Overview of Behavioral Psychology Courses

Behavioral psychology courses teach students about common psychological behavioral problems and their evolution, diagnosis and treatment. This article covers some of the most commonly offered courses in behavioral psychology.

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Essential Information

Behavioral psychology courses are commonly present in undergraduate and graduate certificate and degree programs in fields such as psychology or behavioral neuroscience. Many psychology programs require an internship or clinical experiences, particularly at the graduate level. Some concepts covered in these programs include:

  • Behavioral Analysis
  • Behavioral Modification
  • Psychological Processes
  • Psychological Development
  • Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy

List of Courses

Abnormal Psychology Course

Abnormal psychology is the study of behaviors and psychological problems that are categorized as abnormal. This course covers the most common types of psychological disorders and maladaptive behaviors, as well as their diagnosis and treatment. Major disorders such as anxiety, schizophrenia, impulse control, and personality disorders are the basis of this course, though some classes may also examine the place of individuals with abnormal psychological conditions in society. This course usually requires a prerequisite course in general psychology.

Developmental Psychology Course

Typical classes in developmental psychology cover the evolution of psychological processes throughout the average life span. This course teaches students about the genetics of behavior, social aspects that shape behaviors and the particular psychological issues that are associated with aging. The development of the central nervous system, our physical senses, and human emotions are studied. Students may also learn about educational, environmental and social effects on psychological development. This course requires only basic introductory psychology courses as prerequisites.

Child Psychology Course

The focus of this course is to teach students about specific childhood psychological disorders and conditions. Students study child development to gain an understanding of the role played by physical, emotional and cognitive factors on the psychological development of infants and children. Classes may examine specific psychological conditions such as language disorders, developmental delays, behavior problems, and psychosis, as well as their treatment and diagnosis. Lower-level psychology courses serve as acceptable prerequisites for this course.

Personality Disorders Course

Development, causes, diagnosis and treatment of personality disorders are covered in a typical course of this type. Students learn about the major personality disorders, such as paranoia, schizophrenia, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and others, and study the difference between normal and abnormal personalities. This course may also examine typical anxiety and defense mechanisms in relation to personality disorders. This class requires lower-level psychology courses as prerequisites.

Self-Control and Addictions Course

This course focuses on the study of self-control disorders and addictions. Impulse control disorders such as gambling, sex addiction, and excessive exercising are studied, as well as drug and alcohol addictions and eating disorders. Students will examine the way these disorders and addictions form and how they are diagnosed. Proper treatment methods are covered, and different perspectives on how these disorders and addictions form may also be a part of class discussion. This course usually requires lower-level psychology classes as prerequisites.

Behavior Analysis and Modification Course

This course teaches students how to analyze behaviors and make determinations about critical behaviors that when modified, produced desired changes. Students study human behavior and learn different analysis methods, and focus on studying behavior in different environments. This course usually requires lower-level psychology course prerequisites.

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