Psychology | Behavior Modification
P430 | 8823 | L. Bates
How can we help people to change? What really works? The
psychological intervention approach that has inspired the largest
amount of empirical research in the past few decades is behavior
therapy. This course provides an advanced introduction to important
topics in behavior therapy, including basic principles of assessment
and intervention, as well as of clinical research. We will consider
not only approaches to solving problems as defined by DSM categories,
but also interpersonal, educational, workplace, and other problems.
It is assumed that students enter with a basic understanding of
psychopathology and the main principles of learning.
The course will involve a mixture of reading and writing, lectures,
discussions, films, and class and individual exercises. Students in
previous P430 classes have commented that the class is demanding but
rewarding. Former students have also reported later that the course
was a helpful foundation to them in their further development in
graduate programs in clinical psychology, school psychology, and
clincial social work. The emphasis of the course is on scientific,
clinical psychology, but it is not designed only for those planning
careers in psychology-related fields. For example, students aiming
for business, legal, criminal justice, therapeutic recreation, and
teaching careers have found it useful and have provided valuable
perspectives in class discussions.
Grading will be mainly based on several papers and two exams. The
papers concern two projects: 1. A review of literature on a relevant
topic of special interest to the student (e.g., treatments for
delinquency or depression) and 2. A self-change project (e.g.,
increasing a positive behavior such as preparing healthy meals or
decreasing a behavior such as verbal hostility). Intensive writing
credit can be arranged for this course on an individual basis.
Professor Bates has a background in developmental psychopathology
research, and has a special interest in treatment of oppositional
behavior problems in children and their families. He has worked
clinically with a number of other problems, including behavior
problems in a residential facility for mental retardation, maritial
problems, and a variety of other adult, child, adolescent, and family
problems. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org or 855-8693.