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Abnormal Psychology-Fall 2011


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									Arthur H. Konar, Ph.D.            Abnormal Psychology-Fall 2011         Psychology 460 B W142 Lago 8-9:20 AM
W271 Lagomarcino Hall                                                 T.A.-Omesh Johar (omesh@iastate.edu)
294-7462 - Faculty Office, and                                           Office hours: Tues & Thurs 9:30-11 AM
To leave messages                                                      akonar@iastate.edu (optimal contact form)
294-1742 - Department Office                                             Please put “PSY 460” in the subject line.

Course Description:

This course is designed to provide descriptive, theoretical and research information pertinent to the
major forms of maladaptive behavior including the varieties of anxieties, psychoses, depression, and
personality disorders. In addition, it will introduce the student to factors that likely contribute to the
development and maintenance of abnormal behavior. Current research findings, methods, and trends
will be presented. This course will provide an overview of treatment.

Prerequisite Education:

The prerequisites are introductory psychology and two other psychology courses.


The required text is: Comer, R. J. (2010). Abnormal Psychology (7th edition). New York: Worth.

Course Goals:

1. To provide information concerning the description, origins and societal implications of the major
forms of maladaptation,
2. To provide an introduction to diverse theoretical views of abnormal behavior, including cognitive,
behavioral, psychodynamic, and biological perspectives,
3. To introduce the student to the multiple probable causes and correlates of behavior deviations,
4. To foster awareness of behavioral classification and diagnostic systems such as the DSMIV-TR; and to
present critiques, limitations, and implications of diagnoses and classification,
5. To introduce current research findings and trends pertinent to the development and description of
maladaptive behavior, as well as sociocultural and gender influences on the prevalence of abnormality,
6. To provide an overview of treatments relevant to the disorders presented in the course.
7. Stimulation of curiosity about abnormal behavior
8. Increased insight into yourself and your behavior
9. Enhancement of sensitivity and empathy for people who are mentally ill

Evaluation and Grades:

Grades will be determined on the basis of total number of points acquired in the course. Point
acquisition will result from summation of numerical scores on three equally weighted multiple choice
with possible short essay tests, scores from a multiple choice format final examination, points from
periodic in-class quizzes, and points from a Research and Opinion Paper. There will be a couple of
possible instructor selected opportunities for extra credit. The final examination will be cumulative.
The allocation of points to course activities and tasks is presented on the next page.
Test score and letter grade correspondence will be determined by the instructor, consistent with
departmental standards of achievement, and by examination of class test score distributions. Course
grades will be accorded by use of the University's plus and minus letter grade system.

Test Policy:
Students are expected to be present at all scheduled examinations. Presentation of picture identification
at the exam site will be required (driver's license or student identification card). Under extenuating and
exceptional circumstances, with prior notification and permission of the instructor, make up
examinations may be scheduled if the student is unable to be present for a scheduled examination.

Research and Opinion Paper

You will have the opportunity to gain increased familiarity with the notion of doing a miniature
literature review pertinent to the area of abnormal psychology, and from these search activities to
obtain information about a topic in abnormal psychology. You will find a topic either discussed in class
or one of interest in the abnormal psychology arena. From that point you will do research looking at
different paradigms or conceptual frameworks. For example, you might consider three different articles
that provide evidence that investigates biological, cognitive-behavioral and socio-cultural theories on
the etiology of schizophrenia. Based on your research, you will then write a focused, word processed,
brief paper summarizing current findings or trends pertinent to your specific topic, and will finish with a
summary on your opinion of the topic based on the research that you just did. The paper is due
November 08, 2009. Additional information about the task will be provided.


       Food and beverage is allowed in class as long as you respect others and clean-up your mess.
•       Please turn off all cell phones before class begins. No texting.
•       All of the procedures and schedules described in the syllabus are subject to change. If any
        changes become necessary, you will be notified of the course adjustments as soon as possible
        in class or by e-mail

ACADEMIC DISHONESTY: Procedures for dealing with academic dishonesty (cheating, plagiarism, etc.) will follow university
guidelines. See the ISU student handbook for details.

