Singapore University of Social Sciences

Understanding Psychological Disorders

Understanding Psychological Disorders (COU362)


COU362, Understanding Psychological Disorders is a Level 3 course that covers the range of psychological disorders mainly in adulthood. Greater emphasis will be placed on common disorders. Core interventions and community resources will also be discussed. This course aims to equip students with an understanding of mental illness, through an integrative and multidimensional perspective. Students will come to understand the challenges and implications with the diagnosis of mental illness. Students will be able to identify the various commonly encountered psychological disorders, and come to understand the cultural influences amongst different disorders. Lastly, they will have knowledge of basic interventions and psychological treatments available in the community.

Level: 3
Credit Units: 5
Presentation Pattern: Every January


  • Introduction: History of Abnormal Behaviour, An Integrative Approach to Psychopathology, Clinical Assessment and Diagnosis
  • Anxiety Disorders
  • Mood Disorders and Suicide
  • Eating and Sleep-Wake Disorders
  • Addictions and Personality Disorders
  • Schizophrenia and Other Psychotic Disorders

Learning Outcome

  • Assemble an overview (integrative and multidimensional) of psychological disorders
  • Understand the strengths and limitations of diagnostic classification of psychological disorders
  • Appraise and recognise symptoms of common psychological disorders
  • Organise information obtained in a meaningful manner, and conduct simple assessments of psychological disorders
  • Develop a basic understanding of the treatment interventions of psychological disorders
  • Apply information learnt in class, and use the information meaningfully in understanding clients with psychological disorders
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