School of Psychology - Leading psychological science, scholarship and practice


Stage III courses

Our third-year undergraduate courses are designed to give a more detailed and specific conclusion to your undergraduate majors and prepare you for possible postgraduate study.

PSYCH 300: Special Topic: Applied Psychology


(15 points) S2

The coordinator is Dr Katrina Phillips.

Applied Psychology: An introduction to the linkage between psychological science and applied practice across different subdisciplines. The course will include aspects of health, organisational, communication and behavioural psychology. Emphasis will be on how psychology can improve the performance and wellbeing of people.

Coursework: 55% (five assignments)
Final exam: 45%
Plussage: There is no plussage in this course.

Prescribed text:
None. Lecturers for different areas have recommended texts and readings.

This course is limited to 150 places. 

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PSYCH 303: Cognitive Science


(15 Points) S2

The course coordinator is Associate Professor Jeff Hamm.

This is a more in-depth study of Cognitive Psychology that follows on from PSYCH 201. This course covers theories, models and applications of cognitive psychology. Coverage includes sensory science, perception, memory, attention, language and motor control. Consideration will also be given to connections with cognate areas, such as cognitive neuroscience and artificial intelligence, and students will be introduced to research methods in cognitive science.

Prerequisite: 45 points in Stage II Psychology and 15 points from STATS 101-125, 191.
Coursework: 40% (three laboratory reports)
Final Exam: 60%
Plussage: Students must attempt all coursework and obtain a passing grade overall and must attend all laboratories. 

Recommended (not required) text: Eysenck, M.W. and Keane, M.T. (2010). Cognitive Psychology: A Student’s Handbook (6th ed.). Hove, UK: Psychology Press

This course is limited to 120 places.

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EXERSCI 304: Sport Psychology


(15 points) S2  Note: Taught at the City Campus

The course coordinator for this course is Dr Arne Nieuwenhuys.

Examination of psychological factors affecting behaviour and performance in exercise and sport. The individual performer is the major consideration, but group influences on individual performance are also considered.

Prerequisite: EXERSCI 204, SPORTSCI 204 or 45 points in Stage II Psychology with at least a B- average
Restriction: SPORTSCI 304
Course work: 60%
Final Exam: 40%
Plussage: Must obtain a passing grade for coursework and final exam.

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PSYCH 305: Human Neuroscience


(15 points) S2

The course coordinator is Associate Professor Paul Corballis

This course covers material relating to the neural basis of cognitive processes, including perception, attention, memory, language and social cognition. Students will be introduced to different methods of inferring mind-brain relations in normal and neurologically impaired individuals. This will include study of neurodegenerative conditions such as Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease and Huntington’s disease.

Prerequisite: As per PSYCH 303 or 15 points from PHYSIOL 220 or MEDSCI 206.
Coursework: 40% (Two essays worth 20% each)
Final exam: 60%
Plussage: Must attempt all work and obtain passing grade overall.

Texts for background reading: Gazzinaga M.S., Ivry R. B., & Mangun G. R. (2009). Cognitive Neuroscience: The Biology of the Mind (3rd edition). New York: W.W. Norton and Co. New York. Pinel, J.P.J. (2011). Biopsychology. (8th Edition) Boston: Pearson Education.

This course is limited to 120 places.

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PSYCH 306: Research Methods in Psychology


(15 points) S1

The Course Coordinator for this course is Dr David Moreau

This course deals with principles and practices relevant to psychological research, best research practices, research design and measurements, describing and analysing data, and interpreting results.

Prerequisite: 45 points at Stage II Psychology and 15 points from STATS 101-125, 191
Coursework: 30% (10 lab quizzes)
Mid-term exam: 30%
Final exam: 40%

Recommended text: Field, A. (2013). Discovering statistics using R. Sage.
Prescribed text: None. A selection of reprints will be available.

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PSYCH 308: Research Topic


(15 points)

Course coordinator / assessor: Associate Professor Paul Corballis

To complete this course students must enrol in PSYCH 308A and 308B.

Prerequisite: 45 points in Stage II Psychology and 15 points from STATS 101-125,191
Corequisite: Students must be enrolled in or have completed an additional 45 points of Stage III Psychology courses, plus have HoS approval.

1.    Enrolment in this course is not automatic. Approval must be obtained from the Head of School or the Deputy Head of School (Academic) and approval will normally be given if (i) a student has completed or is concurrently enrolling in four other Stage III courses, and (ii) has been accepted by a supervisor to work on an appropriate topic. Thus, students should discuss potential projects with staff prior to enrolment. Please apply for a concession on Student Services Online and arrange for your supervisor to email Michelle Burstall in support of your enrolment into this.

2.    Students should complete the bulk of empirical work by mid-year, and submit a draft to the supervisor. The final report must be typed and should follow APA journal format.

3.    Assessment for this course is 100% coursework. This is made up of 80% for the written research report, and 20% for the practical component, based on a report from the project supervisor.

