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Lecture 5

BISC 102 Lecture Notes - Lecture 5: Thomas Szasz, Shayne Corson, Deep Brain Stimulation

64 pages47 viewsFall 2012

Department
Biological Sciences
Course Code
BISC 102
Professor
Agnieszka Kopinska
Lecture
5

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Chapter 1: Abnormal Behaviour in Historical Context
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What is a Psychological Disorder?
psychological disorder: a psychological dysfunction within an individual that is associated
with distress/impairment + a response that is not typical or culturally expected.
Criteria:
1. Psychological dysfunction
2. Distress/impairment
3. Atypical response/not culturally expected
- No one description has yet been identified that defines the sense of abnormality.
Phobia: a psychological disorder characterized by marked + persistent fear of an object /
situation
Psychological dysfunction: breakdown in cognitive, emotional, or behavioural functioning
- exist on a continuum/dimension rather than categories
- Most psychological disorders are EXTREME EXPRESSIONS of normal emotions,
behaviors, and cognitive processes.
Personal distress: individual is extremely upset
Atypical/not culturally expected: occurs infrequently/ // violating social norms
example: Saplonsky's study on Masai tribe in East Africa
- Deviating from the average = doesn’t work well as a definition of abnormal behavior
- Women acting aggressively, hearing voices "not at the right time"
- Wakefield = HARMFUL DYSFUNCTION = a psychological disorders caused by a failure of
one of more mechanisms to perform their evolved function and the dysfunction produces
harm or distress
official definition: behavioural, psychological, or biological dysfunctions that are unexpected
in their cultural context and associated with present distress and impairment in functioning, or
increased risk of suffering, death, pain, or impairment.
- Abnormal behavior (psychological dysfunction): it is a psychological dysfunction within a
individual associated with distress or impairment in functioning and a response that is not
typical or culturally expected
- Some scholars have argued that the health professions will never be able to satisfactorily
define disease or disorder
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Prototype: typical profile
- Patient may have only some features/symptoms of the disorder (a min. number) and still
meet criteria for the disorder because the symptoms are close to the prototype
- the best thing to do: consider how the apparent disease or disorder matches a "typical"
profile of a disorder (depression/skitzo) when st or all symptoms that experts age are part of
the disorder are present
Thomas Szasz + George Albee (1960s)
- Highly critical of medical diagnoses being used in the case of psychological disorders
- "mental illness = myth" the practice of labelling mental illnesses should be abolished
- argued that a fundamental difference exists between the use of diagnoses for physical
diseases (objective criteria: blood tests) and their use in mental illnesses (subjective
judgements)
The Science of Psychopathology
psychopathology: the scientific study of psychological disorders.
- includes specially trained professionals: clinical + counselling psychologists, psychiatrists,
psychiatric social workers, psychiatric nurses, marriage + fam. therapists, mental health
counsellors
Clinical Psychologists: Ph.D after a course of graduate level study (5 yrs) // Psy.D (more
emphasis on clinical practice - less on research training) (not in Canada - in development in
Quebec)
- conduct research into causes + treatment of psychological disorders
- diagnose, assess, treat the disorders
Canada:
- regulation of the psychology profession is under the jurisdiction of the provinces/territories
- depending on jurisdiction: psychologist can have doctoral or masters
Ontario:
only those who are licensed or registered with their provincial board or college are permitted
to call themselves "psychologists" (psychotherapist + therapist are not regulated)
Psychologists with experimental or social training:
concentrated on investigating the basic determinants of behaviour but do not assess or treat
psychological disorders
counselling psychologists (Ph.D, Psy.D, Ed.D): tend to study+ treat adjustment + vocational
issues encountered by healthy individuals
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Psychiatrists (M.D. + specialize in psychiatry during 3-4 year residency training program)
- investigate nature + causes of psychological disorder, often from biological point of view,
make diagnoses, offer treatments
- many emphasize drugs/other biological treatments + use psychosocial treatments
Psychiatric Social Workers (Masters in Social Work)
- develop expertise in collecting information relevant to the social and fam situation of the
individual with a psychological disorder
- treat disorders: concentrating on fam. problems associated with them
Psychiatric Nurses (Masters/Ph.D)
- specialize in care + treatment of patients with psychological disorders
- usually in hospitals as part of treatment team
Marriage + Family Therapists / Mental Health Counsellors
- Masters (1-2 year)
- provide clinical services in hospitals/clinic (under supervision of a doctoral-level clinician)
1. The Scientist-Practitioner
most important recent development in psych: adoption of scientific methods to learn more
about the nature of psychological disorders, their causes, and their treatment
scientist-practitioners: mental health professionals that take a scientific approach to their
clinical work
1. may keep up with the latest scientific developments in their field + use most current
diagnostic + treatment procedures
2. evaluate their own assessments/treatment procedures to see whether they work
(accountable to patients, government agencies, insurance companies that pay for treatments)
3. conduct research (in clinics/hospitals) that produces new info about disorders/treatment
2. Clinical Description
presenting problem: (presents) indication of why the person came to the clinic
clinical description: represents the unique combination of behaviours, thoughts, feelings that
make up a specific disorder
- what makes the disorder different from normal behaviour or from other disorders?
clinical: 1. the types of problems or disorders you would find in a clinic/hospital 2. the activities
connected with assessment + treatment
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