PSY2600 – Personality and Abnormal psychology

Schedule, syllabus and examination date

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Course content

The course gives an overview of historic and current theory and research within the fields of personality psychology and abnormal psychology.

The personality psychology component focuses on theoretical and empirical approaches to personality with special relevance for understanding abnormal behavior. Domains include psychodynamic theory, the cognitive approach, motivation, the self concept, and the relationship between stress and health.

The abnormal psychology component focuses on historical and current understand of abnormal behavior, its classification, theoretical understanding, and treatment. Specific topics include anxiety disorders, mood disorders (including suicide), personality disorders, and schizophrenia.

The course complements and expands on topics covered in PSY1101 and lays the foundation for the Master's program in Health, Social and Personality Psychology.

Learning outcome


You should be able to:

  • Describe theories of personality covering intrapsychic functioning, cognitive aspects and issues related to stress and health
  • Describe personality assessment methods and diagnostic systems
  • Describe major diagnostic categories of mental disorders, their characteristics, prevalence, aetiology and treatment


You should be able to:

  • Illustrate how different conceptualizations of personality can complement and enhance our understanding of normal and abnormal functioning
  • Aquire a basic understanding of possible relationships between normal personality functioning and abnormal behavior
  • Recognize basic symptoms of mental disorders
  • Illustrate how different mental disorders are classified

General competence

You should:

  • Develop the ability to evaluate human behavior and individual differences as many-faceted and complex
  • Be able to apprechiate the complexity of defining what is normal and what is abnormal


Students who are admitted to study programmes at UiO must each semester register which courses and exams they wish to sign up for in Studentweb.

If you are not already enrolled as a student at UiO, please see our information about admission requirements and procedures.

If there are more applicants than available places, the students
that has this course as an obligatory course in their education plan will be preferred. Read more here (only in Norwegian)

Overlapping courses

5 studypoints overlap with PSYC4200 – Personlighetspsykologi (discontinued).

Partial overlap with PSY120 (The course is no longer taught).


12 two-hour lectures plus student's independent reading.


Three hours written examination.

Previous exams

Digital examination

The written examination is conducted in the digital examination system Inspera. You will need to familiarize yourself with the digital examination arrangements in Inspera.

Read more about written examinations using Inspera.

Examination support material

Students may use dictionaries at this exam. Dictionaries must be handed in before the examination. Please read regulations for dictionaries permitted at the examination.

Language of examination

You may write your examination paper in Norwegian, Swedish, Danish or English.

Grading scale

Grades are awarded on a scale from A to F, where A is the best grade and F is a fail. Read more about the grading system.

Explanations and appeals

Ask for explanation of your grade in this course

Resit an examination

If you are sick or have another valid reason for not attending the regular exam, we offer a postponed exam later in the same semester.

See also our information about resitting an exam.

Withdrawal from an examination

It is possible to take the exam up to 3 times. If you withdraw from the exam after the deadline or during the exam, this will be counted as an examination attempt.

Special examination arrangements

Application form, deadline and requirements for special examination arrangements.


The course is subject to continuous evaluation. At regular intervals we also ask students to participate in a more comprehensive evaluation.

Facts about this course






Last semester with teaching in PSY2600 is Spring 2018. The course will be discontinued after this semester. 


Last chance for retake examination is Spring 2018 and Autumn 2018.

Teaching language