Psychology (PSYC) 471

Supporting Children and Youth with Emotional and Behavioural Challenges (Revision 8)

PSYC 471 Course website

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Delivery Mode: Individualized study online with eTextbook

Credits: 3

Area of Study: Social Science

Prerequisite: EDPY 351, or PSYC 389/EDPY 389, or equivalent

Precluded Course: PSYC 471 is a cross-listed course—a course available in two different disciplines—with EDPY 471. PSYC 471 cannot be taken for credit if credit has already been obtained for EDPY 471.

Faculty: Faculty of Humanities & Social Sciences

Psychology home page

PSYC 471 has a Challenge for Credit option.

Course website

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This course focuses on management strategies and techniques for children and adolescents who present serious disruptive and/or emotional and behavioural disorders in schools. It presents a comprehensive review of assessment techniques and behaviour management strategies.

Learning Outcomes

When you have completed this course, you will be able to do the following:

  • Outline the primary conceptual approaches to emotional and behavioural disorders (EBDs).
  • Discuss the role of an effective teacher of students with EBDs.
  • Describe the causal factors of EBDs and possible preventions.
  • Outline how EBDs are defined and the issues with defining EBDs.
  • Define and describe the characteristics of types of disordered behaviour.
  • Identify the primary approaches to intervention and education for each type of EBD.
  • Describe the issues with measurement, screening, and identification of EBDs.
  • Search for, find, evaluate, and share resources on EBDs.
  • Develop case studies that include instructional and assessment strategies that are appropriate for the specific emotional and behavioural challenges of students with EBDs.


PSYC 471 is divided into 15 units, grouped into 4 parts:

Part 1 – Background

  • Unit 1: Basic Assumptions about Emotional and Behavioural Challenges
  • Unit 2: Definitions and Prevalence
  • Unit 3: Development of the Field and Current Issues

Part 2 – Causal Factors

  • Unit 4: Biology
  • Unit 5: Culture
  • Unit 6: Family
  • Unit 7: School

Part 3 – Types of Disordered Behaviour – Characteristics and Interventions

  • Unit 8: Attention and Activity Disorders
  • Unit 9: Conduct Disorder
  • Unit 10: Anxiety and Related Disorders
  • Unit 11: Depression and Suicidal Behaviour
  • Unit 12: Disorders of Thinking, Communicating, and Stereotypical Behaviour
  • Unit 13: Special Problems of Adolescents: Delinquency, Substance Abuse, and Early Sexual Activity

Part 4 - Assessment

  • Unit 14: Measurement Issues, Screening, and Identification
  • Unit 15: Assessment for Instruction


Your final grade in PSYC 471 will be based on your performance on five journals and a course project and on your participation in the discussion forum. To receive credit for the course, you must achieve a grade of at least 50 percent on each assignment as well as an overall grade of at least D (50 percent). As well, you must complete all components of the course (including a study plan) in order to receive credit for the course. The following chart indicates the assignments for credit and the value of each assignment toward the final course grade.

Activity Weighting
Study Plan 0%
Journals (5) 40%
Participation in Discussion Forum 20%
Course Project 40%
Total 100%

To learn more about assignments and examinations, please refer to Athabasca University's online Calendar.

Course Materials


Registration in this course includes an electronic textbook. For more information on electronic textbooks, please refer to our eText Initiative site.

Kauffman, J. M., & Landrum, T. J. (2018). Characteristics of Emotional and Behavioral Disorders of Children and Youth (11th ed.). Pearson Education.

A print version of the eText may be available for purchase from the publisher through a direct-to-student link provided on the course website; you can also acquire the textbook on your own if you wish.

Other Resources

All other learning resources will be available online.

Challenge for Credit Overview

The Challenge for Credit process allows you to demonstrate that you have acquired a command of the general subject matter, knowledge, intellectual and/or other skills that would normally be found in a university-level course.

Full information about Challenge for Credit can be found in the Undergraduate Calendar.

Challenge Evaluation

To receive credit for the PSYC 471 challenge registration, you must achieve a grade of at least D (50 percent) or higher on both the Course Project and the examination.

Activity Weighting
Course Project 50%
Exam 50%
Total 100%

Undergraduate Challenge for Credit Course Registration Form

Athabasca University reserves the right to amend course outlines occasionally and without notice. Courses offered by other delivery methods may vary from their individualized-study counterparts.

Opened in Revision 8, November 25, 2020.

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