8 credits during the 5th year of 9322 TEACHER EDUCATION (LM-85 bis) GENOVA
1° Semester
Teaching materials


The course aims to facilitate the acquisition of the main theoretical models and methods of developmental clinical psychology by the future teachers, with reference to educational and school contexts and highlighting the specificities for kindergarten and primary schools.



The teaching of Clinical Psychology aims to provide a framework of clinical psychology at developmental stages. Particular attention will be devoted to the clinical methods and their applications, emphasizing especially the school environment. The course will focus on the following themes: the psychological value of child-teacher relationship and its formative and transformative potential, the analysis of family context and its role both as a risk and protection factor for the welfare of children, the relevance of team work both in the training and education field.

As for the specific objectives related to the primary school program, the course will aim at developing knowledge and skills related to emotional-behavioral problems in school-age children, with particular reference to social and cognitive outcomes.    


The aim of Clinical Psychology teaching is to address the main issues of clinical psychology in the developmental field, with particular reference to the following topics:

  1. Definition and theoretical models of clinical psychology. The initial part of the course will be dedicated to the definition of clinical psychology as a theoretical-applicative branch of psychology and to the deepening of the main theoretical paradigms of the discipline with a special focus on their developmental aspects.
  2. Work as a team both in training and educational field. Particular attention will be paid to understanding the psychological dynamics experienced in working teams in organizational frameworks, highlighting both the strengths and weakness of the work team.
  3. The models and the analysis methodologies of the family contexts. The course will address both the understanding of the emotional climate experienced in the family as a risk and protection factor for the welfare of children psychological, and the meaning of belonging to different family contexts (eg. migrant families, adoptive families, broken families, etc.) attributed by the children.
  4. The assessment of the main symptoms displayed by children at preschool and school age. The initial part of the course will be devoted to the analysis and understanding of the signs of emotional discomfort experienced by children in school contexts and the connections with their limitations of cognitive and socialization skills and performances.

At the end of the course the student will be able to:

  1. define clinical psychology in developmental field (knowledge and understanding)
  2. acquire adequate knowledge of the main models of clinical psychology in a developmental perspective (knowledge and understanding)
  3. recognize the importance of team work and acquire understanding of group dynamics (knowledge and understanding)
  4. understand the characteristics of family systems in a developmental perspective, acquire adequate knowledge on typical and atypical family organizations, recognize functional and dysfunctional communication processes in the family (knowledge and understanding)
  5. acquire basic knowledge of the main developmental psychopathologies and reflect on the support that the school context can offer in the presence of children with vulnerabilities (making judgements)
  6. acquire a basic vocabulary of clinical psychology in order to be facilitated in mutual communication with specialist interlocutors in interdisciplinary contexts (learning skills)
  7. examine scientific articles in journals and books and produce a written and oral presentation in team (communication skills)

Teaching methods

The teaching will consist of:

  1. Lectures in the presence through slides presentations 
  2. Work in small group focused on the analysis of international literature
  3. Visualization of video material and group discussion


A critical and active participation of the students will be encouraged.


The course program will include the presentation and discussion of the following topics:

  • The complex definition of clinical psychology
  • Theoretical paradigms of clinical psychology by developmental perspective
  • Knowledge of psychopathology in the educational process
  • Team work and the relevance of working in a team group
  • The origins of family psychology
  • The identity of the family
  • Interactive and relational processes in the family
  • Family, life cycle and development tasks
  • The formation of the couple and the family with young children
  • Atypical families: separated/divorced, adoptive, single-parent, same-sex parents, etc.
  • Eating disorders in childhood
  • Emotional adjustment and attachment disorders
  • Autism spectrum disorders
  • Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder
  • Anxiety disorders, obsessive-compulsive disorder and phobias in children
  • Disorders of mood in children
  • Disruptive disorders, impulse control and conduct disorders
  • Stress-related disorders and developmental trauma in children


Study bibliography list:

  1. Zennaro A. (2011). Lo sviluppo della psicopatologia. Fattori biologici, ambientali e relazionali. Il Mulino. For exam chapters: II, from IV to X, XII and XIV. Read only: I, III, XI, XIII e XV.
  2. Pani R., Biolcati R., Sagliaschi S. (2009). Psicologia clinica e psicopatologia per l'educazione e la formazione. Il Mulino. For exam: chapters from I to IV, from VIII to X. Read only: V, VI e VII
  3. Gambini P. (2007). Psicologia della famiglia. La prospettiva sistemico-relazionale. Franco Angeli For exam: Parte I, Part II (only chap. 4, 5 e 6), Part III. Read only: cap. 7, 8 e 9
  4. Lecture notes (for attending students) / Siegel D.J & Payne Bryson T. (2011). The Whole Brain Child. 12 Revolutionary Strategies to Nurture Your’s Child Developing Mind, Survive Everyday Struggles, and Hepl Your Family Thrive. Mind Your Brain and Bryson Creative Productions (for not attending students).

Recommended Reading:

  1. Aucouturier B. (2015). Il bambino terribile e la scuola. Raffaello Cortina 
  2. Granatella V. (2011). Reciproci sguardi. Sistemi migranti e costruzione intersoggettiva di pratiche e saperi. Franco Angeli.
  3. Chistolini M. (2006). Scuola e adozione. Linee guida e strumenti per operatori, insegnanti, genitori. Franco Angeli.

Although most of the course’s books are in Italian, they can be replaced with other texts agreed with the Lecturer


Ricevimento: The student reception will be on Tuesdays from 10 to 12 in the Professor's office, on the fourth floor of the DISFOR. Please, send an email to the Professor before to coming

Exam Board




Teaching methods

The teaching will consist of:

  1. Lectures in the presence through slides presentations 
  2. Work in small group focused on the analysis of international literature
  3. Visualization of video material and group discussion


A critical and active participation of the students will be encouraged.


Tuesday, September 24, 2019


L'orario di tutti gli insegnamenti è consultabile su EasyAcademy.

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Exam description

The exam procedure is in written form, followed by electronic registration, normally in the subsequent appeal.

Assessment methods

The written exam includes four open questions concerning the texts and topics presented in classes. The questions will be formulated in order to evaluate the acquired student's both the acquired knowledge and comprehension and reflection skills.

Exam schedule

Date Time Location Type Notes
09/06/2020 14:00 GENOVA Registrazione
09/06/2020 14:00 GENOVA Scritto
23/06/2020 14:00 GENOVA Registrazione
23/06/2020 14:00 GENOVA Scritto
07/07/2020 14:00 GENOVA Registrazione
07/07/2020 14:00 GENOVA Scritto
17/07/2020 14:00 GENOVA Registrazione
17/07/2020 14:00 GENOVA Scritto
17/07/2020 14:00 GENOVA Scritto
17/07/2020 14:00 GENOVA Registrazione
08/09/2020 14:00 GENOVA Registrazione
08/09/2020 14:00 GENOVA Scritto