Current Research Issues in Social and Organisational Psychology

Module titleCurrent Research Issues in Social and Organisational Psychology
Module codePSYM211
Academic year2018/9
Module staff

Dr Anna Rabinovich (Convenor)

Duration: Term123
Duration: Weeks


Number students taking module (anticipated)


Description - summary of the module content

Module description

In this module you will be exposed to a number of research talks delivered by visiting researchers and covering current research issues in social and organisational psychology. Each talk will be preceded by some reading relevant to the topic, and followed by a group discussion, facilitated by a group of students. The module will expand your awareness of current research issues in social psychology and develop your ability to discuss research critically.

Module aims - intentions of the module

The aim of this module is to enable you to sample and learn from a wide range of examples of current research within a specific discipline, using the pool of expertise at our disposal including visiting specialists, academic staff, and advanced postgraduate research students. It aims to develop a critical awareness of the broad range of methods available in research in the context of discussion of, and reflection on, larger issues of scientific method. It aims to develop expertise in critical analysis and research design and in the communication of ideas in a concise and engaging manner.

Through attending the weekly seminars and completing the assessments, you will further develop the following academic and professional skills:

  • problem solving (linking theory to practice, developing your own ideas with confidence, showing entrepreneurial awareness, being able to respond to novel and unfamiliar problems)
  • managing structure (identifying key demands of the task, setting clearly defined goals, responding flexibly to changing priorities)
  • time management (managing time effectively individually and within a group)
  • collaboration (respecting the views and values of others, taking initiative and leading others
  • supporting others in their work, maintaining group cohesiveness and purpose), and audience awareness (presenting ideas effectively, persuading others of the importance and relevance of your views, responding positively and effectively to questions).

The teaching in this module is directly based on the most recent research conducted in the areas of Social and Organisational Psychology. Moreover, this research is delivered to you first-hand – directly by invited speakers who discuss their research and set readings for the module. Learning and assessment builds directly on content delivered by the invited researchers.

Intended Learning Outcomes (ILOs)

ILO: Module-specific skills

On successfully completing the module you will be able to...

  • 1. Discuss in detail the types of research questions that are being addressed in your specific discipline
  • 2. Describe extensively current methods and their applications in your specific discipline
  • 3. Summarise at an advanced level the problems that arise in research development across a range of topics

ILO: Discipline-specific skills

On successfully completing the module you will be able to...

  • 4. Identify and analyse critically the strengths and weaknesses of a range of methodologies
  • 5. Adequately relate specific research questions to appropriate methodology

ILO: Personal and key skills

On successfully completing the module you will be able to...

  • 6. Engage in advanced critical analysis of research design
  • 7. Discuss research with instructors and peers
  • 8. Work effectively with others as a member of a group and meet obligations to others
  • 9. Undertake independent learning and self-directed study (including good time management and the setting of appropriate deadlines, precise clarification of the aims and expected results of research, library use and website investigation)

Syllabus plan

Syllabus plan

You will be expected to attend 6 x 2.5-hour research seminars relevant to your research stream. In the first hour, you attend the regular seminars organised for the SEEORG group. These seminars provide you with an opportunity to hear about and discuss research projects in progress. In the second 1.5 hour part, you will engage in an in-depth discussion and critical analysis of the methods used in the research.

Learning and teaching

Learning activities and teaching methods (given in hours of study time)

Scheduled Learning and Teaching ActivitiesGuided independent studyPlacement / study abroad

Details of learning activities and teaching methods

CategoryHours of study timeDescription
Scheduled Learning and Teaching15Research seminars (6 x 2.5 hours)
Guided Independent Study135Background reading, presentation preparation, generating critical points for the post-talk discussions, developing discussion plans


Formative assessment

Form of assessmentSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
Contribution towards group discussion, ELE forum posts, questions posed to the presenter Weekly1-8Oral

Summative assessment (% of credit)

CourseworkWritten examsPractical exams

Details of summative assessment

Form of assessment% of creditSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
Seminar participation20Weekly1-8Oral
Critical analysis paper803500 wordsAllWritten


Details of re-assessment (where required by referral or deferral)

Original form of assessmentForm of re-assessmentILOs re-assessedTimescale for re-assessment
Seminar participationAlternative assessment to be arranged as required1-8By the end of August
Critical analysis paperCritical analysis paperAllBy the end of August

Re-assessment notes

Deferral – if you miss an assessment for certificated reasons judged acceptable by the Mitigation Committee, you will normally be either deferred in the assessment or an extension may be granted. The module mark given for a re-assessment taken as a result of deferral will not be capped and will be treated as it would be if it were your first attempt at the assessment.

Referral – if you have failed the module overall (i.e. a final overall module mark of less than 50%) you will be required to submit a further critical analysis paper. The module mark given for a re-assessment taken as a result of referral will count for 100% of the mark and will be capped at 50%.


Indicative learning resources - Basic reading

  • Readings for each week are set by the invited speakers, and will be circulated as soon as they become available.

Indicative learning resources - Web based and electronic resources

Module has an active ELE page

Key words search

Research, social psychology, organisational psychology

Credit value15
Module ECTS


Module pre-requisites


Module co-requisites


NQF level (module)


Available as distance learning?


Origin date


Last revision date