Meehl, P. E. (1973). Why I do not attend case conferences. In P. E. Meehl (Ed.), Psychodiagnosis: Selected papers (pp. 225-302). Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press.
Common mistakes in the oral process of diagnosis are reviewed. Examples are given of logical, rhetorical, and statistical mistakes, as well as misuses of psychodiagnostic testing and validations. Repeated themes include: The relationship of minor, irrelevant facts to symptoms or diagnosis; The clinical vs actuarial problem; The proper role of the psychologist and psychological testing; And the importance of records, genes, construct validity, diagnosis, interrater reliability, extant research, adequate criterion, and followup. The research on diagnostic testing should include accuracy rates as well as reports of significance levels. The purpose of case conferences is both diagnostic and educations, and focussing on the best methods of diagnosis improves them. The polemical rhetoric calls the many logical, rhetorical, and scientific diagnostic errors silly, muddleheaded, dumb, stupid, softheaded, intellectually dishonest, bobbysoxer, ludicrous, absurd, and incompetent. (Editor's abstract)