Division of Clinical Psychology ● Formulation is a core skill for clinical psychologists at all levels and in all specialties. These guidelines outline best practice for the profession of clinical psychology. ● This document defines psychological formulation as a hypothesis about a person’s difficulties, which links theory with practice and guides the intervention. Psychological formulation can serve a large number of purposes for individuals, teams and organisations. ● Formulation can be understood as both an event and a process, and it summarises and integrates abroad range of biopsychosocial causal factors. It is based on personal meaning and constructed collaboratively with service users and teams. ● The document recognises the value of all types of formulation, while recommending that clinical psychologists always formulate from a broad-based, integrated and multi-model perspective which locates personal meaning within its wider systemic, organisational and societal contexts. ●
Current research findings are reviewed, along with ethical considerations relating to the use of formulation. Recommendations are made for future developments in theory, practice and research. ● Principles for best practice formulation and formulating are summarised in a checklist.