An overall aim of this free course is for you to develop an understanding of mental health science (focusing on anxiety and depression) from contemporary biological and psychological perspectives. At Masters level you will be expected to think critically about issues, models and frameworks and their application in different contexts, to take a proactive ‘questioning’ approach, to put forward your views, and to argue a case convincingly backed up with evidence that supports your view. These are skills that you will continue to develop if you move on to postgraduate study. But before we broach these topics, it is first worth clarifying some concepts, dispelling some common misconceptions, and to help provide the context to inform your studies.
This free OpenLearn course has been developed from the Open University course S826 Introduction to mental health science [Tip: hold Ctrl and click a link to open it in a new tab. (Hide tip)] (Stage 1 in the Masters in Mental Health Science), and is suitable preparatory reading if you are considering moving on to postgraduate study in this area. A number of related free courses are also available on OpenLearn. They are recommended to complement your studies, can serve as background reading, introduce you to underlying concepts, and provide a basis that will help to support and broaden your knowledge and understanding of topics further. You can find these in the Further Reading section.
Please note that a glossary of terms is not provided on this course. However, you may find it helpful to keep one as you study. The course may contain some specialist vocabulary, terms or ideas with which you are unfamiliar, such as a medical condition, a complex technical term or a specific procedure or assessment. At this more advanced level of study, it is expected that you use your initiative and find the missing information for yourself, perhaps using medical dictionaries or encyclopaedias, or by conducting an online search using a search engine. Searching for information is also an overt feature of study at Masters level, and will help you to better prepare for postgraduate study.