Abnormal Psychology Test One
◦ Symptoms that cause mental, emotional, or physical pain.
◦ Environment and circumstances in which a behaviour occurs.
➔ Gender Roles
◦ According to Freud, what society considers to be the appropriate behaviours for males and for
➔ Cultural Relativism
◦ View that norms among cultures set the standard for what counts as normal behaviour, which
implies that abnormal behaviour can be defined only relative to these norms; no universal definition
of abnormality is therefore possible; only definitions of abnormality relative to a specific culture are
◦ Criterion for abnormality that suggest that abnormal behaviours are rare or unexpected.
◦ Criterion for abnormality that suggest that only behaviours that cause a person great distress should
be labelled as abnormal.
➔ Mental Illness
◦ Legal description of an individual who purportedly has a mental illness, which is analogous (in this
view) to having a medical disease.
◦ In reference to behaviours, causing people who have the behaviours physical or emotional harm,
preventing them from functioning in daily life, or indicating that they have lost touch with reality or
cannot control their thoughts and behaviours (also called dysfunctional).
➔ Biological Theories
◦ Theories of abnormality that focus on biological causes of abnormal behaviours.
➔ Supernatural Theories
◦ Theories that see mental disorders as the result of supernatural forces, such as divine intervention,
curses, demonic possession, and personal sins; mental disorders can be cured through religious
rituals, exorcisms, confessions, or death.
➔ Psychological Theories
◦ Theories that view mental disorders as caused by psychological processes, such as beliefs, thinking
styles, and coping styles.
◦ Procedure in which holes were drilled into the skulls of people who displayed abnormal behaviour to
allow evil spirits to depart their bodies; performed in the StoneAge.
➔ Psychic Epidemics
◦ Phenomena in which large numbers of people begin to engage in unusual behaviours that appear to
have a psychological origin.
➔ Moral Treatment
◦ Type of treatment delivered in psychiatric hospitals in which patients are treated with respect respect
and dignity and are encouraged to exercise self-control.
➔ General Paresis
◦ Disease that leads to paralysis, insanity, and eventually death; discovery of the disease helped establish a connection between biological diseases and mental disorders.
◦ Treatment for hysterical patients based on the idea that magnetic fluids in the patients' bodies are
affected by the magnetic forces of other people and objects; the patients' magnetic forces are thought
to be realigned by the practitioner through his or her own magnetic force.
◦ Form of treatment for psychopathology involving alleviating unconscious conflicts driving
psychological symptoms by helping people gain insight into their conflicts and finding ways of
resolving these conflicts.
◦ Study of the impact of reinforcements and punishments on behaviours.
◦ Thoughts or beliefs.
➔ Self-efficacy beliefs
◦ Beliefs that one can engage in the behaviours necessary to overcome a situation.
➔ Patients' Rights Movement
◦ Movement to ensure that psychiatric patients retain their basic rights and to remove them from
institutions and care for them in the community.
◦ Movement in which thousands of patients were released from psychiatric institutions; a result of the
patients' rights movement, which was aimed at stopping the dehumanizing of psychiatric patients
and at restoring their basic legal rights.
➔ Clinical Psychologists
◦ People with a PhD in psychology who can conduct psychotherapy but cannot prescribe medications.
➔ Marriage and Family Therapists
◦ People who specialize in helping families, couples, and children overcome problems that are
interfering with their well being.
➔ Clinical Social Workers
◦ People with a master's degree in social work who help people with psychological problems
overcome the social conditions contributing to their problems.
➔ Psychiatric Nurses
◦ People with a degree in nursing who specialize in the treatment of people with severe psychological
➔ Occupational Therapists
◦ People with a master's degree and skills to help individuals overcome obstacles and barriers caused
by injury, illness, disability, or other problems that affect their productivity and the satisfaction they
derive from every day activities.
◦ Approach to psychopathology that emphasizes how biological, psychological, and social factors
interact and influence each other to produce and maintain mental health problems.
◦ Aset of assumptions about the likely causes of abnormality and appropriate treatment.
◦ View that biological factors cause and should be used to treat abnormality.
◦ Approach to abnormality that focuses on personality, behaviour, and ways of thinking as possible
causes of abnormality. ➔ Social Approach
◦ Approach to abnormality that focuses on interpersonal relationships, culture, society, and the
environment as possible causes of abnormality.
➔ Vulnerability-Stress Models
◦ Comprehensive models of the many factors that lead some people to develop a given mental
➔ Cerebral Cortex
◦ Part of the brain that regulates complex activities, such as speech and analytical thinking.
◦ Component of the brain that regulates eating, drinking, sex, and basic emotions; abnormal
behaviours involving any of these activities may be the result of dysfunction in the hypothalamus.
➔ Limbic System
◦ Part of the brain that relays information from the primitive brain stem about changes in bodily
functions to the cortex, where the information is interpreted.
◦ Biochemicals, released from a sending neuron, that transmits messages to a receiving neuron in the
brain and nervous system.
◦ Space between a sending neuron and a receiving neuron into which neurotransmitters are first
released (synaptic gap).
