Full course description
Aggression is defined as any behaviour directed towards a target who is motivated to avoid harm with the cause of damaging that target. Surprisingly maybe, nowadays, aggression levels in our society are actually lower than that in previous societies. Nonetheless, when incidents of aggression do occur they can cause major damage both on a personal level (i.e. for both victim and perpetrator) and for the society as a whole. This course is situated on the interplay between social, clinical and forensic psychology. Next to the major models on the existence and maintenance of aggression, and both nature and nurture-related causes, the course will focus on the main expression forms, cultural influences, and pathological disorders related to aggression. We will also address how aggression can be measured adequately and what the treatment options are.
- students are able to explain the definition of aggression, and its sub forms like reactive and proactive aggression. They also have insight into the relation with related constructs like anger and hostility, and of the transdiagnostic nature of aggression. These also learn which pathological disorders are related to aggression;
- students gain and apply knowledge about gender and cultural influences on aggression;
- students can explain the different main models on aggression like the GAM and I-cubed model, and on nature- and nurture related origins of aggression;
- students are able to explain the main goals of the different treatment model available for aggression, like cognitive therapy, stop-think-do approaches, schema therapy and EMDR; gain clinical insight into these therapies, and reflect on the empirical evidence supporting the effectiveness of the different therapies;
- students gain knowledge and are able to reflect critically on the assessment methods used to measure aggression.