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2023/24 Undergraduate Module Catalogue

PSYC3418 Joint Honours/Intercalated Programme: Cognitive Neuroscience

10 creditsClass Size: 30

Module manager: Dr Christina Sotiropoulou Drosopoulou

Taught: Semester 2 (Jan to Jun) View Timetable

Year running 2023/24

Pre-requisite qualifications

Successful completion of Level 1 & 2 Medicine or Dentistry MChD or BChD

This module is mutually exclusive with

PSYC2518Cognitive Neuroscience

This module is not approved as a discovery module

Module summary

Brain functioning underlies all human and animal behaviour, and so is critical to our understanding of psychological phenomena. As such, neuroscience has the potential to explain human behaviour, and in turn, provide considerable benefits to society, for example intervention strategies. This module explores how neuroscientific knowledge and theory can be used to inform effective experimental work addressing real-world problems. It also considers the challenges facing Neuroscience and critically draws upon contemporary issues in experimental/research development and implementation science. In addition, given that this module is delivered in the form of problem-based Learning, it offers students a unique learning context that allows them to develop valuable research-specific and transferable skills.


This module aims to provide in depth coverage of key concepts in Neuroscience, especially ‘Behavioural Neuroscience’ and 'Cognitive Neuroscience'.
The module will be taught by a team of experts in the subject.
Students will continue to develop their knowledge of this discipline with particular emphasis on the research expertise of the module team.

Learning outcomes
By the end of the course, students will be expected to have:
(1) a critical understanding on how several cognitive, affective and motivational processes are underpinned by neurobiological processes.
(2) Students should also be able to effectively communicate themes and arguments in Human Cognition.
(3) They will also be expected to have a robust and up to date knowledge on how structural and dynamical aspects of the human brain relate to several psychological processes.
(4) They will also be expected to have acquired a critical understanding of the main epistemological and methodological issues related to human cognitive neuroscience. This knowledge will be critical to prepare students for Level 3 modules from the Biological and Cognitive range of options.
(5) In addition students will be able to critique relevant published work

Skills outcomes
Students will have the opportunity to develop skills in the critical analysis of published behavioural and cognitive neuroscience research.

This module supports the development of:
- analytic and creative thinking of neuroscience research
- information retrieval, synthesis and evaluation of neuroscience research
- Development of a rationale and literature review relevant to neuroscience research


Syllabus includes:
1. Historical and epistemological foundations of behavioural and cognitive neuroscience
2. Methods in behavioural and cognitive neuroscience
3. Ageing
4. Appetite and Motivation
5. Language
6. Lateralisation in the brain

Teaching methods

Delivery typeNumberLength hoursStudent hours
Group learning21.503.00
Group learning61.006.00
Independent online learning hours6.00
Private study hours83.00
Total Contact hours11.00
Total hours (100hr per 10 credits)100.00

Private study

Lectures: 1 introductory in person lecture at week 1 (module structure/timetable, learning outcomes, methods of assessment, details on psychological processes’ impact and how they related to practice – link to assessments, intro to neuronatomy).

Group learning – in person group work. Six sessions are one hour and facilitated by 2 academics who are present in class aiming to support the groups with their work on their selected topics to write their Research Proposals. Two sessions are 1.5 hours and supported by 1 academic. These sessions provide more structured learning opportunities to help students develop the skills necessary for both assessments.

Independent online learning – online pre-recorded lectures. Approx. 1 lecture per topic. Each lecture will comprise 3 segments i.e. approx. 40 minutes on behavioural neuroscience aspect of the topic, approx. 40 minute on cognitive neuroscience of the topic, and approx. 20 minutes on implications/future directions and 1-2 papers that they must read to start with their Research Proposal). If a topic doesn’t have both a behavioural and cognitive aspect, the lecture will be focusing on just one of them (e.g. only the cognitive aspect for ‘Language’).

Private study:
Final assessment (Evaluation of Research Proposal): 30 hours
Group assignment (Research Proposal): 40 hours
Independent reading: 13 hours

Opportunities for Formative Feedback

There will be formative MCQs throughout the semester to support students understanding and knowledge. These will allow students to gauge their understanding, and will provide formative support for the Critical Evaluation and the Research Proposal.

One peer review session will provide formative feedback. This will be an interactive and reflective piece, which will help students to prepare for the Research Proposal.

Students will be also be provided with feedback in the group-based teaching sessions. Group-based teaching sessions will be an opportunity for students to work on their group assignments and so staff members can provide formative feedback during these sessions. Students will also work on tasks during the group teaching sessions, staff will be able to provide students with feedback during these sessions which will help students to clarify their understanding of the module content. This will be helpful for the completion of their Research Proposal and Critical Evaluation.

Methods of assessment

Assessment typeNotes% of formal assessment
PresentationPresentation of Research Proposal10.00
Group ProjectResearch Proposal30.00
Self/Peer AssessmentEvaluation of how much each member of a group contributed to the group work according to their peers in the group.10.00
CritiqueCritical Evaluation. Students will receive three funding proposals submitted by other groups and they will need to evaluate the quality of these proposals50.00
Total percentage (Assessment Coursework)100.00

All summative assessment components (Research Proposal, Critical Evaluation, and Peer Evaluation) must be completed. To pass the module, students need to attain over 40% in both the Critical Evaluation and the Research Proposal.

Reading list

The reading list is available from the Library website

Last updated: 26/01/2024


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