Psychology in Action

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roles of client and/or therapist yourself. It helps show students that you're willing to take a chance and helps model appropriate behaviors. Active Learning Activity 14.6 - A "Norm" Violation After you lecture on defining normality, ask the students to devise a plan to display deviant behavior (e.g., talking to themselves or an inanimate object, dressing in bizarre clothes, using bizarre hand or facial gestures). Emphasize that the behavior cannot be illegal, dangerous or against any college rules. Have the students form small groups of at least three students, with one student being the abnormal person and the others the observer/recorders. The observer recorder's task is to observe and record how it feels to be perceived as different. How do people react? Do they ask if you are all right, or simply avoid you? Have each group present their experiences to the class during the next class meeting. Use these discussions as examples throughout your lectures on abnormal behavior. Instructor’s Resource Guide                              Chapter 14                                         Page   192
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  B rain- B ased L earning Brain-Based Learning Activity 14.1 - What's Your Clue? You have heard through the grapevine that one of the students in your class is mentally disordered but don't know who it is. What clues or behaviors would signal you that you have identified the right person? Give the students 3-5 minutes to generate a list. Write the answers on the board and note how much agreement/disagreement there is amongst the students. Select several of the most frequently mentioned behaviors and assign each of these to a group of students. They have 3-5 minutes to come up with situations that would explain the selected behavior as harmless or normal. How important is a person's age, sex, social status, previous history or state of inebriation in broadening the students' willingness to define such behavior as acceptable? Would it be easier or harder to detect signs of mental abnormality in a person you know really well, such as a close family member? Brain-Based Learning Activity 14.2 - How Low Is your Depression? We all have good days and bad days. Think back over the last five years of your life to the lowest, bluest days during that timeframe. Looking back from today, would you describe your then-self as depressed? If yes, how which of the DSM-IV criteria did you meet? If no, what else would you have to do/say/feel before such a diagnosis would apply to you? Imagine you met with a friend during that period of your life and your friend asked how you are doing. Make a list of what advantages there are in telling your friend:" I am depressed." Make a list of what disadvantages there are in telling your friend: "I am depressed." Are you better off admitting you have a "problem" or would such a label just encourage you to play "victim"?
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