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Lecture

PSYC 3140 Lecture Notes - Syphilis, Humorism, Paul E. Meehl


Department
Psychology
Course Code
PSYC 3140
Professor
Joel Goldberg

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ABNOMAL PSYCHOLOGY
LECTURE 2: JANUARY 15TH, 2013
TOPIC: CHAPTER 4
Review-Who Cares?
Thought broadcasting
Ideas of reference
Auditory hallucinations
Paranoid delusions
Transinstitutionalization (Hospital → Jail)
Efforts to protect the rights of the mentally ill can unfortunately....
REFER TO LAST CLASS NOTE
Case Vignette (Classification Diagnosis → topic) Paul Meehl's patient
Teenage girl admitted to hospital for a 30-day forensic (psycho-legal) psychiatric
assessment.
Behaviour
in a fit of anger she hit her foster mother with a lamp which caused the skull to fracture
and a concussion.
Runs away from home all the time
She was a smoker
Everyday at 3pm the nurse would give them their pack of smokes
At 2:30 she asked for a smoke and the nurse said she had to follow the rules
She had an episode (tantrum) and demanded her smoke
Is this behaviour normal or abnormal?
29% of people in class feel that is normal
71% feel it is abnormal
Some felt it was normal because if you take away smokes from someone with an
addiction they will react.
Meehl said at the case conference
“Wouldn't anybody act that way under those circumstances?”
People disagreed and said people would not just throw themselves on the floor because
they do not want to wait 30 minutes for a smoke.
Acting Out
Behaviour is reflecting some underlying conflict
It reflects her limited tolerance for frustration
The court wanted to assess her frustration tolerance. So therefore she is making it
clear that she cannot follow rules and failed the test.
She showed child-like behaviour.
What does this all mean?
Maybe the nurse is representing some kind of authority figure
Maybe she displays anger when an authority figure establishes rules.
(Example: her foster mother, the nurse)
Maybe her childhood experience held inconsistency in terms of affection
shown. Her needs were not met so she could never be sure she could get
what she wanted.
People in her life may have promised her things but never followed through.

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Her behaviour is not normal. Would you have a tantrum if the Prof told you
to wait for your clicker?
Dangers of Labelling
Diagnosis is used much like a label
Example: Go take care of that C section down the hall. That is an an example of calling a
patient by their procedure for instance. You would not say go deal with the anemic in the
other room.
Rosenhan (1973) On Being Sane in Insane Places
He had a bunch of graduate students pretend one symptom (hearing a thud)
Presented themselves before a doctor
Doctor in all cases admitted them to hospital on the basis of the single symptom
It is an auditory hallucination in which they were faking
If they were asked they denied having the symptom and there was no more faking
After being admitted, they were being prescribed 100's of pills and it was not discovered
for many days that they were pseudo patients (fake).
The fellow patients were able to identify them as normal
Once you get a diagnosis, that label sticks
It was about the fact that once they got the label there was no one checking up on them
afterward.
Nurses did not attend to them once labelled
Issues
Careless diagnostic practice-lack of follow up to re confirm condition
Criticism of staff conflict- need to humanize treatment
ICD
International Classification of Diseases System from the World Health Organization
Paul Meehl
1920-2002 (died of leukemia)
Obtained his PhD-University of Minnesota 1946 and then was a faculty member there
Strong interest in psychometrics (test development)
1962-president of the APA
Great titles for articles -Why never attend case conferences and Wanted: A Good Cookbook
He wrote a classic text: Clinical versus Statistical Prediction
1996 APA lifetime contribution award
Meehl's predictions-factors that will remain important for abnormal psychology
Psychometrics
Applied learning theory
Behaviour genetics
Descriptive clinical psychiatry
Psychodynamic theory
LOOK THESE UP FOR DETAILS OR REVIEW RECORDING
Goals of Classification
Basis for communication
Information retrieval
Descriptive system
Make predictions
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