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Module Specifications..

Current Academic Year 2023 - 2024

Please note that this information is subject to change.

Module Title Communities and Wellbeing
Module Code PSYC518
School 37
Module Co-ordinatorSemester 1: Louise Hopper
Semester 2: Louise Hopper
Autumn: Louise Hopper
Module TeachersLouise Hopper
NFQ level 9 Credit Rating 10
Pre-requisite None
Co-requisite None
Compatibles None
Incompatibles None
Coursework Only

This module aims: (1) To evaluate theories and concepts of wellbeing; (2) To develop students’ potential as an agent of change with regard to strategic policy making concerning marginalised groups, (in)equalities in health, mental-health, well-being and community development at local community level, regional and national levels; (3) To introduce the psychological development of community practice through historical and theoretical lenses; (4) To debate on individual versus social-level approaches to well-being; (5) To promote the understanding of the importance of current wellbeing related policies; (6) To promote the understanding of the importance of legislative and social justice frameworks underpinning community practice; (7) To develop awareness of the importance of a community psychology approach to promoting empowerment in communities; (8) To develop a critical approach to understanding the various ideologies underlying discourse and debates about provision of services relating to individuals and communities; (9) To promote students’ awareness of the current issues effecting contemporary Irish society and how these impact on well-being, health and psychological states, on the individual, on communities and nationally.

Learning Outcomes

1. To evaluate theories and concepts of wellbeing.
2. Demonstrate an understanding of marginalisation and the link between individuals’ lives and the communities they inhabit.
3. Critically evaluate the theoretical and practical contribution of community psychology to psychology and well-being.
4. Analyse the contribution of evidenced based practice as an agent of change in marginalised communities.
5. Demonstrate a critical understanding of the ways in which social and community problems are linked to wider theoretical issues and contemporary culture, society and economy.
6. Complete a case study on a community based practice.
7. Critically navigate the literature and present work that bears relevance in both a theoretical and practical space.

Workload Full-time hours per semester
Type Hours Description
Lecture24On-campus lectures with accompanying online asynchronous materials to be completed before each lecture
Directed learning60Specified Learning activities related to weekly lectures; synthesis evaluation and literature searching
Independent Study160Independent study
Total Workload: 250

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

What is wellbeing? How has it been studied and conceptualized?

Issues of ecological validity in the study of wellbeing

Community Psychology: What is it and what does it do?

Psychology; paradigm shifts in practice

Wellbeing: policy and practice

Interactions: Linking individuals with community

Appreciating diversity

Stress, coping and social support

Integration of services: range of theory and CP

Risk: crime, drugs, anxiety and fragmentation

Resilience and wellness

Embracing social change: empowerment

Disempowerment through professionalization; a challenge for practitioners

Assessment Breakdown
Continuous Assessment100% Examination Weight0%
Course Work Breakdown
TypeDescription% of totalAssessment Date
AssignmentPosition Paper50%Once per semester
Group project Students, in their groups, will apply a community psychology lens (theory and practice) to the case (project) they have chosen to study in the PSYC517 Environmental influences on Wellbeing module.50%Sem 2 End
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

  • Kagan, C., Burton, M., Duckett, P., Lawthom, R., & Siddiquee, A. (2011).: 0, Critical community psychology., West Sussex, UK: Wiley.,
  • Riemer, M., Reich, S.M., Evans, S.D., Nelson, G. & Prilleltensky, I.: 2020, Community Psychology: In Pursuit of Liberation and Wellbeing, 3rd, Red Globe Press, London, UK, 9781137464095
  • Adams, L (2002): 0, Promoting Health Politics and Practice,, London: Sage Publications.,
  • Bane, L. (2007).: 0, A Seagull’s View – Adult and Community Education In P.Downes & A-L. Gilligan (eds.), Beyond Educational Disadvantage., Dublin: IPA,
  • Groth-Marnat, G. (2009): 0, Handbook of Psychological Assessment, 5th ed. Ed., John Wiley & Sons New York, 978047
  • Furr, R. M., & Bacharach, V. R. (2014): 0, Psychometrics: An Introduction, Sage London,
  • Mackereth, C. J., Brown, J. S., & Learmonth, A. M. (2014).: 0, Promoting public mental health and well-being: Principles into practice., Jessica Kingsley Publishers.,
  • Maître, B., Whelan, C. T., & Russell, H. (2016).: 0, Social Risk and Social Class Patterns in Poverty and Quality of Life in Ireland., Welfare.ie,
  • Miller LA, Lovler RL (2016): 0, Foundations of Psychological Testing: A Practical Approach, 5th Ed., Sage Publications,
  • Orford. J (2008).: 0, Community Psychology: Challenges, controversies and emerging consensus.,
  • Sidell, M. et al eds. (2003): 0, Debates and Dilemmas in Promoting Health. 2nd ed., Basingstoke: Macmillan,
Other Resources

60003, Website, Community Psychology Section, British Psychological Society (BPS)., 0, A Community Psychology Section Response to 'The Origins of Happiness', https://drive.google.com/file/d/1mTHzX0oEoi23Z6jI8wJhmXMfeypaE8ag/view,
Programme or List of Programmes
MPWMSc in Psychology and Wellbeing

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