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Slide 1

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The psychodynamic approach,
treatments and evaluations
AS Psychology, unit 2 AQA-
individual differences
(psychopathology)…read more

Slide 2

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Psychodynamic approach
Mental illness is caused by unresolved, unconscious conflicts
in the mind formed in childhood. The mind consists of the
id (always seeks pleasure), superego (insists of the morally
right choice) and the ego (mediates the opposing demands
of the id and superego). The mind uses defence
mechanisms to protect the ego such as denial and
repression, but in the long term can cause problems and
lead to mental illness.
Early childhood experiences will later effect adult behaviour,
if a child suffers bereavement they will repress that
feeling (protecting the ego) but if a similar incident occurs
in adulthood, those repressed feelings will effect how the
adult deals with the latest loss.…read more

Slide 3

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Psychodynamic approach
Defence mechanisms can cause long term problems and
lead to mental illnesses:
· Denial leads to schizophrenia
· Regression leads to schizophrenia
· Repression leads to depression
These unconscious defence mechanisms can affect our
behaviour and cannot be controlled, leading to mental
illnesses.…read more

Slide 4

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Psychodynamic approach- evaluation
· Effective treatment- psychoanalysis can be
effective, so if the treatment is effective then the
approach the treatment is based on must be correct
and valid
· Weak evidence to support the idea that anxiety
causes mental illness- evidence is based on repressed
Viennese Victorian women. So the theory may, only
apply to women and only women from Vienna and can
be out of date…read more

Slide 5

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Psychodynamic approach- evaluation
· Reductionist- ignores other factors such as genes and
the environment, so the explanation can only give a
limited understanding of the mental illness in question
· Id, ego, superego are untestible- psychodynamic
concepts of the id, ego and superego are abstract and
therefore untestible as they may not even exist.
Therefore we can't be sure that anxiety is caused by
conflicts between the id and superego.…read more

Slide 6

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Psychodynamic Treatments-
Attempts to make the unconscious conflicts conscious
by using the following methods:
· Free association- patient lies on a sofa and says out
load whatever comes into their mind. The therapist
interprets these thought to try and uncover the
unconscious conflict.
· Inkblot tests- these are random shapes with no
meaning. The patient looks at them and tells the
therapist what they see. This triggers the
unconscious mind as the description of the shape
helps to reveal what is in your unconscious thoughts…read more

Slide 7

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Ibrahim - Team GR


It has immense detail and explores the Psychodynamic approach really well and explains it in terms I actually understand. Superb Effort and very great resource. ThankYou

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