HS 224 : Psychopharmacology

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Course Description

This course covers the knowledge required to pass the pharmacology section of the Certified Alcohol and Drug Counselor (CADC) 1 exam. It includes the ways drugs are used, controlled and valued culturally; how the human body functions normally, including knowledge of cells, nerve cells, and basic bodily systems (i.e., respiratory, circulatory, endocrine and digestive; how drugs are absorbed, distributed, metabolized and excreted and how drugs affect these systems).

Course learning outcomes

1. Explain basic pharmacology including routes of administration, drug metabolism, drug excretion, dosage and potency, absorption and distribution, drug actions, reactions and interactions, genetic influences and interactions.
2. List the impact of the following drug categories on the body: stimulants, including nicotine and performance-enhancing drugs (steroids); depressants/sedative hypnotics including alcohol, inhalants; opiates including methadone and narcotic analgesics, hallucinogens and psychedelics; cannabis; and psychotropic medications.
3. Demonstrate familiarity with philosophies, policies and outcomes of the generally accepted and scientifically supported treatment modalities for substance use disorders.
4. Describe DSM criteria for substance use disorders
5. Identify treatment issues related to diverse cultures, lifestyles, gender, age and the relevant needs of people with disabilities.
6. Explain the impact and history of social, political, economic, cultural and legal systems on drug taking behavior.

General education/Related instruction lists

  • Science not Lab

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