    Course task and point allocation:                                                                                                            Points                %

1. Three combination (50 pts./exam) multiple choice and (possible) short essay exams                                                              150              50.0

2. Multiple choice final exam (Exam # 4)                                                                                                           70              23.3

3. Research and Opinion paper                                                                                                                      40              13.3

4. Periodic, unannounced, in-class quizzes (5 quizzes with no makeup’s)                                                                            40              13.3

Each quiz is composed of 10 questions and you have to take 4 of the five quizzes to get a possible full 40 point credit for that
area. Yet, if you are in class and take all 5 quizzes then you can make a potential 50 out of 40 possible points. A quiz may be in
the 1 10 minutes of the class. If you are late to that class you lost the opportunity to take the quiz. No make-up quizzes are
allowed, save for sanctioned prior absences.

Total possible points = 300

GRADING SCALE: 100-90% = A, 88-90% = A-, 87-85% = B+, 84-78% = B, 77-78% = B-, 76-75% = C+, 74-
69% = C, 68-67% = C-, 66-64% = D+, 63-60% = D, 59-57% = D-, <57% = F

  DATE                         TOPIC                          READING         ASSIGNMENT DUE:
8/23        Welcome/Course Overview

8/25        Abnormal Psychology: Past and Present        Chapter 1            Quiz Date?

8/30        Models of Abnormal Psychology (A)            Chapter 3            Quiz Date?

9/01        Models of Abnormal Psychology (B)            Chapter 3 (Cont.)    Quiz Date?

9/06        Clinical Assessment/Diagnosis (A)            Chapter 4            Quiz Date?

9/08        Clinical Assessment/Diagnosis (B)            Chapter 4 (Cont.)    Quiz Date?

9/13        Research in Abnormal Psychology              Chapter 2            Quiz Date?

9/15        Anxiety GAD, Phobias and Panic Disorder     Chapter 5            Quiz Date?

9/20        Examination #1                               Study for exam

9/22        Anxiety OCD, Stress & Adjustment Disorder   Chapter 6            Quiz Date?

9/27        Somatoform Disorders (A)                     Chapter 7            Quiz Date?

9/29        Dissociative Identity Disorder (B)           Chapter 7 (Cont.)    Quiz Date?

10/04       Major Depression-causes and expression       Chapter 8            Quiz Date?

10/06       Bipolar Depression-causes and expression     Chapter 8            Quiz Date?

10/11       Major & Bipolar Depression-treatment         Chapter 9            Quiz Date?

10/13       Suicidal Ideation, threat and attempts       Chapter 10           Quiz Date?

10/18       Examination #2

10/20       Eating Disorders                             Chapter 11           Quiz Date?

10/25       Substance-related Disorders                  Chapter 12           Quiz Date?

10/27       Causes/Treatments of S-R Disorders           Chapter 12 (Cont.)   Quiz Date?

11/01       Sexual Disorders                             Chapter 13           Quiz Date?

11/03       Paraphilias & Idenity Disorders              Chapter 13 (Cont.)   Quiz Date?
11/08          SchizophreniaTheories                            Chapter 14                 Research and Opinion
                                                                                            Paper DUE—QUIZ

11/10          SchizophreniaTreatments                          Chapter 15                 Quiz Date?

11/15          Personality Disorders                             Chapter 16                 Quiz Date?

11/17          Personality Disorders                             Chapter 16                 Quiz Date?

11/22          Thanksgiving Break

11/24          Thanksgiving Break

11/29          Examination #3

12/01          Disorders of Childhood & Adolescence              Chapter 17                 Quiz Date?

12/06          Disorders of Aging & Cogntition                   Chapter 18                 Quiz Date?

12/08          Mental Health and the Law Final Exam              Chapter 19                 Quiz Date?

12/13 7:30-                                                      Cumulative
9:30 AM        FINAL EXAM- (Exam #4)

Final: Administered as indicated by University Finals Schedule. Examination #4 covers all readings and
notes and the questions are based from the entire course.
NOTE: Due dates for the research paper and exams are firm expectations. The paper is due via email at
the indicated class time. Late papers, without prior notification and discussion with the instructor, will
not be accepted, and all points associated with the activity will be forfeited.

Disability Accommodations: If you have a disability and require accommodation, please contact the
instructor during the first week of the semester and indicate your need for accommodation so that your
learning needs may be appropriately met. You will also need to obtain a Student Academic
Accommodation Request (SAAR), a form to be presented to the instructor that describes the needed
accommodation. It can be obtained from the following resource:

Student Disability Resources Phone: 515-294-7220 E-mail: disabilityresources@iastate.edu Dean of
Students Office Academic Success Center 1076 Student Services Building Ames, IA 50011-2222--------------------

Thank you for the opportunity to be your instructor in this class. I hope that you will find the course interesting
and maybe even enlightening---Art Konar, Ph.D.

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