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1-22-09 - Abnormal Behavior Class Notes February 2nd 2009...

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Abnormal Behavior – Class Notes – 1/22/09 February 2 nd , 2009 30 students have put together a radio drama – 7 episodes, half hour each Sakai readings Due next Tuesday Last class – REVIEW 1 st Main point - The theory of how to diagnosis abnormal behavior has changed throughout time and it can still change 2 nd Main point - Psychology is not quite a natural science Most people think of science as: Paradigm – everyone has the same assumptions, everyone is using the same basic set of knowledge – there is no MAJOR disagreement about the substance of the science. This paradigm is known as “normal science” Not a gradual accumulation of facts All of the old ideas are thrown out and new ideas emerge and a scientific revolution occurs. Now we are back at a new paradigm (normal science) BASICALLY, science proceeds in a series of discontinuous steps. It is NOT an accumulation of facts
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A mature science has an established paradigm Psychology is so young of a science that we are actually at stage 1 we are at a pre-paradigm stage o Psychology has NEVER achieved a paradigm. Everytime we get to a disorder, we ask ourselves what is the cause of this disorder. o Each subcategory of psychologists (behaviorist, etc.) will have a different viewpoint and different explanation for the disorder. o Each psychological viewpoint is mutually exclusive For the next few classes, we are going to examine the different branches/viewpoints in psychology: - Biological perspective IDEA: you cannot wait until everything makes sense because we need to help people NOW, even though the solutions are imprecise
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NOTE: Biology and psychology are very similar The research methods of Psychology are problematic In clinical psychology, there are three different ways you go about conducting research: 1. Experimental methods – From these, you can use these to determine causation . a. Manipulate the independent variable: i. Example – you want to see if an anti-depressant (like Prozac) has an effect on depressed individuals 1. Random sampling 2. Random assignment 3. Placebo controlled ii. What doseage, how often, etc? iii. Details of the experiment make it difficult to produce “significant” results iv. You must conduct research ethically b. The point is that the experimental methods used in chemistry are not as useful in Psychology 2. Correlational methods – Shows a relationship between one or more variables. a. Example: The homicide rate is highly correlated to ice cream consumption – third variable (heat) that is involved in this relationship b. Example – People with Schizophrenia have very different physical brain structure.
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