Module Catalogue 2016/17

PSY1008 : Personality and Abnormal Psychology

  • Offered for Year: 2016/17
  • Module Leader(s): Dr Val Tuck
  • Owning School: Psychology
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus
Semester 2 Credit Value: 10
ECTS Credits: 5.0
Pre Requisites
Pre Requisite Comment


Co Requisites
Co Requisite Comment



To introduce students to personality and abnormal psychology. To provide an understanding of the different levels at which personality can be measured and how extremes of behaviour are measured in a clinical context. To inform students about some of the most influential personality theories, and to give insight into how these can be applied to the description, aetiology and treatment of psychological disorders.

Outline Of Syllabus

Introduction to personality, what it is and how we measure it and an introduction to abnormal psychology what it is and how we classify it.

Classic personality theories will be covered e.g. the behavioural genetic theory, the Psychodynamic approach and the Humanistic personality theory.

Students will learn how the situation may affect personality e.g. theories of Mishel and Bandura.

The abnormal psychology topic will cover the main types of disorder, e.g. anxiety, personality disorders, depression, psychosis.

There will also be the opportunity to take part in an animal observation study.

Learning Outcomes

Intended Knowledge Outcomes

On completion of the module the students will be able to:

- explain what personality is and how it is measured
- explain the concept of abnormal behaviour and how such behaviour is classified in a clinical context
- discuss how abnormal behaviour may develop and how this may be accounted for by the classic
personality theories
- demonstrate insight into the issues in personality research and the implications surrounding the
diagnosis of psychological disorders
- appreciate the interaction between genetic, physiological and environmental influences on human
- discuss how personality research can inform treatment of disorders
- identify critical issues in personality and abnormal psychology
- gather appropriate information from a variety of sources

Intended Skill Outcomes

After completing the module, students will be able to:

- formulate and discuss, orally and in writing, their independent views on animal personality research
- evaluate the classic personality theories
- interpret simple data plots
- work as part of a small group

Graduate Skills Framework

Graduate Skills Framework Applicable: Yes
  • Cognitive/Intellectual Skills
    • Critical Thinking : Present
    • Data Synthesis : Present
    • Active Learning : Present
    • Information Literacy
      • Source Materials : Present
  • Self Management
    • Self Awareness And Reflection : Present
    • Planning and Organisation
      • Goal Setting And Action Planning : Present
      • Decision Making : Present
    • Personal Enterprise
      • Innovation And Creativity : Present
      • Initiative : Present
      • Problem Solving : Present
  • Interaction
    • Communication
      • Oral : Present
      • Interpersonal : Present
      • Written Other : Assessed
    • Team Working
      • Collaboration : Assessed
      • Relationship Building : Present
      • Leadership : Present
      • Negotiation : Present
      • Peer Assessment Review : Present

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion110:0010:00N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture241:0024:0012 lectures are interactive.
Guided Independent StudyDirected research and reading210:0020:00Journal articles
Guided Independent StudyProject work11:001:00Case Study
Guided Independent StudyStudent-led group activity15:005:00Associated with the assignment
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study140:0040:00N/A
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

Lectures will be used as the main way to impart basic knowledge and to stimulate interest in the topics. The interactive sessions will allow further discussion of concepts taught in lectures and give the opportunity for students to take part in small scale psychological experiments that illustrate the taught material, The observation study will allow students to gain practical experience of personality research. This will help them to appreciate the difficulties surrounding personality research thereby assisting them in developing their skills of interpretation and evaluation. In addition, the discussion and feedback sessions for the observation study will provide students with the opportunity to carry out group work and to gain both formative and summative feedback on a written report. The private study time will allow students to carry out in depth review of the information imparted through lectures, to consolidate their learning and to generate their own views, views that can be shared with others in the interactive sessions and followed up by independent reading.

Reading Lists

Assessment Methods

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Description Length Semester When Set Percentage Comment
PC Examination602A80Unseen, multiple choice
Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Case study2M20Case Study report, approximately 500 words
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

The examination will assess material from all parts of the syllabus, ensuring that students have a good overall knowledge of the topics. The report will assess the students' ability to work effectively in small groups and will test their skills of written communication and their higher level evaluation skills.


Past Exam Papers

General Notes


Note: The Module Catalogue now reflects module information relating to academic year 16/17. Please contact your School Office if you require module information for a previous academic year.

Disclaimer: The University will use all reasonable endeavours to deliver modules in accordance with the descriptions set out in this catalogue. Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information, however, the University reserves the right to introduce changes to the information given including the addition, withdrawal or restructuring of modules if it considers such action to be necessary.