Syllabus for GER-610

GEROPSYCHOLOGICAL ASSESSMENT


COURSE DESCRIPTION

Geropsychological Assessment prepares the student to engage in a variety of data collection methods (e.g., interviewing, observation, self-report, psychological testing, integration of interdisciplinary assessments) in order to assess mood, cognition, decision making, functional capacities, and level of risk, with consideration of the interaction between these factors and biosocial factors for older adults. Students will gain familiarity with screening instruments and will examine diagnosis and referral to other agencies.

COURSE TOPICS

COURSE OBJECTIVES

After completing this course, you should be able to:

CO1        Apply the Contextual Adult Life Span Theory for Adapting Psychotherapy (CALTAP) model to the assessment of behavioral issues in older adults.

CO2        Examine assessment tools commonly used to evaluate mood and behavior disorders in older adults.

CO3        Evaluate cognitive strengths and weaknesses with screening tools.

CO4        Assess how personal attitudes and beliefs about aging are relevant to the assessment of older adults.

CO5        Analyze the assessment of decision-making capacity in older adults.

CO6        Synthesize medical, psychological, functional, and social information to assess psychological status and develop effective treatments and/or recommend appropriate referrals.

CO7        Critique diverse data collection methods, including interview, observation, self-report, and screening tools.

CO8        Evaluate the roles of different medical professionals in assessment, diagnosis, and treatment of psychological disorders.

COURSE MATERIALS

You will need the following materials to do the work of the course. The required textbook is available from the University’s textbook supplier, MBS Direct.

Required Textbook

          ISBN: 978-0-19-965-253-2

COURSE STRUCTURE

Geropsychological Assessment is a three-credit online course, consisting of six modules. Modules include an overview, topics, learning objectives, study materials, and activities. Module titles are listed below.

ASSESSMENT METHODS

For your formal work in the course, you are required to participate in online discussion forums, complete written assignments and assessment assignments, and complete a final project. See below for details. Consult the Course Calendar for due dates.

Discussion Forums

In addition to an ungraded Introductions Forum, you are required to participate in six graded online class discussions.

Communication with your mentor and among fellow students is a critical component of online learning. Participation in online class discussions involves two distinct activities: an initial response to a discussion question and at least two subsequent comments on classmates' responses.

All of these responses must be substantial. Meaningful participation is relevant to the content, adds value, and advances the discussion. Comments such as "I agree" and "ditto" are not considered value-adding participation. Therefore, when you agree or disagree with a classmate or your mentor, state and support your position.

You will be evaluated on the quality and quantity of your participation, including your use of relevant course information to support your point of view, and your awareness of and responses to the postings of your classmates. Remember, these are discussions: responses and comments should be properly proofread and edited, mature, and respectful.

Written Assignments

You are required to complete six written assignments. Written assignment questions afford you an opportunity to demonstrate mastery of the information that you have studied within the module. Each written assignment includes guidelines for response length. In all cases, you should be sure to adequately address each part of the assignment.

Be sure to apply the material to real-world situations when appropriate. It is always desirable that you use scholarly sources in addition to the course textbook to support your arguments. All sources, when used, should be properly documented in APA format.

Assessment Assignments

You are required to complete six assessment assignments. These assignments afford you an opportunity to demonstrate your ability to select, administer, and evaluate various types of assessment tools. In all cases, you should be sure to adequately address each part of the assignment.

Final Project

Your final project will be a paper of between 2000 and 3000 words that integrates course content within the CALTAP framework to complete a psychological assessment of an older adult.

See the Final Project area of the course site for a full description of this assignment.

GRADING AND EVALUATION

Your grade in the course will be determined as follows:

All activities will receive a numerical grade of 0–100. You will receive a score of 0 for any work not submitted. Your final grade in the course will be a letter grade. Letter grade equivalents for numerical grades are as follows:

A

=

93–100

B

=

83–87

A–

=

90–92

C

=

73–82

B+

=

88–89

F

=

Below 73

To receive credit for the course, you must earn a letter grade of C or higher on the weighted average of all assigned course work (e.g., assignments, discussion postings, projects). Graduate students must maintain a B average overall to remain in good academic standing.

STRATEGIES FOR SUCCESS

First Steps to Success

To succeed in this course, take the following first steps:

Study Tips

Consider the following study tips for success:

ACADEMIC INTEGRITY

Students at Thomas Edison State University are expected to exhibit the highest level of academic citizenship. In particular, students are expected to read and follow all policies, procedures, and program information guidelines contained in publications; pursue their learning goals with honesty and integrity; demonstrate that they are progressing satisfactorily and in a timely fashion by meeting course deadlines and following outlined procedures; observe a code of mutual respect in dealing with mentors, staff, and other students; behave in a manner consistent with the standards and codes of the profession in which they are practicing; keep official records updated regarding changes in name, address, telephone number, or e-mail address; and meet financial obligations in a timely manner. Students not practicing good academic citizenship may be subject to disciplinary action including suspension, dismissal, or financial holds on records.

 

Academic Dishonesty

Thomas Edison State University expects all of its students to approach their education with academic integrity—the pursuit of scholarly activity free from fraud and deception. All mentors and administrative staff members at the University insist on strict standards of academic honesty in all courses. Academic dishonesty undermines this objective. Academic dishonesty can take the following forms:

Please refer to the Academic Code of Conduct Policy in the University Catalog and online at www.tesu.edu.

 

 

Plagiarism

Using someone else’s work as your own is plagiarism. Thomas Edison State University takes a strong stance against plagiarism, and students found to be plagiarizing will be severely penalized. If you copy phrases, sentences, paragraphs, or whole documents word-for-word—or if you paraphrase by changing a word here and there—without identifying the author, or without identifying it as a direct quote, then you are plagiarizing. Please keep in mind that this type of identification applies to Internet sources as well as to print-based sources. Copying and pasting from the Internet, without using quotation marks and without acknowledging sources, constitutes plagiarism. (For information about how to cite Internet sources, see Online Student Handbook > Academic Standards > “Citing Sources.”)

Accidentally copying the words and ideas of another writer does not excuse the charge of plagiarism. It is easy to jot down notes and ideas from many sources and then write your own paper without knowing which words are your own and which are someone else’s. It is more difficult to keep track of each and every source. However, the conscientious writer who wishes to avoid plagiarizing never fails to keep careful track of sources.

Always be aware that if you write without acknowledging the sources of your ideas, you run the risk of being charged with plagiarism.

Clearly, plagiarism, no matter the degree of intent to deceive, defeats the purpose of education. If you plagiarize deliberately, you are not educating yourself, and you are wasting your time on courses meant to improve your skills. If you plagiarize through carelessness, you are deceiving yourself.

For examples of unintentional plagiarism, advice on when to quote and when to paraphrase, and information about writing assistance and originality report checking, click the links provided below.

Examples of Unintentional Plagiarism 

When to Quote and When to Paraphrase

Writing Assistance at Smarthinking

Originality Report Checking at Turnitin

 

Disciplinary Process

First-time incidents of academic dishonesty concerning plagiarism may reflect ignorance of appropriate citation requirements. Mentors will make a good faith effort to address all first-time offenses that occur in courses. In these cases, the mentor may impose sanctions that serve as a learning exercise for the offender. These may include the completion of tutorials, assignment rewrites, or any other reasonable learning tool including a lower grade when appropriate. The mentor will notify the student by e-mail. Decisions about the sanctions applied for subsequent plagiarism offenses or other violations will be made by the appropriate dean’s office, with the advice of the mentor or staff person who reported the violation. The student will be notified via certified mail of the decision. Options for sanctions include:

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