunday, March 24, 8:00 am – 11:45 am

(View Workshop Info / Close)

Workshop Information:

The Inventory of Problems – 29 (IOP-29; Viglione, Giromini & Landis, 2017) is a new, brief, self-report, malingering-related measure designed to assist practitioners evaluating the credibility of various symptom presentations, including those related to (1) depression/anxiety, (2) psychosis/schizophrenia, (3) post-traumatic reactions, and (4) neuropsychological/intellectual dysfunction. It is comprised of 29 items, administrable via classic, paper-and-pencil format, or online, using a tablet or a PC. By analyzing the responses to each of these 29 items, a logistic regression-derived formula generates the False Disorder Probability Score (FDS), a probability value reflecting the likelihood of drawing that specific IOP-29 from a group of experimental feigners versus a group of bona fide patients. This half-day workshop will describe the research foundation for using the IOP-29 in forensic evaluations and will present some guidelines for its use in applied practice. For example, it will address issues related to administering the IOP-29 in multimethod, symptom validity assessment (e.g., administration order when used with the TOMM or PAI; online versus paper-and-pencil administration, etc.), and to interpreting its chief index, the FDS. No prior experience with the IOP instruments is required.

Goals and Objectives:

  • Describe the research foundation for using the IOP-29 to evaluate the credibility of various mental illness complaints
  • Compare the efficacy of the IOP-29 versus other available toolstive choices of the assessors such as SIMS, TOMM, PAI and MMPI
  • Select the proper repairs to restore the relationship with clients.
  • Provide practical guidelines on how to administer, score, and interpret the IOP-29
  • Integrate IOP-29 results with other sources of information

Skill Level:

No prior experience with the IOP instruments is required, and all psychologists and graduate students at all levels of training may attend this introductory workshop .

#24 An Applied Introduction to the Crisi Wartegg System (CWS) for the Wartegg Drawing Completion Test

Alessandro Crisi, PhD, Istituto Italiano Wartegg, Roma, Italy

Jacob A. Palm, PhD, Southern California Center for Collaborative Assessment, Long Beach, CA

Sunday, March 24, 8:00 am – 5:00 pm

(View Workshop Info / Close)

Workshop Information:

This workshop presents a general introduction to Crisi Wartegg System (CWS), a methodology for the clinical use of the Wartegg Drawing Completion Test (WDCT). The WDCT is a semi-structured, graphic, performance-based personality test, created by Ehrig Wartegg (1939). With a foundation in Gestalt and Psychodynamic theory, the WDCT has been used widely throughout Europe, South America, and Japan, but only recently has become integrated into personality assessment in the United States. Initial scoring systems for the WDCT were considered cumbersome and lacked research-driven validation. In response to these factors, Alessandro Crisi, following years of clinical practice and research, developed the Crisi Wartegg System (CWS; 1998, 2007), a normed and standardized administration, scoring, and interpretation system for the WDCT. Over the past three decades, Dr. Crisi has refined and expanded the CWS through research, broadening the scope of the measure, and increasing the accessibility of the system to clinicians. A recent meta-analysis attests to its validity in assessing personality and psychopathology, and reliability and validity data of the CWS is commensurate with both self-report (MMPI-2) and performance-based (Rorschach) personality measures. The CWS provides an efficient, intuitive, and incrementally valid assessment tool for personality assessment. Able to be administered to individuals of all ages, developmental levels, and cognitive abilities, administration takes approximately 10 minutes, with scoring and interpretation requiring 15-30 minutes for a skilled clinician. Despite these minimal time requirements, the test produces normatively-driven interpretive information commensurate with other performance-based measures of personality, as well as incremental validity based in utility, theoretical application, the non-threatening or non-affectively arousing nature of the test stimuli (which lends itself well for use with children, adolescents, and individuals with significant mental health or personality disorders), and applications to the Therapeutic Assessment model. As such, the CWS is one of the performance-based personality measures approved for certification in the Finn (2007) model of Collaborative/Therapeutic Assessment. With a growing community of trained English-speaking clinicians using the measure, the CWS is a useful addition to the personality assessment toolbox! Topics covered in this workshop include introduction to the history of the WDCT, as well as the development of the CWS. Reliability and validity data will be reviewed, as well as recommended clinical use and incremental validity of this measure. Participants will learn proper administration procedures and be provided with introduction to major scoring categories of the CWS. A variety of clinical cases examples and protocols will be provided to demonstrate both the utility of the measure and its discriminative power between clients with various presenting symptoms or challenges. Lastly, an applied case examples and will be presented. Prior to exposure to the CWS, participants will have the opportunity to complete the test independently, with time provided for reflection on their experience and initial reactions.

Goals and Objectives:

  • Describe personal reactions to the WDCT, reflecting on potential client reactions to the test.
  • Describe clinical use of the CWS, including the clinical populations the measure is appropriate for, as well as the incremental validity/benefits of use in clinical practice;
  • List the steps required for proper administration of the WDCT according to the CWS;
  • List and describe the major scoring categories of the CWS;
  • Utilize CWS scores and analyses to differentiate between various clinical symptoms and presentations through review and discussion of case examples

Skill Level:

This is an introductory training on the CWS; no previous use of the test is required although thorough grounding in psychological assessment and theory is recommended. It is further useful if attendees have previous knowledge of the Rorschach and other performance-based personality tests. This workshop is open to mental health professionals and graduate students training to be mental health professionals

#25 Introduction to the Emotional Assessment System (EAS-5)

James P. Choca, PhD, Roosevelt University, Chicago, IL

Sunday, March 24, 1:15 pm – 5:00 pm

(View Workshop Info / Close)

Workshop Information:

