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ALBANY / OTHER / APSY 333 / What is the Hypothesis?

What is the Hypothesis?

What is the Hypothesis?


School: SUNY Albany
Department: OTHER
Course: Childhood Behavioral Disorders
Professor: Kristin christodulu
Term: Fall 2018
Tags: Psychology
Cost: 50
Name: Childhood Behavioral Disorders Exam 1 study guide
Description: All of class notes and topics from the study guide that will be on the exam.
Uploaded: 09/30/2018
6 Pages 4 Views 8 Unlocks

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Research Strategies 

What is the Hypothesis?

● Scientific approach

○ Hypothesis: a proposition made based on limited evidence to attempt

further investigation on the topic.

● Common Research Topics

■ Incidence rates: extent to which new cases of a disorder  

appear over a specific time period

■ Prevalence rates: all cases, whether new or previously  

existing, that are observed during a specified time of period  

(more or less common)

■ Risk Factor: a variable that precedes an outcome of interest  

and increases chance negative outcome will occur (pg. 70)

■ Protective factor: a positive variable that precedes an  

outcome of interest and decreases chances negative outcome  

will occur

■ Correlated variables: variables associated at a particular point in time with no clear proof that one proceeds the other (Pearson  product: higher the number- stronger the relationship, positive  

What are the Incidence rates?

or negative- direction)

● Methods of Studying Behavior (pg. 67)

○ Standardization: a set of norms is specified for a measurement  procedure so that it can be used consistently across different  We also discuss several other topics like What lures new firms to enter industry?


○ Reliability: consistency of measure, either across raters or time ○ Validity: extent to which the method actually measures the construct  

of interest

■ Internal Validity: refers to the extent to which the explanation  is judged to be correct or sound. Effects observed in a study are  due to the manipulation of the independent variable and not  

some other factor.

■ External Validity: addresses generalizability, the extent to  which the results of an investigation apply to other populations  

and situations.

● True experimental: research has maximum control over the independent  variable, subjects are randomly assigned, and possible sources of bias are  

What are the Prevalence rates?

We also discuss several other topics like What are all chemical reactions in the body catalyzed by?


○ True Experiment: Abecedarian Project, Ramey & Campbell 1948 ■ IV: Educational program

■ DV: Developmental or intellectual test

● Correlation studies: only examine relationships among variables-causality

cannot be determined

● Research Designs (pg. 74-75)

○ Common examples are the A-B-A-B *(reversal) design and the multiple If you want to learn more check out What can cause bone deformation?

baseline design (A-baseline B-intervention)

○ Time Frames in Research (Pg.76) 

■ Cross-sectional Studies: individuals at different ages or  

stages of development  

■ Longitudinal Studies: same individuals are studied at different

ages or stages in the development  

■ Accelerated Longitudinal Studies: a combination of  

longitudinal and cross-sectional approaches  

Understanding Abnormal Child Psychology 

● Features that distinguish child and adolescent disorders ○ Often not clear whose “problem” it is

■ Children do not refer themselves to mental health treatment  

(usually because of a parent or teacher)

○ Failure to show expected development progress

■ Language development, social developmental goals, academic  

goals, self-regulation

○ Many problems behaviors are not entirely abnormal

○ Interventions intended to promote further development ■ Try to get a child into normal and further development We also discuss several other topics like What are the syndromes related to sex chromosome abnormalities?

● Historical Views of Child Psychopathology

○ Jean-Marc Itard (19th Century)

■ Advanced the belief that children should be treated with  We also discuss several other topics like what is the listing of all possible out outcomes?

kindness and compassion. (Victor- Wild boy of Aveyron: one of  

the first attempts to work with a special needs child)

● Mental Hygiene and Child Guidance Movement (pg. 10-11) ○ Mental Hygiene Movement

■ Increase understanding, improve treatment, prevent disorders ○ Child Guidance Movement If you want to learn more check out What is syndicated data?

■ 1896 UPenn Lightner Witmer (set up first child psychology clinic  

in the US).  

■ 1909 Juvenile Psychopathic Institute, Interdisciplinary approach  

(a psychologist and psychiatrist set it up)

● Defining Psychological Disorders (pg. 3)

○ A pattern of behavioral, cognitive, or physical symptoms, that is  associated with one or more of distress, disability and increased risk  

for further suffering or harm

○ Importance of relationships: family, peer, siblings

○ Labels: describe behavior, not the child (stigma)

● Competence

○ Must consider not only the degree of maladaptive behavior but also

children’s competence

■ Ability to adapt in the environment and achieve normal  


○ Development tasks: performance relative to same-age peers Developmental Influences 

○ Adaptational failure: failure to master or progress in accomplishing  developmental milestones. Differ from children their own age on some  

aspect of normal development

○ Pathways of Development (pg.24)

■ Stable adaptation: start out well adjusted, end up well adjusted ■ Stable maladaptation: start out poorly, end up poorly

■ Reversal of maladaptation: start out poorly, end up doing well ■ Decline of adaptation: start out well, end up poorly

■ Temporal maladaptation: start out well, temporary poor phase  

but end up well

○ Multifinality: similar early experiences lead to different outcomes (pg.


