Abnormal psychology: Assignment 1 – defining abnormality 1. Explain statistical infrequency as a means of defining abnormality Statistical infrequency is when something is a rare occurrence and as with abnormal behavior it is the same if it is rare it is considered abnormal. 2. Give an example to illustrate how this definition could be used. One such example would be a person is in the middle of the town center screaming that he is a plane whilst running around and since this is a statistical infrequency (rare behavior) it is thusly considered to be abnormal. 3.
Explain at least two criticisms of this definition a) First criticism Where does a person draw the line on what is considered to be a normal behavior and at what point do we cross that line take IQ as an example if the average IQ is 100 does a person starting becoming abnormal at 99 or at 101 or it is at a further away from what is average. b) Other criticisms Another criticism is would be what happens if the infrequency is a behavior that is a desirable one, such as a person being a genius or and Olympic athlete they are now considered to be abnormal despite having a wanted quality. . Explain deviation from social norms as a means of defining abnormality To deviate from social norms is to act in a way that is the opposite of what society believes to be the right way to act. 2. Give an example to illustrate how this definition could be used. Any act that acts out of the social norms such as standing and screaming during the sermon in a church would be an example of deviation from social norms. 3. Explain at least two criticisms of this definition a) First criticism
A criticism of deviation from social norms would be how far would a person has to deviate to be considered abnormal is it the first time they do something or is it multiple deviations but it also could be is it ok to deviate in little ways but is a major deviation the problem. b) Other criticisms other examples are that certain norms change over time such as a once upon a time it was considered a so called sin to be with someone out of wedlock now it is nothing more than a usual everyday site due to most people wishing for a period of cohabitation before marriage.
Another example is that norms will change from culture to culture and even sub culturally such as in America they have nerds (people considered smart) and jocks (people of the sports teams) but whilst at home here in Leicester we have emos (people who were mainly dark clothing) and chavs (people who were tracksuit bottoms and drink alcohol on parks) 1. Explain failure to function adequately as a means of defining abnormality
People who cannot look after themselves properly such they are DIM which is an acronym for Distress, Irrationality and Maladaptivness each one has its own meaning distress is most negative emotions at extremes such as depression or anxiety. Irrationality is if a person can reason with people, act in a reasonable manner or even just talk reasonably. Maladaptivness is behaviour that harms a person or just simple failure to look after oneself. Now as means to define abnormality any of the above would be considered abnormal behaviour due to all being ways to not function adequately. . Give an example to illustrate how this definition could be used. An example would be self-harming also people who suffer from schizophrenia may be considered abnormal as they cannot speak and sometimes act reasonably. 3. Explain at least two criticisms of this definition a) First criticism One of the problems with this definition of abnormality would be that certain people that have mental illness/ disorders may not appear to have any due to acting very rational in all manner of things. ) Other criticisms Another problem is that how can you tell someone is coping without being in the same situation they are as everyone copes in a different way to certain problems in their life all because a person has a messy house does not mean that they are abnormal they. Also certain people engage in dangerous behaviour for sport or even as a hobby does this action make them now to the public an abnormal person.