School of Psychology - Leading psychological science, scholarship and practice


Stage Two courses

Second year undergraduate courses are designed to build your knowledge base in specialised areas.

Prerequisite information

Prerequisite information for your choosen programme can be found here.

PSYCH 200 Special Topic: Foundations of Developmental Psychology


(15 points) Semester One

How do children’s minds develop, how do they work, and how do they influence children’s behaviour? Students will learn the theoretical perspectives and methods that scientists use to investigate the developing mind in infancy through late childhood. Topics of particular focus include learning and memory, concepts and categories, language, the self and identity, social cognition, attachment, and emotion.

Course coordinator: Dr Chris Erb
Prerequisite: 30 points at Stage One in psychology
Assessment: Coursework 60%; exam 40%
Required text: Sigelman, C. K., De George, L., Cunial, K., & Rider, E. A. (2019). Life Span Human Development: Australian and New Zealand Edition (3rd Ed). Cengage Learning Australia. ISBN 9780170415910

This course is limited to 200 places.

 

PSYCH 201 Perception and Cognition


(15 points) Semester Two

An introduction to a variety of topics in human experimental psychology. Topics covered may include: perceptual processes, attention, memory, mental imagery, language development, theory of mind, problem solving and decision making. Participation in the laboratory component of this course is compulsory.

Course coordinator: Dr Barry Hughes
Prerequisite: 30 points at Stage One in psychology
Assessment: Coursework 40%, exam 60%
Plussage: Plussage operates in this course.

There is a limit of 350 places in this course.

PSYCH 202 Biopsychology


(15 points) Semester One

Provides a basic introduction to the structure and function of the brain, neuropsychology, and genetic and hormonal influences on behaviour. This course includes a compulsory laboratory component.

Course coordinator: Professor Ian Kirk
Prerequisite: 30 points at Stage One psychology or 15 points from BIOSCI 101, 103
Assessment: Coursework 40%, exam 60%
Plussage: Plussage operates in this course.
Prescribed text: Pinel, J.P.J. (2011). Biopsychology (8th edition). Boston: Pearson Education.

There is a limit of 360 places in this course. 

PSYCH 203 Learning and Behaviour


(15 points) Semester Two

A consideration of the environmental factors that control and modify animal (including human) behaviour. Generally, an experimental laboratory approach is taken, and quantitative theories are stressed. Topics include: classical and operant conditioning, theories of reinforcement, the stimulus control of operant behaviour, behavioural analyses of problem solving, concept learning and language, choice, self control, remembering and experimental design. This course includes a compulsory laboratory component.

Course coordinator: Dr Sarah Cowie
Prerequisite:
30 points at Stage One psychology or 15 points from BIOSCI 101, 103
Assessment: Coursework 50% (2 lab reports one worth 10% and one worth 20%, and 5 tests at 4% each); exam 50%
Plussage: Plussage operates in this course.
Prescribed Text: Davison, M, Jones, M, Elliffe D, Krageloh, C, & Podlesnik, C. (2013) Learning and Behaviour
Recommended Text: Mazur, J.E. (2006). Learning and Behaviour (6th edn). Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall.

There is a limit of 240 places in this course.

PSYCH 204 Social Psychology


(15 points) Semester Two

Focuses on humans as social beings. Covers topics such as social cognition, attitudes, group processes, interpersonal relationships, and language communication. The course may include participation in and completion of a research project.

Course coordinator: Associate Professor Danny Osborne
Prerequisite: 30 points at Stage One psychology
Assessment: Coursework 50%, exam 50%
Plussage: Plussage operates in this course.

There is a limit of 360 places in this course.

PSYCH 207 Theories of Personality and Development


(15 points) Semester One

The major personality theories are presented including: Behavioural, Cognitive, Social-Cognitive, Psychodynamic, Humanistic/Phenomenological, Trait/Dispositional and Biological/Evolutionary. The hypotheses generated by these theories, about development from early childhood onwards and about 'normal' and 'abnormal' behaviour, will be discussed and evaluated in terms of empirical evidence and utility. Attention will be paid to cultural issues of relevance in a New Zealand context.

Course coordinator: Associate Professor Liz Peterson 
Prerequisite:
30 points at Stage One in psychology
Assessment: Coursework 50%, exam 50%
Plussage: Plussage operates in this course.
Prescribed Text: Cervone, D. & Pervin, L. Personality: Theory and research (2011 Edition and more recent Editors). NJ: John Wiley & Sons.

There is a limit of 360 places in this course.

PSYCH 208 Producing Psychological Knowledge


(15 points)

How do you go about answering a research question? What is a research question anyway? Which research methodology and method will best provide the types of answers you are looking for? Examines what we do and can know in psychology, and why and how we know it, including philosophy of science, methodology, ethics, research outcomes, and particular methods.

Prerequisite: 30 points at Stage One in psychology

Planning your Stage Two psychology courses


You need to have passed PSYCH 108 (or PSYCH 128) and PSYCH 109 (or PSYCH 129) to take Stage Two psychology courses. You may take PSYCH 202 and/or PSYCH 203 if you have passed BIOSCI 101 or BIOSCI 103.

All Stage Two courses are limited entry. In most cases, students who meet the GPA, who enrol in plenty of time and who have passed their Stage One prerequisites will get a place in the courses of their choice. 

Affirmative action for Māori and Pacific Island students will be applied. Courses are filled on a first come first served basis and you are strongly advised to complete your enrolment as early as possible.

Students who are transferring from another university need to apply well in advance to have their previous psychology courses assessed for crediting.

You may enrol at the beginning of the year for one or two Stage One prerequisites in Semester One, and Stage Two courses in Semester Two. However, your enrolment in the Stage Two courses is conditional on passing the prerequisites. You will be need to withdraw from your Stage Two courses if this requirement is not met.

Thinking ahead to Stage Three psychology


Students must pass any three Stage Three psychology courses (45 points) and one Stage One statistics course (from STATS 101 to 125) to be eligible to enrol in Stage Three Psychology courses.

Under current regulations, it is not essential that you take any specific Stage Two courses in order to go on to a particular branch of psychology at Stage Three and postgraduate level. However, many courses at Stage Three and above assume that you have a basic knowledge of the area covered in the Stage Three courses you've chosen. We recommended that you consider the branches of psychology that may interest you in the future when choosing your Stage Two courses.