Please note: there may be some adjustments to the teaching arrangements published in the course catalogue for 2020-21. Given current circumstances related to the Covid-19 pandemic it is anticipated that some usual arrangements for teaching on campus will be modified to ensure the safety and wellbeing of students and staff on campus; further adjustments may also be necessary, or beneficial, during the course of the academic year as national requirements relating to management of the pandemic are revised.

Psychology: an introduction ADED11375E

  • Academic Session: 2020-21
  • School: Short Courses
  • Credits: 20
  • Level: Level 1 (SCQF level 7)
  • Typically Offered: Semester 2
  • Available to Visiting Students: Yes
  • Available to Erasmus Students: No

Short Description

Psychology studies human behaviour.  This introduction provides anyone with an interest in the subject a firm foundation for further study.  The history and scope of psychology are highlighted, and our understanding of human behaviour is demonstrated through case studies and psychological research. Biological, Cognitive, Social and Developmental psychology are introduced, and research methods in psychology discussed. Study topics include intelligence, personality, the human brain and perception.


Block 2 & 3

2 hours pw for 20 weeks

Tuesdays, 19.00-21.00 

Requirements of Entry


Excluded Courses

Fundamentals of Psychology: ADED1044E 




Written Assessment (50%): Two equally weighted essays (1,200 words).


Oral Assessment and Presentation (25%): Students will form small groups to investigate a topic in psychology in greater depth and present their topic in a mini-conference as a short talk and power-point presentation.


Set exercise (25%): Every 2 weeks students will complete online multiple choice question sets to test knowledge and understanding and the average score for these will be calculated.

Course Aims

This course aims to:

■ Provide a basic understanding of how psychologists study human behaviour.

■ Give an introduction to the most significant concepts and findings of psychology.

■ Create a firm foundation for progressing into further study in Psychology.

■ Build student confidence in applying psychological knowledge.

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

By the end of this course students should be able to:

■ Identify the historical origins and present day scope of modern psychology.

■ Give a broad but integrated definition of modern psychology.

■ Discuss the main methods of psychological investigation.

■ Produce an overview of how Biological, Cognitive, Social and Developmental aspects of human behaviour are considered from a psychological perspective.

■ Give an account of the processes by which we interact with our environment.

■ Offer psychological explanations for individual differences.

■ Apply theoretical accounts of psychological concepts to every-day life.

■ Review theories related to personality and its development.

■ Give an account of the main debates in intelligence.

■ Offer psychological explanations for illusions in perception.

■ Discuss the structure and function of brain regions and evidence of plasticity within the brain.

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits

Students must submit at least 75% by weight of the components (including examinations) of the course's summative assessment.