Course Description

Placing contemporary clinical and research practices in the mental health professions in historical, political and philosophical perspective, this workshop is designed to provide a critical examination of the effects on clients and providers of using the DSM-5 and ICD-10 diagnostic systems, and relying on treatments that are “empirically validated” in clinical practice.  After offering this critical examination, an alternative model of clinical knowledge and practice will be offered that develops out of socially responsible practice communities and integrates aspects of humanistic, psychodynamic, and social systems approaches into a psycho-social-bio model of practice.

Conference Schedule

8:30       Registration

9:00      Program Begins

10:00    Break

12:00     Lunch (ON YOUR OWN)

1:00       Program Resumes

2:30       Break     

4:30       Program ends

Continuing Education Credits:  The Vermont Psychological Association is approved by the American Psychological Association and the Vermont Board of Psychological Examiners to sponsor continuing education for psychologists.  VPA maintains responsibility for this program and its content.  CE certificates for six (6) continuing education credits will be awarded to participants who attend the entire workshop and complete the evaluation form.  Partial credits will not be awarded.  Late arrival or early departure will preclude receipt of a certificate.

Registration/Refund Policy:  Registration at the door is welcome, but is on a space-available basis only; all registrations at the door are $195.  No refunds will be offered for this program.

See all of our CE policies on ourCE Eventspage.

CE Workshop-June 15, 2018

Who Should Attend:  Psychologists, mental health counselors, social workers, & other mental health professionals.

Ronald Miller, Ph.D., is Professor of Psychology and director of the master’s program in Clinical Psychology at Saint Michael's College for over 30 years.  He is the author of three books, all published by APA Books:  The Restoration of Dialogue: Readings in the Philosophy of Clinical Psychology (1992);  Facing Human Suffering: Psychology and Psychotherapy as Moral Engagement (2004); and Not So Abnormal Psychology: A Pragmatic View of Mental Illness.  Dr. Miller was in both public and private practice full-time for seven years prior to his appointment to the psychology department at Saint Michael’s College, and he has maintained a part-time clinical practice with his partner, Naomi P. Shapiro, LICSW, for 40 years.


By attending this conference participants will be able to:

  1. Distinguish the scientific method from institutional/magisterial scientific practices.
  2. Identify five central illusory beliefs about the mental health professions and their practices that are widely held within these professions and more broadly within the educated members of the public.
  3. Analyze the extent to which the most common DSM-5 and ICD-10 diagnoses also embody these illusory beliefs. 
  4. Distinguish evidence- based from empirically validated treatment, and identify the illusions about mental health incorporated into these research models, and consider the alternative concept of clinical knowledge.
  5. Consider these five alternate principles for socially responsible clinical practice: (1) The search for self-understanding; (2) The ubiquity of human suffering, (3) The centrality of intention, meaning, and purpose in behavior; (4) The clinician as a safe guide into these difficult realms, (5) The wisdom of William James’ pragmatism as a means of evaluating our work.

The Threat of Magisterial Science to the Socially Responsible Practice of Psychology--and How to Counter It

Ronald Miller, Ph.D.

Professor of Psychology, Saint Michael's College

St. Michael's College