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JOHN CABOT UNIVERSITY

COURSE CODE: "PS 354"
COURSE NAME: "Abnormal Psychology"
SEMESTER & YEAR: Fall 2017
SYLLABUS

INSTRUCTOR: Elaine Luti
EMAIL: [email protected]
HOURS: TTH 11:30-12:45 PM
TOTAL NO. OF CONTACT HOURS: 45
CREDITS: 3
PREREQUISITES: Prerequisite: PS 101
OFFICE HOURS: before and after class and by appointment

COURSE DESCRIPTION:
Issues related to psychopathology will be explored, with an emphasis on methodological problems and the causes of psychopathological conditions. The classification system of DSM-IV, which has become standard in North America and in many other parts of the world, will be examined critically, and other more theoretically coherent nosologies will be studied. Diagnostic categories will be examined from the point of view of three major theoretical approaches: psychodynamic, biological, and cognitive. Through required readings and a research paper, the student will become familiar with contemporary work in the field and will learn to read professional articles in a critical way. Emphasis in the course will be on the understanding and not simply the description of psychopathological states and their multiple complex determinants. Every psychological disorder has its specific content for the person suffering from it.
SUMMARY OF COURSE CONTENT:
SUMMARY OF COURSE CONTENT:
Through a textbook and many additional readings, the course will explain the fundamental epistemological issues faced in psychopathology and then examine the major diagnostic areas such as Depression, Dissociatiation, Obsessive and Compulsive personalities, etc.  (see course schedule). Emphasis will be on the implications of theory for the conception of diagnosis, the phenomenology of mental disorders, the experience of the person who suffers from these disorders, and symptoms as ways the individual is dealing with the suffering he or she experiences. 
LEARNING OUTCOMES:
LEARNING OUTCOMES:
The student should be able to understand the significance of theoretical approaches in the understanding of psychopathological conditions and the implications of the more common theoretical approaches.  The student will be able to understand these conditions from the points of view of symptoms, history, cause, experience of the patient of their particular symptoms and feelings, and their treatment. The student should be able to understand and explain with examples, what the specific symptoms and defenses do for the patient and how they are an attempt to heal. 
TEXTBOOK:
Book TitleAuthorPublisherISBN numberLibrary Call NumberComments
Psychoanalytic DiagnosisMcWilliamsGuilfordany edition is fine You can buy a used copy (recommended) and any edition is fine for the purposes of this course. You can also share a copy or photocopy it for your own use.
REQUIRED RESERVED READING:
NONE

RECOMMENDED RESERVED READING:
NONE
GRADING POLICY
-ASSESSMENT METHODS:
AssignmentGuidelinesWeight
homework essays, a midterm, a collaborative class presentation and a final examThis course is not about knowledge of facts or even knowledge of the course material, but is about understanding, thinking about and applying the material presented in the course. With open-book and open-note exams, it hardly makes sense to give much credit to knowledge as such, since it will be readily available to you. But the understanding of the material - an understanding that shows that you’ve thought about it, can come up with examples or show its application and implications for the field and perhaps outside of the specific field - is the mark of an excellent paper or exam. You will, hopefully, form your own opinions of this material and by no means are you required to agree with the professor. In fact, very often some of the best work students do comes from a critical analysis of the material and positions taken by the professor. However, your critical analysis must necessarily show your understanding of what it is you’re criticizing, as well as clear and reasoned arguments for your opinion. Ideally it should try to anticipate the criticism of the professor’s point of view and answer these potential criticisms. If you agree with the material, then you should be able to show that you’ve thought about it, come up with further examples, considered the implications and thought of possible objections and the answers to them. to be determined
2 homework essays (1 to 2 pages)These will be assigned in the course and posted on myjcu. They are important as practice for the exams and will be similar to the types of questions that will be on the midterm and final. It's up to the student to find out in case of absence if homework was assigned and to check the website regularly. 10%
optional homework essaysThese will be posted during the semester, generally in the period approaching the exams for practice. Excellent essays will function as extra credit, but their primary value is as PRACTICE for the midterms and finals. extra credit
A paper with or without presentation A paper that can be presented to the class if desired, on one of the diagnostic categories studied in class from a theoretical point of view differing from that taken by the course. It should show an understanding of the difference in theoretical position and the IMPLICATIONS of theory for diagnosis and treatment. Other topics will be considered on an individual basis at the discretion of the professor if they can be a contribution to the course and presented in class. 20%
Midterm 75 minutes, essay questions, open bookThe exam will be open book and will be entirely of essay questions similar to the homework assignments. Unsatisfactory exams will have to be redone. 30%
Final ExamThe final exam will be similar in type to the midterm but will be 2-1/2 hours long and will not be able to be retaken. 40%

