Postgraduate taught 

Psychological Studies (conversion) MSc

Developmental Psychology (PGT Conv) EDUC5842

  • Academic Session: 2022-23
  • School: School of Education
  • Credits: 10
  • Level: Level 5 (SCQF level 11)
  • Typically Offered: Semester 1
  • Available to Visiting Students: No
  • Available to Erasmus Students: No

Short Description

This course will explore the developmental changes individuals experience from infancy to adolescence. As part of this exploration students will critically evaluate the main theoretical perspectives on how development occurs and engage in the debates surrounding the role of nature and nurture in development.


One hour weekly lectures for 11 weeks of semester and four one hour seminars

Excluded Courses




1000 word written assignment (30%). Students will submit a critical refection on the theory and research of the chosen area of developmental psychology.

1 hour written exam answering one question (70%)

Main Assessment In: December

Course Aims

The aims of this course are to:


- Promote an understanding of the developmental changes experienced across the life span from prenatal development through childhood, to adolescence, and into old age.
- Promote a critical evaluation of the main theoretical perspectives on how development occurs
Critically analyse the interplay between nature and nurture on development. 
Undertake critical evaluation of methodological complexities associated with research in this developmental psychology, including research involving complex and vulnerable populations. 
- Review critically empirical evidence relevant to each of the areas discussed.

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

By the end of this course students will be able to:
- Conduct a comparative analysis of constructivist, social constructivist and information processing theories of development

- Identify and evaluate contemporary and historical debates relating to the role of nature and nurture in psychological development

- Assess ways in which developmental theory and research can inform educational, social and clinical practice

- Recognise the unique methodological and ethical complexities associated with research in developmental psychology and apply appropriate methodologies in practice
- Use psychological theory to demonstrate an understanding of the nature of perceptual, motor
, social, emotional and cognitive development across lifespan in typical and atypical development

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits