Instructor: Dr. Diane Finley
Office: Marlboro 2049
Phone: 301-322-0869
email:  (Put PSY208ONLINE in the subject line if you want a response)
Office Hours: To Be Announced

Course Description:

Study of human behaviors and mental experience that are unusual,  unreasonable, and distinct from cultural norms. Changing views of mental disorders are discussed. Prerequisite: PSY 101.

Course Objectives:

At the end of the course the student who has fully participated in the course should be able to: (included here are the departmental core objectives for PSY 2080).


An online course includes components not found in traditional classroom courses. By enrolling in an online course, you are making a commitment to your classmates in the course. This commitment involves active participation in weekly discussion boards and working in groups on assignments as designated by the instructor.



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1. Define abnormal behavior, discuss cultural issues in abnormality, and describe the prevalence and incidence of mental disorders
2. Describe research approaches in abnormal psychology
3. Identify major historical and legislative events that have influenced current  practices in community mental health programs.
4. Use the psychodynamic, biological, behavioral, cognitive and humanistic perspectives to explain abnormal behavior
5. Describe the classification system for the DSM and identify the identify the appropriate criteria for each major mental disorders
6. Describe different categories of personality disorders, treatments and  outcomes for these disorders
7. Identify and describe child, adolescent and adult mental disorders.
8. Contrast different psychotherapies in terms of treatment approach, success,  social value and cultural diversity
9.Describe current multicultural issues in community mental health  that impact ethnic minority communities.
10. Discuss contemporary and legal issues in abnormal psychology           
11. Demonstrate proficiency applying information literacy skills to produce individual/group projects, papers and presentations



Final Grading:

A 90%
B 80%
C 70%
D 60%
F 59% and below

All Written Assignments  
Written assignments are designed to enhance your learning of course materials. ALL projects must be typed or done on a word processor. You must double-space your work. Your paper must have a cover sheet with your name and section number on it. Pay attention to your writing skills as these figure into the final grade. Reference pages must follow the American Psychological Association Style Manual. The Manual is available in the library. There is also information on how to cite and reference APA Style on my homepage. ( Go to the Title 3 Supersite).

Here are some websites that may help you with writing APA Style.

College Policies:
All college policies regarding student conduct, academic integrity and disability referrals apply. It is the studentís responsibility to be aware of such policies. For copies check the Student Handbook or contact the Office of Academic Advising.  Students are also responsible for knowing and following all College policies regarding registration, withdrawal, etc.

Classroom Conduct
Students are expected to observe the College code of conduct found in the PGCC Student Handbook. Smoking and eating are not permitted in the classroom. Disruptive students will not be tolerated and are subject to dismissal procedures as outlined in the Handbook. Cheating is obviously unacceptable behavior and is grounds for failing the class. If you cheat on any test or assignment, you will receive a 0 for that assignment/test. You will not be allowed to make-up any such item. In addition, your behavior will be reported to the Dean.

Students with Disabilities

Any student with a documented disability, including learning disabilities, that the student feels may affect classroom performance should discuss the matter privately with their instructor at the beginning of the semester so that reasonable accommodations can be made.  It is also recommended that students contact the Disability Support Services Office (M-1042) or call 301-322-0838 (voice) or 301-322-0122 (TTY) for additional assistance with classes and campus activities. Students must provide documentation of disability when requesting academic accommodations and copies of their enrollment confirmation (bill) with paid receipt. If you need accommodations, I must be notified by the start of the second week of class.