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Flashcards in Statistical Infrequency Deck (5)
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- Statistical Infrequency defines abnormality as a behaviour that deviates from the 'average'.
- Occurs when an individual possesses a less common characteristic than most of the population and therefore the behaviour displayed is statistically rare.
- Example of this is being extremely intelligent with an IQ score over 130 which is only 2.5% of the population.
- On the lower side, 2.5% of the population have below average IQ of 70 and below.
- The data collected can also be presented as a Normal Distribution Curve.


Strength: Gives guidelines

- Offers the prospect of clear guidelines for identifying behaviours as normal and abnormal.
- The definition gives objectivity into the process of defining abnormality so that all psychologists can scientifically identify behaviour in the same way.
- This is a strength as it offers a more scientific way of measuring abnormality which reduces subjectivity and bias.
- So gives a more accurate way of dealing with abnormality.


Strength: Abnormal is not negative

- Under this definition, being classed as abnormal is not necessarily negative behaviour but can instead be positive and desirable.
- E.g having a high IQ is very advantageous.
- This is a strength as it shows that behaviour which is statistically infrequent does not mean that the person needs treatment.


Weakness: Arbitrary

- The decision of where to start the 'abnormal' classification is arbitrary as there seems to be a subjective cut off point between stat. infrequency and normality.
- E.g it can be questioned how an IQ of 70 is abnormal but IQ of 71 is normal.


Weakness: Ethnocentric

- Cultures around the world differ in terms of what they consider normal behaviour.
- E.g it would be unusual if someone is in a polygamy relationship in UK but in other cultures, it's normalised.
- This is a weakness as it shows that this definition cannot be applied to every culture so using this definition may cause some to be incorrectly defined as abnormal.