Reports, Reports

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Originally published in Contemporary Psychology: APA Review of Books, 1962, Vol 7(11), 417-418. Reviews the book, Report Writing in Psychology and Psychiatry by Jack T. Huber (see record 1962-01145-000). This is one of those books easily overlooked by training supervisors because of its guilelessness and readability. If it were placed in students' hands early enough, this same book could avoid endless pages of pompous confusion. The author writes to an audience of clinical students in a conversational tone and asks them to construct a logical report which communicates to its readers. A report, he says, “contains what one human being has to say about another human being,” and the function of a report “is to answer questions.” The virtue of this slim volume should be apparent from these quotations, namely, its simplicity in stating what should be obvious about reports but is rarely made so. The title of the book appears to be a typical publisher's catch-all. It could be more accurately titled, “How To Write A Clinical Psychological Report”. Perhaps the fairest way to judge a book of this kind is to ask, “How does it stand up as a report itself?” It stands up well. It is clear, concise, practical, and logical. It, in short, communicates to the reader. It will lack certain things for every reader, as do all reports; some will argue with the author's theoretical stands, but they are, at least, made quite explicit. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2006 APA, all rights reserved)

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