Comprehensive Assessment of At-Risk Mental States (CAARMS) practitioner training

Course information
Course information
About the course

CAARMS has become the standard tool for assessing people at risk of developing psychotic illness around the world. This programme includes two days of live teaching in addition to an interactive eLearning course and will enable practitioners to implement effective screening of at-risk individuals in their service. It has been developed as a collaboration between experts from Maudsley Learning, the Outreach and Support in South London (OASIS) team, and King’s College London and is delivered by experienced early intervention practitioners. At the end of this course, you will be accredited to administer the CAARMS tool. A 1-day CAARMS supervisor course is also available on request.

Course overview
  • Prevention of psychosis: rationale and impact
  • Detecting emerging psychosis; key psychopathology, stages of psychosis
  • Overview of psychometric tools that can be used to assess clinical high risk (CAARMS, Structured Interview for Prodromal Syndromes (SIPS) /Scale of Prodromal Symptoms (SOPS), DSM-5 with focus on CAARMS
  • Comprehensive Assessment of At Risk Mental State; foundations and core concepts
  • Core subgroups
  • Environmental and practical setting for assessing clients at risk
  • Thresholds for psychosis; idea of false positive/ false negatives, outcomes in those who do not make transition
  • For ARMS; attenuated psychotic symptoms, brief limited intermittent psychotic symptoms (BLIP), genetic risk and deterioration syndrome
  • Core psychometric CAARMS rating principles; intensity, frequency, onset/ offset, relationship to substance use, anchors, ‘rate don’t formulate’, functioning
  • Core psychometric CAARMS rating scales; P1. unusual thought content, P2. non-bizarre idea, P3. perceptual abnormalities, P4. disorganised speech
  • Complementary psychometric CAARMS rating scales for affective and behavioural symptoms e.g. Sofa’s scale
  • Operational and pragmatic considerations for CAARMS assessment in the NHS; where fits in wider assessment and risk management, pre-screening, transdiagnostic assessment and comorbidities
  • Brief overview of clinical care for ARMS; principles of screening, assessment, follow-up, crisis management and preventive interventions 4
  • Wider context and looking forward; unreliability of CAARMS in the over 35year olds; assessing clinical risk states for disorders beyond psychosis
Learning outcomes

At the end of this course learners will be able to:

  1. Understand the background and rationale for early detection of psychosis
  2. Utilise a range of validated tools to assess people at risk of psychosis
  3. Implement screening effectively in your service
Course timings

Start time 9.00 The first 30 minutes, is to allow for logging in/ arrivals, orientation, and introductions. Teaching will begin at 9.30am

Finish time 16.30

The times listed above are our standard course delivery times but are negotiable. When delivering the course digitally, we will offer you the opportunity to log in from 8.30 or 8.45 am for a last-minute check-in and run-through before the course goes live at 9:00am.

Please be aware that once the course is Live on our website, we will be unable to change the times of the course.

Course schedule

Target audience
MH nurses (incl trainees) , Healthcare assistants, Social workers, Psychiatrists (inch trainees), General hospital doctors , Allied health , Psychologists (incl trainees)
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Discounted rates are available for group bookings. Please contact us for more information. Maudsley Learning has a full range of courses to meet the needs of your organisation. Most can be delivered to you flexibly and tailored to your requirements.

Bespoke courses

We are able to offer custom-made programs, whether digital or face to face, to meet the education and training needs of your organisation in the UK or internationally.


We value research and knowledge-sharing and will continue to contribute to the literature base on mental health education, addressing important research questions in this exciting field.