Durham University
Programme and Module Handbook

Undergraduate Programme and Module Handbook 2022-2023 (archived)


Department: Psychology


Type Open Level 3 Credits 20 Availability Available in 2022/23 Module Cap 45 Location Durham


  • 60 Credits from Level 2 Psychology modules


  • None

Excluded Combination of Modules

  • None


  • To further understanding of the psychological aspects of prenatal development


  • This module examines fetail growth and development from conception to birth taking account of maternal health behaviours.
  • Topics can vary from year to year but are likely to include:
  • Fetal development
  • Fetal vision
  • The Development of hearing and the effects of sound on speech
  • Pain in the fetus
  • Prenatal attachment
  • Laterality in the fetus
  • Epigenetics and fetal development
  • The module will also cover related conceptual and historical issues in psychology.

Learning Outcomes

Subject-specific Knowledge:
  • Detailed knowledge of key areas of psychological research in prenatal development including the methods used in their investigation.
Subject-specific Skills:
  • Ability to review critically and consolidate understanding of a coherent body of psychological knowledge and apply it appropriately.
Key Skills:
  • Good written communication skills.
  • Ability to work independently in scholarship and research within broad guidelines.

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

  • Students' acquisition of detailed knowledge will be facilitated by lectures, some small group work, audio-visual materials, discussions and detailed reading lists.
  • These modes of teaching provide students with detailed knowledge of thekey theories and the skills needed to evaluate different theoretical positions in light of current evidence.
  • Preparations for the examination will promote students' abilities to locate, read and evaluate a body of evidence.
  • The use of group discussions / small group work will ensure that students are exposed to a range of different theoretical positions, and encouraged to understand their inter-relations.
  • Lectures, discussions and small group work will also give students the opportunity to interpret and evaluate the significance of empirical work.
  • The examination will assess students' written communication skills.

Teaching Methods and Learning Hours

Activity Number Frequency Duration Total/Hours
Lectures 22 2 per week 2 hours 44
Preparation and reading 156
Total 200

Summative Assessment

Component: Examination Component Weighting: 70%
Element Length / duration Element Weighting Resit Opportunity
Examination 2 hours 100%
Component: Essay Component Weighting: 30%
Element Length / duration Element Weighting Resit Opportunity
Essay 2000 words 100%

Formative Assessment:


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