○ Equifinality: different factors lead to a similar outcome

○ Protective Tirad

■ The strength of the child, strength of the family, strength of the  


■ Related to resilience

● Managing to avoid negative outcomes and/or the ability to

achieve positive outcomes

● Displaying sustained successful ability under stress

● Showing recovery from trauma

○ Risk factors

■ Variables that precede a negative outcome and increase the  

chances that the outcome will occur

■ Typically involved acute, stressful situations, as well as chronic  


■ Known risk factors include: community violence and disaster,  divorce/family break-up, poverty, homelessness, parental  

inadequacies, parental psychopathology, parietal stress

○ Resilience

■ The ability to avoid negative outcomes despite being at risk for  


■ Associated with strong self-confidence, coping skills, ability to  avoid risky situations, ability to fight off or recover from  


Biological Influences

● Structures of the brain (pg. 38-39)

○ Cerebral hemispheres: sensory processing, monitor control, and  

higher mental functioning

○ Limbic system: regulates emotional experiences  

■ Involved in disordered behavior (norepinephrine, serotonin,  

dopamine, acetylcholine GABA)

○ Abnormal Development

■ Prenatal: excessive medication, unusual delivery, anoxia (lack  

of oxygen)

■ Postnatal: accident, illness, malnutrition, accidental poisoning  


○ Nervous system functioning and biochemistry

■ Neurons: vary in shape, size, and chemistry but all have a cell  

body, dendrites, and axon

■ Neurotransmitters: when the impulse reaches the end of the  


● Norepinephrine: alertness, energy

● Dopamine: attention, motivation, pleasure, and reward

● Serotonin: obsession and compulsion

● Also Acetylcholine and GABA

○ Molecular Genetics

■ Discover the genes associated with a disorder. Strategies for  

finding genes

● Linkage analysis: location of the defective gene  

(specific chromosome). Huntington's disease chromosome


● Association analysis: tests whether a particular form of  

a gene (an allele) is associated with a trait or disorder in  

the population. DRD4 and DAT4 are associated with ADHD

○ Behavioral Genetic Research (pg. 43)

■ 3 major strategies used to asses heritability

● Family: relatives of an individual with disorder examined

● Twin: comparison of identical twin resemblance to  

fraternal twin resemblance

● Adoption: evaluate the relative contributions of genetics  

and environment

■ Results suggest that heritability estimates from behavioral  

disorders rarely exceed 50%. Provides evidence for the  

importance of environmental influence.

Classification, Assessment, Treatment 

● The Decision Making Process

○ Idiographic: detailed understanding of the child and family as a  

unique entity

○ Nomothetic: emphasizes more general inferences that apply to broad  

groups of individuals

● Development Consideration

○ Age, gender, and culture

■ More commonly reported among males: attention-deficit/  hyperactivity disorder, childhood conduct disorder, intellectual  disability, autism spectrum disorder, language disorder, specific  

learning disorder, enuresis

■ More commonly reported among females: anxiety  

disorders, adolescent depression, eating disorders, sexual abuse ■ Equally reported among males and females: adolescent  

conduct disorder, childhood depression, feeding disorder,  

physical abuse and neglect

■ School refusal in a 13-year-old. Gender difference in rates and  expression of childhood disorders. Shyness and oversensitivity in

Western vs. Eastern cultures.

● Purpose of Assessment

○ Clinical description: summarizes child’s unique behaviors, thoughts,  

and feelings that make up psychological disorders

○ Diagnosis:refers to assigning a category of a classification  

system to an individual

○ Prognosis: generating predictions regarding future behaviors ● Assessing Disorders

○ Clinical interviews: developmental and family history (Structured or  

unstructured interviews)

○ Behavioral assessment: frequently made in the child’s natural  environment, although situations are sometimes created in clinic or  

laboratory setting to approximate naturally occuring interactions.  ○ Checklist: described in our discussion of classification. Checklist  

scores clearly discriminated between the clinic and nonreferred  

children regarding both behavior problems and social competencies ○ Rating scales: a general rating scale may thus help a clinician judge  

the child’s adjustment relative to norms for referred and nonpreferred  


○ Intelligence and educational testing: these tests are a central  defining feature for disorders such as intellectual disability and  learning disabilities, but it may also contribute to and be affected by a

wide array of behavioral problems.  

○ Projective testing: these tests are less commonly used today, a large part because of debates regarding lack of empirical norms, reliability,  and validity. Projective tests were derived from the psychoanalytic  notion of projection as a defense mechanism: one way the ego deals  with unacceptable impulses is to project them onto some external  


● Classification and Diagnosis

○ Categorical: a discrete grouping, for example, anxiety disorder; into  

which an individual’s symptoms judged to fit or not to fit.

○ Dimensional: an attribute is and can occur to various degrees. For  example, a child may exhibit high, moderate, or low levels of anxiety.

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