BSc Psychology / Course details

Year of entry: 2023

Course unit details:
Topics and Issues in Social Psychology

Course unit fact file
Unit code PSYC21701
Credit rating 10
Unit level Level 2
Teaching period(s) Semester 1
Offered by Division of Psychology and Mental Health
Available as a free choice unit? No


The unit will explore major topics in social psychology. As well as new topics that have not previously been covered, the focus will be on deepening students’ understanding of the basic concepts taught in First Year. Topics to be covered include, but are not limited to, social cognition, including impression formation, social categorization, heuristics and social inference; attribution theory and biases; social identity and group behaviour; and social psychological approaches to discourse and communication.


The unit aims to further develop students' understanding of topics in Social Psychology. Building upon the foundations in First Year, topics are explored in depth to allow students to develop critical skills and knowledge in this area.


Teaching and learning methods

This unit will be taught via lectures and seminars.

E-learning provision: Supplementary reading and resources including media relevant to key topics, and a monitored discussion board will be provided via Blackboard.


Knowledge and understanding

Understand major theoretical explanations of social cognition, attribution, and social identity; Understand key principles in the social psychology of group behaviour and intergroup relations; Understand the contribution of social psychology to the study of communication, social interaction, and discourse in society.

Intellectual skills

Critically evaluate methods, theories and approaches in key social psychological topics; Interpret quantitative and qualitative research findings in key social psychological topics; Apply social psychological theories to understand contemporary social issues.

Practical skills

Communicate psychological research findings for a non-expert audience in an accessible format; Search for research on a topic in social psychology using a range of sources (library, internet, electronic databases) to gather information; Plan and write a written argument supported by empirical research, in accordance with APA guidelines.

Transferable skills and personal qualities

Reflect on, and critically consider, obstacles to diversity, tolerance and inclusion in society. 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

Written Assignments - 90%

Reading Quizzes - 10%

Feedback methods

Students will receive a grade and written feedback for the written assignments 

Recommended reading

Core text: Hogg, M. A., & Vaughan, G. M. (2018). Social psychology (8th ed.). Harlow, UK: Pearson. (Kortext EPUB and PDF; supplied through UoM eTextbook programme)

Study hours

Independent study hours
Independent study 83

Teaching staff

Staff member Role
Matthew Farr Unit coordinator

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