Module code: PSY0001

Module Overview

At the University of Surrey we have psychologists from a range of different psychological fields and expertise. This module provides opportunities for students to develop an understanding of how psychology influences every-day life in the real world. The module will encourage critical thinking of how we live our lives and the psychology behind the decisions we take and the behaviour we perform. The students will be introduced to a wide range of different fields of psychology at Surrey and have the opportunity to see the importance of psychology in the real world.

Module provider


Module Leader

HACK Sarah (Psychology)

Number of Credits: 30

ECTS Credits: 15

Framework: FHEQ Level 3

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

Overall student workload

Workshop Hours: 20

Independent Learning Hours: 250

Lecture Hours: 10

Guided Learning: 10

Captured Content: 10

Module Availability

Semester 1

Prerequisites / Co-requisites


Module content

The content of this module takes advantage of the expertise within the School of Psychology.  The School employs many staff who research in a range of different fields of psychology.  The module will introduce the students to the different areas and show how psychology is important for everyday life.

Indicative content might include (for example):

  • Psychology and education

  • Using nature to manage stress

  • Psychology of health behaviours

  • Social comparison

  • Unwinding from work

  • Psychology of decision-making

  • Gender, LGBT and leadership


Assessment pattern

Assessment type Unit of assessment Weighting
Coursework Annotated Bibliography (3.5 pages) 50
Coursework Essay/Report (3 pages) 50

Alternative Assessment


Assessment Strategy

The assessment strategy is designed to provide students with the opportunity to demonstrate a broad understanding of the relevance of psychology to every-day life.

Summative assessment

The summative assessment for this module consists of:

  • An annotated bibliography which provides the opportunity to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of an applied area of psychology, and skills in evaluating sources of information. (50%)

  • An essay/report which provides the opportunity to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of how psychology may be applied in real-world situations (50%).

Both assessments may feed into the Issues in Social Research module.

Formative assessment

Opportunities for formative assessments will be integrated throughout this module. Formative assessment will be used to support the summative assessments, and the development of knowledge and understanding, intellectual and cognitive skills.


Continuous feedback strategies are built into the module to capture students’ experiences, and to support the development of their feedback literacy, and in turn, their development as independent, resourceful and resilient learners. These strategies will be both peer and tutor facilitated and will provide students with opportunities to reflect upon and discuss learning, develop their interpersonal skills, and encourage engagement and the development of communication skills.

Module aims

  • Introduce students to a range of psychological topics offered at Surrey.
  • Develop an understanding of how psychology plays a role in these areas of life.
  • Build confidence in selecting and evaluating sources, and using evidence effectively.

Learning outcomes

Attributes Developed
001 Demonstrate a broad understanding of the different fields of psychology at Surrey K
002 Discuss the relevance of psychology to the contemporary world K
003 Evaluate different sources of information CT
004 Apply knowledge and understanding of different areas of psychology KCPT
005 Demonstrate skills in communication for different audiences PT
006 Assess own capabilities against given criteria CT

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: 

  • Enhance the students learning experience

  • Encourage active student engagement

  • Create the ability to study independently with support


During the course a number of learning and teaching methods will be used, for example:

  • Lectures

  • Interactive workshops

  • Flipped learning

  • Revision and feedback tutorials

  • Independent study and self-directed learning

  • Guided group/team work

  • Blended learning

  • Peer evaluation


Using a range of learning and teaching methods will support the students in achieving the learning outcomes. For example, through lectures students will be able to gain knowledge and understanding of the different applied areas of psychology, and feedback tutorials will support students in developing the ability to assess their own capabilities against specific criteria.