-ASSESSMENT CRITERIA:
A Because this course is not about knowledge of facts or even knowledge of the course material, but is about understanding, thinking about and applying the material presented in the course, these will be the criteria for an A. With open-book and open-note exams, it hardly makes sense to give much credit to knowledge as such, since it will be readily available to you. But the understanding of the material - an understanding that shows that you’ve thought about it, can come up with examples or show its application and implications for the field and perhaps outside of the specific field - is the mark of an excellent paper or exam. You will, hopefully, form your own opinions of this material and by no means are you required to agree with the professor. In fact, very often some of the best work students do comes from a critical analysis of the material and positions taken by the professor. However, your critical analysis must necessarily show your understanding of what it is you’re criticizing, as well as clear and reasoned arguments for your opinion. Ideally it should try to anticipate the criticism of the professor’s point of view and answer these potential criticisms. If you agree with the material, then you should be able to show that you’ve thought about it, come up with further examples, considered the implications and thought of possible objections and the answers to them. A paper or exam that shows the above qualities will be given an A
B To receive a B you’ll show good knowledge of the course material and arguments presented, will have some examples of the material but while some will be original, they will be primarily the examples given in class, and you’ll show some sense of the implications but these, too, will be primarily limited to the implications mentioned in the course. Your arguments will be well presented and thought out, but these won’t go very far beyond the actual material of the course.
C To receive a C you’ll show knowledge of the material insofar as it can be found in the readings and lecture notes, but it will often not be complete, and will not show much personal elaboration of the material. Examples and applications of the material will be limited and there will be some concepts that you haven’t clearly understood.
D You’ll receive a D when there’s some indication that you didn’t fully read or understand the material or follow the class lectures and discussions. There will be gaps in what you’ve been able to find in the readings and class notes. You won’t have understood some concepts.
F To fail the course with an F it will be apparent that you haven’t read or understood a large part of the material and can’t find it among your notes or readings, that you haven’t done some of the reading or followed in class and have no understanding of the material that is in the paper or essay beyond relaying some facts.

-ATTENDANCE REQUIREMENTS:

 

The student is presumed to be a responsible adult who will attend class and get the notes for classes missed. Therefore there will be no official penalties for absences. However it will be extremely difficult to pass the course without attending class and class material will be drawn on for exams.In the case of group projects, the responsibility of the student is to the other group members, and participation in the group will be part of the grade. 
ACADEMIC HONESTY
As stated in the university catalog, any student who commits an act of academic dishonesty will receive a failing grade on the work in which the dishonesty occurred. In addition, acts of academic dishonesty, irrespective of the weight of the assignment, may result in the student receiving a failing grade in the course. Instances of academic dishonesty will be reported to the Dean of Academic Affairs. A student who is reported twice for academic dishonesty is subject to summary dismissal from the University. In such a case, the Academic Council will then make a recommendation to the President, who will make the final decision.
STUDENTS WITH LEARNING OR OTHER DISABILITIES
John Cabot University does not discriminate on the basis of disability or handicap. Students with approved accommodations must inform their professors at the beginning of the term. Please see the website for the complete policy.

SCHEDULE

Each unit may have a different number of classes dedicated to it.  It will depend on the difficulty and complexity of the material and also on the amount of class discussion it elicits.  

To know what we will be covering next, just see what is in the next unit.  For example, if we are doing depressive disorders then the next will be narcissistic disorders. 

I may make small changes to reading assignments, but they will be announced in advance in class and on the MYJCU website, which you should check at least weekly.

here is the full reading list followed by the schedule

REQUIRED READINGS FOR ABNORMAL PSYCHOLOGY

 

These are not in order of the course material but you can check the syllabus and see what readings apply to the unit being covered. 

