BSc Educational Psychology / Course details

Year of entry: 2023

Course unit details:
Social psychology of Education

Course unit fact file
Unit code EDUC13052
Credit rating 10
Unit level Level 1
Teaching period(s) Semester 2
Available as a free choice unit? Yes


This unit takes an exploratory case approach by ‘walking through’ the many experiences of a individual in relation to social-psychological processes.  The unit builds upon each session to paint an increasingly complex picture of social psychological in relation to:

  • Perception of self
  • Perception of others
  • Interrelationships between pupils and teachers
  • Group processes and conformity
  • Group processes, friends and enemies
  • The role of the school



  • To provide coverage of the BPS qualifying syllabus core area of social Psychology
  • To develop knowledge of the social psychological processes that impact on learning and teaching


Learning outcomes

Category of outcome

Students should/will (please delete as appropriate) be able to:

Knowledge and understanding


Demonstrate critical insight into the role of intra-personal processes, inter-personal processes and wider socio-cultural influences in the classroom


Intellectual skills


Critically discuss and evaluate recent social psychological theory and research related to education


Practical skills


Application of knowledge to applied learning scenarios.


Transferable skills and personal qualities





Take charge of their own learning and undertake self-directed study to produce a credit-bearing assignment

Written communication

Oral communication (contributing to discussion and debate)

Working with others (group work, case-based work)

IT skills (word processing, accessing electronic databases and library facilities, managing references)



Teaching and learning methods

Face to face lectures (e.g. including whole class discussion and debate, case/scenario based learning, and other approaches to learning and teaching)

Blended learning approaches by discussing the developing exploratory case using asynchronous online discussion boards between taught sessions.

Support for students in formative assessmet in preparing for peer assessment.




Assessment methods

Assessment task                                   Length How and when feedback is provided Weighting within unit
Students are to create a poster, suitable for school and academic audiences applying a key theory of social psychology to the context of the school and/or class environment.  Example topics are given below: 1,500 Criterion-referenced peer assessment (30% of final mark) and criterion-based grading from lecturers (70% of final mark) 100%
  • Self-conception (e.g. self-esteem, self-efficacy, locus of control, social comparison theory)
  • Motivation (e.g. self-determination, attribution theory)
  • Friendships (e.g. risk-taking, conformity, group homogeneity) 
  • Student-teacher relationships (e.g. gender stereotypes, teacher's pet, self-fulfilling prophecy)
  • Bullying (e.g. interpersonal conflict, prejudice)  




Feedback methods

Criterion-referenced peer assessment (30% of final mark) and criterion-based grading from lecturers (70% of final mark)


Recommended reading

 Babad, E. (2010). The social psychology of the classroom. Oxon: Routledge.

Hewstone, M., Stroebe, W. & Jonas, K. (eds.) (2015).An introduction to social psychology (6th Edition)., West Sussex: Wiley.

Hogg, M.A. & Vaughan, G.M. (2010). Essentials of social psychology. Essex: Pearson

Nier, J.A. ( 2012) Taking sides: Clashing views in social psychology (4th Edition). New York: McGraw Hill

Study hours

Scheduled activity hours
Lectures 15
Independent study hours
Independent study 85

Teaching staff

Staff member Role
Charlotte Bagnall Unit coordinator

Additional notes


Hours Allocated

Staff/ Student contact  


Online discussion board


Private study, reading and assignment preparation


Total Hours



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