Social Robotics 4H PSYCH4086

  • Academic Session: 2023-24
  • School: School of Psychology and Neuroscience
  • Credits: 10
  • Level: Level 4 (SCQF level 10)
  • Typically Offered: Semester 1
  • Available to Visiting Students: No

Short Description

This course will provide an overview of the challenges and opportunities for research psychologists with the growing development of social robotics. This will be achieved by examining the state of the art in this domain, investigating social robotics use in clinical disorders, and exploring different areas where social robotics research holds potential to inform our understanding of human cognition and behaviour.


10 hours over a 5 week block

Requirements of Entry

Successful completion of level 3H psychology single honours.

Excluded Courses



Coursework 100% - group research proposal

Students will work together in groups of 3 to produce a group research proposal (maximum of 3000 words), with an aim to examine a novel question related to the social robotics topics covered during this course. The groups will be created during the first class meeting.

Are reassessment opportunities available for all summative assessments? Not applicable for Honours courses

Reassessments are normally available for all courses, except those which contribute to the Honours classification. For non-Honours courses, students are offered reassessment in all or any of the components of assessment if the satisfactory (threshold) grade for the overall course is not achieved at the first attempt. This is normally grade D3 for undergraduate students and grade C3 for postgraduate students. Exceptionally it may not be possible to offer reassessment of some coursework items, in which case the mark achieved at the first attempt will be counted towards the final course grade. Any such exceptions for this course are described below. 

Course Aims


To obtain an overview of state of the art behavioural and neurocognitive research into human robot interaction, including in-depth exploration of topics such as the utility of socially intelligent avatars for social psychology, how artificial human faces advance our understanding of social communication, and the different roles played by expertise, experience, emotion and embodiment when humans interact with socially intelligent artificial agents.

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

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

Explain and evaluate state of the art experimental psychological work exploring human-robot interaction

Explain and evaluate the utility of socially intelligent virtual agents for exploring fundamental social psychology research questions

Discuss how physical presence shapes how people perceive and interact with artificial agents

Discuss the role played by emotions in shaping human-robot interactions

Evaluate the role of experience and expectations with artificial agents on the formation of long-term (social) relationships between humans and machines

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.