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Psychopathology – Understanding Mental Ill Health

3. On Being Sane In Insane Places

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About this Lecture

Lecture

In this lecture, we review Rosenhan’s 1973 paper ‘On Being Sane in Insane Places’, focusing in particular on: (i) the procedure and outcomes of the paper, which explored the validity of psychiatric diagnoses by inserting healthy pseudo patients into a psychiatric ward; (ii) the patients initial reports of hearing voices saying particular words without reporting any abnormalities once admitted and behaving entirely normally while on site; (iii) the fact that, despite participants not having a history of psychopathology and behaving entirely normally, all but one were discharged with a diagnosis of schizophrenia in remission (a false positive diagnosis); (iv) the phenomenon that, despite remaining undetected by doctors, the pseudo patients were suspected by 35% of other patients, and exploring the reasons why this might have occurred; (v) one of Rosenhan’s follow-up studies, further exploring the opposite effect, whereby the medical staff were led to believe there might be pseudo patients, whereas in fact there were not.

Glossary:

False Positive in Mental Health – Diagnosing a healthy person with a mental disorder.

False Negative in Mental Health – Failing to recognise the presence of a mental disorder in a sick person, therefore assessing a person who is sick to be healthy.

Glossary:

False Positive in Mental Health – Diagnosing a healthy person with a mental disorder.

False Negative in Mental Health – Failing to recognise the presence of a mental disorder in a sick person, therefore assessing a person who is sick to be healthy.

Course

In this course, Dr Jude Stevenson (University of Glasgow) explores concepts of mental health. In the first lecture, we look at what abnormality means. In the second lecture, we approach the practice of diagnostic labelling, discussing both the positives and negatives of doing this, as well as walking through two key databases used to do it officially. Next, we take a deep dive into Rosenhan’s 1973 paper ‘On Being Sane in Insane Places’ which investigated the legitimacy of psychiatric diagnoses, with some concerning results. In the fourth and final lecture, we take a walk through the history of understanding mental ill health, contextualising the timeline into three primary models – the supernatural model, the medical model, and the cognitive behavioural model.

Lecturer

Dr Jude Stevenson is a lecturer in the School of Psychology at the University of Glasgow, with a primary focus on mental health and well-being. Dr Stevenson’s research centres around body focused repetitive behaviours and is a UK ambassador for the TLC Foundation for Body Focused Repetitive Behaviours. Some of Dr Stevenson’s recent publications include 'Social media peer support groups for obsessive-compulsive and related disorders: understanding the predictors of negative experiences' (2021) and 'Pathogen disgust predicts stigmatization of individuals with mental health conditions' (2020).

Cite this Lecture

APA style

Stevenson, J. (2021, November 30). Psychopathology – Understanding Mental Ill Health - On Being Sane In Insane Places [Video]. MASSOLIT. https://massolit.io/courses/understanding-mental-ill-health/on-being-sane-in-insane-places

MLA style

Stevenson, J. "Psychopathology – Understanding Mental Ill Health – On Being Sane In Insane Places." MASSOLIT, uploaded by MASSOLIT, 30 Nov 2021, https://massolit.io/courses/understanding-mental-ill-health/on-being-sane-in-insane-places

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