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Abnormal Psychology (Chapter
Lecture Outline:
“Abnormality” and diagnosis
Anxiety Disorders (video 92 case)
40 questions, 2 points each (80 points)
Chapters 11, 13, 16
13/14 questions/chapter
3-4 short answer questions (20 points)
Get to class on time please!!!!!!
On the sheet of paper, list
three things you are afraid of
• Behavior is
– Statistically unusual
– Maladaptive or harmful behavior
– Labeled “abnormal” because of a violation of
cultural standards
– Mental disorder as suffering, personal distress
• Historical examples of abnormal behavior:
– psychosis: demon possession, syphillis
– mentally retarded individuals & midgets were
– Salem witch trials: girls may have ingested ergot,
LSD derivative
Salem witch trial
Models of abnormality
• Psychodynamic: Intrapsychic conflict
– e.g., sexual abuse and conversion disorder
• Humanistic: Oversensitivity to others
– e.g., alcoholism for social anxiety
• Behavioral: Reinforcement/Punishment
– e.g., snake bite leads to snake phobia
• Cognitive: Distorted thinking
– e.g., negative thoughts and depression
• Medical: Physiological imbalance
Diagnosis: DSM-IV
• Diagnostic and Statistical Manual, 4th
Ed. (APA, 1994)
• Axis I: Clinical syndromes/ Mental
• Axis II: Personality and Disorders
• Axis III: General Medical Conditions
• Axis IV: Psychosocial and
Environmental Problems
• Axis V: GAF Scale (1:low to 100:high)
Problems with DSM
• Overdiagnosis, e.g., attention problems
• Power of diagnostic labels, e.g., person
“becomes the disorder”
• Mental disorder vs. “everyday problems”, e.g.,
bad spellers?
• Illusion of objectivity
• But diagnosis leads to treatment, categories
lead to empirical verification, and there is
cross-cultural evidence of various mental
health problems such as psychosis and
Anxiety Disorders
Symptoms of Anxiety
• Symptoms of anxiety:
– Mood: tension, apprehension and panic
– Cognitive: catastrophe, concentration
– Somatic: Sweat, pulse, dizzy, pounding
– Motor: Tics, bite nails, pace, fidget
• Case examples of clients with anxiety
disorders, with emphasis on panic
disorder (video #92)
Case example: Social phobia
"I couldn't go on dates or to parties.
For a while, I couldn't even go to class. My
sophomore year of college I had to come home
for a semester."
"My fear would happen in any social
situation. I would be anxious before I even left
the house, and it would escalate as I got closer
to class, a party, or whatever. I would feel sick
to my stomach--it almost felt like I had the flu.
My heart would pound, my palms would get
sweaty, and I would get this feeling of being
removed from myself and from everybody
"When I would walk into a room full
of people, I'd turn red and it would feel like
everybody's eyes were on me. Iwas too
embarrassed to stand off in a corner by
myself, but I couldn't think of anything to say
to anybody. I felt so clumsy, I couldn't wait to
get out."
Specific kinds of anxiety
• Phobias: Simple, social, and
• Panic Disorder: Bouts of intense and
uncontrollable anxiety
• Generalized anxiety disorder: Chronic
• Stress Disorder: PTSD
• Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder
– obsession: unwanted impulses or thoughts
– compulsion: uncontrolled repetitive act
Etiology (Cause) of Anxiety
• Psychodynamic: External threats
– guilt after id-superego struggle
• Learning theory: Classical conditioning
– sexual anxiety after unprotected sex
• Cognitive: Anxious cognitions
– public speaking catastrophes
• Humanistic-Existential: “A” gets a “B”
• Physiological: Autonomic reactivity