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    Abnormal and Abnormality

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    At this stage in your study of human psychology, you might be wondering, "Since I can often recognize what I consider to be abnormal behavior, why is it so difficult to define?" As you found in this week's assigned reading, some of the issues involved in distinguishing abnormal from normal behavior are complex and fraught with controversy. Additionally, the definition of abnormal behavior can change with time.

    To prepare:

    Review the definitions of abnormal and abnormality in Chapter 1 of your text and the Introduction in the DSM-5.

    Analyze how the definitions align, overlap, or differ.

    Reflect on how these statements or others might have changed your ideas of what constitutes abnormal behavior.

    With these thoughts in mind:

    Post by Day 4 a comparison of normal and abnormal behavior, drawing from your original definition of abnormal behavior, and the definitions put forth in the Learning Resources. Point out any challenges you might see in using these definitions to guide the assessment of your clients.

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    Solution Preview

    Abnormal vs. Abnormality

    Abnormal and abnormality at first encounter appears almost one and the same. When we talk of abnormal - we refer to something that is not typical or normal in society. Thus people who are abnormal therefore have attributes that make them atypical, different and in psychology, this almost always refers to problems in terms of mental and emotional functions. To say something is abnormal therefore refers also to that which is normal, only that it is deviating from it. What is abnormal thus is based on culture, norms and social standards. Psychologically speaking, having an established set of parameters of normal psychological functioning, that which does not fit into this is considered atypical - and therefore abnormal. Meanwhile, abnormality is that condition in the person itself that is that which is not normal. For example, a child suffering from some form of autism spectrum disorder can be claimed to be abnormal because that disorder the child suffers from is an abnormality - a condition that is not typical and deviates from the norm of expected function or form.

    If we look into the definitions provided in DSM 5, abnormal people do not usually show the following capabilities (Salinas, 2015), "common to people with 'normal' psychological states is an efficient perception of reality, meaning that an ...

    Solution Summary

    The solution provides information, assistance and advise in tackling the task (see above) on the topic of abnormal and abnormality. Resources are listed for further exploration of the topic.

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