This course will cover the basic concepts of clinical psychology, or the study of diagnosing, treating, and understanding abnormal and maladaptive behaviors. We frequently refer to these behaviors?which include depression, anxiety, and schizophrenia?as mental diseases or disorders. While you might have a general understanding of these disorders, this course will cover each in great detail.

Many of you are likely familiar with the idea of therapy, whether because you or someone you know has been in therapy, or because you have seen it in popular TV shows or movies. Because many approaches to therapy draw from research on clinical populations?that is, populations suffering from some sort of mental disorder?therapy is closely related to the field of psychopathology. Although this class will not teach you how to conduct therapy?see PSYCH404, or Psychotherapy for an in-depth look at the subject?it will provide you with a solid understanding of the etiology and symptoms of a number of disorders.

Much of the information in this course is based on the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual IV-TR (DSM), the industry standard for both clinical psychologists and psychiatrists who reference it frequently in order to diagnose mental disorders. A new version of this manual is due to be published soon, and it will likely challenge some commonly held ideas about certain disorders. This brings up an important point about clinical psychology: few issues in the field have hard-and-fast answers. Much is left up to debate and subjective opinion. As such, rather than providing you with step-by-step directions, this course has been designed to provide you with in-depth, current information about mental disease and related aspects.

We will begin this course by reviewing the historical context from which clinical psychology emerged, and defining the major roles clinical psychologists fill and the tasks in which they engage. We will then discuss current paradigms and classification methods before learning about individual disorders, their treatments, and common explanations concerning their origins. We will conclude with an introduction to methods of intervention.

Quiz PDF eBook: 
Clinical Psychology MCQ PSYCH205
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Sample Questions from the Clinical Psychology MCQ PSYCH205 Quiz

Question: An anxiety disorder often involves anxiety that is ______ to the situation at hand.






Question: The etiology of anxiety disorders focuses on a multitude of aspects including alterations in what type of neurotransmitter?






Question: Which of the following is NOT an issue with the biopsychosocial model of disease?


Degree of interaction

Variation across individuals and lifespans

Degree of factoral influence

Age of mental disorder development

Question: Which of the following is NOT a type of anxiety disorder?


Obsessive Compulsive Disorder

Social Anxiety Disorder

Panic Disorder

Bipolar Disorder

Question: All of the following can influence the progression and recovery of schizophrenia in adults EXCEPT ______.


personal/social issues

disease heterogeneity

affect and sense of self

neurocognitive impairments

Question: Treating anxiety in older adults with what type of medication can result in a toxicity issue?





MAO inhibitors

Question: The history of mental health services focuses on which of the following?


The percentage of people who use mental health services

Origins of treatment and policy interventions

Promotion of recovery process

Life stage influence on mental health

Question: Abnormal psychology focuses on all of the following EXCEPT ______.


mental disorders as statistical and social deviance

mental disorders as social constructions

mental disorders as predictable behavior

mental disorders as maladaptive behavior

Question: According to your readings from the United States Department of Health and Human Services, ______ is the most easily understood of all mental disorders.




mood disturbance

somatic disturbance

Question: The two primary concerns in the clinical psychology practice are _____ and _____.


diagnosis, prevention

prevention, treatment

development, treatment

diagnosis, treatment

Question: What type of anxiety disorder in children is characterized by a persistent fear of embarrassment in social situations?


Separation Anxiety Disorder

Social Phobia

Generalized Anxiety Disorder

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder

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Disclaimer:  This course is designed to address the fundamentals of clinical psychology. It will NOT provide the education or experience needed for the diagnosing and treating of mental disorders.
Source:  Clinical Psychology The Saylor Academy 2014,
Anindyo Mukhopadhyay
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