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FAU / CLPS / CLP 4144 / What are the roles of neurotransmitters in psychopathological syndrome

What are the roles of neurotransmitters in psychopathological syndrome

What are the roles of neurotransmitters in psychopathological syndrome


School: Florida Atlantic University
Department: CLPS
Course: Abnormal Psychology
Professor: Larry miller
Term: Fall 2018
Tags: Substance Abuse, Personality Disorders, LearningDisorders, Traumatic Brain Injury, seizures, tourette, Dementia, ADHD, Asperger, Autism Spectrum Disorder, neurotransmitter, licensed, Diathesis-stress, Sigmund Freud, neofreudian, operant conditioning, and classicalconditioning
Cost: 50
Name: AP Study Guide for Midterm
Description: These notes go over some of what is going to be on the midterm exam.
Uploaded: 10/09/2018
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Study Guide~ Exam 1

What are the roles of neurotransmitters in psychopathological syndromes?

∙ The various meanings of “abnormal” In the term abnormal  psychology are:  

o Statistical infrequency

o Violation of social norms

o Functional impairment

 and what best describes the relationship between normal  and abnormal is:  

o Normal-Abnormal: dichotomy (yes/no) vs. continuum  (occurs over states)

∙ The independent licensed mental health professions that can treat patients with mental health disorders are:

o Licensed mental health counselors, licensed clinical  social workers, and licensed marriage and family  


∙ Stress-diathesis model:  

o When a certain predisposition to something can/is  affected by the environment  

What are the basic concepts in freudian psychoanalytic theory?

∙ The roles of neurotransmitters in psychopathological  syndromes:

o Dopamine: motivate/energize

o Norepinephrine- alert/arouse, increases vigilance/sense  of awareness

o Serotonin: modulates the ratios of energizing factors in  brain, gut hormone for food, used in functioning of  sleep

o GABA: lowers arousal effect, produces state of sedation, produces less attention/care for environment

o Acetylcholine: enables individual to move

∙ The basic concepts in Freudian psychoanalytic theory are o Dreams as subconscious

o Freudian slips

o ID (our unconscious impulses and desires, Ego  

(negotiation between ID ad conscience, Super-ego  (cultural buildup of a conscience)

What is classical conditioning?

o psychosexual stages of development

 oral- act of feeding (breastfeeding, sucking of  pacifiers)/ can lead to dependency, cynicism,  

untrust, etc. if this stage is disturbed

 anal- what goes in must come out We also discuss several other topics like What would change the demand curve?

 phallic- little girls/boys discover each other’s  

structural differences

∙ Oedipus & Electra complexes: little boys have a need for intimate relationship with mothers  

and have castration anxiety (Oedipus), little  

girls in psychosexual competition with their  

mothers for possession of their father

∙ Latency- boys and girls detest one another

∙ Genital- adolescence is reached. Successful  If you want to learn more check out What is the difference between impressions and ideas?

negation of previous stages leads to positive  


∙ The fundamental practices of Freudian psychoanalytic  psychotherapy are:

o Free association- say whatever comes to your mind  without trying to control it

o Dream interpretation- describing one’s dreams o Transference & countertransference- a person’s  tendency to treat the therapist like their early  

caregivers after triggering a childhood memory; having  negative or positive feelings towards the client/person  which messes with their ability to be objective

o Interpretation & working-through- gaining insight and  then applying the insight to new situations

∙ The basic concepts in the theories of Carl Jung, Alfred Adler,  ego psychology, and existential/humanistic psychology are:  o Carl Jung: analytic psychology

 Collective unconscious- your brain holds memories of everything that has ever happened to your over your lifetime and also memories of other people  around you

 Animas and anima- psychosexuality (masculine  traits vs. female traits)  

 Introversion- extraversion- more reflective,  

withdrawn, conclusive, etc.

o Alfred Adler: individual psychology

 striving for superiority- a person’s desire for  We also discuss several other topics like Why does lactose intolerance cause pain?

ambition, success, etc. (too much of this could  

lead to obsessiveness, etc.  

