Skip To Content

Lackawanna College

PSY212OM ~Abnormal Psychology

Online Classroom

October 21st, 2015 to December 11th 2015

Instructor:        Tina Bruno, M.S., LPC, CCDP-D     Phone: (570) 955-1478

Office:             Angeli Hall Room 105A                

E-mail:    Email is checked several times daily.

Office Hours:   Online through Chat at a mutually convenient scheduled time.

Be sure to read this syllabus over thoroughly. The course syllabus is considered a contract between instructor and students. Your continued enrollment in the course equates to your signature on the contract, indicating your agreement to abide by the terms of this contract.

Required Text

Abnormal Psychology, 13th Edition; Kring, A. M., Johnson, S. L., Davison, G., & Neale, J.;

ISBN: 9781118953983    Copyright Year: 2014   Publisher: John Wiley & Sons, Incorporated       



This course is a review of abnormal behaviors that affect human beings. The course includes a review of the various paradigms of abnormal behavior and the leading treatment modalities for those behaviors.

Prerequisite: PSY 105



1) To explore the development, etiologies, theories and treatment interventions regarding behavior exceptionalities encountered by human services workers and educators.

2) Explore the behavior associated with Intellectual Disabilities, Schizophrenia, ADHD, Mood Disorders, Anxiety Disorders, and Personality Disorders.

3) Understand the social, psychological, educational, and intervention issues associated with exceptionalities.

4) Understand and assess exceptionalities from the viewpoints of the main paradigms.


Online Course Attendance Policy:

Students enrolled in credit-bearing courses at Lackawanna College will fail any course(s) in which they accumulate absences beyond the maximum number allowed. This pertains to online courses as well.

Attendance is defined by participating in an academic activity within the online classroom, which includes posting in a graded discussion forum or submitting a written assignment. Postings not related to the aforementioned activities will not count for attendance purposes.

# of Days Required for Discussion in an Online Course

Maximum # of Weeks Allowed without Discussion

Twice on any four days in a week (8 total)


  • You are required to engage in discussion at least TWICE on FOUR days throughout the week for a total of EIGHT posts in all, minimum.
  • You should respond to the initial DQs posted AND respond to your classmates.
  • Responses MUST be substantive. See the document titled Good Discussions in your Handouts and Links.
  • Responses that do not move the conversation forward by providing information to which others can respond and build upon will NOT be counted toward your weekly score.
  • Students who miss one week of discussion will be DROPPED from the course.
  • Students who do not log on to the course within the drop/add period for the course will be DROPPED from the course.



Online Course Discussion Policy   

In order to understand, remember, and benefit from what we learn in class, discussion and interaction are critical. Responses such as, “I like what you said.” “I agree.” Or “Good thinking.” are NOT acceptable. Also, you should NOT simply repeat what someone else has already said.

You MUST post no less than 8 times per week – twice on any four days.

Good Discussions in Handouts and Links will help you, but you should also use this rubric to gain all possible points for your contributions and, more importantly, to get the most out of our class discussion!

Online Classroom Discussion and Interaction Rubric

Up to 16 points per week can be earned for responses to Discussion Questions = 128 points total

What Should I Do?

Points Available

Did I do This?


Points Earned

Answer  both Discussion Questions directly demonstrating a clear understanding of the material, support your response with research or reading, and promote conversation (2 post)





Respond to at least two classmates’ posts (2 posts)





Continue both conversations with at least one additional reply to each peer (2 posts)





Respond to at least one of the teacher’s secondary questions, conversing with a classmate who responds to the same question (2 posts)





Be sure all responses are detailed and clear and are posted twice on four separate days.





Be sure that all responses relate to the course reading and notes, your own everyday life, or to both






Provides the class with a response that is non-generic and inspiring – meaning that they learn from what you have contributed and can continue the conversation





Use proper grammar, spelling, and netiquette











Withdrawal Policy:

A student has the privilege of withdrawing from any courses or from the College itself without academic penalty up to and including the final date for withdrawal indicated on the College calendar.

To withdraw officially from a course or from the College, a student must obtain the proper withdrawal form from the Student Affairs Office or from your Center Director, complete this form and submit it to the Registrar's Office before the final day for withdrawal without academic penalty as indicated on the College calendar. If a student stops attending a course for which he/she is registered after the published census date (end of drop/add) without having officially withdrawn from the course, the student will be assigned an AW (penalty-grade failure) for the class. No exceptions will be made.


Students who violate the College's Academic Integrity Policy and fail a course in consequence may not exercise the withdrawal privilege in that particular course.

Financial obligations to the College will be determined according to the Refund Policy.




