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

Undergraduate Course: Psychology in Action (PSYL10150)

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 Credits10 ECTS Credits5
SummaryThis course will cover two key areas, one focused on science in practice, and one on science communication. The contents covered will include the academic ecosystem (such as grants, ethics and publishing), the replication crisis and possible solutions, fundamentals of science engagement, and practical aspects of communicating in various contexts. These will be delivered through lectures, online self-study modules, including quizzes and short assignments, as well as practical workshops. During the course, small groups of students will be matched with active researchers at the University and provided with structured shadowing and interview opportunities.
Course description The course will allow the students to experience psychology in action in two contexts - in academic research and in the wider world. The goal is to show how the skills they gain during the programme can be applied in real life and to familiarise them with the environments in which science is done and communicated.

One section of the course will consist of two elements, running in Block 1 (Lifecycle of a study) and Block 3 (Replication crisis) and cover a number of fundamentals of academic research, including ethics, funding, publishing, the replication crisis, open data and open access, and will allow the studies to talk with active researchers about how they run their projects. This section will be assessed through quizzes and a blog post on an aspect of the replication crisis.

The other section will consist of two elements running in Block 2 (Varieties of science engagement) and Block 4 (Debating psychology and science) and will focus on science engagement and cover theoretical and empirical fundamentals of public engagement, various engagement strategies, and writing for non-experts. The students will analyse various science communication campaigns and practice writing for different audiences. The section will be assessed by quizzes, and an evaluation of a public engagement campaign.

Both sections will be delivered through an online component with self-study modules, graded quizzes, tutor moderated online discussions and short assessments. They will be supported by introductory lectures and hands on workshops to develop practical skills.

The final assessment will be an accessible write up of the research project the students interviewed staff members about, and will draw on the skills gained in both components of the course.
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. Enrolment is also at the discretion of the course organiser, and students must contact the course organiser for the course to seek their permission to enrol in the course, then send that written confirmation to the Visiting Student Office for consideration.
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
Academic year 2022/23, Available to all students (SV1) Quota:  0
Course Start Full Year
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 100 ( Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 2, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 98 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 0 %, Coursework 100 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) 20% MCQ, 30% short pieces, 50% final piece.
Feedback Feedback will be given throughout the course, especially through the moderated online forum that will feed forward to the summative assessments.
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Understand and explain the institutional context in which academic research is done
  2. Critically engage with and write about the replication crisis in social sciences
  3. Understand and critically evaluate the practice and theory of science engagement
  4. Understand the theory and practice behind presenting a specific message to the public
  5. Write a critical summary of an academic debate for a lay audience
Reading List
Core and optional reading for each section of the course is provided at the start of each 5 week block.
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Research and enquiry: Critical thinking, Independent research, Knowledge integration and application, Handling complexity and ambiguity.
Personal and Intellectual Autonomy: Ethics and social responsibility, Independent learning and development.
Personal Effectiveness: Planning, organising and time management, Team working, Professional awareness.
Communication: Interpersonal skills, Written communications.
KeywordsPsychology,Science Engagement
Course organiserDr Graham MacKenzie
Tel: (0131 6)50 3451
Course secretaryMr Keith Deeley
Tel: (0131 6)50 9870
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