Identify, discuss and debunk mental health myths and why mental illnesses are viewed differently than physical illnesses. Mental disorders affect about one in five individuals – meaning we are all impacted either personally or through our family or friends. Despite how common mental disorders are what do we really know about them? We will discuss what a mental disorder is and why it is hard to define as well as how mental health professionals decide what is “normal” and “abnormal”. We will also consider the role of culture and how our social norms impact our understanding of “abnormal” behavior.
Instructor: Vina Goghari, PhD, RPsych
A registered clinical psychologist and associate professor of psychology, Vina Goghari has experience in both assessment and therapy with people with mental health issues. She specializes in working with individuals with schizophrenia and their families and has an active research program in studying cognitive and biological markers of illness. She has taught a number of courses at the University of Calgary, including Abnormal Psychology, Clinical Psychology, and Humour and Happiness. One of her key goals is to make the general population aware of research findings and psychoeducation in general to promote less stigma and early assessment and intervention.