 Inferiority complex- spend their life trying to  

overcompensate for something because of  


∙ Basic concepts of the behavioral, cognitive, and cognitive behavioral paradigms:

o Behavioral paradigms- classical conditioning/ operant  conditioning

 Classical Conditioning

∙ Unconditioned stimulus- that which needs no  interference to produce a response

∙ Unconditioned response-Response that needs no stimulation

∙ Conditioned stimulus- Stimulating a response  from something or someone

∙ Conditioned response- Response to  

something that is correlated with something  


∙ Extinction- Response goes away

∙ Generalization- Response comes back faster  We also discuss several other topics like What is the probability of rolling an even number?

 Operant Conditioning- "You can't NOT do  


∙ Positive reinforcement: any event that an  

organism has that is followed by an increase  

in the rate of response/ anything that when  

given increases the rate of behavior

∙ Negative reinforcement: anything that when  

withdrawn or discontinued increases the rate  

of response  

∙ Punishment: anything that when  

administered or withdrawn is followed by a  

decrease in the rate of response

∙ Shaping by successive- learn one aspect first  and then learn the rest over experience

∙ Schedules of reinforcement- how often do you present a reinforcer; interval schedules (per  

time, i.e. seconds, minutes, salary per hour)  

and ratio schedule (per action),

o Ratio schedules yield higher rates of  


o Varying the rates increases the rates of  


o Cognitive paradigms- People think, conceptualize, and  interpret their experiences before responding

 Retains empirical orientation of experimental  psychology, but emphasis is on clinical application  Legacies include principles of learning, the ego  psychologists, and neuropsychologists If you want to learn more check out Who is benjamin franklin?

 There is a reciprocal relationship between  

thoughts, feelings, actions, and environment, i.e.  trying to figure out the most appropriate course of  action based on their

o Cognitive-behavioral therapy: 

∙ Dichotomous thinking (all or nothing), i.e. "if I don’t pass this test I’ll fail at life"

∙ Overgeneralization "if this person doesn’t like me than no one will"

∙ Exceptionalizing (discounting positives)

∙ Catastrophizing, "oh my god this happened,  

my life is over!"

∙ Mind-reading (over-assumption) -people who  

are concerned that people are thinking about  

them. (mostly in a negative way)

∙ Basic concepts of the evolutionary psychology paradigm: o Traits are adaptive as a group, but the maladaptive  traits are the extreme ones that are singular

∙ Why are reliability and validity of diagnosis important? o We also discuss several other topics like What are the types of electromagnetic radiation?

∙ Define a sign, symptom, syndrome, and disorder.  o Sign: Objective, observable feature, characteristic, lab  finding, or behavior of a patient (anything that is  observable by someone else)

 Ex. Mr. Flag is talking to an inanimate object  

o Symptom: subjective experience reported by the  patient

o Syndrome- set of regularly occurring signs and  symptoms with a common etiology and predictable  course

 Example: Mr. Knee might have had the pain  

building up for a while, which could be  


o Disorder- syndrome that causes significant distress to  the patient or others

∙ The therapeutic relationship in psychotherapy: o The relationship between the client and the mental  health professional

∙ “Common factors” shown to be important in all successful  therapies:

o Working alliance between client and mental health prof. o Agreement on therapeutic goals

o Client liking the therapist

o Therapist’s knowledge of problem and ability to help  through various approaches

o Patient’s willingness to change

∙ What is the main difference between a clinical psychological  evaluation and a forensic psychological evaluation.  o Forensic evaluation requires the answer of the forensic  or legal question

o Clinical evaluation is not

∙ What are the differences between civil and criminal forensic  psychology?

o Civil: Contracts, laws, family; civil competency o Criminal- crime, defendant *most likely to use  psychologist*

∙ Describe the main features of competency to stand trial and  the insanity defense.  

o Competency to stand trial:  

 Understand the nature of the charges

 Understand the range of possible penalties

 Be able to assist one's attorney in one's defense

 Requirements documentation of mental  

impairment, but no specific diagnosis

o Insanity defense:

 Requires diagnosis of "Mental disease of defect"  and didn’t understand what you were doing or that it was wrong