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: PSY0001

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:


In line with Surrey's Curriculum Framework this programme is committed to developing graduates with strengths in Employability, Digital Capabilities, Global and Cultural Capabilities, Sustainability and Resourcefulness and Resilience. This module contributes in the following ways:

Digital Capabilities: Throughout the module students learn to navigate and use SurreyLearn, the University’s Virtual Learning Environment. They are also introduced to other digital resources and software, to support their development as independent learners. Students are introduced to, and required to use, specific digital techniques, including online searching, using search mechanisms including Google Scholar and the university’s search engine, SurreySearch.  Students are also required to engage with a variety of digital media, for example, Teams, Zoom, Padlets, Wakelets, Google Jamboard. In addition, students will be required to use cloud/file sharing platforms such as GoogleDocs, SharePoint when working collaboratively. Module assessments require students to draw on their experience of using a wide range of digital platforms and resources. In line with university policy, assessments are submitted through SurreyLearn.

Employability: During the year students are taught by a range of academics from within the School of Psychology and guest speakers, introducing them to a range of applied areas of psychology and raising awareness of other areas of work in which psychologists’ skills are valued. A key skill which underpins psychology as a discipline and hence this module is a focus on developing the ability to critically evaluate evidence and to discuss the appropriate application of knowledge within the limitations of the research design and data collection methods. Thus specific transferable skills developed that are utilised in many areas of employment include the ability to evaluate sources, to critically engage with material, and to evaluate data. In addition, the tasks and assessments undertaken across modules are specifically chosen to prepare students for the assessments they will take on the undergraduate programme, but also to prepare them for tasks they might undertake as psychologists, or in other forms of employment. For example, students are required to search for, and to evaluate, sources relating to an applied area of psychology, and also to provide evidence-based recommendations in a report, demonstrating research skills and the application of knowledge.

Global and Cultural Capabilities: A key issue explored within the programme is that of ethnocentrism within Psychology, the tendency for universal assumptions to be made, inappropriately, from culturally-specific research. In PSY0003 students are introduced to the concept of WEIRD Psychology (research conducted by, and using participants from, Western, Educated, Industrialised, Rich and Democratic societies), and the associated notion of the ‘missing 95%’, the proportion of the world population not represented in psychological literature. Students are also introduced to ways of addressing ethnocentrism, including avoiding making claims of universality and conducting cross-cultural research. Within this module these issues are discussed in relation to applied areas of psychology. In addition students are provided with the opportunity to learn from speakers who have an interest in related areas, for example inequalities in health and educational experiences.

Resourcefulness and resilience: The key aim of the programme is to support the development of students in their journey to becoming resourceful, resilient and independent learners. Over the course of the programme students are introduced to a range of academic skills and positive psychology interventions to support (i) their development as learners and (ii) their overall resilience. Opportunities to develop these skills are mapped both within and between modules, and chronologically across the academic year. Teaching and learning activities, and assessments (formative and summative) have been developed to enable students opportunities to develop and demonstrate their capabilities in a ‘learning spiral’ format.  Within this module, the assessments schedule has been carefully designed to enable students to develop and demonstrate increasingly sophisticated research and evaluation skills, alongside academic writing skills, with the importance of engaging with feedback to support their learning journeys emphasised.

Sustainability: Students are introduced to applied areas of psychology that explore how psychology may be used in ethically, socially and environmentally responsible ways, within the context of the UN Sustainable Goals, to support the development of a more sustainable future society. Students will therefore understand how psychologists might work towards developing potential solutions for the promotion of inclusion, social justice, and environmentally sustainable behaviour. Examples of topics students may be introduced to which support the development of this knowledge and understanding include environmental psychology (e.g. psychology of energy consumption), applied social psychology (issues of gender inequality and leadership), health psychology, and psychology & education.  In addition, one summative assessment requires students to produce recommendations for good practice within one of the applied areas of Psychology, thus providing students with the opportunity to demonstrate their knowledge and understanding of how psychology may be used to support the development of a more sustainable future society.

Programmes this module appears in

Programme Semester Classification Qualifying conditions
Psychology with Foundation Year BSc (Hons) 1 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 50% 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 2024/5 academic year.