Year 3

A series of optional modules complement your research project, allowing you choose your own specialism and work under the guidance of a leading expert.

The optional modules change to reflect the latest developments in psychological research. Those shown here are indicative content. You will choose 5 optional modules.

Historical and Conceptual Issues in Psychology

Learning about the history of psychology will help you to understand the context of the discipline. We will introduce you to debates about:

  • what kind of science psychology could be
  • what kinds of objects it should study
  • what effect it has had on how we think of ourselves and others

Research Project

Consistently popular with our students, this module allows you the freedom to choose your own specialism and work under the guidance of a leading expert in that area. You will have ownership of a major piece of work that allows you to demonstrate the breadth and depth of your psychological knowledge and research skills.

Advanced Issues in Neuroscience

You will look at in-depth and up to date coverage of areas of current research interest in neuroscience. We will explain recent developments in research methods in neuroscience and provide you with the skills to evaluate critically the assumptions underlying these techniques. Our experts will deliver in-depth knowledge of selected important real-world disorders, such as schizophrenia and Parkinson’s Disease.

Hot Topics in Social Psychology

The topics in this module reflect the lecturers’ active interests:  recent examples are the psychology of animal treatment, social media and nostalgia and propaganda/advertising.  You will explore how social psychology may be applied to real-world problems and learn the skills to engage critically but constructively with social psychological research and theory.

Forensic and Investigative Psychology

You will gain an understanding of the predominant theoretical perspectives of forensic psychology and research on specialised topics such as deception, detection and offender profiling. Additionally, you will develop your capacity to think critically about theories and research methodologies, and appreciate the implications of the research for professional practice.

Psychology of Art

Explore the role of psychological processes in our understanding and appreciation of art. Different forms of art, such as visual art, music and dance, are all multi-dimensional. They can be analysed, evaluated and experienced from various psychological perspectives.

The Psychology of Attention: from the laboratory to everyday behaviour

Attention is relevant to a wide range of psychological phenomena. This module considers what attention is - and what it isn’t - in more detail than is usually provided. We will discuss various theoretical models of attention, but also examine how concepts have been used in areas that include:

  • atypical development in childhood (autism and ADHD)
  • anxiety states
  • disorders of attention

Prozac Nation: Human Psychopharmacology

You will be introduced to the concepts of human psychopharmacology and discover the theoretical background of drug-induced modification of nervous system function and behaviour respectively. We’ll provide insight into psychoactive drugs and how they act upon the brain to influence behaviour. You will explore why individuals differ in responsiveness to psychoactive drugs and discuss current controversies in the area of psychopharmacology.

The Lying Brain

Examine and explore striking instances of hallucination, delusions and disorders of consciousness in the normal, clinical and pathological population.  You will learn over-arching theoretical concepts which influence neurocognitive theory and our understanding of brain function. You only know what is real because your brain tells you what is real. However, your brain is lying to you, find out how and why in “The Lying Brain”.

Topics in Clinical Psychology

You will discover what clinical psychology is, learn about key theoretical frameworks and treatment approaches, and develop an understanding of how research is related to practice. Covering various populations (including children, adults and older adults), this module will discuss various psychological disorders in terms of their assessment, aetiology, research background and interventions. A series of guest lectures delivered by experienced practitioners will introduce you to issues in professional practice and confer a realistic appreciation of the work of clinical psychologists.

The Developing Mind

You will develop a better understanding of theoretical problems, building on your knowledge from Year 2 Developmental Psychology.

These problems include:

  • the Nativist vs Empiricist account on infant knowledge and reasoning
  • the development of empathy and pro-social behaviour
  • moral reasoning and the emerging understanding of moral rules
  • social and emotional development in adolescence

The Neuroscience of Typical and Atypical Development

This module studies different topics within developmental psychology from a social neuroscience approach. We present you with different aspects of typical and atypical socio-emotional development. You will then look how core principles and methods have helped advance their understanding.  We put an emphasis on how different processes interact during development. You will study how this influences the outcome at different points during their ontogenetic trajectory.