 

 

·         Nancy Mc Williams – Psychoanalytic Diagnosis – this will be referred to as “the textbook” or “the text” – and you have to read pretty much all of it.  I recommend buying it – it’s available used. You can share. 

·         Joanne Greenberg – I Never Promised You a Rose Garden – not expensive and you can buy it easily used on amazon.it or amazon.co.uk  - you have to read the whole thing (hopefully it will be hard to put it down).

·         George Atwood The Abyss of Madness,  chapter 2: “Exploring the Abyss of Madness”  four chapters available online at this link http://icpla.edu/wp-content/uploads/2012/10/Atwood-G.-The-Abyss-of-Madness-ch-1-4.pdf other chapters in pdf in shared files

·         Psychodynamic Diagnostic Manual pg 1 – 31, and 483-509  NOTE THAT THIS IS ONLY AVAILABLE IN THE LIBRARY AND YOU HAVE TO COPY IT YOURSELF

·         Davies, Frawley, Treating the Adult Survivor of Childhood Sexual Abuse: chapt 10 pp 186-197

·         Ferenczi, Final Contributions to the Problems and Methods of Psycho-Analysis: p. 156-167 “The confusion of tongues between adults and the child” available as an ebook

http://web.ebscohost.com/ehost/detail?sid=06a3f3ed-5e07-4abf-8b45-8ebb97625804%40sessionmgr4004&vid=1&hid=4206&bdata=JnNpdGU9ZWhvc3QtbGl2ZQ%3d%3d#db=e000xww&AN=369215

·         Beebe & Lachmann: The Origins of Attachment ch 1

·         Atwood: “The unbearable and the unsayable” ch 5 of The abyss of madness p 107-132

·         Gabbard, Glen: Psychodynamic Psychiatry in clinical practice, : pp 249-267

·         Brandchaft, Bernard Towards an Emancipatory Psychoanalysis,  ch 11 “Obsessional disorders” p 163-191

·         Bowlby, John: Attachment and Loss vol 2- Separation Ch 19: “Anxious Attachment and Agoraphobia” pp 334-355

·         Bowlby, Attachment and Loss vol 3 Loss, sadness and depression: ch 14 “sadness, depression and depressive disorder” p 245-262

·         Optional: Psychoanalytic electronic publishing, Atwood, G.E., Orange, D.M., Stolorow, R.D. (2002). Shattered Worlds/Psychotic States Psychoanal. Psychol., 19:281-306. http://web.ebscohost.com/ehost/detail?sid=5ae58f0c-d6a1-4fca-8a75-7f7468060104%40sessionmgr4002&vid=5&hid=4206&bdata=JnNpdGU9ZWhvc3QtbGl2ZQ%3d%3d#db=pdh&AN=2002-12574-003

·         Atwood “The dark sun of melancholia” Chapter 7 of The abyss of madness

·         Miller, Alice. The Drama of the Gifted Child: The Search for the True Self. Basic Books, 1997. ISBN 978-0-465-01647-1. 139 p. Chapter 1: “The Drama of the Gifted Child and how we became Psychotherapists” P. 1-25

·         C. Johnson, Psychodynamic treatment of anorexia nervosa and bulimia, Chapter 2 Susan sands, “Bulimia dissociation and empathy: a self-psychological view” p 34-49

·         Firestone: Suicide and the Inner Voice. Pp 35-58, 94-103, 219, 279-296

·         “The tragedy of self destruction” chapter 6 The abyss of madness

·         Mate’ In the Realm of Hungry Ghosts ch.11-13, 17-19

unit

readings

topics

1

Class notes: “Blackboard”;

Atwood  The Abyss of Madness: ch 2:“Exploring the Abyss of Madness” (ch 1 optional);

Psychodynamic Diagnostic Manual pp 1-10

Normal and abnormal, healthy and pathological; statistical and functional definitions. 

Assignment: pre[are comments to discuss in class - see myjcu- read Atwood ch 2, revise comments and hand in

2

Notes: “Theoretical approaches”

Text ch 2 optional as reference

PDM p. 483-486

Importance of theory: what is relevant to observe.  Phenomenology, Experience, Subjectivity and Intersubjectivity. 

