Psychology 316 Course Offerings

Course Information

  • Department: Psychology
  • Course Title: Atypical Development
  • Course Code: PSY 316
  • Credits: 3
  • Contact Hours: 45

Catalog Description

In this course students will explore developmental deviations that result in disorders of childhood focusing on neurodevelopmental disorders (intellectual disability, autism spectrum disorder, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, and specific learning disorder) and psychopathology (anxiety, mood, and conduct disorders). Developmental theories will be utilized to analyze disorders at the genetic, brain, behavioral, and cognitive levels. Emphasis will be placed on examining neurobiological and environmental factors contributing to disorders of childhood. The final portion of the course will focus on how atypical development may contribute to our understanding of typical development. Prerequisite(s): PSY 232 Credits: 3 (3,0)

  • Prerequisites: PSY 232. Credits: 3.
  • Required For: None
  • Elective For: All curricula with a social science elective
  • Text: Mash, E. J., Wolfe, D. A. (2016). Abnormal Child Psychology, 6th Edition

Learning Objectives:

  • Discuss the major themes, issues, and concepts that define and surround atypical development
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the range of childhood disorders including DSM-5 diagnostic criteria
  • Demonstrate an understanding of how the environment can shape developmental trajectories
  • Demonstrate an understanding of how the neurobiological and environmental factors that impact the development, maintenance, and behavioral manifestation of childhood disorders
  • Identify risk and protective factors and discuss how they contribute to the development of psychopathology
  • Demonstrate an understanding of how studying atypical development informs our understanding of typical development
  • Critically evaluate research findings
  • Practice critical thinking, reasoning, and communication skills

Assignments & Course Work

Students will be assessed via a variety of methods including written exams, oral case study presentations, and a research paper.

Week 1 Topic
  Introduction to the Class
  What is Atypical Development?
Week 2 Topic
  Levels of Analysis: Genes, Brain, Behavior, & Cognition
  Theories & Causes
Week 3 Topic
  Intellectual Disability (Single Gene Disorders)
Week 4 Topic
  Intellectual Disability (Chromosomal & CNV Disorders)
Week 5 Topic
  Autism Spectrum Disorder
Week 6 Topic
  Language Disorders
  Developmental Dyslexia
Week 7 Topic
  Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder
Week 8 Topic
  Tourette’s Disorder
Week 9 Topic
  Attachment Disorders
Week 10 Topic
  Anxiety Disorders
Week 11 Topic
  Mood Disorders
Week 12 Topic
  Conduct Disorders
Week 13 Topic
  Face Processing
  Social Cognition
Week 14 Topic
  Attention & Visual Processing
Week 15 Topic