Ethical Conflicts in Psychology, Fourth Edition

Pages: 608
Item #: 4312012
ISBN: 978-1-4338-0353-6
List Price: $49.95
Member/Affiliate Price: $39.95
Copyright: 2008
Format: Softcover
Other Format: Hardcover
Availability: In Stock
FREE Shipping

For individuals in the U.S. & U.S. territories


The fourth edition of the classic volume Ethical Conflicts in Psychology, a perennial best seller, describes the fundamental ethical dilemmas embedded in the psychologist's array of roles—assessor, treater, and researcher. The author updates readers on such complex issues as the duty-to-protect, multiple relationships, privacy, privileged communication, and the treatment of minors and clients with HIV/AIDS, particularly with regard to confidentiality.

More than 20 articles published since 2003, and additional commentaries, have been added on topics such as performing assessments, providing therapy, and conducting research on the Internet; navigating the federal regulations governing the transmission of health care records electronically under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA); responding to requests for "raw data" from parents, insurers, and attorneys; testifying as an expert witness; becoming involved in military interrogations; and practicing ethically under the boundaries of managed care.

Material has been excerpted from a wide variety of publications to illuminate the most salient points related to ethics. Excerpts are linked to original commentary that highlights opposing viewpoints, poses lively discussion questions, offers numerous vignettes, and suggests additional readings.

First published in 1995, Ethical Conflicts in Psychology quickly became a definitive and valued comprehensive resource. Widely adopted as a textbook in graduate psychology courses in ethics and continuing education development, this innovative volume presents readers with over 100 different perspectives on crucial ethical issues and offers possible solutions from an expert ethics educator, psychologist, and former APA general counsel.

Table of Contents

Preface to the Fourth Edition

Preface to the Third Edition

Preface to the Second Edition

Preface to the First Edition


  1. Ethics Codes and How They Are Enforced
  2. How Ethics Are Applied
  3. Learning Ethics
  4. Confidentiality, Privilege, and Privacy
  5. Multiple Relationships
  6. Psychological Assessment
  7. Therapy and Other Forms of Intervention
  8. Academia: Research, Teaching, and Supervision
  9. Forensic Settings
  10. The Business of Psychology


About the Author

Author Bio

Donald N. Bersoff recently joined the faculties of Drexel University's College of Law and Department of Psychology, where he serves as director of the JD–PhD Program in Law and Psychology. He also consults with attorneys and mental health professionals on ethical issues. He received his PhD from New York University in 1965 and his JD in 1976 from Yale Law School, where he was an editor of the Yale Law Journal.

Between his PhD and his JD degrees, Dr. Bersoff served as a clinical psychologist in the U.S. Air Force (1965–1968), spending two of those years in Southeast Asia. He then taught at three universities, training future psychologists while maintaining a part-time private practice. In 1976 he joined the faculties of the University of Maryland School of Law and the Johns Hopkins University Department of Psychology, where he developed the nation's second Law and Psychology Program.

In 1979, Dr. Bersoff became the first general counsel of APA. Two years later he helped found the law firm of Ennis, Friedman, Bersoff and Ewing. In his capacity as APA legal counsel (1979–1989), he prepared more than 25 briefs in the U.S. Supreme Court and an equal number in lower federal and state courts, informing these courts of social science evidence relevant to the issues before them. During this time he also served as legal consultant to the APA Ethics Committee, drafted a precursor of its current Rules and Procedures, and participated in all of the 30 meetings the committee held for the decade.

Dr. Bersoff is the author of over 100 chapters, articles, and papers on ethics and the interaction of law, psychology, and public policy. An APA fellow and an ABPP diplomate in school psychology, he has been elected to three terms as a member of the APA Council of Representatives, APA's legislative body. During the first two of these terms (1977 and 1992), he participated in passing a revised ethics code. From 1994 to 1997 he served on the APA Board of Directors, which functions in one capacity to independently review the work of the Ethics Committee in cases resulting in recommendations to assess the most serious of sanctions. In 1999, he served as chair of APA's Policy and Planning Board.

Dr. Bersoff has served as president of the American Psychology–Law Society, on the American Bar Association's Commission on the Mentally Disabled, and as chair of the Section on Mental Disability Law of the Association of American Law Schools. He is a member of the Pennsylvania, District of Columbia, and Maryland Bars as well as of the Bar of the U.S. Supreme Court. He was given the Arthur Furst Ethics Lectureship Award for "Outstanding Contributions to the Field of Ethics" in 1997, the Pennsylvania Psychological Association's Ethics Educator of the Year Award in 2000, and on his retirement, the American Psychology–Law Society's Lifetime Achievement Award in 2002.

In 2007, Dr. Bersoff served as an invited participant in a week-long symposium on Ethical Sentiments: The Waning Trust in Government, at Pembroke College, Oxford University, England.