Cognitive psychopathology

Cognitive psychopathology, a relatively new discipline takes its inspiration directly from the concepts and methods of cognitive psychopathology, and even more from sciences and cognitive neurosciences.


Where can it be precisely positioned? A particularly influential approach in psychiatry, namely the biological approach, aims to explain a complex clinical symptomatology based on basic neurobiological changes, for example a hyperfunctioning of dopaminergic systems in the case of schizophrenia.  But this complaint manifests itself in a large heterogeneity of symptoms, some said to be positive (hallucinations, delirium, disorganised speech and behaviour), and the others said to be negative (withdrawing into oneself, loss of motivation, disjointed speech, dulling of reactions). In short this kaleidoscopic vision of schizophrenia seems to underline a discrepancy between the proliferation and complexity of clinical symptoms on the one hand, and the simplicity of the explanation on the other. Based on this assessment, cognitive psychopathology aim to introduce an intermediary level of explanation, that of cognitive functioning. Thus, thanks to the models on which it bases itself and its own advances, it aims to provide the link between clinical symptomology of psychopathological states and biological factors.

© 2007 ULiège