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Lecture 1

PSYCH 2AP3 Lecture Notes - Lecture 1: Intellectual Disability, Psychopathology, Echolalia

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Geoffrey Hall

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What is abnormal behaviour?
Various labels have been applied to behaviour problems:
Abnormal behaviour, behavioural disturbances, emotional disorders, psychological deficit, mental
illness, psychopathology, maladaptive behaviour, developmental disorder
Systems have been devised to categorized behaviour problems and to provide guidelines for
identification and treatment
Diagnostic systems:
oICD-10 classification of Mental and Behavioural Disorders
DSM V: uses a multi-axial approach – it assesses five dimensions:
Axis I: Clinical Syndromes
More generally = the diagnosis (ex. depression, schizophrenia, social phobia)
Axis II: Developmental Disorders and Personality Disorders
Developmental disorders include autism and intellectual disability
Personality disorders are clinical syndromes with long lasting symptoms and include paranoid,
antisocial, and borderline personality disorders
Axis III: Physical Conditions
Such as brain injury or disease that can result in symptoms of mental illness
Axis IV: Severity of Psychosocial Stressors
E.g. death of a loved one, new job, unemployment, marriage
Axis V: Highest level of functioning
Clinical rates the person’s level of functioning
Defining and Identifying
What is abnormal behaviour?
Such systems examine a range of behaviours at one extreme
oEx. failure to acquire language by age 6, teenager having hallucinations
More subtle:
A child who is running around, flitting from one activity to another, yelling excited, cannot settle
ADHD? Child playing at recess
A child who is exceptionally sullen, socially withdrawn and quick to tears – depressed? Child who
lost family pet
Child with language use, generates nonsense words, and seems echolalic ASD? Child of 14 or
15 months
How do we determine that behaviour is abnormal?
Extend beyond what we think of normal? NO
Interested in behaviour that are:
o(1) Not just atypical but harmful
APA describes DISORDER as clinically significant if there is a pattern of:
oIncreased harm
o(2) Developmentally inappropriate
o(3) Need to consider a number of other variables
Culture (ethnicity or race)
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