Unit Options and Core Texts

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1 Unit Options and s BSc Health Psychology (Full-Time) Core units Year 1 Foundations to Psychology Introduction to Psychological Research and Data Analysis Psychology in Everyday Life Health and Wellbeing Psychology Unit Details Foundations to Psychology This unit introduces four of the core areas of Psychology as distinguished by the British Psychological Society. These are Cognitive Psychology, Biological Psychology, Developmental Psychology and Individual Differences. The aim is for students to gain a breadth of understanding of the theoretical and experimental debates within these areas with a view to addressing the question: How are psychological theories developed and investigated ethically? Throughout the Unit established ideas in Psychology (e.g. classical conditioning) will be discussed from a historical perspective, students will then use skills in information literacy to locate and evaluate more recent experimental research which builds upon initial theories. Core text Comer, R., Gould, E., & Furnham, A., (2013). Psychology. Chichester: John Wiley & Sons. Link to Library Catalogue for this text: 1

2 Introduction to Psychological Research and Data Analysis The unit is designed to introduce you to the idea of the discipline of psychology as a science and discusses the theoretical and practical applications of how Psychologists design, conduct, analyse and write up an ethically sound research project. The unit is split in three integrated sections covering a variety of quantitative methodological research designs, descriptive statistics and inferential statistics, and an introduction to how psychologists analyse qualitative data. The Unit aims to encourage you to consider what is meant by the scientific study of psychology and examine how the BPS ethical guidelines underpin researching psychological issues. It also aims to provide you with the skills needed to begin to critically evaluate published research and statistical claims in the media. s McQueen, R. A & Knussen, C (2006) Introduction to research methods and statistics in psychology. Harlow. Pearson, Prentice Hall Hinton, P, McMurray, I and Brownlow, C (2014) SPSS Explained, 2 nd Edition. London. Routledge. Psychology in Everyday Life This unit aims to enhance knowledge of psychological topics by framing them in the context of everyday life and everyday behaviours and further develop independent learning abilities and critical thinking. You will gain topic knowledge and an understanding of psychological theory using the observable and latent behaviour of yourselves, others and groups within society. This unit develops your knowledge of contemporary topics in psychology, professional and transferable skills, and your ability to reflect upon your learner development, framing this using key developmental psychology theories. Hogg, M.A., & Vaughan, G.M. (2011) Social Psychology (6 th Edition) Harlow: Pearson Health and Wellbeing Psychology This unit provides you with an introduction to the core themes in Health and Wellbeing Psychology. In this unit you will critically examine the ways in which psychological, biological and social knowledge combine to offer explanations of health, illness and psychological wellbeing. 2

3 You will also examine the prominent theories and models in the field and study key aspects of health psychology such as stress, pain, chronic illness and traumatic injury, with a focus on health promotion strategies and ways by which quality of life might be improved. The unit aims to enable you to gain a breadth of understanding across the discipline of health psychology to enable you to identify and describe how health psychology as a discipline can be applied to a wide range of health behaviours and an awareness of the theoretical approach, which underpins the discipline. Throughout the unit you will discuss established ideas in health psychology and draw on areas such as Social Psychology, Individual Differences and Biological Psychology to expand upon the initial theory and develop your understanding. Ogden, J. (2012). Health Psychology: A Textbook (5 th Edn). Buckingham: Open University Press. 3