Instructor Policies

Online courses allow flexibility for "attending class" (so-to-speak) at your convenience, as well as require self-motivation and time-management on your part. You can expect online courses to take as much time and dedication as short-term, in-class courses, and from that plan your schedules accordingly.  Because this online course is a 7.5 week course, it is more concentrated than a typical 15-week traditional in class or online course. It is important to keep in mind that online courses are not for every student.  If the pace of this short-term course is too fast for you or if you are having difficulty with independent time-management, you can consider enrolling in an on-campus, full-term (15-week) course.  Speak up soon, e-mail or call me so we can discuss your concerns sooner rather than later to ensure the best in return for your choice.


Participation will be accomplished through online discussions and completion of weekly assignments turned in on time. Students are expected to "attend" class on a regular basis. Attendance is noted as assignments are turned in and discussion questions are answered. You are expected to have read all material prior to the due date to incorporate the material into assignments and discussions. It will be through inter-active participation that course information is learned and retained.



The assignments in this course are tracked by points. Use the Points Value column to check your grade based on how many points you have earned. You might also estimate how many more points you need in order to earn the final grade that you want.

Letter Grade

Numeric Range

Points Value

Quality Points


96 – 100




90 – 95




87 – 89




83 – 86




80 – 82




77 – 79




73 – 76




70 – 72




67 – 69




60 – 66




0 – 59




Due Dates and Late Penalties:

Late assignments will earn a penalty. Technical difficulties are NOT a justification for lateness.


The grace period for late assignments is as follows:

  • 1 day late-10% deduction off of the assignment grade
  • 2 days late-20% off of the assignment grade
  • 3 days late-the assignment will receive a grade of 0%


There will be no “extra credit.”


Academic Integrity:

Academic dishonesty in any form, such as plagiarism and cheating, will not be tolerated either in the online or traditional classrooms. Sanctions will include an automatic F for plagiarism, but the severity or frequency of the violation may result in dismissal from the College as well.


The following are among the forms of dishonesty, in a classroom of any type, for which sanctions may be applied:

  • Using books, notes or other materials during an examination, unless expressly permitted;
  • Using purchased essays, term papers or preparatory research for such papers;
  • Copying others' work or engaging in unauthorized cooperation during an assignment or examination;
  • Allowing another student to copy from an examination or other assignment intended to be performed independently;
  • Borrowing from published works, whether material is taken verbatim or with minor alterations, without proper and/or sufficient acknowledgment;
  • Submitting as one’s own work originally done by someone else;
  • Submitting the same written report in more than one course without prior approval from the instructor(s) involved;
  • Stealing examinations or assignments;
  • Supplying or selling examinations or assignments;
  • Misrepresenting statements concerning work submitted;
  • Falsifying or fabricating experimental data or results;
  • Falsifying or fabricating the need for extensions on papers or make-up examinations.
  • Misrepresenting identity in an online course


Disability Statement

Lackawanna College is an Affirmative Action, Equal Employment Opportunity institution.  Students with disabilities and other needs should feel free to contact the instructor privately if there are services and adaptations which can be made to accommodate specific needs.  Students who are having difficulties with class material are strongly advised to seek assistance in the reading and writing lab.  If you feel that you have a disability that has not been formally documented, you may meet with Ms. Christine Kiehart in the academic development office to discuss your options. Please note that disability services do not include exemption from participation requirements in courses considered part of the School of Distance Education, including online and hybrid courses.

Lackawanna College Notice of Nondiscrimination

Lackawanna College will not discriminate in its educational programs, activities, or employment practices, based on race, color, national origin, sexual orientation, disability, age, religion, ancestry, union membership, or any other legally protected classification. Announcement of this policy is in accordance with State Law including the Pennsylvania Human Relations Act and with Federal Law including Titles VI and VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, Sections 503 and 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, the Age Discrimination Act of 1975, and Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990.


Title IX of the Education Amendment of 1972 is a federal civil rights law that prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in federally funded education programs and activities. Lackawanna College is committed to providing an educational and work environment that is free from unlawful sexual discrimination including sexual harassment, sexual violence, and gender based harassment. 


In accordance with Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, Lackawanna College will not tolerate any forms of sexual misconduct including but not limited to: sexual harassment, sexual assault, sexual violence and gender-based harassment by employees, students or third parties. This includes prohibiting discrimination against pregnant and parenting students. The College also prohibits retaliation against any person who makes a claim of discrimination or harassment or who provides information in such an investigation. This policy applies to admissions, employment, treatment and access to all programs and activities that take place either on or off the campus at Lackawanna College. 


Lackawanna College will fully and promptly investigate all allegations of sexual misconduct and will take action reasonably designed to resolve the complaint in an equitable manner, end a hostile environment if one has been created, prevent its recurrence, and, when appropriate, take steps to remedy its effects on individuals and the college community.


Lackawanna College complies with Title IX and all other federal laws and regulations that prohibit discrimination in education programs or activities receiving federal financial assistance.