 Unable to control it even if they understood the  consequence  

o What are the main differences between them?  Competency to stand trial does not require a  diagnosis but the insanity defense requires the  

diagnosis of specific mental disease of defect

∙ The significant clinical characteristics of the ten types of  personality disorders are:

o Avoidant (C)- scared of people, can’t stand the idea of  people not liking them

o Dependent- excessive need to be taken care of o Obsessive-compulsive- spontaneity is associated with  loss of control

o Paranoid (A)- pervasive distrust and suspiciousness  o Schizoid- they like to be alone; presence of others  annoys them

o Schizotypal-perceptual distortions and behavioral  eccentricities

o Histrionic (B)- dramatic attention-seeking behavior,  impressionistic

o Borderline- behavioral impulsivity; fragile self-image  and identity  

o Narcissistic- need for admiration, hypersensitivity to  criticism, and lack of empathy.

∙ Main structures of the brain that we discussed, and what are  their functions:  

o Cerebellum- skilled muscles (writing, playing piano,  etc.)

o Hippocampus- brain formatting; consolidation of  information from short-term memory to long-term  memory, and in spatial memory

o Limbic system- functions involved in emotions and  memory

o Brainstem- pons: bridges coming from cerebellum and  nuclei to cranial nerves,

∙ Main functions of the four lobes of the brain:  

o Frontal lobe- allows you to act upon the world,  movement,  

o Parietal- analyzing things based off of senses (i.e.  feeling, smell, etc.)

o Occipital- analyzing the visual sense, interpreting what  you see

o Temporal lobe- sense of hearing as well as holds limbic  system and hippocampus (memory, emotion, etc.).  o Cerebellum-skilled muscles (writing, playing piano, etc.) ∙ The main differences in functioning between the left and  right hemispheres:  

o Left hemisphere controls functioning in logic and  reasoning (the science)

o Right hemisphere controls functioning in intuition and  imagination (the emotion)

∙ Clinical characteristics of ADHD vs. ADD, and the presumed  causative factors for these syndromes.

o ADHD- insufficient dopamine supply to prefrontal cortex (inability to control)

 Easy targets for “set-ups”

 Difficulty sustaining attention towards a goal

 Immaturity- better social relationship with those at a younger age then them

 Distractibility

 Hyperactivity and/or physical restlessness

 impulsivity in speech/behavior

o ADD- heritability/genetics

 Mild or no hyperactivity or impulsivity

 Prone to losing or forgetting things

 Easily distracted by sounds or things happening ∙ What is the difference between Oppositional Defiant Disorder and Conduct Disorder?

o Oppositional defiant disorder is your typical bratty kid  and conduct disorder is your burgeoning psychopath.

Conduct disorder usually involves extreme physical  violence towards others.

∙ Main types of learning disorder:

o Academic learning disorders  

o Non- academic learning disorders

 Non-verbal learning disorders

∙ What are the clinical characteristics of Autism Spectrum  Disorder, particularly the mild type, which used to be called  Asperger Syndrome?

o Lack of skills

o Difficulty in social relationships

o Poor concentration

o Restricted interests

o Sensitive to loud noises

o Repetitive routines or rituals

o Non-verbal communication problems

o Tend to be "in their own world"

o Have difficulty planning and coping with change ∙ Most and least common symptoms of Tourette Syndrome:  o Common: motor tics

o Least common- Coprolalia: may progress from syllables  to words to sentences

∙ Symptoms of delirium:

o Clouding of consciousness

o Restlessness/agitation

o Lethargy-under responsiveness

o No systematized delusions, esp. paranoia (confused or  unknowing story)

o Hallucinations: usu. Visual & tactile (something  touching or crawling on the person's body)

o Predominant emotion: fear

o Thought processes & speech: slowed and disorganized ∙ Main symptoms of Alzheimer dementia at the various stages: o Episodic memory loss-memory of things that happened  to you

o New learning loss- things learned more recently are  forgotten first

o Attention and working memory

o Language processing

o Visuospatial abilities

o Complex movement

o Executive functions: reasoning, planning, task  completion, emotional and behavioral self-regulation o Immobility or wondering aimlessly

