Global Opportunities

SPE1056 : Brain and Behaviour Across the Lifespan I: Introduction to Psychology and Social Interaction

Semester 1 Credit Value: 10
Semester 2 Credit Value: 10
ECTS Credits: 10.0


To give an overview of psychological and sociological factors affecting communication across the lifespan, through 2 strands:

Introduction to Psychology:

To introduce foundation concepts from cognitive and developmental psychology

To explore and evaluate different psychological theories relating to development

To understand important cognitive changes across the lifespan

To develop reporting skills and practice through writing essays, observational reports and logs, and giving presentations.

Social Interaction, Contexts and the Sociology of Communication Impairment:

To provide a practical introduction to the theories of how we perceive ourselves and others and how this influences our interpretation of behaviour and situations, particularly in relation to clinical practice.

To consider the influence of social contexts on behaviour and the role of demographic and cultural factors.

To consider cognitive and psychosocial consequences of ageing and disability.

To provide students with the opportunity to observe, analyse and evaluate interactions between individuals and groups, considering the importance of the environmental context and the respective roles of the individuals.

In addition, students develop their academic skills through this module, including essay writing, critical appraisal oral presentations, debating and report writing.

Outline Of Syllabus

For students studying the clinical programmes (BSc Speech & Language Therapy and Masters of Speech & Language Sciences), the HCPC Standards of Proficiency are of relevance. This module addresses aspects of the following standards but is not the only module to do so:

13.8 understand linguistics and phonetics, psycholinguistics, sociolinguistics and all levels of typical processing

13.10 understand psychology as relevant to lifespan development and change, normal and impaired communication and sychological and social wellbeing

13.11 understand sociology in relation to the practice of speech and language therapy, including its application to educational, health and workplace settings and within multi-cultural contexts

14.4 be able to gather appropriate information

14.13 be aware of a range of research methodologies

14.14 be able to evaluate research and other evidence to inform their own practice

Introduction to Psychology:

Theories of development
Perception, attention and memory
Changes across the lifespan
Nature-nurture debate
Psychology of language
Workshops on academic writing, critical appraisal and referencing

Social Interaction, Contexts and the Sociology of Communication Impairment:

Sense of self and personality
Intuition and social cognitive biases
Social and professional interactions
Group formation, structure and decision making
Influence of social contexts
Psychosocial consequences of ageing and disability
Discrimination and prejudice

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion120:0020:00N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture152:0030:00N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesPractical61:006:00N/A
Guided Independent StudySkills practice42:008:00N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesWorkshops21:002:00N/A
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study1134:00134:00N/A
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

Knowledge outcomes are primarily addressed through lecture materials and guided reading/independent study. Skills outcomes are addressed through workshops and class activities e.g. presentations and debates.

Teaching involves a range of practical elements e.g. observing interaction sessions.

Assessment Methods

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

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Essay1A50Psychology: 2000 words on key debate in field of psychology
Reflective log2A10ReflectiveLog:5 exercises encourage reflection on lecture content using clinical scenarios. Reports have a page limit one A4 sheet
Report2M40Observational Report: Evaluation of a video-recorded clinical interaction. Up to 3 A4 pages double-spaced.
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

Knowledge outcomes are assessed through the essays. Skills outcomes are promoted by setting a formative essay mid-term in semester 1 and providing timely feedback for students to apply this in their summative essay. The reflective log exercises encourage students to reflect on main knowledge outcomes from certain sessions and reflect on clinical applications. Each exercise is essentially a question for the students to answer that help them to reflect on some of the lecture content and put the techniques into practice e.g. short report on group therapy observation, completing and reflecting on self-perception inventory. Observational report assesses one of the main skill outcomes.

Reading Lists