4 All units are core Year 2 Social Processes and Lifespan Development Biological and Cognitive Psychology Methods of Research in Psychology Health Psychology and Public Health Unit Details Social Processes and Lifespan Development The unit explores key topics in developmental and social psychology with a view to addressing the question: How do individuals change and develop across the lifespan? The aim is for you to develop an understanding of aspects of biological, cognitive and social development from the prenatal stage through to old age with an emphasis on culture, society, and social factors. This unit encourages critical reading and evaluation of current research articles, and provides an opportunity to conduct and participate in small-scale empirical exercises relevant to the unit topics. This unit aims to allow you to learn academic and transferable skills including writing critical reviews and provides the opportunity to reflect on personal development and career goals. Sigelman, C. K., & Rider, E. A. (2011). Life-Span Human Development. (7 th ed.) Thomson Wadsworth: Belmont, CA, USA. Biological and Cognitive Psychology The unit examines human thinking, perception, language, memory and learning at two related levels of explanation. At the biological level the aim is to explain and investigate the physiology and neuroanatomy of behaviour. The unit will therefore enable you to integrate biological concepts into your knowledge of other areas of psychology such as individual differences and cognition. At the cognitive level, the unit takes an information processing approach to theories of memory, perception language and thinking and aims to relate these theories to everyday behaviour from face recognition and eye-witness testimony to the use of mobile phones in 4

5 cars. Staff research informs a number of the topics covered in this unit, for example, language processing, perception, attention and behaviour. The Unit aims to: Develop an understanding of information processing and computational models of human thinking Provide a grounding in neuroanatomy and the physiology of behaviour Develop biopsychological explanations of cognitive processes; Provide the opportunity to test theories by experiment Examine the impact of the structure and organisation of cognitive system on human behaviour Develop an appreciation and critical reflection on the various research methods, conceptual and historical issues relevant to cognitive and biological psychology Encourage critical reading and discussion of primary sources Toates, F. (2011), Biological Psychology. Edinburgh, Pearson Education Ltd. Methods of Research in Psychology This unit builds on the first level units on research methods and extends into an exploration of the assessment of personality and individual differences. The central question is how to select the most appropriate research method to answer particular questions, develop and validate methods of psychological assessment, and consider ethical issues relating to the design of research through to the dissemination of findings. Moreover, you will have the opportunity to advance your knowledge and skills in software packages such as the SPSS for statistics, software for qualitative analysis, and programs for designing and conducting laboratory experiments, as well as for database search. Students will expand their knowledge on research design and methods of collecting and analysing data working individually as well as in groups on research topics of their choice in preparation for the final year Honours Project. Staff research will inform the content of the unit and engage the students in current research activities related to the topics covered in the unit. s Bryman, A. (2011) Quantitative Data Analysis with SPSS London: Routledge Banister, P., Burman, E., Parker I., Taylor, M. and Tindall, C. (2003) Qualitative Methods in Psychology: A Research Guide. 2 nd Edition. Milton Keynes: Open University Press 5

6 Health Psychology and Public Health What role does health psychology have in the prevention of disease and illness in the 21 st Century? The unit aims to provide you with a broad understanding of key topics in health psychology to determine how the discipline can be integrated and applied to health behaviour. This unit will unravel the interlinking relationship of the biological, social and psychological processes that impact on the uptake of health enhancing and health inhibiting behaviours. This unit encourages you to design a psychological driven intervention to facilitate positive health behavior change. You are also required to design a study to implement and evaluate this intervention to demonstrate the successful ingredients needed for an effective intervention. Alongside the academic skills this unit will provide you with a wide range of transferable skills. These include report writing, working collectively with others and delivering presentations with a core focus on enhancing your communication skills. This unit will also provide you with an opportunity to apply self-assessment and reflection to improve your performance. Chater, A.and Cook, E. (2014). Psychology Express: Health Psychology (D.Upton, ed.). Harlow: Pearson. Revision-Guide)-Angel-Chater/

7 Year Three All units are core Health Psychology Honours Project Community Health Psychology Culture and Individual differences Psychology of Mental Health Coaching Psychology Unit Details Health Psychology Honours Project The Research Project is designed to enhance your pre-existing research methods skills and further develop independent learning abilities and critical thinking. You are required to blend the dichotomous elements of supervised academic research along with independent critical evaluation of your own learning and professional practices. This unit allows you to enhance your knowledge of a specific research topic in contemporary psychology, your professional and transferable skills, and your ability to reflect upon your learner development, framing this using key developmental psychology theories. The American Psychological Society s Guide to Undergraduate Student Research and Writing: https://www.apa.org/education/undergrad/student-research.aspx Community Health Psychology This unit will provide an alternative and critical introduction to this relatively new subdiscipline of psychology, which has significant application in the field of health and wellbeing. Community psychology draws on the discipline of sociology in order to promote health and well-being through individual, group, community and societal level interventions. In particular it focuses on the promotion of social justice and the enhancement of well-being for disadvantaged, marginalised and stigmatised individuals and groups through both ameliorative and transformative actions. Community participation and positive social change are seen as the means to accomplishing this endeavour, as is the use of participatory research methods. 7

