K435 – Biopsychosocial Problems
This course builds on concepts developed in K421 – Human Development I: Psychosocial Development in Infancy and Childhood, K422 – Human Development II: Psychosocial Development from Early Adolescence through Adulthood, practice courses, and supervision seminars, taking students’ knowledge and understanding from these courses to a more advanced level. Using a case study approach, it draws upon social-cultural theories and theories of development and identity to provide a context in which to understand the nature of diagnostic thinking and definitions of problems in biopsychosocial functioning and assessment. The course provides students with an opportunity to explore how relationships between biological, psychological, and environmental factors lead to and exacerbate individual problems in functioning. This applied course will also help students understand, learn, and critique descriptive approaches to mental health assessment, as well as the use and application of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) and other taxonomies for assessing and diagnosing a range of mental health disorders in children, adolescents, and adults. Students will discuss the ways in which race, ethnicity, social class, gender, sexual orientation, age, and other social variables intersect with assessment and practice issues. Issues related to pharmacological intervention will also be explored.