Specific theoretical perspectives in psychopathology (class notes); Implications of the perspectives on the approach of diagnosis and treatment, implications of the fundamental premises of each theory (what it considers relevant to observe). Biology and psychology – what is cause and what is effect? Comparisons of diagnostic approaches (DSM vs PDM)

3

Text ch 1;

PDM 11-31

(Abyss ch 1 optional)

Diagnosis and classification.  Why classify categories of mental illness, how should these classifications be made? How does the diagnostician diagnose. 

4

Pdm 486-509

Comparisons of diagnostic approaches (DSM vs PDM). The irrational, the peremptory and the unbidden.  What is health?

5

Text ch 3

PDM 20-26

Reference to ch 5 and 6

Text p 151-155

Levels of pathological organization- neurosis, psychosis, borderline and types of character organization Definitions of mechanisms of defense can be found in chs 5 and 6  (these chapters contain descriptions of each mechanism of defence referred to in the text so don’t read them now, but only refer to them as you come across the individual mechanisms in the other units – e.g. in obsessive-compulsive disorders, you will want to look up undoing, intellectualization, etc.  It will make more sense in context.)

6

Text ch 15;

Atwood ch 5 (The unbearable and the unsayable)

Davies&Frawley ch 10;

Ferenczi “confusion of tongues”

Beebe&Lachmann The Origins of Attachment Ch 1 "Origins of Relatedness"

Dissociation and dissociative disorders. Freud’s original trauma theory, beyond the Oedipus complex  (class lecture)

Dissociation, dissociative personalities, unbearable trauma and the creation of the “other” self, dissociation in general and its use in other personality structures, trauma in context of deficit

Early roots of dissociative phenomena and the intergenerational passing-on of trauma

7.

Text ch 13;

Brandchaft Towards an Emancipatory Psychoanalysis ch 11 "Obsessional disorders"

Obsessive and compulsive personalities – beyond the anal phase

8

Gabbard Psychodynamic Diagnosis in Clinical Practice ch 9 “anxiety disorders”;

Bowlby: Separation: “anxious attachment:

Anxiety neurosis, or panic disorders, phobias. True vs. pseudo-phobias. Biological elements in anxiety, cause or effect?. Childhood roots.

9

Text ch. 11

Bowlby: Separation "Loss sadness & depression" from Atwood  Abyss of Madness: ch 7 "The dark sun of melancholia" & Ch 8:"What is a Ghost"

Depressive and manic personalities- depression and loss, mourning, unshared sorrow, depression and guilt – biological elements of depression. Elements of dissociation in cyclothymic disorders.

10

Text ch. 8,

Miller: “The drama of the gifted child”

Narcissistic personalities: two views of narcissism and two types of narcissistic personality: Kernberg's oblivious, self-centered and Kohut's hypervigilant, depleted narcissist. The self in narcissism. Narcissism and shame.

11

Gabbard: Psychodynamic Psychiatry in Clinical Practice: “Eating Disorders”;

Sands, “Bulimia, dissociation and empathy”

“Eating” disorders – the "hunger artist" and the search for the lost self: Anorexia Nervosa. Guilt and self-loathing: Bulimia Nervosa and the purging of badness; Dissiociative aspects of bulimia and other forms of self-harm

12

Mate’In the Realm of Hungry Ghosts 133-147, 187-219

Addictions and other problems of self regulation – roots in early infant neurological development

13

Text ch 9

Greenberg: I Never Promised You a Rose Garden

Schizoid personalities- and the range to schizophrenia. Loneliness and the schizoid person. Schizophrenia and its cognitive symptoms. Discussion of I Never Promised You a Rose Garden

14

Text ch. 10

Paranoid personalities: paranoia and guilt: the mechanism of projection in paranoia..

15

Text ch. 7

Psychopathic or sociopathic personalities. Acting instead of talking. The absence of shame or guilt. Disintegrated families of origin, emotional deprivation. Attachment and the lack of it.

16

Firestone Suicide and the Inner Voice): p 35-58, 94-103, 219, 278-296,

Atwood The Abyss of Madness"The tragedy of self-destruction"

Suicide – causes, prevention, suicide and the "inner voice"