University Homepage
DRPS Homepage
DRPS Search
DRPS Contact
DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of Philosophy, Psychology and Language Sciences : Psychology

Undergraduate Course: Psychology of Language Understanding (PSYL10144)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Philosophy, Psychology and Language Sciences CollegeCollege of Humanities and Social Science
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 10 (Year 3 Undergraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryThis course covers the main current research areas in the psychology of language comprehension. The course covers the neural foundations of language, and gives an overview of current research in all levels of language comprehension, from the comprehension of single words to multi-sentence text. The course also covers language and social cognition, and considers some of the applications of language comprehension research.
Course description This course aims to cover the main current research areas in the psychology of language comprehension, aiming for breadth, but going into depth in some selected topics. We will start by discussing the neural foundations of language processing, drawing on evidence from aphasia and from brain imaging. We then go on to consider language processing at successively higher levels, starting with the perception of single words, and going on to discuss the comprehension of whole sentences, and then multi-sentence texts, paying attention to how the language comprehension system is supported by related cognitive processes, such as prediction, and memory encoding, storage and retrieval. Having established these foundations, we then discuss the role of language in social cognition, taking gender stereotype inferences as a test case. We will cover applications of language processing research, focusing on the communication of quantity and risk, and on the perception of brands. Finally, we consider how language processing relates to other cognitive domains such as music and mathematics, taking evidence from both brain imaging and behavioural studies.

The course encourages students to develop skills of critical analysis, and how to structure arguments to evaluate theories, leading to an understanding the nature of evidence for those theories. The course also allows students to understand how psychological research can be applied to real-world problems.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Students MUST have passed: Psychology 2A (PSYL08011) AND Psychology 2B (PSYL08012)
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Information for Visiting Students
Pre-requisitesVisiting students who are Psychology majors and in their third or final year at their home university are welcome to take this course.
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Not being delivered
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Understanding of the main theories of language comprehension
  2. Ability to evaluate theories of language comprehension based on empirical evidence.
  3. Understanding of the main experimental techniques used to study language comprehension
  4. Critical analysis
  5. Structuring of written work
Reading List
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Not entered
Course organiserDr Patrick Sturt
Tel: (0131 6)51 1712
Course secretary
Help & Information
Search DPTs and Courses
Degree Programmes
Browse DPTs
Humanities and Social Science
Science and Engineering
Medicine and Veterinary Medicine
Other Information
Combined Course Timetable
Important Information