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PsychEd: educational psychiatry podcast

43 EpisodesProduced by PsychEdWebsite

An educational psychiatry podcast affiliated with the University of Toronto. Made for medical learners, by medical learners.


PsychEd Episode 17: The Psychiatric Interview with Dr. Juveria Zaheer

Welcome to PsychEd, the psychiatry podcast for medical learners, by medical learners. In this episode of our miniseries on psychiatric skills, we review the core content areas of a psychiatric assessment and look at techniques to improve interviewing efficiency, accuracy and alliance building. Our expert for this episode is Dr. Juveria Zaheer, a clinician-scientist at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health, and an assistant professor at the University of Toronto, in Toronto, ON. 


Learning Objectives:

By the end of the episode you, the learner, should...

  1. Have a clear understanding of the goals of a complete psychiatric interview and the general structure and content that should be covered
  2. Feel comfortable to begin to use techniques that will help you conduct a professional, compassionate, empathic, efficient, and accurate interview
  3. Be familiar with techniques you can use to facilitate information gathering in more challenging interviews 

Episode Timepoints

  • 3:15 - Purpose of the psychiatric interview 
  • 6:30 - First content areas of the interview; introduction, ID, RFR, CC, HPI, ROS, Past Psych Hx
  • 19:00 - Techniques and Strategies for Organized and Efficient Psychiatric ROS
  • 26:00 - Details of Past Psychiatric History 
  • 29:30 - Past Medical History
  • 31:00 - Substance Use History
  • 33:30 - Medications
  • 34:20 - Family Psych History
  • 36:25 - Personal and Developmental History (Content & Process discussion)
  • 44:00 - Commonly missed areas including Legal/Forensic history
  • 45:00 - Shift from content to process discussion “how to best manage a psychiatric interview”
  • 49:00 - Self-care and monitoring 
  • 52:00 - Building rapport, therapeutic alliance, empathy 
  • 53:30 - Alex and Lucy reflect on their growth as interviewers over 4 years in residency 
  • 73:00 - Managing challenging interviews

References and Resources
1) Shea, S. C. (1998). Psychiatric Interviewing E-Book: The Art of Understanding: A Practical Guide for Psychiatrists, Psychologists, Counselors, Social Workers, Nurses, and Other Mental Health Professionals

2) Carlat, D. J. (2016). The psychiatric interview: A practical guide. Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.


CPA Note: The views expressed in this podcast do not necessarily reflect those of the Canadian Psychiatric Association.


For more PsychEd, follow us on Twitter (@psychedpodcast) and Facebook. You can provide feedback by email at; For more information visit our website:

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