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Unit information: Neuropsychiatry in 2015/16

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Unit name Neuropsychiatry
Unit code PSYC31053
Credit points 20
Level of study H/6
Teaching block(s) Teaching Block 1A (weeks 1 - 6)
Unit director Professor. Leonards
Open unit status Not open

Level 5 Psychology



School/department School of Psychological Science
Faculty Faculty of Life Sciences

Description including Unit Aims

Historically, neurology and psychiatry were closely linked. In the last century, abnormal behaviour experienced different explanatory approaches by neurologists (body) and psychiatrists (mind). This unit will provide information on the historical foundation of neuropsychiatry, and consequently, demonstrate that common syndromes dealt with in Abnormal Psychology are also observable in patients with circumscribed brain lesions. In particular, this unit will deal with the most prevailing psychiatric phenomena such as major psychoses (schizophrenia, depression), anxiety, obsession, drug addiction, eating disorders, and personality disorders. Further examples are presented to illustrate the relationship between focal brain lesions and abnormal behaviour (e.g. phantom limb, out-of-body experiences, hysteria, alien hand syndrome, Capgras delusion, Fregoli delusion). In sum, the current unit intends to contribute to the ongoing body-mind debate, with the specific goal to demonstrate that psychiatric disorders are as organic as established neurological disorders.

Intended Learning Outcomes

On completion of the unit, the students will: 1. Have developed a thorough understanding of contemporary issues and methodological approaches to the study of Neuropsychiatry. 2. Have a comprehensive understanding of the application of these approaches in the literature. 3. Have further improved their transferable skills.

Teaching Information

18 x 1 hour lectures and 4 x 1 hour tutorials

Assessment Information

Coursework: 1x 1600 word essay Examination: 1 x 2 hour exam

Final Grade: Based on 30% coursework and 70% exam

Reading and References

Every Abnormal Psychology textbook (available from the library, common author names are: i) Davison and Neale, ii) Hansell, and iii) Comer) describes the basic psychiatric syndromes, and importantly here the related symptoms. Watch out for books published 2013 or younger including the DSM-5; though versions based on the DSM-IV-R will also be fine. Every Neuropsychology textbook can help understanding the link between anatomy and function (see 2nd year unit, common authors are Kolb and Whishaw). Most literature for this unit comes from original journal articles. Examples illustrating psychiatric symptoms from a neurological perspective will be given in each lecture. These references are journal articles available electronically via the library.