Abnormal Psychology and Individual Differences

Module code: PS7504

Module co-ordinator: Dr Diana Pinto

We are constantly trying to decipher why people behave or feel differently to us. This is a challenging task as often we find it difficult to understand ourselves. We find it hard to describe our own personality; are we outgoing or conscientious? Are we empathetic or self-serving? Gaining insight into what we consider normal or expected behaviour is as frustrating as gaining insight into behaviours that we consider beyond the normal range. In this module we will examine different types of personality and various categories of psychopathology as defined by the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM). We will also look at how practitioners measure personality and intelligence and the controversies and debates around these methods.

We will study individual differences in human behaviour, personality and beliefs and address cognitive disorders such as irrational beliefs and anxiety disorders. We will cover trauma and forgiveness and also consider depression, addictions and dependencies.

You will gain the necessary skills to assess the strengths and weakness of the theoretical and methodological approaches in abnormal psychology and individual differences. You will also be able to critically evaluate empirical evidence in this area and their contribution to scientific understandings and theraputic interventions.

Topics covered 

  • Personality and personality disorders
  • Intelligence
  • Irrational beliefs
  • Childhood disorders
  • Eating disorders
  • Forgiveness
  • Anxiety disorders
  • Addictions 
  • Depression
  • Schizrophrenia
  • Trauma

Learning 

The module is delivered completely via distance learning through a combination of lectures and online tutorials with online discussion, demonstrations with activities and guided independent study.

Assessment 

  • Essay, 2,000 words (50%)
  • Short answer questions (50%)


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