Cognitive neuropsychology is the branch of psychology that studies brain-damaged patients to understand the workings of our brain. Our brain is constructed of two hemispheres which are responsible for different facets of human personality and behaviour. Despite some essential differences in some functions, these hemispheres communicate through inter-hemispheric neural connections, most through the corpus callosum. This communication allows the brain to integrate different elements to produce coordinated, apparently seamless action and a unified personality
Our behaviour, personality and thought processes are affected by neurobiological processes and can be altered by any damage to our nervous system. Study Neuropsychology to gain an understanding of how psychology in a person can be affected by their own anatomical and psychological characteristics.
The distance learning course in cognitive neuropsychology offered on http://www.acs.edu.au/courses/neuropsychology-358.aspx aims to:
Describe the relevance of neuropsychology to managing psychological disorders.
Explain the physiology of the nervous system.
Describe the anatomy of the nervous system.
Describe how conditions within the brain affect the way in which a person is physically capable or incapable of performing a variety of different tasks.
Explain how various aspects of a person’s thought processes may vary according to that person’s neurobiology.
Describe a variety of perceptual disorders.
Explain a variety of motor disorders.
Explain the neuropsychology of language.
Differentiate between different dementias.
Explain aspects of development in neuropsychological terms.
Learn about the development of Neuropsychology and techniques used in human neuropsychological studies.
Describe the Neuroanatomy of the: brainstem, cerebellum and cerebral cortex, organisation of the cerebral cortex, cranial nerves, brain covering, ventricular system, arteries, brain malfunction, visual system and other systems;
Determine why there is laterality;
Discuss callosal syndrome;
Discuss and compare theories of frontal lobe function;
Contrast normal aspects and abnormal aspects of emotion from a neuropsychological perspective;
Develop a diagnostic table of perceptual disorders;
Determine how the brain perceives faces;
Discuss language formation;
Describe language disorders;
Develop a table of kind of dementia;
Learn how recovery of function is affected across age spans.
And it covers:
Foundations of Neuropsychology
What is neuropsychology?
The Information Processing Approach
Studying the human mind
Methods of investigating the brain
Parts of a neuron
Effects of neurotransmitters
Neurotransmitters and their effects
Disorders associated with neurotransmitters
The nervous system
Parts of the central nervous system
The spinal cord
Blood brain barrier
Peripheral nervous system
Autonomic nervous system
Sensory somatic nervous system
How the nervous system works (a summary)
Problems with brain functioning
Injuries to the head
Meningitis and encephalitis.
Laterality and Callosal Syndromes
Split brain syndrome
Dual brain theory
Cognition, Personality and Emotion
Emotion and moods
Brain damage and emotion
Higher level functioning
The Limbic system
Causes of hemispatial neglect
Auditory perceptual disorder
Types of visual agnosia
Hallucinogen persisting perception disorder.
Motor disorders resulting from traumatic brain injury
Non traumatic and/or genetic paediatric movement disorders
Motor skills disorder
Neural transplants and Parkinson’s Disease
How does gene therapy work
Ethical issues surrounding gene therapy,
Speech and language disorders
Kinds of dementia
Dementia with Lewy Bodies
Spotting dementia and other conditions,
Major processes of neurodevelopment
Neuroplasticity and brain damage.