Psychology 2042B-001

Exceptional Children: Behavioural Disorders

If there is a discrepancy between the outline posted below and the outline posted on the OWL course website, the latter shall prevail.


This half course will cover theory and treatment related to major psychological disorders of childhood, including depression, anxiety, attention deficit disorder, conduct problems, and the impact of child maltreatment.


Antirequisites: Psychology 2041, 2320A/B, 3320F/G, 3434E


Antirequisites are courses that overlap sufficiently in content that only one can be taken for credit. So if you take a course that is an antirequisite to a course previously taken, you will lose credit for the earlier course, regardless of the grade achieved in the most recent course.


3 lecture hours, 0.5 course


       Instructor:   Dr. Jeff St. Pierre, C.Psych.


Office Hours:    As my office is not located on campus, I can speak with students directly after the class, arrange to meet before class, or arrange a phone meeting through e-mail. For common questions and discussion, ask your classmates on the course website Forums page, which I will monitor and offer answers to your questions.       


Course Email:  (Dr. St. Pierre checks this e-mail every evening, not during the day)                  

Phone: 519-858-2774 x2021


       Teaching Assistant:  Adrian Sardinas  

Office: tbd

Office Hours:



Time and Location of Lectures: Tuesday, 7 – 10 pm, SSC 2050

If you or someone you know is experiencing distress, there are several resources here at Western to assist you.  Please visit: for more information on these resources and on mental health.

Please contact the course instructor if you require material in an alternate format or if you require any other arrangements to make this course more accessible to you. You may also wish to contact Services for Students with Disabilities (SSD) at 519-661-2111 ext 82147 for any specific question regarding an accommodation.


Exceptional Children Psychology 2042B Behavioural Disorders, 2016. In the bookstore, this contains Chapters 1, 2, 4 (pages 83 – 90 only), 8, 9, 10, 11, 12 of Mash and Wolfe, 6th edition of their Abnormal Child Psychology textbook. This text is on reserve in Weldon library (RJ499.M296 2016). The full Mash and Wolfe text or e-book can be purchased if you wish to self-study the chapters on developmental and learning disorders that are not covered in this course. Online you can also get each e-Chapter, Chapter 1 is free. 



The objective of this course is to introduce students to the study of psychopathology in children and adolescence. An overview will be provided of several major behavioural and emotional disorders of childhood and adolescence, including their prevalence, characteristics, causes, and current approaches to assessment, diagnosis, and treatment.


After successfully completing this course, students should be able to:

  • Recognize the main symptoms of a range of psychological disorders and state the prevalence of these disorders. Measured through Multiple-Choice and Short Answer Exams.
  • Apply DSM-V criteria to provide the most plausible diagnosis for a set of psychological symptoms. Measured through Multiple-Choice and Short Answer Exams.
  • Differentiate evidence based treatment strategies from unproven assertions. Measured through Multiple-Choice and Short Answer Exams.
  • Identify and contrast current scientific theories (e.g. biological, psychological) on the etiology and treatment of psychological disorders. Measured through Multiple-Choice and Short Answer Exams.
  • Apply the theories of child development to case examples of normal versus abnormal coping and interpersonal functioning. Measured through Multiple-Choice and Short Answer Exams.



Student evaluation will be based on three exams with equal weighting. The first two exams will be held during class periods. The third exam will be scheduled by the Registrar’s Office during the final exam period in the spring. Each exam will focus on material from that section. Questions on each exam will be based on information contained in the assigned chapter readings, supplementary readings on the course website, lectures, and audio-visual presentations. You are responsible for gathering information missed in lecture, Power Point lecture slides are on OWL, additional Professor lecture notes will not be posted. The 3 exams will be primarily multiple choice, with Dr. St. Pierre utilizing some short answer questions at his discretion.

Although the Psychology Department does not require instructors to adjust their course grades to conform to specific targets, the expectation is that course marks will be distributed around the following averages:

70%     1000-level and 2000-level courses
72%     2190-2990 level courses
75%     3000-level courses
80%     4000-level courses
The Psychology Department follows the University of Western Ontario grading guidelines, which are as follows (see ):

A+  90-100      One could scarcely expect better from a student at this level
A    80-89        Superior work that is clearly above average
B    70-79        Good work, meeting all requirements, and eminently satisfactory
C    60-69        Competent work, meeting requirements
D    50-59        Fair work, minimally acceptable
F    below 50    Fail


Test 1  February 6, 2018  - in class

Test 2  March 13, 2018 – in class

Test 3 t.b.a. – set by Registrar April 14 - 30, 2018


Full Calendar


SSC 2050,  7-10pm


January 9  Chapter 1  Introductions and Course Overview, Child Development


January 16  Chapter 2 Theories and Causes. Assessment (Portion Chp 4; 83 – 90)


January 23  Chapter 8 Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)


January 30  Chapter 9 Conduct Problems


February 6  Exam I (Ch’s 1, 2, 4, 8, 9, website readings + lecture)

Students who miss this exam due to illness should contact the Academic Counselling Office of their Faculty immediately with appropriate medical/supporting documentation, and contact Adrian Sardinas, your TA. He will inform you of the date of the group Make-up Exam.


February 13  Chapter 10 Depressive and Bipolar Disorders


February 19-23 READING WEEK


February 27  Chapter 11 Anxiety and Obsessive-Compulsive Disorders


March 6  Anxiety and Mood Disorders - evidence based treatment


March 13  Exam II (Ch’s 10, 11, website readings + lectures)

Students who miss this exam due to illness should contact the Academic Counselling Office of their Faculty with appropriate medical/supporting documentation, and contact your course TA immediately.

He will schedule a group Make-up Exam.


March 20  Chapter 12 Child Maltreatment and Attachment Disturbance


March 27  Trauma and Stressor-Related Disorders


April 3  Risk and Protective Factors in Developmental Psychopathology


April 10 Last Class Review and Questions



Remember Course/Instructor Evaluations are to be completed at


TBA (April 14 – 30) Final Exam (Ch’s 12, website readings + lectures)


Students are responsible for understanding the nature and avoiding the occurrence of plagiarism and other scholastic offenses. Plagiarism and cheating are considered very serious offenses because they undermine the integrity of research and education. Actions constituting a scholastic offense are described at the following link:

As of Sept. 1, 2009, the Department of Psychology will take the following steps to detect scholastic offenses. All multiple-choice tests and exams will be checked for similarities in the pattern of responses using reliable software, and records will be made of student seating locations in all tests and exams. All written assignments will be submitted to TurnItIn, a service designed to detect and deter plagiarism by comparing written material to over 5 billion pages of content located on the Internet or in TurnItIn’s databases. All papers submitted for such checking will be included as source documents in the reference database for the purpose of detecting plagiarism of papers subsequently submitted to the system. Use of the service is subject to the licensing agreement, currently between Western and

Possible penalties for a scholastic offense include failure of the assignment, failure of the course, suspension from the University, and expulsion from the University.


Western’s policy on Accommodation for Medical Illness can be found at: 

Students must see the Academic Counsellor and submit all required documentation in order to be approved for certain accommodation:


Office of the Registrar web site:

Student Development Services web site:

Please see the Psychology Undergraduate web site for information on the following:

- Policy on Cheating and Academic Misconduct
- Procedures for Appealing Academic Evaluations
- Policy on Attendance
- Policy Regarding Makeup Exams and Extensions of Deadlines
- Policy for Assignments
- Short Absences
- Extended Absences
- Documentation
- Academic Concerns
- 2017 Calendar References

No electronic devices, including cell phones and smart watches, will be allowed during exams.