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Psychological and Behavioural Science – Part 2: Applied Cognitive and Behavioural Psychology

Psychological and Behavioural Science – Part 2: Applied Cognitive and Behavioural Psychology

A unique opportunity for students interested in the fields of Psychology and Behavioural Science to explore these fascinating areas of study, whilst living in a college of the University of Oxford.

This one-week summer programme, residential on the campus of the University of Oxford, can be combined with Part 1 in this series, “Conducting Psychological Research”, to form a longer immersion in this fascinating subject.

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Course Summary

This course will focus on cognition in humans and critically evaluate it from both psychological and more wider behavioural perspectives in relation to a number of contemporary areas of Psychology. These areas will include memory and personality, as a well as abnormal and developmental psychology.

It will begin by introducing the fundamentals of working memory research and theory, looking at the various theories and research evidence but also going beyond this to assess its real world applications and consider how it can be measured. It will examine in depth the structure and function of the brain, key brain research and critically assess the value of brain activity measurement techniques. In addition to covering all the main areas of current cognitive and behavioural research, students will critically assess the value of behavioural science and psychology to the study of ‘abnormal’ or ‘non-normal’ population psychology, investigating its role in the diagnosis and treatment of depression, schizophrenia, stress, developmental and memory disorders.

The course will then consider the contemporary value of attachment theories in the light of key research studies, and round off with an analysis of cognitive aspects of social psychology and social behaviour of individuals and as group members. Examples include, prejudice, conformity, attitudes, stereotypes, aggression and interpersonal relationships.

Course Outcomes

By the end of the course students will understand:

  • How to conduct further research into the branch of applied psychology known as Cognitive Psychology and into specific areas such as working memory and the brain, developmental and social psychology, and abnormal psychology.
  • How the scientific study of applied cognitive and behavioural psychology can be used to explain and resolve real-world problems
  • How to use the material on the course to devise further experimental studies

Course Outcomes

Monday Lecture 1: Working Memory and the Brain
Seminar 1: Working Memory practicals and group discussion
Tuesday Lecture 2: Developmental Psychology
Seminar 2: Applications of Developmental Psychology
Wednesday Lecture 3: Abnormal Psychology
Seminar 3: Abnormal Psychology practicals and debates
Thursday Lecture 4: Attachment Theory
Seminar 4: Critical discussion and contrastive practicals connected to  attachment theory
Friday Lecture 5: Social Psychology
Seminar 5: Presentations, course review and action planning


Assessment Methods

1 x Written Assignment (500-750 words)

1 x Group Presentation


Oxford College Accommodation

  • Location Oxford
  • Ages Ages: 12+, 13-15, 16-18, 19+
  • Bedroom Type Single and twin
  • Bathroom Type En-suite & Shared (single gender)
  • Year Built Founded in 1096 (University of Oxford)

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