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TUESDAYS and THURSDAYS, July 17th to August 3rd INCLUSIVE



E-mail: krodgers@uvm.edu

Office hours by appointment

Course Description
This course is an introduction to neuroanatomy, neurophysiology, and psychopharmacology as they
pertain to mental health counseling. Course also covers commonly prescribed medications, ethical
issues and the referral process. This course is required for MH track students. Prerequisites: Counseling
majors with EDCO 220, 350, 374, and 378, or by instructor permission.

Course Objectives

1. To gain basic knowledge of neuroanatomy, neurophysiology, and pharmacology in order to allow

understanding of the mode of action of psychotropic medications, their intended effects, their side
effects, their interactions with other medications, and their potential for abuse and dependence.

2. To gain familiarity with the more commonly prescribed medications for the treatment of mood,
anxiety, thought, attention, and addiction disorders, as well as efficient ways for gathering information
about these medications.
3. To understand research methodology used in determining the safety and efficacy of medications, to
be able to analyze research reports critically, and enable evidence-based comparisons of the efficacy of
therapeutic options.

4. To explore ethical, economic, and social issues related to prescription of psychopharmacologic agents.

5. To explore issues of mental health care in the medical model, as well as professional relationships
involving shared care of patients/clients between physicians and counselors.

6. To gain knowledge of the referral process, and to explore avenues for collaboration among
counselors, other mental health care providers, and medical care providers.

2009 Council for Accreditation of Counseling & Related Educational Programs (CACREP) Standards:

The course objectives and content are also designed to meet the 2009 Council for Accreditation of
Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP) Standards:

Standards to be Covered:

2009 CACREP Common Core Standards:

o Human Growth & Development-3- [b, f, g]

Clinical Mental Health Counseling Standards:

o Foundations (Knowledge-A) [6]

o Counseling, Prevention & Intervention (Knowledge C) [2, 4, 5]

o Assessment (Knowledge-G) [1]

o Diagnosis (Knowledge-K) [1, 3]

Standards to be Assessed:

Clinical Mental Health Counseling Standards:

o Assessment (Knowledge-G) [3]

Counseling Program Standards:

Counseling Program curricula and experiences are designed to help students meet the following
program objectives. These overall objectives will enable students to work as professional counselors in a
way that is consistent with the Counseling Program philosophy. By the time a student completes the
Counseling Program he or she will be able to:
o Articulate a well-developed and informed personal theory of counseling;

o Articulate an understanding of human development across the lifespan;

o Articulate an informed understanding of human behavior from a number of theoretical perspectives;

o Understand the major theories and techniques of individual and group counseling;

o Apply counseling skills and techniques appropriately in a variety of settings and with clients from
diverse backgrounds;

o Demonstrate competence in leading groups;

o Seek appropriate supervision and consultation;

o Provide appropriate consultation services;

o Demonstrate relevant knowledge and skills specific to his or her area of practice (e.g., school
counseling, mental health counseling);

o Plan, implement, and assess programs appropriate to his or her practice setting(s);

o Demonstrate an awareness of, sensitivity to, and ability to work effectively with cross-cultural
differences in clients as well as differences due to physical or mental disability, age, sexual identity, race
or ethnicity, and gender;

o Demonstrate competence in understanding and addressing variances in human behavior and

emotions including exceptional behavior, psychopathology, and what is considered maladaptive in
relation to developmental, social, cultural, environmental, and other contextual factors;

o Demonstrate a high level of self awareness regarding his or her personal and professional strengths
and challenges;

o Adhere to the ethical and legal standards of the profession of counseling.

Multicultural & Diversity Statement

The American Counseling Association (ACA) 2005 Code of Ethics Principles for Multicultural and
Diversity Competencies will be observed and assessed in this course. The Diversity Competencies utilize
a definition of diversity that includes race, class, gender, sexual orientation, religion and ability and
emphasizes the acquisition of awareness, knowledge, and skills that will allow counselors to effectively
facilitate counseling with diverse clients. The competencies are based on the assumption that all
individuals develop in and are affected by their cultural context and thus, diversity affects all aspects of
individual processes and interpersonal relationships. Diversity competence will be assessed in this
course through written reflective assignments, clinical conceptualization and proposed interventions
during class discussions.

