BSc Psychology / Course details

Year of entry: 2023

Course unit details:
Brain & Behaviour

Course unit fact file
Unit code PSYC11212
Credit rating 10
Unit level Level 1
Teaching period(s) Semester 2
Available as a free choice unit? No


Basic principles of neuroanatomy, neurophysiology, and neurochemistry will be discussed to develop an understanding of how these biological factors underlie human brain function. Topics will include biological basis of emotion, motivation, stress, sleep, autistic, ADHD and substance abuse disorders. Students will become familiar with multidisciplinary methods of investigation through use of behavioural, computational, neuropsychological and neuroimaging tools.


The unit aims to:

Introduce students to the structure and function of the brain as it affects behaviour. It will focus on how human and animal research, the effects of brain injury and the latest neuroimaging techniques can be used to explain the brain processes that underpin behaviour and cognition.




Teaching and learning methods

This unit will be taught via lectures and seminars.


Knowledge and understanding

  • develop a sound understanding of biological psychology
  • gain a working knowledge of basic brain terminology and functioning
  • understand  how the brain is able to process complex information and respond accordingly
  • have an appreciation of the methods used to study the brain

Intellectual skills

  • evaluate theories developed to explain how the brain works
  • consider research and scholarship in selected core topics in biological psychology

Practical skills

  • use a range of sources (library, internet, electronic databases) to gather information
  • learn to communicate information in a concise fashion, develop arguments and adopt appropriate analysis tools and use them effectively
  • review and assimilate empirical evidence from a range of scientific disciplines (e.g. biology, psychology and neuroscience).
  • Articulate scientific knowledge in a clear and concise form.

Transferable skills and personal qualities

  • independently gather and select the most relevant information from a body of work through online and library sources
  • present concise and persuasive arguments
  • develop skills in critical thinking

Assessment methods

Essay exam - 60%

MCQ Exam - 40%

Feedback methods

Students will receive a grade. For the Essay they will also receive written feedback.


Recommended reading

Carlson, N.R. (2015). Foundations of behavioural neuroscience (9th ed.). East Sussex: Taylor & Francis.

N.B. Students will have access to an electronic version of this textbook through Kortext

Study hours

Independent study hours
Independent study 82

Teaching staff

Staff member Role
Gorana Pobric Unit coordinator

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