Psychology in Popular Culture:
Identifying Psychological Concepts and Disorders in the Media
Over the course of the semester we have discussed many broad topics in the field of Psychology involving (but not limited to): mental illness/disorders, neuroanatomy and general neuroscience, learning and memory, social psychology, etc. In order to provide evidence of your mastery of the course material you will write a brief essay that will be worth 20% of your final course grade. Directions and rubrics, which will assist you in completing this assignment, can be found below. Should you need help with the writing process/planning, make sure to utilize the MCPHS Writing Center.
For this assignment, you must choose either a mental illness (a list of those you may choose from is attached – or a psychological concept/theory that we have discussed in class and/or in the book. You will then identify an example of your chosen disorder/concept in popular media (movie, novel, poem, song, TV show, etc.), and describe how it is either accurately (and/or inaccurately) represented. In addition to your chosen media example, you will also need to provide support for your argument for or against the media representation via peer reviewed primary research articles. All materials for this assignment will need to be uploaded to TurnItIn on Blackboard for evaluation.
ALL 3 PARTS OF THIS ASSIGNMENT ARE BASED OFF OF THE ONE DISORDER AND MEDIA EXAMPLE YOU CHOOSE. It is recommended that you read direction to all 3 parts before starting Part I and think of this as ONE ASSIGNMENT BROKEN UP INTO 3 PARTS. PART 3 is the Final Paper and is worth the most points.
*All materials will need to be uploaded to TurnItIn before 11:59pm of the date on which it is due.
• 1/23/18: Part I: Psychological Disorder/Concept & Popular Media Response (20%)
• 2/13/18: Part II: Reference List w/ explanations (20%)
• 4/10/18: Part III: Written Assignment (60%)
*Make sure to address ALL points described below for each of the required portions of the assignment
PART I: Psychological Disorder/Concept & Popular Media Response (20% of assignment grade) →For Part I, you will submit the following via Blackboard:
. 1) The Psychological Disorder OR Concept you will be discussing in your paper.
. 2) The piece of popular media/culture (movie, book, song, etc.) you are referencing that
exemplifies, in some way, the disorder/concept you have chosen (this must be an easily accessible piece of media (e.g. film or book) that can be looked up – if it is a song or video, please provide a URL).
. 3) Provide a brief (~1 short paragraph) describing a) why you have chosen the disorder/concept; b) why you have chosen your media example; and c) provide a synopsis of how your disorder/concept is portrayed and whether or not you believe it to be an accurate portrayal and why.
• Examples of topics (you may not use these media examples or those we have already discussed in class or in the book!):
• Disorder: Paranoid Schizophrenia Media: A Beautiful Mind
• Concept: Classical Conditioning Media: The Office
PART II: Reference List (with explanations; 20% of assignment grade) → For Part II, you will submit the following via Blackboard:
1) A minimum of FOUR citations referenced in correct APA format • One citation will be your media example
LIB120 – Introduction to Psychology: Writing Assignment SPRING 2018
• Minimum of 1 peer—reviewed REVIEW article regarding your topic
• Minimum of 2 peer—reviewed EMPIRICAL/PRIMARY RESEARCH articles regarding your topics
For each of the peer—reviewed citations, you must provide – in your own words – the main finding of the paper (empirical articles) or the main summary of the paper (review article). Also, describe how the cited material supports the argument you plan to present in your final paper – be clear and concise!
In addition to the citations (not as a part of them), please provide a URL link to the abstract
of the cited articles so that I may reference them while grading. PART III: Written Assignment (60% of assignment grade)
→For Part III (final paper), you will submit a 3-4 page word document of your paper via Blackboard, which should adhere to the following standards: 12pt Times New Roman, double—Spaced, 1—inch Margins. This paper must be written individually and be formatted to APA style.
Please use the following Rubric to help you structure/complete your essay assignment:
• Title of Paper (should make the argument of your paper clear)
• Your name
• Course Title/Section • Date
Body of Essay
• Clearly identify your topic (disorder/concept)
• Provide a characterization of your topic (what is it? If a disorder, how is
it identified/diagnosed? If a concept, how is it used in psychology?
Provide some historical context if relevant.
• Identify the media that exemplifies your topic and provide a brief
explanation of it.
• Present (in 1—2 sentences) your main argument (does your media choice
represent your topic? Why or why not)
Body of Paper Paragraph(s):
• Provide support for your argument as to the accuracy how your topic is portrayed in the media you have chosen.
• Use examples from the articles you have cited – how do these articles support your argument? What is the main finding(s) in them?
• If the media contradicts what is in the scientific literature, identify and explain these instances and why.
• Based on your research, what changes should have been made to make the media example more accurate?
• How has the research you read and/or the media changed (or confirmed) the way you view the disorder/concept?
• Correctly cited in APA format
• Correct number/type of citations (as outlined in Part II of assignment)
• Correctly cite (in—text) your sources (should correspond with Reference Citations) using APA format
Spelling, Grammar, Sentence Structure
• Sentences should be well—structured and varied
• Spelling and grammar should be correct
• Essay should flow well/have well—constructed transitions
LIB120 – Introduction to Psychology: Writing Assignment SPRING 2018 Possible Disorders/Illnesses to Choose From:
Schizophrenia (specify subtype: e.g. paranoid, etc.) Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD)
Anxiety Disorder (Generalized Anxiety; Panic Disorder) Eating Disorder (anorexia; bulimia)
Dissociative Identity Disorder Alzheimer’s Disease
Substance Abuse/Addiction Autism/Asperger’s
Personality Disorders (must specify type) Post—Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) Amnesia
To get a full list of disorders, please access BlackBoard
E—Mail me if you are interested in writing about something not mentioned above.
For Psychological Concepts/Theories, you may use any of the ones mentioned in your book, as long as you provide additional information/examples regarding that concept from outside of your book. Some examples include:
Classical conditioning Operant conditioning Informational social influence Normative social influence Door-in-the-face technique Foot-in-the-door technique Social facilitation
Group think Oedipus conflict Repression Reaction formation Etc.