Reasonable Accommodation for Students with Disabilities

If you have a diagnosed disability or believe that you have a disability that might require reasonable
accommodation on the part of the instructor, please call Accommodation, Consultation, Counseling and
Educational Support Services at 656-7753. As part of the Americans with Disabilities Act, it is the
responsibility of the student to disclose a disability prior to requesting reasonable accommodation.

Academic Honesty

Students are required to be familiar with and adhere to the Academic Honesty policy and procedures
delineated in the most recent edition of The Cats Tale: http://www.uvm.edu/~dosa/handbook/

Electronic Devices

Ringing and beeping pagers, watches, and cell phones are disruptive to the group experience
environment. As a courtesy to others, I expect that students will turn off audible signals for these
devices while attending class.

Intellectual Property

Consistent with the Universitys policy on intellectual property rights, it is the Counseling Programs
policy that teaching and curricular materials (including but not limited to classroom lectures, class notes,
exams, grading rubrics, handouts, and presentations) are the property of the instructor. Therefore,
electronic recording and/or transmission of classes or class notes is prohibited without the express
written permission of the instructor. Such permission is to be considered unique to the needs of an
individual student (e.g. ADA compliance), and not a license for permanent retention or electronic
dissemination to others.

UVM Email Accounts

We will communicate occasionally through email; therefore, it is essential that you activate your UVM e-
mail account and check it regularly to avoid missing important information.

Class Attendance

Because of the compressed summer schedule, students are expected to attend all classes. In situations
in which it is impossible to get to class on time, you must contact the instructor prior to the start of the
class. Make note of the class attendance policy in the Counseling Programs Student Handbook (*see
notes below).

*Religious Holidays: Students have the right to practice the religion of their choice. Each semester
students should submit in writing to me by the end of the first full week of classes their documented
religious holiday schedule for the semester. I will permit students who miss work for the purpose of
religious observance to make up this work.


Required text for preparatory readings is Stahl, SM (2013) Stahls Essential Psychopharmacology:
Neuroscientific Basis and Practical Applications (4th Ed). New York: Cambridge University Press. This
text is available for local or online purchase, new and used, from several sources, and may also be
rented or downloaded to an electronic reading device.

Due to the compressed course schedule adapted to summer session, reading assigned chapters before
the class session is imperative. Preparedness by readings may be assessed by unannounced quizzes.

Research and other articles and materials from the medical and counseling literature will be distributed
at class sessions for reading for the following class session.


1. Reading. Reading assignments are listed by class session on the attached schedule. It is likely that
there will be flexibility and modification of class session topics based on student interest and needs.
Assigned readings should be completed prior to the class session with which they correspond.

2. Written assignments. Over the course of the semester, students will produce two two-to-three page
papers exploring issues related to the course objectives listed above. These papers may combine
personal reflection on topics with focused literature-based inquiry. Examples of topics include: reviews
of research articles on medication safety and efficacy; the relationship between neurophysiology and
personality; the relationship between mood and personality; the relationship between treatment
options and perception of illness; differences between the medical model of diagnosis and treatment
and the

counseling model of understanding and intervention; the right to treatment and the right to refuse
treatment; the feminist perspective of treatment of anxiety and depression in women; personal or
professional experiences related to psychopharmacologic therapy; aspects of the culture of medical
practice; economic and other barriers to referrals from medical to mental health providers; issues
affecting patient compliance with prescribed medication therapy; and enhancing collaboration
between medical care providers and counselors.

By agreement with the instructor, students will develop the topic of an expanded paper to a length of
six-to-ten pages (which will be the basis of the students final presentation), and this paper will
demonstrate acquisition of knowledge and application of skill in analysis and synthesis (i.e. evidence of
reflection on the topic, development of the main theme, and use of appropriate supporting data and
opinion from the professional literature) commensurate with graduate study status. Written
assignments should follow APA style guidelines.
3. Presentations. Through discussion and agreement on topic with the instructor, each student will
prepare a 15 to 20 minute presentation for the class. The purpose of the presentation is to share with
the class the student's reflections and research on the student's expanded paper as mentioned above.
The presentations will be given during the final class session.

4. Objective content test. A take-home final exam will be given to assess acquisition of data and
concepts related to neuroanatomy, neurophysiology, classes of medications, indications for use, major
precautions, typical side effects, etc. Test items will be in multiple-choice, short- answer, and case-study


Points towards a final course grade will be assigned on the following basis for the activities listed below
and described previously. Earning 90% or more of available points will results in a grade of A for the
course, 80-89% a grade of B, and so on. If further stratification of student performance is apparent, +
or - notes may be used. All assignments must be completed to earn a grade of B- or higher.

