Module 2: Key Definitions, Diagnostic Criteria, Classification of Substances, & Trending Topics

Module 2 readings introduce several key terms with their meaning and use defined. This initial section concludes with an explanation of the biopsychosocial perspective on substance misuse and how the various types of theories we are studying might fit together rather than “compete” with each other to help shape our understanding. This biopsychosocial perspective forms the structure for our course Part 1 analysis of theories. Chapter 2 of our Module 2 readings examines the major diagnostic systems used in the U.S. and internationally for diagnosing various types and severity of substance use disorder (SUD). In Chapter 3, we explore several trending topics in the substance use/misuse and SUD arena.

Reading Objectives

After engaging with these reading materials and learning resources, you should be able to:

  • Define key terms related to substance use, misuse, and use disorders
  • Describe the biopsychosocial perspective on substance misuse
  • Describe the diagnostic criteria applied to alcohol and other substance use disorders
  • Explain how two different systems apply to the classification of different types of substances
  • Identify three key trending topics in the area of substance use/misuse and the different sides of the issues


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Theories and Biological Basis of Substance Misuse, Part 1 Copyright © by Dr. Audrey Begun is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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