Keeping Up With Diagnostic Language And Tension Between General Public and Professional Language

by Hawke Robinson published 2022/11/12 09:45:07 GMT-7, last modified 2022-11-12T09:45:08-07:00
As per a discussion on Facebook, regarding the challenges of keeping hup with what is "acceptable" terminology for different populations groups, and the tension between what is acceptable in professional circles, versus layperson and fandom circles.

I sympathize with your challenge. When I began working with diverse populations around '85 with "gifted & talented" children as an instructor, and later as a nurses aide, LPN trainee, habilitation therapist, etc. in the late 80s and early 90s, MR was still the dominant in the DSM and professions. Later replaced with DD/DI, and the terms keep changing. The pace of change is increasing due to Internet and social networks, so it can be quite challenging, and even frustrating, trying to keep up with what terms are currently "acceptable" culturally by the general public and fandom, compared to in professional circles. And of course professional circles have their ongoing changes in light of the other changes. About 80% of my presentations are in professional circles (hospitals, rehabs, professional conferences, etc.), and only about 20% in fandom/layperson circles, and the language can some times be dramatically different alas. Using the language appropriate to the professionals can cause considerable upset in the fandom groups, and using too much of the fandom language in the professional circles may often lead to them questioning your professionalism, if you don't add constant air quotes and references as to why you use the fandom term instead of the professional terms, which can really slow down trying to make the overall intended point. But, that's how things are, and all we can do it try to do our best to keep up. :)

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