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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of Philosophy, Psychology and Language Sciences : Psychology

Undergraduate Course: Critical and Discursive Social Psychology (PSYL10134)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Philosophy, Psychology and Language Sciences CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 10 (Year 3 Undergraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryThis course outlines Discursive Social Psychology and Critical Social Psychology. It examines how these approaches have changed our understanding of social psychological topics with reference to empirical studies of self and social identities; gender; prejudiced attitudes; inequality and power; thinking, subjectivity and emotion. It discusses key debates to which these different approaches have given rise.
Course description This course draws on ideas and arguments from other disciplines (such as studies of science, social constructionism, Foucault, and 'the turn to language') to examine the basis and nature of social psychological knowledge, how it affects individuals' lives, the role of language, and assumptions about self that underpin psychological theory and research. We ask whether social constructionism and the analysis of discourse can provide an alternative approach for social psychologists. If so, what kind of discourse analysis? We explore how these different discursive approaches have been used empirically in studies of gender and other identities; attitudes and prejudice talk; power; subjectivity, memory, and emotion. This course includes lectures, in-class and online discussions, and debates about key issues.

Regular class work and formative feedback will help students develop skills in critical analysis, presenting and structuring arguments, understanding, verbal communication, and group work/collaboration. The short coursework assessments and final essay will help to develop further skills in information integration and writing.
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 should be studying Psychology as their degree major, and have completed at least 3 Psychology courses at grade B or above. We will only consider University/College level courses. Applicants should note that, as with other popular courses, meeting the minimum does NOT guarantee admission. **Please note that upper level Psychology courses are high-demand, meaning that they have a very high number of students wishing to enrol in a very limited number of spaces.** These enrolments are managed strictly by the Visiting Student Office, in line with the quotas allocated by the department, and all enquiries to enrol in these courses must be made through the CAHSS Visiting Student Office. It is not appropriate for students to contact the department directly to request additional spaces.
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Not being delivered
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Present informed arguments and debate social psychology┬┐s methodological and epistemological claims
  2. Be able to discuss social psychology's paradigm, conceptual and moral/political crises, their solutions and further controversies
  3. Be able to describe and discuss discourse analysis studies of a variety of social psychological topics (identities, attitudes, emotions)
  4. Be able to describe and assess efforts to reconceptualise psychological concepts
Reading List
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Critical analysis, presenting and structuring arguments, questioning assumptions, communication, and group work/collaboration.
Keywordspsychology; social critical
Course organiserDr Sue Widdicombe
Tel: (0131 6)50 3411
Course secretaryMiss Chloe Anderson
Tel: (0131 6)50 9870
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