PSY 7700 - Psychopharmacology
This course explores the neuroanatomy, neurophysiology, and biologic actions of psychopharmacological agents which are currently in use, as well as to the indications for prescribing the agents, the side effects which may occur, and the clinical considerations for the psychologist in referring the patient for medication evaluation. The course also serves as a foundation for further study for those who plan to practice psychology in the event that psychologists are granted prescription privileges.

Learning Outcomes:
  • Introduce self and explain course expectations
  • Synthesize course concepts through interaction and discussion with other Learners
  • Summarize the psychopharmacological interventions currently used for the anxiety disorders
  • Explain the psychopharmacological interventions currently used for the anxiety disorders
  • Describe the process of diagnosing schizophrenia and its subtypes
  • Compare and contrast the various impulse control disorders and the current thought as regards pharmacological treatment of those disorders
  • Describe personality disorders and discuss the rationale for using psychopharmacological intervention in those disorders
  • Differentiate between medications and medical conditions which simulate psychiatric disorders
  • Explain the basic principles of diagnosis and treatment
  • Analyze the biological basis of psychopharmacology, including neurotransmitters
  • Describe the three clusters of personality disorders along with the natural history, epidemiology, and genetics of the disorders as a preliminary knowledge base leading to an understanding of the psychopharmacologic treatment of specific personality disorders
  • Summarize the issues implicit in treating the following special populations: children, adolescents, the elderly, and women of childbearing and lactating capacity. In addition to the above special populations, consider the recovering individual whose need for psychopharmacologic intervention may come into conflict with recovery issues
  • Compare and contrast the action of cyclic antidepressants
  • Describe the antidepressant classes, prescribing techniques and side effects of the SSRI's, novel antidepressants, tricyclic antidepressants and MAO inhibitors
  • Explain the specific biologic effects, clinical uses, food and drug interactions, and other side effects of the MAO inhibitors
  • Analyze the clinical uses and biologic effects of Lithium and the various side effects of lithium therapy
  • Describe the actions of the benzodiazepines and its side effects as well as prescribing techniques involved in deciding to use long versus short half-life benzodiazepines
  • Demonstrate a familiarity with the actions, uses, indications and biologic effects, side effects and prescribing techniques of the following: Zolpidem, Buspirone, nonbarbiturate sedatives and hypnotics, barbiturates, antihistamines, clonidine, beta-blockers, and melatonin
  • Summarize the history and clinical uses, the biologic effects and techniques for prescribing the antipsychotics
  • Describe the side effects of antipsychotic therapy, specifically: dystonic reactions, akinesia, akathesia, neuroleptic malignant syndrome, as well as the non-neurologic side effects, tardive dyskinesia
  • Integrate course concepts through the use of internet resources
  • Demonstrate the ability to evaluate and incorporate emerging relevant technologies applicable to the field of psychology
  • Analyze and evaluate information critically and effectively
  • Demonstrate ethical behavior in regard to information and information technology