There are three broad range questionnaires commercially available to measure emotional disorders. The Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory (MMPI-2) was originally created before the appearance of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders or DSM. The Millon Clinical Multiaxial Inventory (MCMI-IV) was put together to measure Millon’s theory of personality. Although this questionnaire was originally roughly compatible with the DSM-III, our classification system and Millon’s theory became increasingly more divergent as the years went by. Finally, the Personality Assessment Inventory (PAI) was produced to measure the main disorders as the author, Leslie Morey, saw them. The end result is that we do not have any instrument designed to measure our classification system. The Emotional Assessment System was developed using DSM-5 criteria for the main disorders to generate a large pool of items. Item Response Theory (IRT) methodology was then used to pick the best performing items. The EAS-5 is a 360-item, multi-media, computer-based questionnaire. It has 34 scales that include 7 validity, 13 personality, 4 mood, 4 pathological defense, 1 thought disorder, 2 cognitive concerns, 2 stress, and 1 functioning level scales. The instrument has solid psychometric properties, and reasonable correlations with similar instruments. The workshop would introduce the attendees to the EAS-5 that is currently available through the web. Numerous cases will be presented to train the attendees in the use of this questionnaire

Goals and Objectives:

  • Describe briefly the history of emotional disturbance questionnaires and the need for a new one
  • Explain the steps that were taken in order to develop the EAS-5
  • Discuss the data available in support of this questionnaire
  • Utilize an EAS-5 table to tell which problems the client may present

Skill Level:

Intermediate to advanced. It would be excellent to have knowledge of the existing questionnaires but it would not be necessary.

#26 Pre-employment Psychological Assessments of Law Enforcement Candidates

Michelle Casarella, PsyD, New York City Police Department, Brewster NY

Sunday, March 24, 1:15 pm – 5:00 pm

(View Workshop Info / Close)

Workshop Information:

Comprehensive personality assessment is a critical element in pre-employment evaluations within law enforcement/public safety positions. The purpose of this workshop is to provide knowledge in the various components of such evaluations. It will provide an in-depth discussion on legal/ethical issues, procedures/methods, test selection/normative data, various case examples, and consultation/contract opportunities. Furthermore, the workshop will focus on identifying and quantifying various compatible/incompatible personality characteristics and discuss the unique inherent demands of these positions. Additionally, the workshop will review police culture and discuss varying agency standards.

Goals and Objectives:

  • Describe the legal and ethical issues associated with such evaluations
  • Discuss both compatible and incompatible personality traits for law enforcement positions
  • Describe procedures/methods of conducting these evaluations, including rationale for test selection and use of normative data
  • Discuss consultation/contract opportunities

Skill Level:

This is an introductory workshop and will be beneficial to individuals at all levels.

#27 Evaluating the “Sleeper in Psychopathology” with the Thurston Cradock Test of Shame (TCTS)

Julie Cradock O'Leary, PhD, Private Practice, Anchorage, AK

Sunday, March 24, 1:15 pm – 5:00 pm

(View Workshop Info / Close)

Workshop Information:

Shame is a profound sense of inadequacy, a belief that your core self is fundamentally flawed. It underlies many relationship difficulties and is often hidden within the symptoms that lead to therapy and psychological assessment. As a complex construct and dynamic, it is difficult to evaluate shame with a clinical interview or questionnaire. This introductory workshop will teach the Thurston Cradock Test of Shame (TCTS; 2009), a card-based storytelling measure deeply rooted in shame theory and designed to access the multidimensional internal, interpersonal and behavioral aspects of shame. Actual TCTS protocols will be used to provide a brief primer on the topic, and to illustrate subtle expressions of shame, shame dynamics, defenses used to protect oneself from shame, styles of coping with shame and varying abilities to manage it. Attendees will learn how to administer, score and interpret TCTS protocols. Attendees will also learn how the TCTS can be used as a clinical intervention tool.

Goals and Objectives:

  • Assess when a formal evaluation of shame is clinically appropriate
  • Explain the basics of how to administer, score and interpret the TCTS.
  • Describe how best to explain TCTS results to a client.
  • Describe ways that the TCTS can be used as a therapeutic intervention

Skill Level:

As an introductory training on the TCTS, this workshop is suitable for participants at all levels.

Join SPA!

Membership in SPA offers many benefits - Subscription to the Journal of Personality Assessment, Research, Advocacy, Interest Groups, Exchange Newsletter, Annual Convention and more!

Learn more

JPA Journal

Receive 6 Issues of the prestigious JPA Journal each year.

Interest Groups

Would you like to be more involved? Join an SPA Interest Group today - six groups to choose from!

Click Here to Learn More

Ask your favorite personality assessor what the biggest personality assessment convention is, and he/she will tell you it's the Annual Convention of the Society for Personality Assessment. Ask him/her what the best personality assessment convention is, and he/she will tell you it's the Annual Convention of the Society for Personality Assessment, held every March in a different city.

More Information >>

Each April, candidates statements and a Ballot for electing new members to the Board of Trustees is made available to Members, Fellows, Life Members or Life Fellows by the Nominations and Elections Committee. The persons elected to the Board take office in September.

Vote now >>

The Society for Personality Assessment YouTube channel offers full-length lectures from past annual conventions and expert speakers in the field of personality assessment. A great resource to expand your knowledge.

Watch now >>

How Therapeutic Assessment Works: Theory and Techniques - Presented by Stephen E. Finn, PhD. In this webinar, Dr. Stephen Finn, the main developer of Therapeutic Assessment, will explain the techniques of TA and how they relate to TA’s underlying theory of client change. This session is particularly suited to those who are new to TA, including graduate students, or who wish to deepen their understanding of its therapeutic mechanisms.

Webinar >>