Reports or inquiries regarding nondiscrimination should be made to:

Title IX Coordinator/ Executive Director of the Student Wellness Program, Marsha Pigga, Angeli Hall, Room 102, 501 Vine Street, Scranton PA, 18509 (570) 955-1466/ (570) 677-7589,

Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action inquiries: Anita Cola, Affirmative Action Officer/Dean of Continuing Education, Angeli Hall, Room 300C, Vine Street, Scranton PA (570) 961-7815, or Dan LaMagna, Affirmative Action Officer/Dean of Students, Angeli Hall, Room 104, Vine Street, Scranton PA, (570) 504-1579,  


Additional information regarding Title IX requirements and how to file a complaint with the Office of Civil Rights: Office of Civil Rights at, 800-421-3481. Philadelphia Office: Office for Civil Rights U.S. Department of Education, The Wanamaker Building,100 Penn Square East, Suite 515, Philadelphia, PA 19107-3323 Telephone: 215-656-8541, Email:   


Portfolio and Coursework

Lackawanna College will empower you to experience learning by inspiring your critical thinking, assessing your talents and skills, motivating you toward a career choice, and encouraging you to make a difference. In evidence of this learning, the College requires a graduation portfolio containing Career Documents, including a résumé, two letters of recommendation, and a career exploration; Core Coursework, including a research paper from College Writing; three sample papers or projects from Major Coursework; and a Lackawanna College Reflection Paper.


Course Schedule:



Course Objective Met

Related Assignment, Assessment, or Learning Activity




Introduction & Historical Overview of Psychopathology and its Current Paradigms

3, 4


Read Chapter 1 & 2 and Review Week 1 Handout & Links

Through online discussion forum:

Defining what is a psychological disorder, outlining the history of psychopathology and the evolution of contemporary thought as well as the current paradigms in psychopathology.

Journal #1 due by 11:55PM on 10/25/15




Diagnosis and Assessment of Psychological Disorders


Legal and Ethical Issues



Read Chapter 3 & 16 and Review Week 2 Handout & Links

Through online discussion forum:

Effects of stigma on persons with a mental health diagnosis seeking treatment, understanding the DSM 5, its changes in assessment criteria; the cultural bias in assessment and ways to circumvent bias as well as legal and ethical issues.

KWL assignment/Interactive Jeopardy Review in Discussion Forum




Disorders of Childhood

1, 2, 3, 4.


Read Chapter 13 and Review Week 3 Handout & Links

Through online discussion forum: explore the behaviors associated with Disorders of Childhood including intellectual disabilities and ADHD; explore their development, etiologies, theories and treatment interventions.

Research Paper Outline Due by 11:55PM on 11/08/15

Journal #2 due by 11:55PM on 11/08/15




Mood Disorders

1, 2, 3, 4

Read Chapter 5 and Review Week 4 Handouts & Links

Through online discussion forum: explore the behavior associated with Mood Disorders: explore the development, etiologies, theories and treatment interventions

Read Chapter 5

Journal #3 due by 11:55PM on 11/15/15





Anxiety Disorders

1, 2, 3, 4

Read Chapter 6 and Review Week 5 Handout & Links

Through online discussion forum: explore the behavior associated with Anxiety Disorders; explore the development, etiologies, theories and treatment interventions


Research paper due by 11:55PM on 11/22/15





1, 2, 3, 4

Read Chapters 9 and Review Week 6 Handout & Links

Through online discussion forum: explore the behavior associated with Schizophrenia; explore the development, etiologies, theories and treatment interventions

Journal #4 due by 11:55PM on 11/29/15






Personality Disorders

1, 2, 3, 4

Read Chapters 15 & Review Week 7 Handout & Links

Through online discussion forum: explore the behavior associated with Personality Disorders; explore the development, etiologies, theories and treatment interventions


Group Presentations due by 11:55PM on 12/06/15




Obsessive Compulsive Disorders & Trauma Related Disorders

1, 2, 3, 4

Read Chapter 7 & Review Week 8 Handout & Links

Through online discussion forum: explore the behavior associated with Obsessive Compulsive Disorders; explore the development, etiologies, theories and treatment interventions

Final  due by 11:55PM on 12/11/15







Feedback Journal Assignment

Feedback Journal:  Write your thoughts and feelings about significant, new insights and ideas you experienced from chapter readings for weeks 1, 3, 4 & 6. Be specific about what you liked, or did not like (or understand).  Each journal should include two topics you learned from the reading as well as two critical thought questions based on your summary along with your answers to these questions.     

