Introduction to Psychology and Development

Module 21513

Value: 20 credits

School of Education

This module is designed to provide you with an introduction to the academic knowledge underpinning further modules in developmental psychology and supplement research skills which are a main component of their degree programme. 

It introduces a range of theoretical perspectives central to studying the psychology of development and these include: Behaviourist, Cognitive, Psychodynamic, Social Constructionist and Evolutionary. 

Content covers theory and research into the ongoing themes and issues in developmental psychology, including continuous and discontinuous development, stability and change and the nature/nurture debate.  It also considers how research and theories of these issues are applied to children's development and education.

Major research approaches in Psychology are considered as are Ethics relating to psychological research particularly those centred on children.

Aims of the module

By the end of the module you should be able to:

  • Describe what developmental psychology is;
  • Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of major themes and issues within developmental psychology
  • Describe key theories of child development, namely psychodynamic, behaviourist, evolutionary and cognitive, and understand important critiques of these theories
  • Identify the main research strategies used by developmental psychologists, and understand their strengths and weaknesses;
  • Describe the Ethics of Psychological research;
  • Design and implement a research study. 

Module Lead

Dr Wendy Symes 

Contact time

40 hours


A group oral presentation of a research project with accompanying individual 1000 word script (50%); A 2 hour unseen exam (50%)


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