July 13, 2017


Being aware of one’s own feelings is important for clinicians, especially when patients have difficult emotional issues. Without this awareness, one often acts reflexively in a negative way. Personal awareness is key to the provider-patient relationship and is particularly important for both interviewing and mental health care training.

I. Research Articles

  • Smith RC: Teaching Interviewing Skills to Medical Students: the Issue of Countertransference. J Med Educ 1984; 59;582-588 (PDF)
  • Smith RC: Unrecognized Responses and Feelings of Residents and Fellows During the Interviews of Patients. J Med Educ 1986; 61:982-984 (PDF)
  • Smith RC, Zimmy G: Physicians’ Emotional Reactions to Patients. Psychosomatics 1988; 29;392-397.
  • Smith RC, Marshall AA, Lyles JS, Frankel RM: Teaching Self-awareness Enhances Learning about Interviewing. Acad Med 1999; 74:1242-1248. (PDF)

II. Teaching Articles

  • Marshall A, Smith RC: Physicians’ Emotional Reactions to Patients: Recognizing and Managing Countertransference. Am J Gastroenterology, 1995;90:4-8
  • Smith RC, Dwamena FC, Fortin VI, AF: Teaching Personal Awareness. J. Gen. Intern. Med; 2005;20:201-207. (PDF)