Even for non-researchers, it is important to be informed about the various initiatives that change the way we do science and, ultimately, the way scientists choose to spend government dollars. In the wake of the 10-year anniversary of RDoC’s inception , I would like to unpack this commonly misunderstood acronym that is popping up in clinical science and provide some insight on how it can help researchers and the general public.
The Current Problem
As a psychologist in training, I believe the field’s ultimate goal is to develop an understanding of psychological processes for the purpose of alleviating the burden of mental illness and associated problems (i.e., decreased employment, socioeconomic status disparities, homelessness and incarceration, worsening of comorbid medical conditions, etc.). Psychologists have traditionally used a divide and conquer approach — everyone working on their favored topic (i.e., a particular disorder or process) and using their favored methods, while remaining isolated from other researchers within and outside of psychology. In clinical psychology, some key problems with this approach stunt progress: (more…)