20% preparedness by readings

25% objective content test (final exam)

25% two brief papers

30% final paper and presentation

Therapeutic Psychopharmacology for Counselors EDC0 387, SUMMER 2017 TENTATIVE COURSE

Please bring the textbook and assigned readings to class for reference during discussions.

Session/Date Topic Readings

1. Morning, 7/18 Introductions Reading on Pharmacokinetics

to be sent to you by email
Student expectations prior to class session
Assessment of pre- Reading on
knowledge Pharmacodynamics to be
Course overview sent to you prior to class
Principles of
psychopharmacology Handout on principles of
Basic pharmacology psychopharmacology

Psychopharmacology in the
context of culture/society

Use of the DSM 5 as it relates

to psychopharmacology

Assignment of Paper #1

2. Afternoon, 7/18 The neuron, the glial cell, the Stahl, Chapters 1 Chemical
synapse, and Neurotransmission
Stahl, Chapter 2
Relevant neuroanatomy. Transporters, Receptors, and
Enzymes as Targets of
Psychopharmacologic Drug

Stahl, Chapter 3 Ion Channels

as Targets of
Psychopharmacologic Drug

neuroanatomy handouts

3. Morning, 7/20 Research and clinical issues in Handouts: research issues,

psychopharmacotherapy and bias, clinical significance of
psychotherapy research findings, etc.

Paper #1 due (bias) Students will select a

psychopharmacology clinical
Assignment of Paper #2, research article of interest
analysis/critique of a
for analysis/critique
research article that you

4. Afternoon, 7/20 Psychopharmacology for Stahl, Chapter 12 Attention

children and adolescents I deficit hyperactivity disorder
and its treatment.
Assign requirement for
outline of final Handouts on treatment of
presentation/paper and depressive disorders, anxiety,
reference list. BAD, enuresis in

5. Morning, 7/25 Psychopharmacology for

children and adolescents, II

6. Afternoon, 7/25 Depression, anti-depressant Stahl, Chapter 6 Mood

medications, and treatment Disorders
of depression, part I
Stahl, Chapter 7
Paper #2 due (research study Antidepressants
Handouts: efficacy studies,
alternatives to medication
therapy ,selecting safe and
effective treatments,
electroconvulsive therapy

Depression, anti-depressant
7. Morning, 7/27
medications, and treatment
of depression, part II

Due: Outline and draft

reference list for final paper

8. Afternoon, 7/27
Treatment of bipolar Stahl, Chapter 9 Anxiety
affective disorder Disorders and Anxiolytics

Anxiety disorders and Stahl, Chapter 8 Mood

treatment options Stabiizers

Psychopharmacology options Stahl, Chapter 14 Impulsivity,

for eating disorders Compulsivity, and Addiction

Linkage: Obesity and Stahl, Chapter 11 Disorders

psychopharmacology of Sleep and Wakefulness
and Their Treatment
Treatment options for
obsessive-compulsive Handouts: OCD, eating
disorders disorders, BAD/mood
stabilizers, anxiety disorders,
treatment of insomnia

9. Morning, 8/1 Antipsychotic medications Stahl, Chapter 5

Psychopharmacologic Antipsychotic Agents
options in the treatment of
substance abuse disorders
(opioids, tobacco, alcohol, Stahl, Chapter 10 Chronic
other substances of abuse) Pain and Its Treatment

Dual diagnosis issues Handouts: articles on

outcomes of treatment of
Issues in treatment of acute tobacco abuse/dependence,
and chronic pain alcohol abuse/dependence,
opioid dependence

10. Afternoon, 8/3

Psychopharmacology issues
for special populations: Handout materials on these
prescribing during pregnancy,
lactation, for Prementrual
Dysphoric Disorder, Stahl, Chapter 13 Dementia
menopausal symptoms



Reserved for completion of

11. Morning, 8/3 course objectives if needed

Student Presentations

Student Presentations

12. Afternoon, 8/3 Distribute Final Exam (take


13. Afternoon, 8/7 Final Paper due by email or

to instructors mailbox Mann

14. Afternoon, 8/10 Final Exam due by email or

to instructors mailbox Mann

Graded final exams,

15. Afternoon, 8/17 evaluation of final
presentation, graded final
papers, and final grade
mailed to you/placed in
student mailbox/sent