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Psychology II. Introduction to Abnormal Psychology. Explain what is ‘abnormal’. Defining Abnormality What does it mean to be sane or insane? Seemingly simple, but complex concept. Defining Abnormality. Statistical Definition Is something atypical considered abnormal?

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psychology ii

Psychology II

Introduction to Abnormal Psychology

explain what is abnormal
Explain what is ‘abnormal’
  • Defining Abnormality
  • What does it mean to be sane or insane?
  • Seemingly simple, but complex concept
defining abnormality
Defining Abnormality
  • Statistical Definition
    • Is something atypical considered abnormal?
  • Societal and cultural norms definition
defining abnormality4
Defining Abnormality
  • Distress Definition - however, there are times when abnormal behavior is not distressing
    • Manic phase of bipolar depression
    • Antisocial personality disorder
defining abnormality5
Defining Abnormality
  • Impairment in functioning
    • Cognitive
    • Emotional
    • Behavioral
  • Sometimes, this is not “abnormal”
    • Depression over a death
defining abnormality6
Defining Abnormality
  • Difficult to define…
  • 3 Criteria…
    • Deviance
    • Distress
    • Disability/Maladaptive Behavior
  • Symptom/Behavior Continuum:

--- normal range +++

Abnormal Abnormal

defining abnormality7
Defining Abnormality
  • DSM-IV-TR Definition
  • Behavioral, emotional or cognitive dysfunctions that are;
    • unexpected in their cultural context
    • associated with personal distress, or
    • substantial impairment in functioning

Defining Abnormality

  • Abnormal behavior must be a consistent pattern of behavior
    • “Thousand light years running through my brain reminding me that no one’s sane, not all the time” - 311
  • What is considered abnormal depends on various factors
    • "And those who were seen dancing were thought to be insane by those who could not hear the music." - Friedrich Nietzsche

Defining Abnormality

  • Characteristics of abnormal behavior.
    • Statistical deviance
    • Cultural deviance
    • Emotional Distress
    • Dysfunction
  • Problems with labeling mentally ill: Rosenhan study – “On being sane in insane places”
  • Just being labeled insane can tremendously affect how people react to you
labeling issues
Labeling Issues
  • Reasons to Label/Diagnose:
    • Needed for communication
    • Guide treatment
    • Insurance reimbursement
  • Arguments against Labeling:
    • Creates a stigma
    • Creates a self-fulfilling prophecy
    • Fail to see the person behind the disorder
ancient perspective
Ancient Perspective
  • Perceived Causes
    • movements of sun or moon
      • lunacy- full moon
    • evil spirits
  • Ancient Treatments
    • exorcism, caged like animals, beaten, burned, mutilated, blood replaced with animal’s blood
bio psycho social bps model





(learned helplessness,

negative perceptions

and memories)


(Societal expectations,

definition of normality

and disorder)

Bio-Psycho-Social <BPS> Model
  • assumes that biological, sociocultural, and psychological factors combine and interact to produce psychological disorders
medical model
Medical Model
  • Diagnosis
    • Label for a set of symptoms
  • Prognosis
    • Prediction or forecast for the course of a D/O
  • Etiology
    • Suspected cause of a disorder
classifying disorders
Classifying Disorders
    • DiagnosticandStatistical ManualofMentalDisorders, 4th edition, Text Revision
    • Published by the American Psychiatric Association
    • 2000…(most recent update 2004)
    • Next major revision (DSM-V) anticipated for 2011.
  • Provides for reliable classification and description of all mental illnesses
  • Allows for better communication

Classifying Disorders

  • DSM IV- Purpose:
    • Provide a well-defined classification system
      • based on objective and measurable criteria,
      • reliable diagnoses of psychological disorders
dsm s multi axial diagnosis
DSM’s Multi-axial Diagnosis
  • Axis IMajor Clinical Disorders
  • Axis IIMental Retardation & Personality Disorders
  • Axis IIIGeneral Medical Conditions
  • Axis IVPsychosocial/Environmental Stressors
  • Axis VGlobal Assessment of Functioning
    • # between 1 and 100
    • Current and Highest in past year
major classes of disorders
Major Classes of Disorders
  • Anxiety Disorders
  • Mood Disorders
  • Somatoform Disorders
  • Dissociative Disorders
  • Schizophrenia
  • Substance Use Disorders
  • Other Axis I Disorders
  • Personality Disorders (Axis II)