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PS4096 Mechanisms of Behaviour: integrating psychological and neuroscience perspectives

SCOTCAT credits:15
Academic year(s):2017/8
SCQF Level 10
Availability restrictions:Available only to students in the second year of the Honours programme.
Planned timetable:12.00 noon - 2.00 pm Tue

The aim of this module is to explore some of the many physiological and neural systems that modulate patterns of behaviour in a range of species, including humans. It will highlight the importance of integrating information from psychology and neuroscience disciplines in order to further our understanding of how and why animals and humans behave the way they do in different situations. The module will deal with examples of mechanisms across different levels of complexity (from genes to physiology). The module will include lectures and student presentations/journal club discussions based around current research articles in the field and a practical session with hands on experience of a physiological technique.

Place in programme(s) and relationship to other modules


Optional for Single and Joint Honours Psychology, Psychology with Biology, Psychology with Film Studies, Psychology with Geography, Neuroscience

UG Pre-requisite(s):Average grade of 11 or better in PS2001 and PS2002 from the first sitting or permission of the Psychology Honours Adviser


Optional for MSc Evolutionary and Comparative Psychology: the Origins of Mind. Optional for MRes in Neuroscience

Learning and teaching methods and delivery

Weekly contact:2-hour lecture (x 10 weeks), 1 practical class (x 4 weeks) plus office hour.
Total module hours:
  • Scheduled learning: 24
  • Guided independent study: 126

Assessment pattern

UG As defined by QAA:
  • Written examinations: 0%
  • Practical examinations: 15%
  • Coursework: 85%
UG As used by St Andrews:Coursework (including presentation) = 100%
UG Re-assessment:Coursework = 100%
Postgraduate Assessment :Coursework (including presentation) = 100%


Module coordinator:Dr K Spencer
Module teaching staff:Dr K Spencer