• Shuffle
    Toggle On
    Toggle Off
  • Alphabetize
    Toggle On
    Toggle Off
  • Front First
    Toggle On
    Toggle Off
  • Both Sides
    Toggle On
    Toggle Off
  • Read
    Toggle On
    Toggle Off

Card Range To Study



Play button


Play button




Click to flip

Use LEFT and RIGHT arrow keys to navigate between flashcards;

Use UP and DOWN arrow keys to flip the card;

H to show hint;

A reads text to speech;

89 Cards in this Set

  • Front
  • Back
abnormal behavior
Actions that are unexpected and often evaluated negatively because they differ from typical or usual behavior.
Deviation from the average or the usual.
Safe refuge; specifically, an institution to house mentally disordered people.
behavior therapy
Array of therapy methods based on the principles of behavioral and cognitive science as well as principles of learning as applied to clinical problems. It considers specific behaviors rather than inferred conflict as legitimate targets for change.
behavioral model
Explanation of human behavior, including dysfunction, based on principles of learning and adaptation derived from experimental psychology.
Explanation of human behavior, including dysfunction, based on principles of learning and adaptation derived from experimental psychology.
castration anxiety
In psychoanalysis, the fear in young boys that they will be mutilated genitally because of their lust for their mothers.
Rapid or sudden release of emotional tension thought to be an important factor in psychoanalytic therapy.
classical conditioning
Fundamental learning process first described by Ivan Pavlov. An event that automatically elicits a response is paired with another stimulus event that does not (a neutral stimulus). After repeated pairings, the neutral stimulus becomes a conditioned stimulus that by itself can elicit the desired response.
clinical description
Details of the combination of behaviors, thoughts, and feelings of an individual that make up a particular disorder.
clinical psychologist
Person who has earned a Ph.D. or related degree (e.g., Psy.D.) in psychology and is trained to conduct research into the causes and treatment of severe psychological disorders as well as to diagnose, assess, and treat them.
collective unconscious
Accumulated wisdom of a culture collected and remembered across generations, a psychodynamic concept introduced by Carl Jung.
counseling psychologist
Person who has earned a Ph.D. or related degree in psychology and is trained to study and treat adjustment and vocational issues in relatively healthy people.
Psychoanalytic concept involving personal issues the therapist brings to professional relationships with clients.
Pattern of development and change of a disorder over time.
defense mechanisms
Common patterns of behavior, often adaptive coping styles when they occur in moderation, observed in response to particular situations. In psychoanalysis, these are thought to be unconscious processes originating in the ego.
Defense mechanism in which a person directs a problem impulse toward a safe substitute.
dream analysis
Psychoanalytic therapy method in which dream contents are examined as symbolic of id impulses and intrapsychic conflicts.
In psychoanalysis, the psychical entity responsible for finding realistic and practical ways to satisfy id drives.
ego psychology
Derived from psychoanalysis, this theory emphasizes the role of the ego in development and attributes psychological disorders to failure of the ego to manage impulses and internal conflicts.
Electra complex
In psychoanalysis, a young girl’s intrapsychic desire to replace her mother, possess her father, and acquire a penis. The resolution of this complex results in development of the superego.
emotion contagion
Situation in which an emotional reaction spreads from one individual to others nearby.
condition of sharing and understanding the emotions of another person.
Cause or source of a disorder.
Religious ritual that attributes disordered behavior to possession by demons and seeks to treat the individual by driving the demons from his or her body.
Learning process in which a response maintained by reinforcement in operant conditioning or pairing in classical conditioning decreases when that reinforcement or pairing is removed; also the procedure of removing that reinforcement or pairing.
In psychoanalysis, stopping or concentrating at a psychosexual stage because of a lack of appropriate gratification at that stage.
free association
Psychoanalytic therapy technique intended to explore threatening ­material repressed into the unconscious. The patient is instructed to say whatever comes to mind without censoring.
hierarchy of needs
Ranking of human necessities from basic food to self-actualization, proposed by Abraham Maslow.
humoral theory
Ancient belief that psychological disorders were caused by imbalances in bodily humors or fluids.
Bodily fluids (blood, black and yellow bile, and phlegm) that early theorists believed controlled normal and abnormal functioning.
In psychoanalysis, the unconscious psychical entity present at birth representing basic drives.
Number of new cases of a disorder appearing during a specific time period (compare with prevalence).
inferiority complex
Feeling of being inferior to others while striving for superiority.
In psychoanalysis, recognition of the causes of emotional distress.
intrapsychic conflict
In psychoanalysis, the struggles among the id, ego, and superego.
In object relations theory, the process of incorporating memories and values of individuals who are important and close to the person.
Early, nonscientific approach to the study of psychology involving systematic attempts to report thoughts and feelings that specific stimuli evoked.
In psychoanalysis, the energy within the id that drives people toward life and fulfillment.
Perjorative, negative term for asylums, the institutions of refuge for the mentally disordered.
marital therapy
Interventions for the relationship problems of couples, whether married or not.
mass hysteria
Phenomenon in which people in groups share the same fear, delusion, abnormal behavior, or even physical symptoms as a result of psychological processes and suggestion.
mental disorder
Psychological disorder.
mental hygiene movement
Mid-19th-century effort to improve care of the mentally disordered by informing the public of their mistreatment.
moral therapy
19th-century psychosocial approach to treatment that involved treating patients as normally as possible in normal environments.
nervous breakdown
Lay term for a severe ­psychological upset that actually has no meaning in scientific or professional psychopath­o­log
Obsolete psychodynamic term for psychological disorder thought to result from unconscious conflicts and the anxiety they cause. Plural is neuroses.
