Module Provider: Psychology
Number of credits: 10 [5 ECTS credits]
Terms in which taught: Spring term module
Non-modular pre-requisites:
Modules excluded:
Current from: 2018/9

Module Convenor: Dr Andreas Kalckert


Type of module:

Summary module description:



This module introduces students to the foundations of biological psychology. Students will learn the basic concepts and terminology relating to the structure and function of the nervous system of humans. They will learn how information is communicated in the brain, via electrical and chemical processes, and the role these biological processes have in behaviour. Students will be introduced to how sensory information is processed to generate perceptual experiences, such as vision or touch.

Assessable learning outcomes:

By the end of the module the student will be able to:

  • Demonstrate knowledge of the structure and function of the human nervous system, including gross anatomical brain structures

  • Understand the basic electrical and chemical processes involved in synaptic transmission

  • Describe how different types of sensory information are processed in specific systems in the human body

  • Explain key concepts in perception, such as sensory adaptation, spatial and temporal resolution, and topical organisation

Additional outcomes:

Outline content:

Lectures cover topics such as: the structure and function of the human nervous system, neuronal communication, sensory processing, for example vision and audition.

Brief description of teaching and learning methods:

The module is taught via 10 hour-long lectures, each followed by a further hour-long online discussion forum, and supported by essential reading. There will be a revision session to help students prepare for the final exam.

Teaching methods include the following:

(a) Lectures including demonstrations where appropriate, e.g. of perceptual phenomena

(b) Online discussion forum following lectures

(c) Required reading from texts

(d) Revision lecture in summer term

NB The contact hours in the table below are indicative of the contact hours for students studying this module in the UK, and may vary for students taking this module at branch campuses. 

Contact hours:
  Autumn Spring Summer
Lectures 20 1
Guided independent study 44 35
Total hours by term 64.00 36.00
Total hours for module 100.00

Summative Assessment Methods:
Method Percentage
Written exam 75
Class test administered by School 25

Summative assessment- Examinations:

Summative assessment- Coursework and in-class tests:

Weekly continuous assessment questions assess students’ breadth of knowledge across the course.  Students also sit an hour-long exam in Summer Term (75%), which requires students to demonstrate in-depth knowledge of the material covered across the module.

Formative assessment methods:

Penalties for late submission:
The Module Convener will apply the following penalties for work submitted late:

  • where the piece of work is submitted after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): 10% of the total marks available for that piece of work will be deducted from the mark for each working day[1] (or part thereof) following the deadline up to a total of five working days;
  • where the piece of work is submitted more than five working days after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): a mark of zero will be recorded.

  • The University policy statement on penalties for late submission can be found at:
    You are strongly advised to ensure that coursework is submitted by the relevant deadline. You should note that it is advisable to submit work in an unfinished state rather than to fail to submit any work.

    Assessment requirements for a pass:

    Reassessment arrangements:

    Reassessment is by re-examination in August/September.

    Additional Costs (specified where applicable):

    Last updated: 20 April 2018


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