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North Idaho College • Coeur d'Alene • Social & Behavioral Sciences • Psychology

Abnormal Psychology PSYC-211

  • Fall 2012
  • Section 02
  • 3.0 Credits
  • 08/27/2012 to 12/20/2012
  • Modified 08/18/2012

Contact Information

Instructor: Laura Sferra MA

Off Campus phone:  208-659-5119

Meeting Times


  • Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, 12:00 PM to 1:00 PM

This is an internet course and all work will be done on-line. There will be no meeting times, but I will be available Monday-Friday by phone or email.


This course provides a study of the nature, cause, treatment, and prevention of patterns of emotional disturbance and personality disorganization. It introduces the major categories of mental disorders as defined in the DSMIVR. This course will not fulfill a requirement for the A.A. or A.S. degree and may not be transferable. Lecture: 3 hours per week


Essentials of Abnormal Psychology

  • Author: Durand & Barlow
  • Publisher: Wadsworth
  • Edition: 5
  • ISBN: 13:978-1-111-83698-6
  • Availability: Campus Bookstore


Psyc 211 Outcomes:

1. Student is able to define what behaviors are abnormal and how such definitions developed.
2. Student is able to explain the biological, psychological, and socio-cultural causes of abnormality.
3. Student can explain the major methods of assessment used by mental health professionals to identify types of mental disorders.
4. Student understands the etiology and treatments available for mental health disorders.
5. Student can apply critical thinking skills to distinguish between myth and fact in information about abnormal behavior.
6. Student is aware of the major legal issues as they apply to people with mental disorders. These include, but are not limited to, hospitalization, involuntary hospitalization, the rights of mental health patients, and treatment.

Outcomes are measured by any of the following: classroom participation, exams, in-class group activities, and papers.

Psyc 211 Abilities:

Historical, Cultural & Global Awareness: Student demonstrates a basic understanding of diverse cultural views and the impact of these views on local and national events.
Social Responsibility/Citizenship: Student demonstrates awareness of the relationship that exist between an individual and social groups and/or private/public institutions, the nature of these relationships, and the responsibilities and consequences that result from change in these relationships.
Abilities are measured by any of the following: classroom participation, exams, in-class group activities, and papers.



Your grade in this course will be determined by:  your participation in on-line discussions, your performance on mulitple choice tests and your performance on additional assignments listed on the schedule.

Grading is done on a percentage basis.  The following scale is used:

90 and above = A

80 - 89          = B

70 - 79          = C

60 - 69          = D

50 and below = F

Course Policies


Course calendar and related activities
When Topic Notes
Course Schedule


Week                    Date                      Assignment

1                              8/27/12                Introduction discussion; Read syllabus

2                              9/03/12                Read Chapter 1

                                                                Participate in Week 2 discussion


3                              9/10/12                Read chapter 2

                                                                Participate in week 3 discussion


4                              9/17/12                Read chapter 3

                                                                Participate in week 4 discussion

                                                                Access Test 1 study guide


5                              9/24/12                Take Test 1

                                                                Read chapter 4

                                                                Participate in week 5 discussion


6                              10/1/12                Read chapter 5

                                                                Participate in week 6 discussion


7                              10/8/12                Read chapter 6

                                                                Participate in week 7 discussion


8                              10/15/12                Read chapter 7

                                                                Participate in week 8 discussion

                                                                Access Test 2 study guide


9                              10/22/12              Take Test 2

                                                                Read chapter 8

                                                                Participate in week 9 discussion


10                           10/29/12              Read chapter 9

                                                                Participate in week 10 discussion


11                           11/5/12              Read chapter 10

                                                                Participate in week 11 discussion


12                           11/12/12                Read chapter 11

                                                                Participate in week 12 discussion

                                                                Access Test 3 study guide


13                           11/12/12              Take Test 3

                                                                Read chapter 12

                                                                Participate in week 13 discussion


14                           11/26/12              Thanksgiving Week


15                           12/3/12              Read chapter 13

                                                                Participate in week 15 discussion

16                           12/10/12                Read chapter 14

                                                                Participate in week 16 discussion

                                                                Submit Research Paper

                                                                Access Test 4 Study guide


17                           12/17/12              Take Test 4





Additional Items

Division Policies

For a complete explanation of the North Idaho College Statement on Academic Honesty & Academic Integrity please ferfer to Policy 5.06 & Procedure 5.06.01: 

Academic Dishonesty
Violations of academic integrity involve using or attempting to use any method that enables an individual to misrepresent the quality or integrity of his or her work at North Idaho College. These violations include the following:

Cheating: using or attempting to use unauthorized materials, information, or study in any academic exercise.
Fabrication: falsifying or inventing any information or citation in an academic exercise.
Plagiarism: knowingly representing the words or ideas of another as one’s own in an academic exercise.
Violation of Intellectual Property: stealing, altering, or destroying the academic work of other members of the community or the educational resources,materials, or official documents of the college. Facilitating Academic Dishonesty: knowingly helping another to attempt to violate any provisions of this policy.

