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Slide 1

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Definitions of Abnormality
· Defining a person or behaviour as
`abnormal' implies something undesirable
and requiring change
· Therefore, we must be careful how we use
the term
· Psychologists need methods for
distinguishing `normal' from `abnormal'…read more

Slide 2

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Definitions of Abnormality
· Our definition of abnormality must be
· It must not depend on anyone's opinion or
point of view
· It should produce the same results whoever
applies it
· It must not be under- or over-inclusive
· It must not label as `abnormal' or `normal'
behaviours or traits that aren't…read more

Slide 3

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Definitions of Abnormality
· Four definitions can be asked for in the
· Statistical infrequency
· Deviation from social norms
· Failure to function adequately
· Deviation from ideal mental health…read more

Slide 4

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Statistical Infrequency
· Under this definition, a person's trait,
thinking or behaviour is classified as
abnormal if it is rare or statistically
· With this definition it is necessary to be
clear about how rare a trait or behaviour
needs to be before we class it as
abnormal…read more

Slide 5

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Statistical Infrequency
Average IQ in the
population is 100pts. The further from 100
you look, the fewer
people you find
70 100 130
IQ Scores…read more

Slide 6

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Statistical Infrequency
A very small subset of
the population (<2.2%)
have an IQ below 70pts.
Such people are
statistically rare. We
regard them as having
abnormally low IQs
70 100 130
IQ Scores…read more

Slide 7

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