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Module Specifications..

Current Academic Year 2023 - 2024

Please note that this information is subject to change.

Module Title Cognitive Psychology and Biopsychology
Module Code PY230
School 37
Module Co-ordinatorSemester 1: James Brunton
Semester 2: James Brunton
Autumn: James Brunton
Module TeachersJames Brunton
NFQ level 8 Credit Rating 15
Pre-requisite PY100
Co-requisite None
Compatibles None
Incompatibles None

Cognitive Psychology is concerned with: how we attend to and gain information about the world; how information is stored and processed by the brain and; how we solve problems, think, and formulate language. It is the scientific study of the thinking mind. Students will study: attention; perception and memory; language; intelligence and problem solving; and representations of knowledge. Biopsychology has, as its core question; what role does biology have in determining our behaviour? In studying Biopsychology students will learn about: Neuroanatomy and Neuropsychology; the biological bases of behaviour; Behavioural Genetics; Evolutionary Psychology, Clinical Neuropsychology and; the chemical bases of behaviour.

Learning Outcomes

1. Examine how knowledge of the structure and function of the brain and the nervous system contributes to our understanding of cognitive processes
2. Analyse the psychological theories and models that explain how we attend to, perceive, learn and process information with which we work everyday
3. Examine the theoretical approaches associated with mental imagery and knowledge representation
4. Assess the research on language processing and its fundamental importance to human cognition
5. Analyse the effect of knowledge on reasoning and problem-solving performance
6. Appraise how knowledge of the structure and function of the brain and the nervous system contributes to our understanding of human psychology
7. Analyse a number of the biological bases of behaviour
8. Illustrate the role of biochemistry, genetics, and evolution in explaining human behaviour
9. Assess the ways in which individuals are assessed, diagnosed, and treated within Clinical Neuropsychology

Workload Full-time hours per semester
Type Hours Description
Tutorial18Online distance learning tutorials
Online activity60Student-Tutor and Student-Student interaction through online discussion forums and other media
Independent Study297Using self-directed learning resources, textbooks and other resources
Total Workload: 375

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

Part 1: Cognitive Psychology 1

- Introduction to Cognitive Psychology

- Cognitive Neuropsychology

- Attention

- Perception

- Memory: Structure and Processes

- Memory: Theories

Part 2: Cognitive Psychology 2

- Mental Representations

- Mental Imagery

- Language 1: Structure and Abstractions

- Language 2: Words and Reading

- Logic and Decision Making

- Problem Solving and Creativity

Part 3: Biopsychology 1

- Introduction to Biopsychology

- Neuroanatomy & Neurophysiology

- Cortical organisation & Function

- The Sensori-motor System

- Biological bases of Behaviour: Sleep

- Biological bases of behaviour: Appetites

- Biological bases of behaviour: Emotion

- Biological bases of behaviour: Consciousness

Part 4: Biopsychology 2

- Behavioural Genetics

- Evolutionary Psychology

- Neurodevelopment & Plasticity

- Brain damage and recovery

- Clinical Neuropsychology: Assessment & Diagnosis

- Clinical Neuropsychology: Rehabilitation & Treatment

- Chemical bases of behaviour

Assessment Breakdown
Continuous Assessment100% Examination Weight0%
Course Work Breakdown
TypeDescription% of totalAssessment Date
EssayThis assessment is an essay in the area of Cognitive Psychology30%n/a
AssignmentThis assessment is a Review of two journal articles in the areas of Cognitive Psychology and Biopsychology, respectively, including a review on the database search approaches used in the assessment.30%n/a
PresentationThis assessment has two parts: 1) to produce a professional report on a Biopsychology topic (75%) and 2) Give a presentation on an aspect of the report (25%).40%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

  • 0: There are no required textbooks for this module. Openly available resources and/or journal articles available in DCU databases will be recommended in the learning materials.,
Other Resources

Programme or List of Programmes
BABA in Humanities
BADIPDiploma in Humanities
BAPYBA in Humanities (Psychology Major)
PYDIPDiploma in Humanities (Psychology Major)
SMPPYSingle Module Programme Psychology

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