12612 - Psychopathology of Development

Course Unit Page

  • Teacher Elena Trombini

  • Learning modules Elena Trombini (Modulo 1)
    Erica Neri (Modulo 2)

  • Credits 8

  • SSD M-PSI/08

  • Teaching Mode Traditional lectures (Modulo 1)
    Traditional lectures (Modulo 2)

  • Language Italian

  • Campus of Bologna

  • Degree Programme First cycle degree programme (L) in Educator in Childhood Social Services (cod. 9083)

  • Course Timetable from Feb 14, 2023 to Apr 12, 2023

    Course Timetable from Apr 13, 2023 to Apr 27, 2023


This teaching activity contributes to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals of the UN 2030 Agenda.

Good health and well-being Quality education Gender equality

Academic Year 2022/2023

Learning outcomes

At the end of the course the student:-will know the main contributions and theories in developmental psychopathology; -will know the main parenting issues and the most important disorders regarding parenthood; -will know the main clinical psychopathological disorders regarding first and second childhood, their relational perspective, their possible expression in the institutional contexts; -will know the main observational techniques based on psychodynamic approach in the contexts of the first and second childhood; -will know the main techniques of observation based on psychodynamic approach for the first and second childhood.

Course contents


1. Theoretical Background: Developmental psychodynamics - Infant Research - Developmental psychopathology

2. Instruments for clinical observation and assessment in Psychopathology of Development

3. Diagnostic and clinical assessment

4. Psychosomatic disorders in infancy

5. Techniques of prevention for Psychosomatic disorders in preschool and school age in psycho-pedagogical context. The role of Play in the teacher-child interaction


Tambelli, R. (2017). Manuale di psicopatologia dell'infanzia. Il Mulino, Bologna. (Capitolo 1)

Tambelli, R., Volpi, B. (2022). I disturbi psicosomatici in età evolutiva. Il Mulino, Bologna

Trombini, E. (2010). Il cibo rifiutato. I disturbi alimentari precoci e la Giocoterapia focale con bambini e genitori. Pendragon, Bologna.

Trombini E. (2018). Interventi precoci: la Giocoterapia Focale con bambini e genitori. In A. Imbasciati, L. Cena (a cura di), Il futuro dei primi mille giorni di vita. Psicologia Clinica Perinatale: prevenzione e interventi precoci. Franco Angeli, Milano.

Teaching methods

Frontal lessons on the main theoretical topics, Seminars held by invited speakers to deepen specific topics, video, practical activities and role-playing

Assessment methods

The final exam will be a written exam, including 3 open questions. The amount of time for the exam will be of 60 minutes.

The final grade will be determined by the sum of the scores of each question (min-max: 0-10), depending on:

- no answer or wrong answer: score 0

- incomplete answer or half incorrect answer: 1-3

- sufficient answer but not exhaustive: 4-5

- quite exhaustive answer, ability in reasoning and use of correct terminology: 6-7

- exhaustive answer, critical analysis, competence in specific terminology, reasoning and connection: 8-10.

The exam will be passed with a minimum grade of 18/30.

The Laude will be added to the exams with an excellent level of deepening, critical analysis and mastery in the terminology.

The questions will focus on the contents of the course, already described.

Teaching tools

Power Point

Office hours

See the website of Elena Trombini

See the website of Erica Neri