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Assignment 1
Although psychology prides itself on being a science, the art of diagnosis goes beyond a simple checklist of symptoms. Clinicians generally recognize that any diagnostic exercise must include a culturally sensitive interpretation and analysis of symptoms.
This week’s discussion touched on how an individual’s culture may influence the presentation of symptoms and syndromes. Keeping the discussion in mind, consider the importance and impact of a patient’s cultural background when making a diagnosis.
In this 250- to 500-word journal entry, begin by choosing one symptom or syndrome covered in the Wen-Shing (2006) article that resonated with you. Using the resources in the Ashford University Library, find at least one case study on the symptom or syndrome and briefly describe it for the reader. Google Scholar is not an acceptable resource for this journal. Explain clearly why you chose to comment on this symptom or syndrome instead of other options. If the symptom or syndrome appears to be similar to a condition found in the DSM-5, compare and contrast what is found in the DSM-5 with what is discussed in the Wen-Shing article. 
Consider any other questions that came up for you over the course of this week’s assignments. You may share as much or as little as you wish, as long as it is evident in your journal that you have taken the time to reflect.
Your journal will be graded based on whether or not you provided a substantial and thoughtful entry.
Assignment 2
For this discussion, you will enter into another conversation on an ongoing controversy and contemporary issue regarding abnormal psychology. Specifically, are there psychological syndromes and symptoms that appear only in certain cultures?
Before you begin working on this discussion, please read the article by Wen-Shing (2006) as well as the “Guidelines on Multicultural Education, Training, Research, Practice, and Organizational Change for Psychologists.”
American Psychological Association. (2002). Guidelines on multicultural education, training, research, practice, and organizational change for psychologists (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site. [PDF]. Retrieved from http://www.apa.org/pi/oema/resources/policy/multicultural-guideline.pdf The American Psychological Association’s guidelines 1, 2, and 5 provide information on culturally sensitive and responsive practices in psychology.
Tseng, W.S. (2006). From Peculiar Psychiatric Disorders through Culture-bound Syndromes to Culture-related Specific Syndromes. Transcultural Psychiatry, 43(4), 554-576. doi:10.1177/1363461506070781 The full-text version of this article can be accessed through the Sage Journals database in the Ashford University Library. This article describes many syndromes and symptoms that appear to be found only in specific cultures
Assignment 3
Before working on this discussion, please read Chapter 12 in the course text, the article by Kamens (2011), watch the Beyond the Gender Binary: Yee Won Chong at TEDxRainier  video. For this discussion, you will enter into a conversation on another ongoing controversy and contemporary issue regarding abnormal psychology. Specifically, should gender dysphoria be included as a diagnosis in the DSM-5? It is absolutely essential that you view the required video and read the required article and your instructor’s initial post before participating in this discussion.
As you enter into this conversation, carefully consider the historical information you read regarding the rationale behind excluding the DSM-IV-TR diagnosis of gender identity disorder from the DSM-5. Then, take a moment to relate this historical background to the current ethical, clinical, and social controversies regarding gender dysphoria and the DSM-5. Analyze this controversy within the context of how clinicians ethically identify and treat psychiatric conditions. Be sure to integrate knowledge of any appropriate cultural considerations psychologist must be aware of when diagnosing gender dysphoria.
Kamens, S. R. (2011). On the Proposed Sexual and Gender Identity Diagnoses for DSM-5: History and Controversies. Humanistic Psychologist, 39(1), 37-59. doi:10.1080/08873267.2011.539935. The full-text version of this article can be accessed through the EBSCOhost database in the Ashford University Library. This article provides a historical context for the exclusion of gender identity disorder and the inclusion of gender dysphoria in the DSM-5.
Chong, Y. W. (2012).  Beyond the gender binary: Yee Won Chong at TEDxRainier (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site.  [Video file]. Retrieved from http://tedxtalks.ted.com/video/Beyond-the-Gender-Binary-Yee-Wo This video clarifies the difference between sex and gender. Further, it shares an experience of being transgender and ways to be an ally.
American Psychological Association. (2009). Report of the American Psychological Association’s Task Force on Appropriate Therapeutic Responses to Sexual Orientation (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site. . Washington, D.C.: American Psychological Association. Retrieved from http://www.apa.org/pi/lgbt/resources/therapeutic-response.pdf This is the seminal white paper that discredited sexual orientation change efforts, also commonly known as reparative therapy or conversion therapy.
Ferro, Shaunacy. (2013).  Why do we pathologize gender nonconformity? (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site.   Retrieved from http://www.popsci.com/science/article/2013-08/chelsea-manning-gender-dysphoria-and-dsm This article provides an illustration of the controversy surrounding the inclusion of gender dysphoria in the DSM-5.
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