Surrey University Stag

MORALITY AND EMOTIONS - 2022/3

Module code: PSY3093

Module Overview

This module will examine critical perspectives in moral psychology, discussing critical debates about what moral concepts, including how different moral concepts should be defined and assessed. It will cover theoretical and empirical findings that explore implications of moral concepts.

Module provider

Psychology

Module Leader

RUSSELL Sophie (Psychology)

Number of Credits: 15

ECTS Credits: 7.5

Framework: FHEQ Level 6

JACs code: C880

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

Overall student workload

Independent Learning Hours: 106

Seminar Hours: 22

Guided Learning: 11

Captured Content: 11

Module Availability

Semester 2

Prerequisites / Co-requisites

BSc Psychology Levels 4 and 5 or equivalent.

Module content

Indicative content includes:


  1. Introduction to moral psychology

  2. Universality versus cultural relativity

  3. Rational versus Intuition explanations

  4. Moral judgement

  5. Moral convictions

  6. Morally condemning emotions

  7. Self-conscious emotions

  8. Other praising emotions

  9. Other suffering emotions

  10. Moral character and virtues

  11. Putting morality into action


Assessment pattern

Assessment type Unit of assessment Weighting
Coursework LITERATURE REVIEW (4 PAGES) 60
Coursework POSTER 40

Alternative Assessment

N/A

Assessment Strategy

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

1.         To build an understanding of the controversies surrounding moral psychology, specifically surrounding definitions and measurement of concepts.  This learning outcome will be assessed by both summative assessments. (C,K)

2.         To demonstrate an understanding of the antecedents and consequences of moral concepts. This learning outcome will be assessed by both summative assessments.  (C,K)

3.         To develop a research question that builds on prior theory and methods in moral psychology. This outcome will be assessed by both summative assessments. (C,K,T)

Thus, the summative assessment for this module consists of:


  1. One literature review (60%) (1500 words)

  2. One poster (40%)



Formative assessment and feedback


  1. Written feedback on literature review.

  2. Verbal feedback in lectures.


Module aims

  • The module will outline theories that attempt to define what morality concepts are, such as moral judgements, moral emotions, moral convictions, and moral behaviours.
  • The module will explore how we decide what is right and wrong. It will investigate whether moral principles are universal or culturally relative.
  • The module will examine whether various cognitions and mental states are necessary for moral judgment. Previously, it was commonly emphasized that rational processes guide moral judgments; however, recent models in moral psychology have emphasized the impact of gut intuitions, affect, and emotions in guiding moral judgments and behaviours.
  • It will attempt to uncover some of the unique relationships between moral judgement and various emotions, indicating what makes an emotion a ¿moral emotion'. We will focus on defining four families of moral emotions 1) other-condemning emotions, e.g., anger and disgust; 2) self-conscious emotions, e.g., guilt and shame; 3) other-praising emotions, e.g., elevation and awe, and 4) other-suffering emotions, e.g. empathy and compassion. Therefore, in this module we will not only be focusing on the negative side of morality but also positive aspects of morality, such as positive moral emotions.
  • The relationship between moral concepts and various behaviours/implications will be explored, including the strength of the relationships. The implications of having moral conviction will be examined, specifically how moral conviction impacts our behaviours (e.g., political engagement, collective action, social distancing).

Learning outcomes

Attributes Developed
001 To build an understanding of the controversies surrounding moral psychology, specifically surrounding definitions and measurement of concepts. KC
002 To demonstrate an understanding of the antecedents and consequences of moral concepts. KC
003 To develop a research question that builds on prior theory and methods in moral psychology. KCT

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:


  • To build an understanding of the controversies surrounding moral psychology, specifically surrounding definitions and measurement of concepts.

  • To demonstrate an understanding of the antecedents and consequences of moral concepts.

  • To develop a research question that builds on prior theory and methods in moral psychology.



The learning and teaching methods include:


  • Lectures of 2hrs duration for 11 weeks

  • Group discussion and exercises in lectures

  • Surrey Learn discussion board and other materials

  • Independent learning

  • Guided learning


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

https://readinglists.surrey.ac.uk
Upon accessing the reading list, please search for the module using the module code: PSY3093

Other information

This module has a capped number and may not be available to ERASMUS and other international exchange students. Please check with the International Engagement Office email: ieo.incoming@surrey.ac.uk

Programmes this module appears in

Programme Semester Classification Qualifying conditions
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 2022/3 academic year.