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

Postgraduate Course: Disorders of language functions (PSYL11029)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Philosophy, Psychology and Language Sciences CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 11 (Postgraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits10 ECTS Credits5
SummarySince the very beginning of the scientific enquiry language disorders have played a crucial role in the study of human cognition and its representation in the brain.
Course description The course will begin with an introduction to the different medical, psychological and linguistic traditions and the way in which they have shaped the methods and models of aphasia research. The course will then examine the main types of aphasia and demonstrate how specific neuropathological mechanisms can influence the pattern of language breakdown observed in aphasic patients. It will draw on observation of different neurological conditions, including stroke as well as different forms of neurodegeneration such as progressive aphasia and semantic dementia. The insights won from the study of aphasia will be discussed in the context of current research in other areas of neuroscience.

The course will also address the issue of bi- and multilingualism and the question to what extent aphasic symptoms are shaped by specific features of different languages (cross-linguistic research).
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Students MUST have passed:
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements Students should have a background either in neuroanatomy / neuropsychology or in linguistics / psycholinguistics. Due to the interdisciplinary character of the course students are also expected to be prepared to assimilate knowledge from outside their original speciality
Information for Visiting Students
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2020/21, Available to all students (SV1) Quota:  27
Course Start Semester 2
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 100 ( Lecture Hours 22, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 2, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 76 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 0 %, Coursework 100 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) Presentation (mid-course 50%)

An critical essay of 1500 words on one of the topics presented by another student (final assessment 50%)
Feedback General feedback is given in the last lecture, individual written feedback to students
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. recognise the main theoretical concepts underlying the study of aphasia and the way in which they influence the interpretation of aphasic phenomena
  2. familiarise themselves with the clinical picture of the main aphasic syndromes and their underlying pathology
  3. critically discuss the possible implications of aphasia research for our models of normal language function in the brain
Reading List
Alfonso Ardila - Aphasia Handbook, Florida International University

Free download:
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills This course is highly interdisciplinary, including insights from medicine, psychology, neuroscience and linguistics, so whatever the academic background of the students might be, they should be prepared to make themselves familiar with other disciplines and their terminology.
KeywordsAphasia,Language Disorders,Neuropsychology
Course organiserDr Thomas Bak
Tel: (0131 6)50 9861
Course secretaryMiss Toni Noble
Tel: (0131 6)51 3188
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