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Introduction to Developmental Psychology


  • Credit value: 15 credits at Level 4
  • Convenor: Professor Natasha Kirkham
  • Assessment: a 1500-word essay (50%) and a one-hour examination (50%)

Module description

This module introduces you to social psychology, focusing on humans as social animals. It provides you with a broad introduction to the discipline of social psychology and key perspectives, including methodological approaches, issues and debates. It will also introduce you to the practice of critical thinking, including the need to evaluate research findings and theory, and develop a reasoned, flexible position in the face of complex, potentially conflicting information in the field of social psychology.

Indicative module content

  • Attribution Theory
  • The Influence of Conformity, Obedience and De-individuation on Social Behaviour
  • Infant Perceptual and Cognitive Development
  • Social Influence and Criminal Justice
  • Self and Identity
  • Aggression and Intergroup Conflict
  • Prosocial Behaviour and Productivity
  • Attitudes
  • Social Cognition and Thinking
  • Prejudice and Discrimination

Learning objectives

By the end of the module, you will be able to:

    • outline the research methods particularly prevalent within social psychology, highlighting their strengths and limitations including reference to ethical issues where pertinent
    • provide a brief overview and critique of main psychological theories relevant to social psychology
    • highlight the way in which cultural psychology might contribute to our understanding of topics within social psychology
    • offer valid examples of the ways in which concepts and theories in social psychology might inform our understanding of practical problems in the ‘real world'
    • indicate some of the limitations of these theories with regard to ‘real-world’ application
    • write academic essays to a standard commensurate with your level of study under both timed and non-timed conditions, and give an accurate account of your strengths and priorities for development.