Durham University
Programme and Module Handbook

Undergraduate Programme and Module Handbook 2012-2013 (archived)


Department: Psychology


Type Open Level 2 Credits 20 Availability Available in 2012/13 Module Cap None. Location Durham


  • Either (i) or (ii). (i) Introduction to Psychology 1: Cognitive & Biological Psychology (PSYC1071) OR (ii) Introduction to Psychology 2: Developmental, Social & Abnormal Psychology (PSYC1081) AND Introduction to Psychological Research (PSYC1062).


  • None

Excluded Combination of Modules

  • None


  • To develop a broad knowledge and understanding of research and theory in some of the key areas of cognitive psychology such as memory, language, emotion or attention


  • The module provides broad-ranging coverage of some key areas of cognitive psychology such as memory, language, emotion or attention
  • The module will also cover related conceptual and historical issues in psychology

Learning Outcomes

Subject-specific Knowledge:
  • The acquisition of a broad body of knowledge relating to cognitive psychology with in-depth knowledge of some topics
Subject-specific Skills:
  • Understand the relationship between theory and data, including the ability to evaluate theories and concepts
  • Ability to formulate research questions and hypotheses
Key Skills:
  • Competent in written communication skills
  • Competent IT skills in word processing and data presentation
  • Effective retrieval and organisation of material
  • Locate, read and review a body of research evidence
  • Critical evaluation of the quality of evidence and arguments
  • Ability to adopt different theoretical positions and see relationships between them

Modes of Teaching, Learning and Assessment and how these contribute to the learning outcomes of the module

  • Acquisition of knowledge and understanding in the area of cognitive psychology is facilitated by the material covered in lectures and the provision of detailed reading lists
  • This knowledge will be assessed in the written assessments and the written examination
  • These assessments will be essay-based, providing students with the opportunities to demonstrate their abilities to organise, review and evaluate evidence and theory, to provide critical appraisal, and to contrast theoretical positions
  • Feedback on progress in acquiring knowledge in the module is provided in the tutorials and in the written assessments
  • The skills of understanding of the relationship between theory and data, effective retrieval and organisation of material, abilities to locate, read, review and critically evaluate research evidence, and to interpret theoretically, are fostered through lecture activities and tutorials, and will be assessed in the written assessments, and the examination.
  • Feedback on student progress in developing these skills is provided in the tutorials and in the written assessments
  • Scientific reasoning skills will be fostered through feedback on the written assessments and in tutorials
  • The written assessments and the examination will assess students' abilities in this area
  • The ability to organise and utilise knowledge is developed through preparation for essays and examinations
  • Feedback on the essays allows students to gauge their progress in this area
  • Written communication skills are developed through feedback on the written assessments, and are assessed in the essays and examination
  • A key component in the preparation of essays is the acquisition of adequate word processing skills
  • Feedback is provided regarding the adequacy of these skills where necessary

Teaching Methods and Learning Hours

Activity Number Frequency Duration Total/Hours
Tutorials 2 per term Term 1 and Term 2 1 Hour 4
Lectures 22 Weekly 1 Hour 22
Preparation and Reading 174
Total 200

Summative Assessment

Component: Summative Essay Component Weighting: 30%
Element Length / duration Element Weighting Resit Opportunity
2000 word summative essay 100%
Component: Examination Component Weighting: 70%
Element Length / duration Element Weighting Resit Opportunity
two-hour examination 100%

Formative Assessment:

Students will submit two 2,000 word essays; one in Term 1 and one in Term 2. The higher of the two essay marks will go forward as the summative assessment mark for the module.

Attendance at all activities marked with this symbol will be monitored. Students who fail to attend these activities, or to complete the summative or formative assessment specified above, will be subject to the procedures defined in the University's General Regulation V, and may be required to leave the University