Title

Psychopathology
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Specification Requirements:

  • Definitions of abnormality, including deviation from social norms, failure to function adequately, statistical infrequency and deviation from ideal mental health.

  • The behavioural, emotional and cognitive characteristics of phobias, depression and obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD).

  • The behavioural approach to explaining and treating phobias: the two-process model, including classical and operant conditioning; systematic desensitisation, including relaxation and use of hierarchy; flooding.

  • The cognitive approach to explaining and treating depression: Beck’s negative triad and Ellis’s ABC model; cognitive behaviour therapy (CBT), including challenging irrational thoughts.

  • The biological approach to explaining and treating OCD: genetic and neural explanations; drug therapy.


Requirements broken down (research studies are in bold) - Students should be able to:

Definitions of abnormality

  1. Describe and evaluate statistical deviation as a definition of abnormality
  2. Describe and evaluate deviation from social norms as a definition of abnormality
  3. Describe and evaluate failure to function adequately as a definition of abnormality
  4. Describe and evaluate deviation from ideal mental health as a definition of abnormality

Characteristics of disorders

  1. Describe the behavioural, emotional and cognitive characteristics of phobias
  2. Describe the behavioural, emotional and cognitive characteristics of depression
  3. Describe the behavioural, emotional and cognitive characteristics of OCD

The behavioural approach and phobias

  1. Describe and evaluate the behavioural approach to explaining phobias including research support from Watson and Raynor
  2. Describe and evaluate the behavioural approach to treating phobias (systematic desensitisation and flooding) including research evidence for effectiveness (Gilroy)

The cognitive approach and depression

  1. Describe and evaluate the cognitive approach to explaining depression including Beck’s theory and Ellis’ ABC model. Research support comes from Grazioli and Terry
  2. Describe and evaluate the cognitive approach to treating depression including Beck’s cognitive therapy and Ellis’s CBT (REBT). Include research evidence from March on effectiveness

The biological approach and OCD

  1. Describe and evaluate the biological approach to explaining OCD including genetic and neural explanations (including research evidence from Nestadt)
  2. Describe and evaluate the biological approach to treating OCD: drug therapy including SSRIs and research evidence for their effectiveness (Soomro)

KEY CONCEPTS

Definitions of abnormality

  • Statistical deviation
  • Deviation from social norms
  • Failure to function adequately
  • Deviation from ideal mental health

Characteristics of disorders

  • Phobia
  • Depression
  • OCD
  • Behavioural
  • Emotional
  • Cognitive

The behavioural approach and phobias

  • Behavioural approach
  • Classical conditioning
  • Operant conditioning
  • Systematic desensitisation
  • Flooding

The cognitive approach and depression

  • Cognitive approach
  • Negative triad
  • ABC model
  • Cognitive behavioural therapy
  • CBT

The biological approach and OCD

  • Biological approach
  • Genetic explanations
  • Neural explanations
  • Drug therapy
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