Module code: PSY3114

Module Overview

The overarching aim of this module is to introduce students to the world of occupational and organisational psychology - to enable students to apply psychological theory in order to understand and develop workplace behaviour and attitudes. Traditional lectures are part of the core curriculum, as are group exercises and case studies workshops. Class exercises/discussions are central to the module giving students the opportunity to try out key skills of an occupational psychologist.

Module provider


Module Leader


Number of Credits: 15

ECTS Credits: 7.5

Framework: FHEQ Level 6

Module cap (Maximum number of students): N/A

Overall student workload

Independent Learning Hours: 128

Seminar Hours: 22

Module Availability

Semester 2

Prerequisites / Co-requisites

Successful completion of BSc Psychology Level 4 and 5 or equivalent

Module content

Indicative topics will include:

1 Introduction
2 Individual Differences at Work
3 Motivation: Theory and Practice
4 Attitude and Identity at Work
5 Personnel Assessment and Selection
6 Training, Learning and Development
7 Case Study Workshop
8 Well-being at Work
9 Managing Teams and Groups in Organisations
10 Leadership
11 Organisational Culture and Change

Assessment pattern

Assessment type Unit of assessment Weighting
Coursework Organisational case study (6 pages) 50
Examination Unseen exam (1 hour) 50

Alternative Assessment


Assessment Strategy

The assessment strategy is designed to provide students with the opportunity to demonstrate

Outcome 3 will be assessed by an organisational case study report. Outcomes 1 and 2 will be assessed by an unseen one hour exam. Outcome 4 will be assessed by both the organisational case study report and unseen one hour exam.

Thus, the summative assessment for this module consists of:
• Organisational Case Study Report: will require the student to write up (in a case study format of 6 pages) a real-life organisational issue. This assignment will require the student to describe the context very clearly in terms of what the exact issue observed was. Then, the student will be required to consider which of the areas of psychology covered in the module that the issue links to; to diagnose the issue. The student will have to question what can be done about the issue according to psychological theory, e.g., can one theory guide thinking or will they need to draw on different orientations? Finally, they will be asked to call upon the literature to indicate how their proposed solution/intervention could be evaluated.
The deadline will be around the middle/second half of the semester.
• Unseen One Hour Exam: Answer one of four questions in relation to the topics covered in the module (sat during formal semester examination period)

Formative assessment and feedback

Students will receive regular formative feedback such as: Start of lecture reflection quiz on last week topic to address what has been learned; students will participate in regular interactive discussions within lectures which will be facilitated in a way which enables them to reflect on their understanding of a topic and ability to critically evaluate it; students will engage in a practice case study workshop/report writing workshop involving group-level and individual-level formative feedback.

Module aims

  • to introduce students to core topics in occupational and organisational psychology: spanning a diverse range of areas of competence.
  • Whilst students will be provided with a conceptual and theoretical basis for how psychology is applied at work, the module will also introduce students to methods and activities used in organisational practice.
  • By the end of the course, students will have gained an understanding of how research and practice in work and organisational psychology operate at different levels (individual, group, organisation, wider society).
  • Students will also appreciate the complexities of being involved in the formulation and implementation of relevant workplace activities and interventions that are based on sound evidence derived from psychological theory.
  • An underlying core theme to the module is that organisational solutions and interventions are rarely simple or formulaic, thus we facilitate our students to integrate knowledge across sessions, theories and frameworks.
  • Ultimately, this module aims to equip students with essential ‘practice to theory’ thinking and implementation skills – how does psychology actually work in practice?

Learning outcomes

Attributes Developed
001 Articulate fundamental knowledge of how psychology is applied to the work place, by linking theory, research and practice. K
002 Critique theories and frameworks pertaining to particular topics in the field. C
003 Using psychological theory and research, formulate a case study, using either a prescribed brief or your own observations, to diagnose real life practical issues in the workplace and propose an intervention to address such diagnosis. PT
004 Integrate knowledge and frameworks across diverse areas of occupational psychology CK

Attributes Developed

C - Cognitive/analytical

K - Subject knowledge

T - Transferable skills

P - Professional/Practical skills

Methods of Teaching / Learning

The learning and teaching strategy is designed to:

• Provide students with fundamental knowledge about work and organisational psychology
• Give students the skills to critically evaluate this knowledge
• Enable students to develop as scientist-practitioners by applying psychological theory, evidence and methods to solve organisational problems.

The learning and teaching methods include:

• 11 x weekly 2-hour lectures which will include interactive discussions and group exercises. One of these lectures will take the form of case study workshop.
• Group exercises are central to the module giving students the opportunity to try out key skills of an occupational psychologist.
• A dedicated SurreyLearn site where lecture slides, hand-outs and relevant links will be available.
• Independent study including key readings each week and writing a case study report.

Indicated Lecture Hours (which may also include seminars, tutorials, workshops and other contact time) are approximate and may include in-class tests where one or more of these are an assessment on the module. In-class tests are scheduled/organised separately to taught content and will be published on to student personal timetables, where they apply to taken modules, as soon as they are finalised by central administration. This will usually be after the initial publication of the teaching timetable for the relevant semester.

Reading list

Upon accessing the reading list, please search for the module using the module code: PSY3114

Other information

This module is a collaboration between Surrey Business School (who will convene the module) and the School of Psychology.

Programmes this module appears in

Programme Semester Classification Qualifying conditions
Sociology with Psychology BSc (Hons) 2 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Psychology BSc (Hons) 2 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module

Please note that the information detailed within this record is accurate at the time of publishing and may be subject to change. This record contains information for the most up to date version of the programme / module for the 2020/1 academic year.