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Module Specifications..

Current Academic Year 2023 - 2024

Please note that this information is subject to change.

Module Title Biological Psychology 2
Module Code PSYC202
School 37
Module Co-ordinatorSemester 1: Aoife Fitzpatrick
Semester 2: Aoife Fitzpatrick
Autumn: Aoife Fitzpatrick
Module TeachersStella Vlachou
Aoife Fitzpatrick
NFQ level 8 Credit Rating 5
Pre-requisite None
Co-requisite None
Compatibles None
Incompatibles None

To extend the description and explanation of the biological basis of human behaviour and the theories of biological influences on behaviour.

Learning Outcomes

1. Explain the major theories and perspectives of biological psychology
2. Describe how the central, autonomic nervous and endocrine systems are involved in psychological processes
3. Define the biopsychosocial bases for a range of internal states
4. Describe how the central autonomic nervous and endocrine systems are involved in psychological processes
5. Describe how the sensory and sensorimotor systems function and affect behaviour
6. Describe and explain the biological basis of learning, memory and cognitive functioning, and identify and explain disorders of cognition
7. Describe and explain the development and plasticity of the nervous system, how neuroplasticity affects brain damage, and identify and explain degenerative diseases in the brain

Workload Full-time hours per semester
Type Hours Description
Lecture24No Description
Seminars6No Description
Independent Study95No Description
Total Workload: 125

All module information is indicative and subject to change. For further information,students are advised to refer to the University's Marks and Standards and Programme Specific Regulations at: http://www.dcu.ie/registry/examinations/index.shtml

Indicative Content and Learning Activities

Biopsychology of Motivation (e.g., Regulation of internal states, such as temperature, hunger, thirst, eating disorders; Reproductive Behaviour, hormones and sex)

The Visual System: vision and visual perception

Other Sensory Systems: Hearing, Touch, Pain, Smell, Taste, Attention

The Sensorimotor System: brain mechanisms and control of movement, movement disorders

Learning and Memory

Intelligence and Cognitive Functioning; Disorders of Cognition

Development and Plasticity of the Nervous System

Brain Damage and Neuroplasticity

Degenerative Diseases of the Brain

Assessment Breakdown
Continuous Assessment30% Examination Weight70%
Course Work Breakdown
TypeDescription% of totalAssessment Date
In Class TestFormative assessment in the form of MCQs and essay questions tests within the semester30%n/a
Reassessment Requirement Type
Resit arrangements are explained by the following categories;
1 = A resit is available for all components of the module
2 = No resit is available for 100% continuous assessment module
3 = No resit is available for the continuous assessment component
This module is category 1
Indicative Reading List

  • John P. J. Pinel: 2017, Introduction to Biopsychology, 10th, Pearson, Boston, MA, 9781292158471
  • Bob L. Garrett: 2015, Brain & Behavior: An Introduction to Biological Psychology, 4th, Sage Publications, Thousand Oaks, CA, 9781452260952
  • James W. Kalat: 2015, Biological Psychology, 12th, Wodsworth Cengage Learning, Belmont, CA, 9781305105409
  • Suzanne Higgs, A. Cooper, J. Lee, M. Harris: 2015, Biological Psychology, Sage Publications, London, UK, 9780857022615
  • Neil R. Carlson: 2010, Physiology of behavior, 10th, Allyn & Bacon, Boston, MA, 0205666272
  • S.M. Breedlove, N.V. Watson: 2013, Biological Psychology, 7th, Sinaeur Associates, Sunderland, Massachusetts, 9780878939275
  • John G. Nicholls, A. R. Martin, P. A. Fuchs, D. A. Brown, M. E. Diamond, D. Weisblat: 2011, From Neuron to Brain, 5th, Sinauer Associates, Inc., Sunderland, MA, 0878934391
  • Dale Purves, George J. Augustine, David Fitzpatrick, William C. Hall, Anthony-Samuel LaMantia, Leonard E. White (eds.): 2011, Neuroscience, 5th, Sinaeur Associates, Inc., Sunderland, MA, 9780878936953
  • Andrew Wickens: 2009, Introduction to Biopsychology, 3rd, Pearson Education, Boston, MA, 9780132052962
  • Bryan Kolb, Ian Q. Whishaw,: 2014, An Introduction to Brain and Behavior, 4th, Macmillan, Worth Publishers, New York, USA, 9781429242288
  • Paul Aleixo (illustrations by Murray Baillon): 2008, Biological psychology: an illustrated survival guide, 1st, John Wiley and Sons, Oxford, UK, 9780470870990
  • Lisa Wise: 2010, Introduction to Psychobiology, Sage Publications, Thousand Oaks, CA, 0761960791
  • L. Squire, D. Berg, F. Bloom, S. du Lac, A. Ghosh: 2008, Fundamental Neuroscience, 3rd, Academic Press, San Diego, CA, 978-0123740199
  • B. W. Connors, M. A. Paradiso, M. F. Bear: 2006, Neuroscience: Exploring the Brain, 3rd, Lippincott, Williams & Wilkins, Baltimore, MD, 978-0781760034
  • Richard Dawkins: 2006, The Selfish Gene, Open University Press, Berkshire, UK, 0192860925
  • Edward O. Wilson: 2005, From so simple a beginning: Darwin's four great books (Voyage of the Beagle; The Origin of Species; The decent of Man; The experience of emotion in Man and Animals), W.W. Norton & Co., New York, NY, 0393061345
  • F. Scott Kraly: 2009, The unwell brain: understanding the psychobiology of mental health, W.W. Norton & Co., New York, NY, 9780393705966
  • Frederick Toates: 2000, Biological Psychology: an integrative approach, Pearson Education, Boston, MA, 9780273745754
  • John Stein, Catherine Stoodley: 2006, Neuroscience: an Introduction, 1st, John Wiley and Sons, Oxford, UK, 978-1861563897
  • Eric R. Kandel, James H. Schwartz, Thomas M. Jessell: 2000, Principles of Neural Science, 4th, McGraw-Hill, New York, NY, 978-0071120005
  • Eric R. Kandel: 2007, In Search of Memory: the emergence of a new science of mind, WW Norton and Co., London, UK, 978-0393329377
  • Larry R. Squire, Eric R. Kandel: 2008, Memory: from mind to molecules, 2nd, Roberts & Company Publishers, Greenwood Village, CO, 978-0981519418
Other Resources

Programme or List of Programmes
BPDTBSc Psychology & Disruptive Technologies
BPMBSc in Psychology with Mathematics
BPYBSc (Honours) in Psychology

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