Module code: PSYM152

Module Overview

This module introduces students to theories, methods, and research findings in the area of social and moral development during childhood and adolescence. We begin by looking at development in the context of important relationships, such as peers and friends, families, and schools. We next examine the development of the self and other categories that make up who we are (e.g., ethnicity). This module relies on socio-cultural and eco-cultural perspectives to try to understand development in context to increase your global and cultural capabilities.

Module provider


Module Leader

TENENBAUM Harriet (Psychology)

Number of Credits: 15

ECTS Credits: 7.5

Framework: FHEQ Level 7

Module cap (Maximum number of students): 10

Overall student workload

Independent Learning Hours: 95

Seminar Hours: 22

Guided Learning: 11

Captured Content: 22

Module Availability

Semester 2

Prerequisites / Co-requisites


Module content

Indicative content includes: 

  • Understanding Social and Moral Development and in particular

  • Self, self-esteem, and aggression

  • Gender and socio-economic understanding

  • Children's reasoning about social justice, including prejudice and rights

  • Important Relationships, including peers, parents, and schools

  • Intervention studies

This module will include multiple opportunities to develop critical thinking and incorporation of global and cultural competences. The coursework will provide students with opportunities to demonstrate in-depth critical evaluation of developmental theories and evidence from a cultural perspective.

Assessment pattern

Assessment type Unit of assessment Weighting
Coursework Essay report 50
Examination Online Exam (90 minutes) 50

Alternative Assessment


Assessment Strategy

The assessment strategy is designed to provide you with the opportunity to demonstrate:

  1. knowledge in social and moral developmental psychology

  2. an ability to critically evaluate the appropriateness of different methodological approaches and theoretical approaches to developmental psychological problems

  3. an ability to evaluate social and moral development in its socio-cultural context, which will help you to develop global and cultural capabilities

  4. statistical knowledge, which will increase your digital capabilities

Thus, the summative assessment for this module consists of: 

  • One coursework assignment (2000 words). For the coursework, you will examine whether a topic of research or theory is cross-culturally valid, which will address all four learning outcomes. 

  • One 90 minute essay format examination (2000 words) that will be to propose a study to address a topic. This exam will address the learning outcomes focused on understanding the measures and methods in the field as well as improving your written communication.

Formative assessment

Throughout the module you will receive verbal feedback in question and answer sessions as well as dialogue between students and staff. In addition, you will receive feedback on your outline for the coursework. Third, you will receive generic written feedback on examinations. The ability to incorporate different types of feedback is needed in the workplace.

Module aims

  • The aim of this module is to build on Level 1 and Level 2 Developmental Psychology, and to introduce students to the many competing theoretical positions and foci of research in this field. As much as possible, we will take a contextual perspective to issues of development. Students will have the opportunity to identify promising future directions for research as well as to become aware of current trends in the field.

Learning outcomes

Attributes Developed
001 Compare, contrast, and critically evaluate theoretical perspectives in social and personality development K
002 Understand and critically evaluate the various measures and methods used to conduct research in this field KCT
003 Critically evaluate findings, especially from a socio-cultural perspective KCP
004 Master written communication in psychology T

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 ensure the module aims are met and students perform optimally in respect to the learning outcomes. During the seminar-style discussions, students are provided with core knowledge, which we will then together critically evaluate through exploring research from a socio-cultural perspective. As a result, you will learn how to critically evaluate theories and empirical evidence in social and moral developmental psychology. You will then be able to demonstrate this knowledge in the essay report and exam.

The module will:

  • Give you the skills to critically evaluate theory in social and moral developmental psychology as assessed both in the coursework

  • Provide you with core foundational knowledge in developmental psychology and the ability to critique the conclusions of this knowledge base by answering the coursework and exam question

  • Give you an enhanced literacy (including methodological and statistical literacy) of the current research in the field through using G*Power and writing up an intervention study for the exam to test a theory.

  • Develop the capacity to explain and to narrate the development of a research questions in the coursework and exam

The learning and teaching methods include:

  • Seminars based on active learning by engaging with readings before the seminars and completing questions relating to the readings during the seminars, you will be taught to critically evaluate research. Each week I will present theories and research related to the topic. After that, you will critically evaluate methods and theories and suggest new research in groups. We will discuss your ideas as a whole class.

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: PSYM152

Other information

Global and Cultural Capabilities: Students will read research from scholars from the global south, and learning outcomes focused on diversity and equality. These learning outcomes detailed that students should be able children from global majority ethnic backgrounds to critically evaluate whether particular developmental theories should be modified based on data from non-WEIRD (Western, educated, industrial, rich, and democratic) populations. We will also read research discussing effects of discrimination, racism, and sexism on child development.

Digital Capabilities: Students are provided with opportunities to develop their digital literacy, including searching for articles and using software for power analyses. Student will also develop the ability to judge whether information is trustworthy and relevant as well as distinguish different kinds of information (e.g. academic, professional, personal and political). You could emphasise the intention for your students to cultivate the ability to critically evaluate and select information that is fit for purpose in addition to using databases and searching for articles. Critical evaluation of sources is needed in most occupations.

Employability: The learning aims and assessments are designed to develop students¿ employability skills. These skills include incorporating formative feedback, managing a project deadline, and writing an essay. The lab report also supports students to improve their writing skills, important in the workplace.

Programmes this module appears in

Programme Semester Classification Qualifying conditions
Social Psychology MSc 2 Optional 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 2025/6 academic year.