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patterns of thoughts, feelings and behaviours that conform to usual, typical or expected standards in a culture.


patterns of thoughts, feelings and behaviours that are deviant, distressing or dysfunctional in relation to the usual, typical or expected standards in a culture.


A state of complete physical, mental and social wellbeing and not merely the absence of illness and disease

Mental health

A person's capacity interact with others and the environment in ways that promote subjective wellbeing, optimal development and effective use of cognitive, social and emotional abilities.

Mental Illness (or disorder)

Physicological dysfunction usually involving impaired ability to cope with everyday life, distress and thoughts, feelings and behaviours that are atypical for that person and/or socio-culturally inappropriate.


An identifiable physiological change associated with an abnormal bodily condition


A person's subjective experience of feeling unwell/unhealthy.

Categorical Approach

Organises and describes mental conditions and disorders in terms of different categories and subcategories, each with symptoms and characteristics that are typical of specific mental conditions and disorders.

Dimensional Approach

Quantifies symptoms or other characteristics and represents them on scales or continuums for dimensions to indicate "how much"


Cluster of co-related psychological and/or behavioural traits (characteristics).

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