Abnormal Psychology: Biological Bases

Description: Lecture, three hours; discussion, one hour. Requisite: course 10. Not open for credit to students with credit for course 127A or 127C. Study of Biological processes involved in etiology, presentation, and course of psychiatric disorders, and biological targets or mechanisms of treatment. Emphasis on clinical neuroscience and behavioral genetics as scientific modalities to understand mood disorders, substance use disorders, psychosis, and others. P/NP or letter grading.

Units: 4.0
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Overall Rating N/A
Easiness N/A/ 5
Clarity N/A/ 5
Workload N/A/ 5
Helpfulness N/A/ 5
Overall Rating 4.1
Easiness 3.2/ 5
Clarity 4.1/ 5
Workload 3.1/ 5
Helpfulness 4.5/ 5
Most Helpful Review
Fall 2021 - I usually only write reviews for professors that I love or hate. Professor Karlsgodt is literally one of the best professors I've ever encountered at UCLA. She is so sweet, accommodating, and understanding. For example, bc participation poll questions weren't working for some people during live zoom lecture, she changed it to participation CCLE questions after class. She also went out of her way to reserve a computer lab for students who needed a quiet place to work to take the midterms. Just some examples of her kindness. Overall, she gives off vibes of that English teacher in high school who was basically your mom. Beyond just her personality, her slides are very clear and she's obviously a very knowledgable professor. She explains everything for your benefit and goes in depth on many topics literally just to educate you, not bc she's trying to fill time or needlessly go into detail. With that being said, despite how detailed the lectures can get, the tests are always fair and ask questions about main concepts. Since the tests were open-note this quarter, even questions that did get a little detailed were in no way unfair. She gets through the material in a timely manner and always stays on target, but not to the point of boredom or tedium. She's funny but not overbearing in her humor; ultimately she's there to teach you and she won't waste your time in the slightest. If she doesn't finish a lecture in time, she won't force you to stay to hear the rest--she'll just finish it next lecture; aka she's very reasonable, down to earth, and fair. As far as class content goes, this class is about mental disorders at its core, and involves some neuroscience (synaptic gap, neurotransmitters, synaptogensis, etc.) but as long as you can understand it on the surface level and know the difference between an agonist and antagonist, you should be fine. A little bit of dev psych (if you took 130 you already know at least one lecture haha). There is a textbook, but in my opinion, it's useless. I read the first chapter, but stopped afterwards because the professor's slides are really all you need to pass the tests. I never once looked at the book for the second midterm and was able to answer everything with just my lecture notes. The book may help you if you're confused about a concept, but other than that, you really don't need it. We had two midterms (not culm) both worth 40%, participation polls 10%, and discussion section attendance 10%. There was an optional final (culm) that you could take for 40% as well and drop your lowest grade of the two midterms and final (aka no harm in taking it). The only thing I didn't like about this class was the discussion section, but that's the TA's fault, not the professor's. My TA just did not do a good job of facilitating discussion and it felt pointless to attend even though the concepts might be interesting. For reference, concepts from discussion are NOT on the test; you have to go simply for attendance points but you don't have to pay attention in the slightest or in my case, even do the readings (small articles usually or ted talk type videos). Overall, if you have a good grasp on neuroscience and neurotransmitters and can handle learning about mental disorders like OCD, Schizophrenia, autism, personality disorders, etc. then you should be fine and this class should be an easy A. Disclaimer: I'm a "good" student and a good test taker and usually don't find psych classes to be that hard, content wise. If you're not like me, you might find the amount of content in the class and level of detail overwhelming.
Overall Rating 3.5
Easiness 1.5/ 5
Clarity 3.3/ 5
Workload 1.7/ 5
Helpfulness 3.5/ 5
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