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Counseling & Health Psychology

Guide Overview

Welcome to the Psychology and Counseling Research Guide

This guide is an introduction to finding information pertaining to psychology and counseling research.  

In this guide, you will find information on the kinds of resources that available to you, and how to use them to find information on psychology and counseling related topics. If you have any questions about your topic or a particular resource, please ask one of your friendly librarians!

Be sure to check out our "How To" Guides to help you get started with search skills, writing and citation tips.


Research - Known Issues and On-going Debates

This introduction to some of the issues and on-going debates is intended to prompt further inquiry and critical evaluation of what you find – and don’t find – in the research. It is not a comprehensive overview of the field or the state of the research in the field. Librarians are available to help you explore the research, and help you answer questions about the context of that research. 

  • The American Psychological Association recognizes there is structural racism within the field including research and is committed to dismantling it. On a positive note, data from 2019 shows an increase in the number of BIPOC entering the field.1
  • Psychology is a relatively young field with roots in the 1900s. To date, most research is conducted in the United States which leaves people in other countries underrepresented.2  
  • The field is working to improve transparency and reproducibility in research by establishing new practices to promote it.3 
  • Historically, non-heteronormative expressions of gender and sexuality have been pathologized; but the APA is now active in opposing harmful practices such as conversion therapy;4 
  1. Adams Z. APA calls for true systemic change in U.S. culture. Monitor on Psychology. 2020; 51(6):20. Accessed April 8, 2021.  
  2. Arnett JJ. The neglected 95%: why American psychology needs to become less American. Am Psychol. 2008;63(7):602-614. doi:10.1037/0003-066X.63.7.602
  3. Hardwicke TE, Thibault RT, Kosie JE, Wallach JD, Kidwell MC, Ioannidis JPA. Estimating the Prevalence of Transparency and Reproducibility-Related Research Practices in Psychology (2014-2017) [published online ahead of print, 2021 Mar 8]. Perspect Psychol Sci. 2021;1745691620979806. doi:10.1177/1745691620979806
  4. American Psychological Association. APA adopts resolution opposing biased or coercive efforts to change individuals’ gender identity. Published March 2, 2021. Accessed April 8, 2021.

Obtain Background Information

To obtain background information on the condition or treatment you are researching, a good place to start is the NIMH Mental Health Information Guide, which provides comprehensive overviews of mental illnesses, including their symptoms, treatments, diagnoses and risk factors.  Texts in the library may also be useful for finding this type of information.  This will give you a basic understanding of the topic, and assist you in formulating search terms that provide you with the most relevant results.

Many useful psychology monographs can be found by searching Dynamed Plus. It covers similar ground in the NIMH guide, but is far more detailed, and provides background information on almost every aspect of the condition.

Looking for articles?

Consult the DSM-5®

Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders - DSM-5 

Call Number: RC455.2 .C4 D43 2013



The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5®), is a comprehensive guide used by clinicians and researchers to diagnose and classify mental disorders.  The criteria are concise and explicit, intended to facilitate an objective assessment of symptom presentations. You can access this guide at BUC and BUK at the library and in the clinic. It is a valuable tool both for providing background information on psychiatric conditions and helping you make the correct diagnosis.

This most recent version has a number of useful features, such as:

  • Organization of chapters by typical age of the disorder's onset (i.e. developmental disorders at the beginning and neurocognitive disorders and the end).
  • Incorporation of the latest research in Neuroimaging and Genetics into the description of each disorder.
  • The provision of ICD-10 codes for all disorders.


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