∙ Define aphasia, apraxia, agnosia, corphologia, sundowning,  and the mirror sign:  

o Aphasia- disorder of language (difficulty understanding  and/or expressing language

o Agnosia- can’t perceive something through their senses o Apraxia- disorder of skilled/ complex  


o Corphologia- picking at clothing

o Sundowning- can’t sleep during the night

o Mirror sign- examining self in a mirror for a period of  time

∙ What are the main clinical features of frontotemporal  dementia, subcortical dementia, and depressive  pseudodementia?

o Frontotemporal dementia:  

 Primary progressive aphasia- problem  

understanding and/or expressing language

 Behavioral variant frontotemporal dementia (Pick's disease): Impaired emotional control and social  functioning; more impulsive, less controlled

o Subcortical dementia:

 Errors in judgement, planning, reasoning

 Commonly associated with difficulty in movement  and emotions/memory

 Most commonly mistaken for a psychiatric disorder o Depressive pseudodementia:  

 Usually affects attention, concentration,  

motivation, and executive functions, while sparing  language

 Usually associated with prior history of major  depressive disorder

 May occur with or without classic depressive  


∙ Main physical effects of a closed head injury (CHI) causing a  traumatic brain injury (TBI):  

o Pain at the point of impact (neck pain, headaches) o Hot and cold flashes

o Posttraumatic seizures

∙ The main symptoms of the postconcussion syndrome (PCS)  resulting from a traumatic brain injury (TBI):  

o Somatic impairment- Headache: vascular; muscle  contraction, Dizziness: syncope; vertigo, fatigue,  nausea; vomiting, sleep disorders, Sensory  

hypersensitivity: photophobia; phonophobia, sexual  dysfunction, seizures

o Cognitive impairment- Attention, concentration,  memory, judgement, language, motor coordination,  special orientation

o Emotional impairment- depression, anxiety, impulsivity, social withdrawal, hypochondrial concern, interpersonal conflict

∙ What are the main clinical features of (1) a temporal lobe  seizure, and (2) the interictal TLE personality disorder? o Temporal lobe seizure:  

 Onset usually in childhood or early adolescence  Begins in the limbic areas of the brain (anterior  temporal lobe)  

 Originates in temporal lobe (75%) or basomedial  frontal lobe (25%).  

 Almost always involves the limbic system (smell,  emotion, motivation, memory).

 May occur alone or in association with other  

seizure types  

 The ictal phase in TLE is typically longer than for  most other seizure types, and may last several  

minutes to ½ hour

o Interictal TLE Personality Syndrome 

 Temporal lobe seizures beginning in childhood and  persisting into adolescence

 Showing particular signs and/or symptoms while  not having an actual seizure

 The more frequent the TLE seizure, the more  severe the syndrome

∙ The main diagnostic difference between substance abuse  and substance dependence:  

o Substance abuse is when you use the substance and  have negative attributes: loss of control, DUIs, etc. and  dependence refers to the withdrawal aspect

∙ Main psychoactive effects of alcohol, sedative-hypnotics,  marijuana, hallucinogens, stimulants, and opiates: o Alcohol 

 Intoxication (biphasic response)

 Lowering of inhibitions

o Other sedative-hypnotics: Barbiturates &  


 Calm feeling “like floating on air”

 Can produce sedation

 Memory impairment & disinhibition

o Marijuana (hallucinogen) 

 Calm euphoria, increased appetite, time dilation,  hallucinations (high doses)

o Hallucinogens (others; LSD, PCP) 

 Produces state of pleasantness and calmness  Agitated delirium

o Stimulants 

 Increases arousal, energy level, impulsivity,  


 Impairs judgment and self-control

 Withdrawal produces irritable-dysphoric depressed sate

o Opiates:

 Used to produce a high or a “calm feeling”

∙ Basic biological, psychological, and societal factors  contributing to substance use disorders:  

o Biological- hereditary

o Psychological- experiences

o Societal: community, socioeconomic status, stress,  mental health resources, etc.

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