object relations
Modern development in psychodynamic theory involving the study of how children incorporate the memories and values of people who are close and important to them.
Oedipus complex
In psychoanalysis, the intra­psychic struggle within a young boy between his lust for his mother and his fear of castration because of it. The resolution of this complex results in development of the superego.
person-centered therapy
Therapy method in which the client, rather than the counselor, primarily directs the course of discussion, seeking self-discovery and self-responsibility.
Psychological disorder characterized by marked and persistent fear of an object or situation.
pleasure principle
Tendency to seek pleasure and minimize discomfort.
presenting problem
Original complaint reported by the client to the therapist. The actual treated problem may sometimes be a modification derived from the presenting problem.
Number of people displaying a disorder in the total population at any given time (compare with incidence).
primary gain
Freudian notion that anxiety reduction is the principal reinforcement obtained for the display of psychological symptoms.
primary process
In psychodynamic theory, the id’s characteristic mode of thinking, which is emotional, irrational, and preoccupied with sex, aggression, and envy.
Predicted future development of a disorder over time.
psychiatric nurse
Person with nursing training who specializes in care and treatment of psychiatric patients, usually in a hospital setting.
psychiatric social worker
Person who has earned a master of social work (MSW) degree or, occasionally, a doctor of social work (DSW) degree and is trained to work with social agencies to help psychologically disordered clients and their families.
Person who has earned an M.D. degree and then has specialized in psychiatry during residency training. Psychiatrists are trained to investigate primarily the biological nature and causes of psychiatric disorders, and to diagnose and treat them as well.
Psychoanalytic assessment and therapy, which emphasizes exploration of, and insight into, unconscious processes and conflicts, pioneered by Sigmund Freud.
Therapist who practices psychoanalysis after earning either an M.D. or Ph.D. degree and then receiving additional specialized postdoctoral training.
psychoanalytic model
Complex and comprehensive theory originally advanced by Sigmund Freud that seeks to account for the development and structure of personality, as well as the origin of abnormal behavior, based primarily on inferred inner entities and forces.
psychodynamic psychotherapy
Contemporary version of psychoanalysis that still emphasizes unconscious processes and conflicts but is briefer and more focused on specific problems.
psychological disorder
Psychological dysfunction associated with distress or impairment in functioning that is not a typical or culturally expected response.
psychological model
Explanation of human behavior and its dysfunction that emphasizes the influence of the social environment and early experience.
Scientific study of psychological disorders.
psychophysiological disorders
Outdated term, similar to psychosomatic medicine, for the study of psychological and social factors influencing physical disorders. The term is misleading because it falsely implies that other psychological problems such as mood disorders do not also have significant biological components.
psychosexual stages of development
In psychoanalysis, the sequence of phases a person passes through during development. Each stage is named for the location on the body where id gratification is maximal at that time.
psychosocial treatment
Treatment practices that focus on social and cultural factors (such as family experience) as well as psychological influences. These approaches include cognitive, behavioral, and interpersonal methods.
reality principle
In psychodynamic theory, the logical reasoning style of the ego that ensures actions are practical and realistic.
In operant conditioning, consequences for behavior that strengthen it or increase its frequency. Positive reinforcement involves the contingent delivery of a desired consequence; negative reinforcement is the contingent escape from an aversive consequence. Unwanted behaviors may result from their reinforcement, or the failure to reinforce desired behaviors.
In psychoanalytic theory, a process that forces unwanted material from the conscious to the unconscious.
Saint Vitus’s Dance
Instance of mass hysteria in which groups of people experienced a simultaneous compulsion to dance and shout in the streets.
scientist-practitioner model
Expectation that mental health professionals will apply scientific methods to their work. They must keep current in the latest research on diagnosis and treatment, they must evaluate their own methods for effectiveness, and they may generate their own research to discover new knowledge of disorders and their treatment.
Process emphasized in humanistic psychology in which people strive to achieve their highest potential against difficult life experiences.
See ego psychology.
In operant conditioning, the development of a new response by reinforcing successively more similar versions of that response. Both desirable and undesirable behaviors may be learned in this manner.
somatic treatments
Biological interventions that include medication, electroconvulsive (shock) therapy, and psychosurgery.
Psychodynamic defense mechanism in which the person redirects energy from conflict and anxiety into more constructive outlets, such as work.
In psychoanalysis, the psychical entity representing the internalized moral standards of parents and society.
supernatural model
Explanation of human behavior and its dysfunction that posits important roles for spirits, demons, grace, sin, and so on.
symptom substitution
Psychodynamic assertion that if overt problem behavior (the “symptom”) is treated without eliminating the underlying conflict thought to be causing it, that conflict will reemerge in the form of new, perhaps worse, symptoms.
systematic desensitization
Behavioral therapy technique to diminish excessive fears, involving gradual exposure to the feared stimulus paired with a positive coping experience, usually relaxation.
See St. Vitus’s Dance.
Freudian concept of a human drive toward death and destruction.
Psychoanalytic concept suggesting that clients may seek to relate to the therapist as they do to important authority figures, particularly their parents.
unconditional positive regard
Acceptance by the counselor of the client’s feelings and actions without judgment or condemnation.
Part of the psychic makeup that is outside the awareness of the person.