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Introduction

Psychological assessment serves several functions: classification, explanation, prediction, and decision aid. Classification means the assignment of the single case to be assessed to an element or category of a classification system, as shown by, for example, the DSM or the ICD. Prediction aims at an answer to the question of what will happen in the future, if the single case concerned is treated in specific ways. And decision aid means supporting the selection of an optimal treatment for the single case, i.e. a treatment with the highest benefit or utility in the respective case. Finally, explanation as the topic of this entry is, generally spoken, a statement or account which makes what is to be explained clearer than it was before and promotes its ...

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