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Heather, a university student with Autism Spectrum Disorder

Question:

Discuss about the Theories of  Positive Psychology Program Management.

Heather is a 20 years-old university student who has an intense fear of speaking to people she does not know.  She isolated herself from the other students during her first and second year by choosing subjects that involved mass numbers. Heather could hide at the back of the big lecture halls during class. She was a brilliant student who performed well in all of her subjects. Heather has a fear of socializing that stems from the fear of being judged negatively. The dread of socializing with other students in her third year makes her want to drop out of the university.

Heather is likely suffering from Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) management . The disorder is characterized by symptoms such as the inability to freely relate with others, limited communication and repetitive forms of behavior. People suffering from this disorder tend to have a high IQ and are usually sensitive about their reputation, and they also suffer from insomnia. Heathers’ fear of interaction and socializing with other students, fear of embarrassing herself in front of other students, lack of participation in class and peer discussion and her lack of sleep all constitutes symptoms of Autism Spectrum Disorder, as per the diagnostic and statistical manual of mental illness (DSM-5). Heather performs well in her classes, but she is considering dropping out of the university due to the intense fear actively interacting with other students and being engaged in group participation.

For heathers condition to be classified as a psychological disorder, the DSM-5 requires that the particular symptoms of Autism Spectrum Disorder must affect her social life.

Heather’s behavior has adverse effects especially to herself; she is unable to form social ties with her peers. She lacks critical communication skills necessary as a student due to her limited contact with others. She considers dropping out of school because she feels alone and has no one to consult.

There’s no actual cure for Autism Spectrum Disorder therefor after Heather is diagnosed with the disorder she is required to undertake therapeutics sessions that involve a combination of therapies. One of the treatments to be applied in Heather's scenario is group therapy.  The treatment includes a couple of therapists who conduct sessions to their patient. Group therapy is performed in groups, that is, patients who require this treatment sit in a group and share their experiences. Group therapy suits patients with Autism Spectrum Disorder since it allows them to freely interact with the group members through socialization and the regular talks and listening, this will help them overcome their fear of socialization and participation. The diversity in the group also boost their personality and confidence to communicate with strangers ("Psychotherapy: Understanding group therapy," 2017)

Symptoms of ASD

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy can be applied in treating the disorder. The treatment’s fundamental proposition is that distorted thinking results in distress while rational thinking produces less negativity (Kathleen, 2017). CBT works by changing the behaviors that lead to adverse outcomes. People with Autism Spectrum disorder suffer from emotional problems. Their thinking is negative, and their perception of others adds to the negativity. The dread of to be negatively judged causes lack of formation of social ties which hinders social integration. CBT focuses on the present beliefs of the patients. The treatment has a particular skill that identifies and rectify distorted thoughts and teaches the patients how to relate with others in different ways. CBT will help patients with Autism Spectrum disorder change their perceptions; it helps the patients understand that not everyone is cruel. The therapy treatment helps raise the patient’s self-esteem.

The cognitive behavioral therapy will help boost one's self-esteem and assist them to develop a positive thinking. The elimination of the thought and fear of being criticized and judged by others will assist them to be active in participating in group therapies that will involve interaction and sharing of life experiences. Being confident and the elimination of negativity will improve participation in group therapies.

The advertisement is about discouraging people from smoking. It provides the reason why one should stop smoking today and the health effects of smoking. The image in the ad provides what happens to your body and your health, for instance, smoking causes lung cancer, heart disease, diabetes and liver cancer. The announcement also explains changes that occur in your body within minutes, hours, days and even years after you smoke your last cigarette. The publication is designed to modify the smoker’s behavior by exposing them to the adverse effects of smoking. These side effects will contribute in changing their attitude towards cigarettes, smoking, and smokers.