8 In this unit we will critique the individualistic theories and interventions explored in traditional perspectives on health psychology, and build on your existing knowledge of social psychology and research methods. In particular, community psychology will expand and broaden your understanding of being an ethical and socially responsible practitioner. The content of this unit will be largely informed by the research and consultancy activities of the lecturing staff. Nelson, G. & Prilleltensky, I. (2010). Community Psychology in Pursuit of Liberation and Well-being. (2 nd Ed.) Basingstoke: Palgrave Culture and Individual differences This unit will consider cultural and individual differences within the area of cross-cultural psychology. Cross-cultural psychology is the comparative study of cultural effects on human psychology. It examines psychological diversity and the links between cultural norms and behaviour. Hence it is a complement to individual differences as well as all the main topics within psychology. Cross-cultural psychology uses comparative methods to establish psychological concepts, principles and hypotheses from the perspective of generalizability, on a range of phenomena from cognition to emotion; intelligence to personality. The purpose of the unit is to introduce the field of cross-cultural psychology and its contemporary applications. Within the context of globalization of knowledge and societies, this unit will enable us to investigate psychology s contribution to the various changes that are taking place in various applied fields such as education, health, mental health and work practices. Shiraev, E & Levy, D. (2013). Cross-cultural psychology: Critical thinking and contemporary applications. International and 4th eds. New York. Allyn & Bacon. Coaching Psychology This unit aims to enable you to understand what is meant by the concept of coaching. It also aims to introduce you to the currently leading models of coaching psychology and understand the basic psychological principles which inform them. This module aims to offer you the opportunity of enhanced personal insight and reflection with the skills to apply this to self-management. It also aims to enable you to recognise, discriminate and apply core coaching and interpersonal skills in a peer coaching role. 8

9 The emphasis on skills development is designed with the aim being relevant to further study in the field of work psychology, and also to aid in your employability and career development. Palmer, S., & Whybrow, A. (2007). Handbook of Coaching Psychology: A Guide for Practitioners. London: Routledge Psychology of Mental Health This unit will allow you to familiarise yourself with the main issues relating mental health problems and therefore help you develop a good grounding towards further study and training or employment in role relating to mental health. The unit aims to: introduce you to the main theoretical and therapeutic approaches to mental health problems present and evaluate major aspects in the classification of mental health problems familiarise you with the clinical symptoms of the most common psychological disorders encourage you to critically discuss aetiological models and therapeutic interventions of the major mental health problems in the light of traditional but also recent concepts and empirical findings discuss the importance of socio-cultural factors in the causation, diagnosis, and treatment of mental health problems. Comer, R. J. (2004). Abnormal Psychology, 5th ed. New York: Worth. 9

10 Course Structure for Part-time Students PART TIME - YEAR 1 PSY Foundations to Psychology Core PSY Introduction to Psychological Research Core Methods and Data Analysis YEAR 2 NEW 4 30 Health and Wellbeing Psychology Core PSY Psychology in Every Day Life Core YEAR 3 PSY Social Processes and Lifespan Core Development PSY Biological and Cognitive Psychology Core YEAR 4 NEW 5 30 Methods of Research in Psychology Core NEW 5 30 Health Psychology and Public Health Core YEAR 5 NEW 6 15 Cultural and Individual Differences Core PSY Coaching Psychology Core PSY Psychology of Mental Health Core YEAR 6 NEW 6 45 Health Psychology Research (Honours) Core Project NEW 6 30 Community Health Psychology Core 10

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