Objective: Journal writing can facilitate reflection and allow students to express feelings regarding their educational experiences. This journal assignment serves as an ongoing opportunity to engage you, the student in the most important concepts and ideas in Abnormal Psychology. Your journal entries should not merely summarize what you have read, nor should they focus only on your feelings. Instead, they should demonstrate your ability to conduct a critical inquiry (the steps involved in collecting and analyzing ideas or information). These reflective and critical thinking skills are necessary in many of the fields associated with psychology

Each Journal is due for submission before midnight each Sunday of that week

These dates are as follows:

Journal#1: Week 1 Due: 10/25/15

Journal#2: Week3 Due: 11/08/15

Journal #3: Week 4 Due: 11/15/15

Journal # 4: Week 6 Due: 11/29/15.

I will comment on your journal entries and return to you prior to the following Sunday.

Each Feedback Journal will be graded based on the following criteria.  

Feedback Journal Grading Rubric

15  Points Each Journal

What Should I Do?

Points Available

Did I do This?


Points Earned

Reflection of two topics that you are focusing on from one of the chapters; how it resonates with you; how it relate to your life situation, personal reflections, future goals, etc.





Two critical thought questions & answers





Proper spelling, punctuation and grammar.





Format: font, margins, heading. All papers are in Times New Roman, 12-point font.











All assignments must be uploaded and include this completed rubric.

Research/Movie Review Paper

This Assignment is due by 11:55PM on 11/22/15.

Each student will examine a specific disorder from the DSM-V AND a movie representative of this disorder.  The movie must be approved. Here is the link to assist you in finding a movie:


A research paper (5-8 pages) will be submitted that conceptualizes the diagnosis from any theoretical approach, and reviews the movie content with accuracy of portrayal and value as a potential teaching tool.  In other words, critique the movie as a counselor.  Your conceptualization of the diagnosis can include, but is not limited to, developmental perspective(s), biological and psychological perspectives, treatment planning, evidence-based approaches to current treatment, comparison of past and present models of treatment and conceptualization, and the counselor’s (in other words, your) views and/or experiences. 


The written paper is to be completed in APA format with relevant reference list.  This assignment is due by 11:55PM on November 22nd 2015.


A brief outline of chosen subject will be due by 11:55PM November 8th 2015 in order to assist in completing this assignment, avoiding procrastination, and determine EARLY the nature and volume of resources available for your subject.  Further discussions and details will emerge throughout the course to help guide your choice and composition.


Outline for Research/ Movie Review Paper Grading Rubric

25 points

What Should I Do?

Points Available

Did I do This?


Points Earned

With clarity and conciseness, summarized the disorder you will be exploring and the reason you chose the movie that you chose to do so.






Identified and outlined your plan for critique with reference to what approach you will be taking in your efforts to draw comparisons between what was learned and what is depicted in the film.






Format: font, margins, heading. All papers are in Times New Roman, 12-point font.












All assignments must be uploaded and include this completed rubric.


Research Movie Review Grading Rubric

100  Points

What Should I Do?

Points Available

Did I do This?


Points Earned

Paper conceptualizes the diagnosis from a theoretical  approach, and reviews the movie content with accuracy of portrayal and value as a potential teaching tool





Structure of the paper is clear and easy to follow.
- Paragraph transitions are logical and maintain the flow of thought throughout the paper.
- Conclusion is logical and flows from the body of the paper.





Paper follows all designated guidelines.
- Paper is 5 pages long
-Format enhances readability of paper and follows APA format very well. 





Rules of grammar, usage, and punctuation are followed; spelling is correct.
- Language is clear and precise; sentences display consistently strong, varied structure.
- Professional language is used throughout the paper 






Group Presentations

Due December 6, 2015

Your group will be assigned to one of the following disorders: ADHD, Intellectual Disabilities, Mood Disorders, Anxiety Disorders, Schizophrenia. Your job is to teach the class how to diagnose a client who has come to your treatment center in need of counseling.

As a group you are:

  • Responsible to create a Client case study of your own using the diagnosis your group has been assigned.
  • Design the Role play between client and therapist at the initial intake appointment.
  • Your group is responsible for either electronically video recording your role play or audio-taping or creating an illustrative voiceover PowerPoint.
  • Be creative, research online sources to find a podcast, video, or an article, charts, etc that you think would be beneficial to teach your diagnosis to the class. All resources need to be credible and cited within your  
  • Prepare a summary (at least 1 page) of the content. Be sure to remember to provide the link where you found your information so that the class can view/read the information.  


Group Presentation Grading Rubric

87 Points Value

What Should I Do?

Points Available

Did I do This?


Points Earned

Presented key behaviors associated with identified disorder, etiologies, theories and treatment interventions.





Clarity, conciseness & thoroughness of summary.





Well thought out clinical interview questions.





Creative well thought out presentation.






Grading & Points Distribution

Discussion Boards (16 points per week x 8weeks)

128 points  (26%)

Feedback Journal Assignments (4 journals X 15points each)

  60  points (15%)

Group Presentation

  87  points (17%)

Final Test

 100 points (20%)

Research Movie Review Outline

 25 points (5%)

Research Movie Review Paper

100 points (20%)


503 points (100%)