PY3PE-Public Engagement

Module Provider: Psychology
Number of credits: 10 [5 ECTS credits]
Terms in which taught: Autumn term module
Pre-requisites: PY2RM Research Methods and Data Analysis
Non-modular pre-requisites:
Modules excluded:
Current from: 2018/9

Module Convenor: Dr Jayne Freeman


Type of module:

Summary module description:
Public Engagement


This module will allow students to explore an area of psychology of special interest to them and to demonstrate its relevance to the wider community. Students will select from a wide range of assignments, carry out an investigation of the literature and wider context relating to the topic of interest, and disseminate information on this topic in a manner that might be used to engage the public with the field of psychology. The aims of the module are to encourage students to apply their knowledge of psychology beyond their studies, and to facilitate students in developing an accessible, clear and engaging style of written and/or oral communication.  Students will also develop their critical reflection skills by completing a reflective report in which they will analyse and justify their approach to the output and consider their experiences and learning in relation to the assignment.  

Assessable learning outcomes:
•Critical evaluation and synthesis of theory, research and wider information
•Translation and application of this information into a format suitable for dissemination to a chosen audience, and an ability to critically reflect on and justify these choices

Additional outcomes:
This module enables students to research in depth a topic that has not been covered in the curriculum, and therefore to explore potential areas of interest for postgraduate study or research. In addition, the variety of assignment types offered will enable students to select the piece of work that will best support their chosen career path, by demonstrating a particular set of interests and/or skills.

Outline content:
This module allows students to choose from a wide variety of assignment types and to focus on a topic of particular interest to themselves when completing the assignment.

Assignments will vary from year to year but might include the following:
- a biography of a current researcher, evaluating their contribution to their field and to society;
- a white paper for government, proposing a change in policy or legislation on the basis of psychological evidence;
- a Wikipedia entry on a topic related to psychology that has not yet been covered, or not covered adequately;
- a newspaper or magazine article, explaining recent scientific findings to a lay audience;
- a grant proposal asking for funding to support a piece of psychological research, justifying the importance of the research and likely impact on society;
- a Teaching and Learning proposal, recommending good practice to schools/universities on the basis of evidence about how people learn;
- a public information website, video or leaflet, that uses evidence-based techniques to encourage behaviour change.

The reports produced for this module are expected to be of disseminable quality, i.e. suitable for publication or presentation to the appropriate audience.

Brief description of teaching and learning methods:
Students will select an assignment from the module booklet soon after the start of Autumn Term. Module leaders will hold initial seminars for all students taking their assignment, explaining the purpose of the assignment and nature of the specific outcome(s) required. Students will be provided with supporting materials in the form of online demonstrations and/or tutorials, recommended sources, examples of the required outcomes, etc. Students will complete the assignment independently, and submit their final report on completion of the assignment. Module leaders will be available to discuss progress with the student's chosen assignment and to provide feedback on a draft of the final report during both terms.

Contact hours:
  Autumn Spring Summer
Lectures 1
Project Supervision 3
Guided independent study 96
Total hours by term 100.00
Total hours for module 100.00

Summative Assessment Methods:
Method Percentage
Report 50
Practical skills assessment 50

Summative assessment- Examinations:

Summative assessment- Coursework and in-class tests:

Assessment of this module is by coursework (100%). Students will be asked to produce an output that could be used to disseminate psychological evidence in the public domain (50%). The nature of the output will vary according to the assignment selected, and might include one or several components. See module booklet for more details. Students will also complete a 1500-word reflective report (50%) in which they will critically analyse their choices regarding the output and reflect on their own learning and efficacy in relation to their objectives.  

Formative assessment methods:
Students will be provided with verbal and/or written feedback on a draft submission of their final outcome, and will be able to draw on this feedback in order to improve their final submission.

Penalties for late submission:

The Module Convenor will apply the following penalties for work submitted late, in accordance with the University policy.
• where the piece of work is submitted up to one calendar week after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): 10% of the total marks available for the piece of work will be deducted from the mark for each working day (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:
A mark of at least 40%.

Reassessment arrangements:
Reassessment is by submission of a new assignment from the module booklet.

Additional Costs (specified where applicable):
1) Required text books:
2) Specialist equipment or materials:
3) Specialist clothing, footwear or headgear:
4) Printing and binding:
5) Computers and devices with a particular specification:
6) Travel, accommodation and subsistence:

Last updated: 20 April 2018


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