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Paradigm Shift - RDoc


Underpinning our CF framework is the RDoC -  the new frontiers in translational neuroscience, developed by the Nat Institute of Mental Health to resolve the fundamental flaws of the outdated diagnostic systems for mental illness such as DSM and ICD.


The RDoC identifies 5 broad domains of psy functioning, that underpin all mental health diagnoses. They include + and - valence systems (responsible for things like mo, fear &anx), cognitive systems (incl. attn, WM, cog control), arousal & regulation system and social processes (such as perception of self and others).


These broad domains combine more than 40 functional constructs, and they replace symptom clusters (around the dial) with root causes of the underlying dysfunction (inside the dial).


This is turning the clinical world upside down: the focus has shifted from symptoms to root causes of clinical conditions, with things like gambling and substance addiction studied together as a dysfunction of reward responsivity under the +valence domain.


Importantly, it helps reframe “mental health” into “metal fitness” and shift from the stigmatised “help/treatment” to the more proactivel “how can I train for it?”


The RDoC deliberately populated its measurement space with measures at multiple levels – from behaviour, self-reports and physiology to neural circuits & bio-chemistry. 


The RDoC matrix highlights the resulting blank spots which helps to stimulate and focus the measurement industry, including psychometrics.


What’s critical to us is that RDoC measures are intended to span a full range from dysfunction to the norm, and we are pushing to extend this logic to include peak performance.


When it comes to cognitive measurement, a few warnings are in order.  

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