◦ Molecules on the membranes of neurons to which neurotransmitters bind.
◦ Process in which a sending neuron reabsorbs some of the neurotransmitter in the synapse, decreasing
the amount left in the synapse.
◦ Process in which a receiving neuron releases an enzyme into the synapse, breaking down
neurotransmitters into other biochemicals.
➔ Endocrine System
◦ System of glands that produce many different hormones.
◦ Chemical that carries messages throughout the body, potentially affecting a person's moods, levels of
energy, and reactions to stress.
◦ Major endocrine gland that lies partly on the outgrowth of the brain and just below the
hypothalamus; produces the largest number of different hormones of all glands and controls the
secretions of other endocrine glands.
➔ Behaviour Genetics
◦ Study of the processes by which genes affect behaviour and the extent to which personality and
abnormality are genetically inherited.
◦ Combination of many genes, each of which makes a small contribution to an inherited trait.
◦ Tendency to develop a disorder that must interact with other biological, psychological, or
environmental factors for the disorder to develop.
➔ Family History Study
◦ Study of the heritability of a disorder involving identifying people with the disorder and people
without the disorder and then determining the disorder's frequency within each person's family.
➔ Monozygotic (MZ) Twins
◦ Identical ➔ Dizygotic (DZ) Twins
◦ Share 50% of their genes (Fraternal)
➔ Twin Studies
◦ Studies of heritability of a disorder by comparing concordance rates between identical and fraternal
➔ Concordance Rate
◦ Probability that both twins will develop a disorder if one twin has the disorder.
➔ Adoption Study
◦ Study of the heritability of a disorder by finding adopted people with a disorder and then
determining the prevalence of the disorder among their biological and adoptive relatives, to separate
contributing genetic and environmental factors.
◦ DNAsegments that lie near each other on a chromosome are examined for inheritance patterns.
➔ Association Studies
◦ Large samples of participants with and without a given disease or disorder are compared for the
presence of genetic markers.
◦ Inherited and acquired mechanisms regulating gene functioning also serve to determine whether or
not a disorder develops.
➔ Psychodynamic Theories
◦ Theories developed by Freud's followers but usually differing somewhat from Freud's original
➔ Psychoanalysis *
◦ Defence mechanism in which the ego pushes anxiety-provoking material back into the unconscious.
◦ According to Freud, psychical energy derived from physiological drives.
◦ According to Freud, most primitive part of the unconscious; consists of drives and impulses seeking
➔ Pleasure Principle
◦ Drive to maximize pleasure and minimize pain as quickly as possible.
➔ Primary Process Thinking
◦ Wish fulfillment, or fantasies, humans use to conjure up desired objects or actions; an example is a
hungry infant's imagining its mother's breast when she is not present.
◦ part of the psyche that channels libido in ways acceptable to the superego and within the constraints
➔ Reality Principle
◦ Idea that the ego seeks to satisfy needs within the realities of society's rules, rather than following
the abandon of the pleasure principle.
➔ Secondary Process Thinking
◦ Rational deliberation, as opposed to the irrational thought of primary process thinking.
◦ Part of the unconscious that consists of absolute moral standards internalized from parents during
childhood and from culture.
◦ To internalize moral standards because following them makes the person feel good and reduces
➔ Unconscious ◦ Area of the psyche where memories, wants, and needs are stored and where conflicts among the id,
ego, and superego are played out.
◦ According to Freud, area of the psyche that contains material from the unconscious before it reaches
the conscious mind.
◦ Mental contents and processes of which we are actively aware.
➔ Defence mechanisms
◦ Strategies the ego uses to disguise or transform unconscious wants.
➔ Neurotic Paradox
◦ Psychoanalytic term for a condition in which an individual's way of coping with unconscious
concerns creates even more problems in that individual's life.
➔ Psychosexual Stages
◦ According to Freud, Stages in the developmental process children pass through; in each stage, sex
drives are focused on the stimulation of certain areas of the body and particular psychological issues
can arouse anxiety.
➔ Oral Stage
◦ Earliest psychosexual stage, lasting for the first 18 months of life; libidinal impulses are best
satisfied through the stimulation of the mouth area, including such actions as feeding or sucking;
major issues of concern are dependence and the reliability of others.
➔ Anal Stage
◦ Between 18 months and 3 years; the focus of gratification is the anus, and children are interested in
toilet activities; parents can cause children to be fixated in this stage by being too harsh and critical
during toilet training.
➔ Phallic Stage
◦ Between 3 and 6 years old; the focus of pleasure is the genitals; important conflicts of sexual
development emerge this time, differing for boys and girls.
➔ Oedipus Complex
◦ Boy attracted to mother and makes father rival.
◦ Boys scared father will castrate them so that they stop having desires for their mothers and start to
aspire to be like their fathers.
➔ Latency Stage
◦ After phallic stage, libidinal drives are quelled and childrens' energy turns toward the development
of skills and interest toward becoming fully socialized to the world; the opposite sex is avoided.
➔ Genital Stage