SHE Level 2
SCQF Credit Points 20.00
ECTS Credit Points 10.00
Module Code M2C824289
Module Leader Monika McNeill
School School of Health and Life Sciences
Subject Psychology
  • A (September start)
  • B (January start)
  • C (May start)

Pre-Requisite Knowledge

Normally successful completion of Foundations in Psychology at level one, or equivalent.

Summary of Content

This module provides an integrated introductory approach to the areas of biological, cognitive and developmental psychology. It is designed to provide a progressive educational experience from some of the core areas covered at level one, and also to underpin progression to modules later in the degree programme, such as Physiology of Behaviour, Applied Cognitive Psychology and Developmental Science and Applied Contexts.


The content of this module is divided into three main sections: An introduction to biopsychology, drawn from: * The structure and function of the peripheral and central nervous systems * Neuroscience (including anatomy of the brain) * Brain imaging techniques * The endocrine system * Evolutionary explanations for human behaviour An introduction to cognitive psychology, drawn from: * Mapping the historical development of cognitive psychology * Exploring the different approaches to studying human cognition, drawing from: - Experimental and computational paradigms - Cognitive neuroscience and neuropsychology An introduction to developmental psychology, drawn from * Cognitive development * Emotional development * Social development

Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of this module students should be able to:1. Understand and critically evaluate the key principles relating to biological, cognitive and developmental psychology. This will be assessed through the exam2. Demonstrate the real-world application of these principles and also how they relate to other areas of psychology. This will be achieved by weekly seminar group activities and discussions3. Be independent learners with the ability to synthesise information in order to reach a specific goal. This will be assessed via the completion of the lab report and the exam4. Demonstrate an understanding of how each of these three areas of psychology are related to one another; building a fuller picture of psychology as a discipline. This will be demonstrated through the lab report. 5. Undertake the steps required to conduct an experiment (including participant recruitment and data collection).6. Understand the structure and content and of a laboratory report

Teaching / Learning Strategy

The module aims to provide an introduction to the biological, cognitive and developmental areas of psychology. The core material for each of these three areas of psychology will be delivered via a combination of face to face lectures and directed learning tasks via GCULearn. The lectures will be supported by lab based practical and seminar activities, promoting student-led enquiry and learning. Summative assessment will involve the development of critical thinking skills, verbal and written communication and scientific enquiry. Formative assessment will involve critical appraisal of their peer's laboratory reports.

Indicative Reading

Kalat, J. (2009). Biological Psychology (10th Ed).New York: Wadsworth. This book is available as an electronic book via the GCU library (<>). Eysenck, M.W. (2012) Fundamentals of Cognition (2nd Ed.) Psychology Press, Hove. Sternberg, R.J. & Sternberg, K. (2012) Cognition (6th Ed.). New York: Wadsworth. Leman,P.,Bremner, A.,Parke, R.D., & Gauvain, M.(2012). Developmental Psychology. New York: McGraw-Hill Education

Transferrable Skills

Successful completion of this module should enable students to demonstrate: 1. Critical thinking skills as evidenced by engagement with both summative and formative assessment. 2. The ability to communicate, in both written form and verbally, their evaluation of extant approaches within psychology and their real world application. 3. A reflective stance on their own learning and how to apply this knowledge to their future learning, both within psychology and beyond.

Module Structure

Activity Total Hours
Practicals (FT) 16.00
Seminars (FT) 4.00
Lectures (FT) 22.00
Assessment (FT) 20.00
Independent Learning (FT) 138.00

Assessment Methods

Component Duration Weighting Threshold Description
Coursework 1 n/a 50.00 35% Lab Report (1500-2000 words)
Exam (Exams Office) 2.00 50.00 35% Two Hour Formal Examination