This is an introductory course in psychopharmacology. Topics include the neurobiology of drug action and psychotropic drugs--their pharmacology, metabolism, interactions, adverse effects and therapeutic uses.
- Neurotransmitters and Receptors
- Pharmacokinetics and Pharmacodynamics
- Biology of Mental Disorders
- Sedative Hypnotics, Anxiolytics and Alcohol
- Marijuana, Hallucinogens, Phencyclidine and Inhalants
- Mood Stabilizers
- Antipsychotics and Anticholinergics
- Herbal Medications
Methods of Instruction
The primary methods of instruction will be lecture and seminar. The course will also involve group activities, presentations, audiovisual media and guest lectures.
Means of Assessment
Evaluation will be carried out in accordance with Douglas College policy. Evaluation will be based on course objectives and include some of the following:
1. multiple choice, short answer, or essay exams
2. term paper, research project, or written assignments
3. oral presentation or teaching demonstration
The instructor will provide a written course outline with specific evaluation criteria at the beginning of semester.
An example of a possible evaluation scheme is as follows:
Research paper 20%
Three exams at 20% each 60%
Upon completion of the course, the student will be able to:
- Demonstrate an understanding of basic neural structure and function, with a particular focus on cellular level events such as neurotransmission.
- Demonstrate an understanding of the basic mechanisms of drug effects, including routes of administration, pharmacokinetics, pharmacodynamics and neurophysiology.
- Describe and demonstrate an understanding of the major classes of psychotropic drugs, their mode of action, effects and side effects.
- Demonstrate an understanding of the drugs used to treat psychiatric disorders.
- Demonstrate an understanding of psychotropic drug abuse, dependence and treatment, including both prescription and street drugs.
- Demonstrate an understanding of drug research including clinical trials.
- Demonstrate an ability to obtain, critically evaluate and understand current information regarding drugs.
Course Guidelines for previous years are viewable by selecting the version desired. If you took this course and do not see a listing for the starting semester/year of the course, consider the previous version as the applicable version.
Below shows how this course and its credits transfer within the BC transfer system.
A course is considered university-transferable (UT) if it transfers to at least one of the five research universities in British Columbia: University of British Columbia; University of British Columbia-Okanagan; Simon Fraser University; University of Victoria; and the University of Northern British Columbia.
For more information on transfer visit the BC Transfer Guide and BCCAT websites.
If your course prerequisites indicate that you need an assessment, please see our Assessment page for more information.