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PSYA2 - Psychodynamic approach

Psychodynamic approach to abnormality

Clare Schulze

on 11 April 2016

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Transcript of PSYA2 - Psychodynamic approach

The Psychodynamic approach
Is associated with Sigmund Freud
The model attempts to explain the
motivating forces
determining behaviour

Freud was the first to challenge the medical model, claiming that mental disorder was caused by psychological rather than physical factors
Assumptions of the psychodynamic approach
Much of our behaviour is driven by unconscious motives
Childhood is a critical period in development
Mental disorders arise from unresolved, unconscious conflicts originating in childhood
You have 5 minutes to design one character per coloured list of characteristics:
Choose a name
General character overview for this person – What job might they do? What are their friends like?
1. Selfish, hedonistic (self-indulgent), seeks pleasure no matter what the cost
3. Considerate, rational, realistic
2. Uptight, follows rules rigidly, worries constantly, wants to be in control
Freud’s tripartite model of personality
This diagram is often used to represent Freud's view of the mind and personality
is present at birth – a newborn baby is completely selfish. innate drive to seek immediate satisfaction.

develops by the end of an infants first year – child becomes aware that other people have feelings and that it can’t always have it’s own way

appears between the ages of three and six – sense of right and wrong (conscience) passed on by parents
Apply Freuds theory of personality to psychopathology
Understand the three parts of the mind as proposed by Freud.
Be able to explain how the assumptions of this approach may explain why someone could develop mental disorders.
Key elements of the theory
1. The structure of personality
2. The defence mechanisms in place
3. Psychosexual stages of development

Defence mechanisms
So the mind develops various methods of
itself – for example you tell yourself that it’s ok to eat the chocolate because it’s good for you (rationalisation)
E.g. You want that bar of chocolate but you know you’re meant to be on a diet – you feel
if you have it but unsatisfied if you don’t – anxiety either way!
We all use defence mechanisms on a daily basis

They are unconscious – we aren’t aware of what we’re doing
But… defence mechanism become pathological when it is overused and its use leads to significantproblems in everyday functioning

Your task is to match the Cheryl/Ashley Cole scenario picture with the defence mechanism definition.
Part two of the lesson
Cross out P23!
Conflicts between the ID, Superego & Ego create anxiety
Extension work!
Little Hans play!
So how can Freuds theory of personality help to explain mental disorders
Application of the approach to abnormality
The Psychodynamic Model assumes that experiences in our earlier years can affect our emotions, attitudes and behaviour in later years without us being aware that it is happening. Freud suggested that abnormal behaviour is caused by unresolved conflicts in the unconscious. The conflicts between the id, ego and superego create anxiety. The Ego protects itself with various defence mechanisms.
Review of
last lesson
Old Age Pensioners Love Guinness
Application of the psychodynamic approach to psychopathology
(so three people in total!)
ID - The deep dark shameful part!
Repressed thoughts, memories and feelings
Superego - Thoughts and memories not accessible at all times, but easily recalled
Ego - The part of the mind we are aware of - everyday thoughts and feelings
Review of last lesson
1. Three bits that make up Freud's tripartite model
2. One characteristics for each part of Freud's personality model
3. When do each of the parts develop in a person?
4. Impact of them being too weak or too strong
Model AO1 answer

Apply the defence mechanisms to explain mental abnormality
Word pool
sense of right
Self reflection
How confident am I on this topic?
1 - Still need lots of help (Not sure about the assumptions or Freud's personality & DM)
2 - I am ok with some of it the information covered but less so on defence mechanisms
3 - I am better at describing the psychodynamic approach than applying it to mental disorders
4 - Becoming more confident - Need help with how to ensure I have identified sufficient limitations
The Ego (conscious rational part of the personality) protects itself with various defence mechanism (DM)
In your exam booklet:
Outline the key features of the psychodynamic approach to psychopathology (6)
Methods of investigating the psycho dynamic approach
Case Study
Little Hans
Anna O
Weakness of case studies
How confident am I on this topic?
1 - Still need lots of help identifying limitations
2 - I am ok with some of it the information that can be used to evaluate this approach
3 - I understand some limitations, but struggle to apply it
4 - Becoming more confident - Need to develop how I can evaluate research methods in this approach
Work through the criticisms in your workbook and work out the correct order
Hi I'm George
Group discussion - Lead by captain
1. One thing you found useful when meeting to discuss psychodynamic approach
Full transcript