The advertisement will persuade people to change their behavior and start living healthy by quitting smoking. Smokers who have the intention of stopping persuaded further that smoking is dangerous. The non-smokers are also convinced that there is no benefit in smoking, but rather it is hazardous to their health. This advertisement will also result in people’s change of attitude towards tobacco use. The regular smokers embrace smoking with a view that it is an essential need. The non-smokers also see smoking as a cultural management norm and just like any other stimulant. A majority of people are not against smoking because they are ignorant of the effects. Information on the advertisement will educate the people on the adverse effects of tobacco use and will consequently change their attitudes. The advertisement will also influence change. Viewers of the image might change their patterns of behavior when it comes to smoking either actively or passively.

Treatment of ASD: Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and group therapy

The advertisement applies stimulation psychological principle of social psychology to impact attitude change, to persuade and to influence. The notice contains a pictorial message that explains the long-term health effects of smoking. This message stimulates a change in people’s behavior by creating awareness, they are encouraged by the advertisement and since they cannot afford to pay the price of ignorance the will result in a change in their behavior. Change in ones’ behavior will also stimulate a change in another’s behavior since the society influence its members through contact and adoption of patterns of behavior amongst themselves. A change in attitude will affect a change in behavior; their relationship findings are; to encourage or discourage behavior is by changing the attitude that causes them (Ford-Martin, 2017)

Behaviorist perspective of motivation. – Motivation is the energy that drives one to do or act differently with aggression and more passion (Heffner & Heffner, 2017).  This perspective has been used to explain why people behave the way they behave; this is usually a persuasion model employed in some sectors such as education and criminology. In education, behaviorist perspective explains how education influence a change in behavior, it is evident that literate people have their way of doing things differently from the illiterate. Their patterns of eating, dressing, talking, walking among others makes the two groups distinct former. This perspective can be used to motivate and influence someone’s decision to enroll in a university.

Autonomy- this is the sense of doing things out of free will, it involves acting out of one's interests, principles, and values. A lecturer can participate in enhancing a student’s autonomy by letting the student choose on what interests them most freely. In social works some have passions to work with children or the elderly, instead of assigning students to these groups the lecturer should let each student choose where their interest lies, this will improve the overall performance.

Competence- refers to the desire to know the outcome. In the case of social work, the lecturer should let the students be part of the result. Being involved in the process will build up the desire to want to know the outcome and the consequences of our actions ("what is self-determination theory?” 2017)

Relatedness- this is the wish to belong to a group. The need to interact and help people and feeling part of their lives by doing or saying is what relatedness entails. The lecturer should encourage sharing during the social work, also being active for instance donating food and clothing to their groups will enhance interaction, and the students will become satisfied with their actions.

It is noted that most teenage girls use the emergency contraceptive pills. They were recommended to change their family planning method to the use of condoms. According to the two-factor theory of motivation, one might not comply with these changes because the condoms cannot be readily available, also because they lack interest in trying them out ("chapter 5: theories of motivation", 2017) Failure of adopting the recommended change will result to replace the approach plan in future. In this case, it can involve creating awareness of the effects of using emergency pills and also providing condoms at their disposal.

References

Ford-Martin, P. (2017). Psychology Encyclopedia - JRank Articles. Psychology.jrank.org. Retrieved 2 October 2017, from https://psychology.jrank.org/pages/52/Attitude-Behaviour.html

Heffner, D., & Heffner, D. (2017). Chapter 7: Section 2: Motivation | All Psych. Allpsych.com. Retrieved 2 October 2017, from https://allpsych.com/psychology101/motivation/

What is self-determination theory? (2017). Positive psychology program. Retrieved 2 October 2017, from https://positivepshychologyprogram.com/self-determination-theory/

Chapter 5: theories of motivation. (2017). saylordot. Retrieved 2 October 2017, from https://saylordotorg.github.io/text_organisational-behaviour-v1.1/s09-theories-of-motivation.html

Psychotherapy: Understanding group therapy. (2017). American Psychological Association. Retrieved 2 October 2017, from https://www.apa.org/helpcenter/group-therapy.aspx

Kathleen, d. (2017). Tommy John surgeries are increasing for youth athletes. Medical News Today. Retrieved 2 October 2017, from https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/296679.php

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