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Throughout the 2021-22 academic year, we will be prioritising face to face teaching as part of a blended learning approach that builds on the lessons learned over the course of the Coronavirus pandemic. Teaching will vary between online and on-campus delivery through the year, and you should read guidance from the academic department for details of how this will work for a particular module. You can find out more about the University’s overall response to Coronavirus at: https://warwick.ac.uk/coronavirus.

PS219-15 Psychobiology

Department
Psychology
Level
Undergraduate Level 2
Module leader
Friederike Schlaghecken
Credit value
15
Module duration
10 weeks
Assessment
20% coursework, 80% exam
Study location
University of Warwick main campus, Coventry
Introductory description

The module aims to extend the basic psychobiological knowledge acquired in the first year

Module web page

Module aims

The module extends the basic psychobiological knowledge acquired in the first year to more complex issues of nervous system functioning and nervous system/endocrine system interactions, in order to enable students to appreciate how a psychobiological perspective might help us to understand human behaviour. Particular emphasis is placed on providing an insight into the complexities of psychobiological research, its recent advances, as well as its limits.

Outline syllabus

This is an indicative module outline only to give an indication of the sort of topics that may be covered. Actual sessions held may differ.

Basics I: The neuron
Basics II: The nervous system - ONLINE TEST (wk 3)
Sexual development I: Genes and hormones
Sexual development II: Hormones and learning
Sexual behaviour
Laterality: Male and female brains
Homeostasis: Eating
Bodily rhythms: Sleep
Evolution
Drop-in & Feedback Session
Drop-in & Feedback Session

Learning outcomes

By the end of the module, students should be able to:

  • students should be able to demonstrate an understanding of the basic principles underlying the functional architecture of the brain at the macroscopic and the microscopic level
  • students should be able to demonstrate an understanding of the basic principles underlying the principles of signal processing in the brain and their relevance for understanding complex behaviour.
  • students should be able to demonstrate an understanding of the basic principles underlying the psychobiological underpinnings of genetics and neurochemistry
  • students should be able to demonstrate an understanding of the basic principles underlying the psychobiological underpinnings of sex differences and laterality
  • students should be able to demonstrate an understanding of the basic principles underlying the psychobiology of learning and memory
  • students should be able to demonstrate an understanding of the basic principles underlying the psychobiology of homeostatic processes
  • students should be able to demonstrate an understanding of the basic principles underlying the psychobiology of bodily rhythms
  • students should be able to demonstrate an understanding of the basic principles underlying basic concepts of evolutionary psychology
Indicative reading list

Purves, D., et al. (2012). Neuroscience. Sinauer (978-0878939671)
Carlson, N.R. (2013). Physiology of Behavior. Pearson (978-1292023205)
Breedlove, S.M., & Watson, N.V. (2013). Biological Psychology: An Introduction to Behavioral, Cognitive, and Clinical Neuroscience. Sinauer (978-0-87893-927-5)
LeVay, S. (1994).The Sexual Brain. MIT Press

View reading list on Talis Aspire

Subject specific skills

understanding of the basic principles of the functional architecture of the brain, mechanisms of signal processing in the brain, psychobiological underpinnings of genetics and neurochemistry, psychobiological underpinnings of sex differences and laterality, psychobiology of learning and memory, psychobiology of homeostatic processes and psychobiology of bodily rhythms.

Transferable skills

critical review of evidence supporting theories.
familiarity with collecting and organising stored information found in library book and journal collections, and online, critically evaluating primary and secondary sources;

Study time

Type Required
Lectures 27 sessions of 1 hour (18%)
Private study 123 hours (82%)
Total 150 hours
Private study description

123 hours guided student study and assessment preparation

Costs

No further costs have been identified for this module.

You do not need to pass all assessment components to pass the module.

Students can register for this module without taking any assessment.

Assessment group D2
Weighting Study time
Online MCQ test 20%

end of week 2 and/or beginning of week 3 (depending on timetabling of lectures)
open for 48 hours

Online Examination 80%
  • Answer book provided by department
Feedback on assessment

Tabula. Drop in sessions in term 3

Past exam papers for PS219

Pre-requisites

Students must have either undertaken PS111 or A-level (or equivalent) Biology

Courses

This module is Core for:

  • Year 2 of UPSA-C800 Undergraduate Psychology

This module is Core optional for:

  • Year 2 of UIPA-C8L8 Undergraduate Psychology and Global Sustainable Development
  • Year 3 of UPSA-C804 Undergraduate Psychology with Education Studies
  • Year 2 of UPSA-C802 Undergraduate Psychology with Linguistics

This module is Optional for:

  • Year 2 of UPSA-C804 Undergraduate Psychology with Education Studies

This module is Core option list A for:

  • Year 3 of UPSA-C802 Undergraduate Psychology with Linguistics

This module is Option list B for:

  • Year 2 of UPHA-VL78 BA in Philosophy with Psychology