Rosenhan (1973)

Rosenhan (1973)

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  • EMPTY... HOLLOW... THUD...
  • The sample consisted of 8 pseudopatients, including Rosenhan himself. They booked appointments at 12 different psychiatric hospitals on the west and east coasts of America (in 5 different states).
  • They told the hospitals they had been hearing voices saying, “empty”, “hollow” and “thud”.
  • They were admitted with having schizophrenia (on one occasion, manic depressive psychosis).
  • OOPS!
  • Once in the hospital, they stopped any symptoms of abnormality.
  • The pseudopatients were labelled with ‘schizophrenia in remission’ once released (between 7 and 52 days upon admission). Despite not showing nay signs of this once admitted, the label had ‘stuck’.
  • The hospitals had made a type 1 error (false positive). They had falsely labelled/diagnosed the pseudopatients as being insane when they were not.
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