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involves an emotionally charged interaction between a trained therapist and a mental patient

Biomedical Therapy

uses drugs or other procedures that act on the patient's nervous system, treating his or her psychological disorders

Eclectic Approach

uses various forms of healing techniques depending on the client's unique pproblems

4 types of psychotherapies

Psychoanalytic, Humanistic, Behavioral, Cognitive

Aims of psychoanalytic theory

bring repressed feelings into conscious awareness where the patient can deal with them


Usually involves free association-the patient speaks about whatever is on his/her mind


During free association, the patient may change subjects to divert away from what they're really thinking

Interpersonal Psychotherapy

a veriation of psychodynamic therapy, is effective in treating depression. It focuses on symptom relief here and now, not an overall personality change, through an examination of current relationships and the mastery of relationship skills

Humanistic Therapies

aim to boost self-fulfillment by helping people grow in self-awareness and self-acceptance

Client-Centered therapy

developed by Carl Rogers; the therapist listens to the needs of the patient in an accepting and non-judgmental way

Active Listening

echoing, restatin, and seeking clarification of what the person expresses (like a mirror)

Behavior Therapy

applies learning principles to the elimination of unwanted behaviors


a procedure that conditions new responses to stimuli that trigger unwanted behaviors; based on classical conditioning and includes exposure therapy and aversive conditioning

Exposure Therapies

involves exposing people to fear-driving objects in real or virtual environments; things the patient would usually avoid

Systematic Desensitization

type of exposure therapy that associates a pleasant, relaxed state with gradually increasing anxiety-triggering stimuli; commonly used to treat phobias

Aversive Conditioning

type of counterconditioning that associates an unpleasant state with an unwanted behavior

Operant Conditioning

type of classical conditioning; procedures enable therapists to use behavior modification, in which desired behaviors are rewarded and undesired behaviors are either unrewarded or punished

Token Economy

type of operant conditioning; in institutional settings, therapists may create a token economy in which patients exchange a token of some sort, earned for exhibiting the desired behavor, for various priviliges or treats

Cognitive Therapies

theaches people adaptive ways of thinking and acting based on the assumption that thoughts intervene between events and our emotional reactions; ie positive thinking/optimisim

Stress Inoculation Training

people learn to dispute their negative thoughts and to restructure their thinking in stressful situations

Cognitive Behavior Therapy

aims to alter the way people act and alter the way they think

Group therapy

normally consists of 6-9 people attending a 90 min session that can help more people and costs less; clients benefit from knowing others have similar problems

Reasons why clients my overestimate the effectiveness of psychotherapy

1. they often enter therapy in crisis, but the crisis may subside over the natural course of time 2. clients my need to believe the therapy was worth the effort 3. clients generaly speak kindly of their therapists

Outcome research

Randomized clinical trials help us best measure the effectiveness of psychotherapy; research shows that psychotherapy is cost and health effective

Eye Movement Desensitization and Preprocessing (EMDR)

the therapist attempts to unlock and reprocess previous frozen traumatic memories by waving a finger in front of the eyes of the client; has not held up under scientific testing; it's more a combo of exposure therapy and placebo effect

Light Exposure Therapy

Treats seasonal affective disorder (SAD); scientifically proven to be effective

Commonalities among psychotherapies

1. a hope for demoralized people 2. a new perspective 3. an empathetic, trusting, and caring relationship

4 types of therapists

Clinical psychologists (phD's), Clinical or psychiatric social worker, Counselors, and psychiatrists (can prescribe medication)


Study of drug effects on mind and behavior; biomedical therapies

Double blind procedures

tests the effectiveness of a drug; actual medication vs placebo

Antipsychotic Drugs (classical and atypical)

Classical-Thorazine: remove positive symptoms associated with schizophrenia (ie hallucinations, agitation); Atypical-Clozaril: remove negative symptoms associated with schizophrenia (ie jumbled thoughts, apathy)

Antianxiety Drugs

Xanax; depress central nervous system and reduce anxiety and tension

Antidepressant Drugs

Prozac, zoloft, paxil; Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors (SSRIs) improve the mood by elevating levels of serotonin by inhibiting reuptake

Mood-Stabilizing Medications

Lithium Carbonate; used to stabilize manic episodes in bipolar disorders

Electroconvulsive Therapy (ECT)

type of brain stimulation used for severely depressed patients; receive a shock that relieves depression


used as a last resort in alleviating psychological disturbances; it is irreversible; removal of brain tissue permanently alters the mind

Attribution Theory

We have a tendency to give casual explanations for someone's behavior, often by crediting either the situations or the person's disposition

Fundamental Attribution Error

the tendency to overestimate the impact of personal disposition and underestimate the impact of the situations in analyzing the behaviors of others leads to this


feelings, based on beliefs that predispose a person to respond in a particular way to objects, other people, and events

Attitudes can affect...


Foot in the door Phenomenon

the tendency for people who have first agreed to a small request to comply later with a larger request

Actions can affect...


Cognitive dissonance

we often bring our attitudes into line with our actions to relieve tension (rationalize to reduce discomfort)


adjusting one's behavior or thinking to coincide with a group standard. Behavior is contatious, modeled by one followed by another. We must follow behavior of others to conform

Chameleon Effect

our natural tendencey to mimic others. Unconsciously mimicking others' expressions, postures, and voice tones helps us to empathize with others


a subtle type of confority, adjusting our behavor or thinking toward some group standard

Normative Social Influence

influence resulting from a person's desire to gain apporval or avoid rejection. A person may respect normative behavior because there may be a severe price to pay if not respected

Informational Social Influence

influence resulting from one's willingness to accept others' opinions about reality

Social Facilitation

improved performance on tasks in the presence of others

Social Loafing

the tendency of an individual in a group to exert less effort towards attaining a common goal than when tested individually (ie tug of war)


the loss of self-awareness and self-restraint in group situations that foster arousal and anonymity

Group Polarization

enhances a group's prevailing attitudes through a discussion. If a group is like-minded, discussion strengthens its prevailing opinions and attitudes

Group Think

a mode of thinking that occurs when the desire for harmonly ina decision-making group overrides the realistic appraisal of alternatives


an unjustifiable (usually negative) attitude toward a group and its members; often directed towards different cultural, ethnic, or gender groups

Scapegoat Theory

one minority group becomes the object of frustration

Cognitive roots of Prejudice

categorization, vivid cases, just-world phenomenon, hindsight bias


any physical or verbal behavior intented to hurt or destroy. It may be done reactively out of hostility or proactively as a calculated means to an end

Biological influences on aggressive behavior

genetic, neural, biochemical

Psychological factors of aggressive behavior

dealing with aversive events, learning aggression is rewarding, observing models of aggression, and acquiring social scripts

Frustration-Aggression Principle

a principle in which frustration (caused by the blocking of an attempt to achieve a desired goal) creates anger, which can generate aggression

Social scripts

mental tapes for how to act, provided by our culture

Psychology of Attraction

proximity, physical attractiveness, and similarity

Passionate Love

an aroused state of intense positive absorption in another, usually present at the beginnig of a love relationship

Companionate Love

a deep affectionate attachment we feel for those with whom our lives are intertwined


a condition in which people receive from a relationship in proportion to what they give


unselfish regard for the welfare of others

Bystander Effect

tendency of any given bystander to be less likely to give aid if other bystanders are present

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