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Unit information: Biological Psychology in 2015/16

Please note: you are viewing unit and programme information for a past academic year. Please see the current academic year for up to date information.

Unit name Biological Psychology
Unit code PSYC20004
Credit points 20
Level of study I/5
Teaching block(s) Teaching Block 2D (weeks 19 - 24)
Unit director Dr. Ludwig
Open unit status Not open




School/department School of Psychological Science
Faculty Faculty of Life Sciences

Description including Unit Aims

This unit provides an introduction to the interaction between brain and behaviour. It is structured around a number of key themes, including human neurophysiology, neurochemistry, neuroanatomy, neuroimaging and neuropsychology.


  • Develop student's interest, scientific knowledge and understanding of the study of the interaction between the central nervous system and behaviour.
  • Introduce students to the methodological approaches to the study of the central nervous system and the application of these to particular cognitive domains.
  • Develop a thorough understanding of the role of empirical evidence in the formation of theory and how theory guides the collection and interpretation of empirical data.
  • Help students to understand the conceptual and historical issues in the subject matter and their relation to other areas of psychological science.
  • Help students to acquire a wide range of transferable skills.

Intended Learning Outcomes

On completion of this unit, the student will:

  • Have a comprehensive understanding and scientific knowledge of the topic and methodological approaches to the study of the central nervous system and its links to behaviour.
  • Have a comprehensive understanding of the application of these approaches to the study of specific areas of psychological science.
  • Be able to integrate this understanding of these methodologies with other areas of psychological science.
  • Be able to plan and contribute to seminar-based presentations of topics covered in this unit and have further improved their scientific writing skills.

Teaching Information

This unit comprises 16 x 2 hour lectures (second hour is for Q&A purposes), two revision tutorials and 8 x 1 hour seminars (presenting at one of these).

Assessment Information

Summative assessment with one 1600-word written essay (20%); one oral presentation in seminar (20%) and one 2-hour written exam (60%).

Reading and References

Suggestions for recommended and further reading will be made separately through Blackboard, with journal articles and book chapters set by individual lecturers.