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The Tri-Valley Library of Conversations Courses

Bipolar Disorder

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Andrew Peckham, PhD


Andrew  Peckham  is a clinical and research psychologist in the Division of Alcohol, Drugs, and Addiction at McLean Hospital and an Instructor of Psychology in the Department of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School. His research focuses on the relationship between cognitive functioning and emotion regulation in mental illness, particularly bipolar disorder.

Bipolar disorder is a serious mental illness that affects millions of Americans. Practitioners of clinical social work are very likely to encounter individuals with a bipolar diagnosis in their careers, and are also likely to encounter individuals with symptoms of bipolar disorder without a formal diagnosis. Given the substantial risks associated with bipolar disorder (such as elevated rates of suicide and substance use disorders), it is essential that social workers are able to recognize, diagnose, and provide evidence-based psychosocial interventions for bipolar disorder. This course will enhance clinical social work practice by introducing foundational information and skills in these areas.

Upon taking the course, attendees will be able to:

  • Describe core symptoms of bipolar disorder

  • Understand how to make a differential diagnosis when bipolar disorder is possible

  • Begin teaching mood-monitoring skills when working with patients with bipolar disorder

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