Negative Implications of Using the DSM-IV in Diagnosing Deaf Individuals with Mental Health Needs


The fourth edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders does not adequately address the needs of the Deaf population. The present paper provides relevant information in regards to the history of Deaf culture and how the psychological field perpetuated the marginalized status of the Deaf. Additionally, the author examines each of the book’s five axes and discusses presentation and diagnostic challenges for Deaf individuals, and offers alternative diagnostic methods where applicable. Information is also given in regards to creating an accessible version of the DSM for the Deaf community at large.

Semester/Year of Award

Spring 2013


Theresa Botts

Mentor Department Affiliation


Access Options

Restricted Access Thesis

Document Type

Bachelor Thesis

Degree Name

Honors Scholars

Degree Level




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Drawn example of a sign used to ask if a Deaf person hears voices

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Drawn example of the sign for ADVICE/ADVISE

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Drawn example of the sign for DECISION/DECIDE

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