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Abnormal Psychology

Professional Development

By successfully completing this course, you will:

  • Gain skills and knowledge in Abnormal Psychology
  • Be awarded the BSY Professional Certificate of Merit
  • Receive the Level 3 Certificate of Achievement from ABC Awards and Certa Awards*

You can study this course from the comfort of your own home; in your own time and at your own pace; with helpful support and encouragement from our friendly tutors.

Course overview

The study of abnormal psychology looks at why people come to act in an unusual or disturbing manner, and what kinds of therapies have been developed to help them return to normal living. The range of what may be termed abnormal behaviours includes stress, depression, anxiety, phobia, neurosis, psychosis and schizophrenia. This course is designed as a foundation or addition for anyone interested in making a career in counselling, social work, nursing, caring or therapy.


  • Lesson One
    • Introduction
    • Defining Abnormal
      • Abnormal Behaviour
      • The Statistical Approach
      • Social Judgements
      • The Medical Model
    • Phobia
      • The Causes of Phobia
      • Social Phobia
  • Lesson Two
    • Phobias (Continued)
      • Sexual Phobias
      • Causes of Sexual Phobias
      • The Symptoms of Phobias
      • Agoraphobia
    • Fears of Illness and Death
      • Fear of Insanity
      • Fear of Illness
      • Fear of Dying and Death
      • Fear of Cancer 
    • Stress
      • Living with Stress
      • The Holmes-Rahe Scale
      • Having a Baby
      • Getting Divorced
      • The Symptoms of Stress
      • Illnesses Linked to Stress
  • Lesson Three
    • Stress (Continued)
      • Causes of stress
      • Stress and Burnout
      • High Risk Occupations
    • Abnormal Moods
      • Shame
      • Jealousy
      • Greed
      • Fear
      • Loneliness
      • Guilt
  • Lesson Four
    • Panic Attacks
      • Symptoms of a Panic Attack
      • Who has Panic Attacks?
      • Types of Panic Attack
      • The Causes of Panic Attacks
      • Physical Causes
      • Emotional Causes
    • Anxiety
      • The Symptoms of Anxiety
      • How Anxiety Helps
    • Problems and Disorders
      • Abnormal Sex
    • Sexual Disorders
      • Paraphilias
      • Fetishism
      • Paedophilia
    • Other Forms of Sexual Dysfunction
      • Stress and Sex
      • Infidelity
  • Lesson Five
    • Disorders
      • Classifying Disorders
    • Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM)
      • Common Disorders
      • Eating Disorders
    • Depression
      • Types of Depression
      • Symptoms of Mild Depression
  • Lesson Six
    • Symptoms of Major Depression
      • Suicide and Depression
      • Myths about Suicide
    • Treatment for Abnormal Psychology
      • Cognitive Therapies
      • Counselling
      • Psychotherapy
      • Humanistic Psychotherapy
      • Hypnosis
      • Family Therapy
      • Behaviour Therapy
      • Psychoanalysis

Practical training

No practical training is required to complete this course.

*Registration through BSY is essential with this course at any time during the studies. Registration fee of £20 applies.