Student Responsibility
As outlined in the Student Code of Conduct, all North Idaho College students have both rights and responsibilities: Please access www.nic.ferpa.StudentCode/index.htm for complete information that pertains to this subject.

North Idaho College, in compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 and Section 504/508 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, provides both services and accommodations to students who meet the guidelines provided in these acts.  For a complete description, please see:

Please contact the North Idaho College Center for Educational Access in Seiter Hall, Room 100 for assistance.  Phone:  208-769-5947

To withdraw from all courses a student must obtain a college withdrawal form from the Registrar's Office, secure the signatures of those persons indicated on the form, and return the form to the Registrar's office. No student may withdraw from the college after the final date of withdrawal from courses except for compelling and extraordinary reasons. In such circumstances a student must petition the Admissions and Academic Standards Committee for late withdrawal from college using the college withdrawal form available in the Registrar's Office.


For complete information regarding student withdrawals, please see the North Idaho College Policy 5.04.01: 

Institutional Policies

Student Code of Conduct

The Student Code of Conduct applies to any student enrolled at North Idaho College.  This includes, but is not limited to, face-to-face classes and Internet classes.

Student Responsibilities

As students undertake to fulfill the obligations and duties outlined in this document, the college community of which they are a part undertakes to respect the basic freedoms of students. In recognition of students’ rights and dignity as members of the college, North Idaho College is committed to the principles found in the NIC Student Handbook.

Center for Educational Access/Disability Support Services

In compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 and Section 504/508 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, North Idaho College provides accommodations to eligible students who experience barriers in the educational setting due to learning, emotional / mental, physical, visual, or hearing disabilities.  Instructors will provide accommodations to students only after having received a Letter of Accommodation from the Center for Educational Access. 

If a student would like to request accommodations, he or she must contact the Center for Educational Access so that a Letter of Accommodation may be sent to the instructor.  Students requesting accommodations must contact the Center for Educational Access at the beginning of each semester.


By registering at North Idaho College, you agree to provide payment by the due dates. You also understand that collection costs and legal fees will be added if the services of a collection agency are utilized.

If you are registered for a class and do not attend, you will still be liable for the tuition unless you drop the class.


Last day for students to withdraw from semester-length classes:

Instructor-Initiated Withdrawal: Instructors have the right to withdraw students for academic reasons up until the same date; in doing so, instructors must notify students through NIC e-mail within 48 hours of submitting documentation to the Registrar's office, and students have the right to appeal the instructor's decision. For more information, see the NIC Procedure:

Financial Aid Satisfactory Progress Policy: All withdrawals, whether for individual classes, total withdrawal from school, or instructor-initiated are not considered to be satisfactory progress for financial aid.  See the Financial Aid Satisfactory Progress Policy:

Additional withdrawal information:


An incomplete is assigned only if the student has been in attendance and has done satisfactory work to within three weeks of the end of the semester (or proportional length of time for a course of less than a semester in length).  Incompletes are issued only in cases of extenuating circumstances, such as severe illness or injury.  Incompletes are not issued in cases in which the student is simply unable to complete his/her work within the specified semester or session.  If a final grade of "I" is recorded, the instructor will indicate in writing to the Registrar what the student must do to make up the deficiency.  The instructor will indicate in the written statement what permanent grade should be entered if the Incomplete is not removed by the deadline.

All incomplete grades must be removed within six weeks after the first class day of the following term, excluding the summer session.  If the Incomplete is not removed by that date, the grade reverts to the grade indicated by the instructor's written statement authorizing the incomplete.

Discrimination and Harassment

North Idaho College has a zero tolerance policy for any acts of discrimination or harassment of any kind.  For more information, please see the NIC Student Handbook, Code of Conduct Article III and Article VIII. Compliance efforts with respect to these laws and regulations are the responsibility of each member of the campus community and are under the direction of the Dean of Students Office for Student Issues (2nd floor, Edminster Student Union Building, (208) 676-7156) and the Human Resources Office (Sherman Administration Building, (208) 769-3304) for employee issues.

Institutional Statement

DROP FOR NON-PAYMENT:  By registering at North Idaho College, you agree to provide payment by the due dates. You will be dropped from classes if payment is not received by  5 p.m. Pacific Time on the third day of the semester. Students on the waitlist will be given the option to register for classes after students are dropped for non-payment.

REMOVAL FROM CLASS FOR NON-ATTENDANCE:  Attendance is based on your participation in this class. Failure to attend may result in your being removed from this class and may result in your financial aid award being reduced. You are responsible for confirming the accuracy of your attendance record.