4.    Closing date for submission of research topic reports: 30 October

Students interested in PSYCH 308 need to identify an area of interest and consult individual staff members. Information about staff research areas can be found on the Psychology website.

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PSYCH 309: Learning


(15 points), S1

The course coordinator is Dr Sarah Cowie.

The course covers a series of topics in animal learning, behaviour, memory and cognition. Among the topics covered will be: The law of effect; the generalised matching law, punishment and avoidance; maximising, matching and melioration, signal detection, behavioural detection and free-operant detection, issues relating to stimulus control, animal memory and cognition, economic approaches to behaviour, applied behaviour analysis. This course is highly recommended for those intending to study Applied Behaviour Analysis at postgraduate level.

Prerequisite: As per PSYCH 303 or 45 points at Stage II Biological Sciences
Restriction: PSYCH 362
Coursework: 40% (Two laboratory reports worth equal marks)
Final Exam: 60%
Plussage: Must gain more than 50% on coursework

Recommended text: Mazur, J.E. (2006). Learning and Behaviour (6th edn). Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall.
Prescribed text: None. A selection of reprints will be available.

This course is limited to 120 places. 

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PSYCH 310: Introduction to Clinical Psychology


(15 points) S2

The course coordinator Associate Professor Kerry Gibson.

Describes and evaluates psychological approaches to the assessment and treatment of those mental health problems, in adults and children, most commonly encountered by clinical psychologists. Consideration is given to work in mental and physical health, child protection and clinical neuropsychology. Issues relevant to Māori mental health, gender, cross-cultural work and prevention are included.

Prerequisite: As per PSYCH 303
Restriction: 461.315
Coursework: 50% (one essay worth 25% and one test worth 25%)
Final exam: 50%
Plussage: Must attempt all coursework and obtain a passing grade overall in coursework. Must attend all tutorials. 

Required text: Rieger, Elizabeth (3rd Ed.). (2014). Abnormal psychology: Leading researcher perspectives. North Ryde, NSW, Australia: McGraw Hill.

Recommended text (for additional readings): Carr, A. (2006). Handbook of Child and Adolescent Clinical Psychology: a contextual approach (electronic resource) New York: Routledge.

Any additional readings will be provided at the beginning of each section of the course.

This course is limited to 250 places.

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PSYCH 311: Advanced Topics in Social Psychology


(15 points), S2

The Course Coordinator for this course is Professor Nickola Overall

This course focuses on people as social beings. There are three modules. Module 1 examines social cognition and interpersonal communication and influence, such as self-presentation, relationship maintenance and conflict management. A second module examines issues in identity, well-being and community psychology. Module 3 covers collective behaviour and social issues such as crowd dynamics, the impact of culture on behaviour, prejudice and intergroup hostility. Coursework involves participation in and completion of a research project.

Prerequisite: As per PSYCH 303
Coursework: 50% (two written assignments worth 25% each)
Final exam: 50%
Plussage: Must complete all coursework and obtain a passing grade for coursework overall. May miss one tutorial without producing satisfactory evidence for absence. 


Recommended text: There are no prescribed texts. Readings will be recommended on the topics covered.

This course is limited to 200 places.

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PSYCH 313: Psychology of Communication Disorders


(15 points) S1 

The course coordinator is Dr Elaine Ballard

This course will examine human communication. Beginning with a view of the complexities of human language, it will discuss the extraordinary nature of communication development, the intricate involvement of other psychological processes such as cognition, audition, social and emotional behaviour and context (including that of culture), and how all these are relevant to an understanding of disorders of human communication in both children and adults. It is recommended for students who may wish to apply for the MSLTPrac course, but is also relevant to students across the full range of Psychology sub-disciplines.

Prerequisite: As per PSYCH 303
Coursework: 60% (two assignments worth 25% and 10%, and a test worth 25%)
Final exam: 40%
Plussage: Must complete all coursework and obtain a passing grade for coursework overall. Must attend all tutorials. 

Recommended text: There are no prescribed texts. Readings will be recommended on the topics covered.

This course is limited to 120 places.

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PSYCH 317: Evolution, Behaviour and Cognition


(15 points), S1

The course coordinator is Professor Quentin Atkinson

Do other animals have language? Do they have culture? Can human behaviour be explained in evolutionary terms? This course addresses these questions and the methods that can be used to answer them. Specific areas that may be discussed include the evolution of language; social learning and cultural evolution; evolution of mind; the nature/nurture, sociobiology and evolutionary psychology debates; the assessment of animal welfare; and the ethics of animal experimentation. The course will emphasise the importance of a comparative, evolutionary approach to the study of behaviour.

Prerequisite: 45 points in Stage II Psychology and 15 points from STATS 101-125,191 or 45 points at Stage II BIOSCI
Coursework: One research proposal worth 40%
Final exam: 60%
Plussage: Must attend 7/9 labs, submit all coursework and obtain a passing grade overall

This course is limited to 120 places.

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PSYCH 319: Psychology and Gender


(15 points) S2

The course coordinator is Professor Nicola Gavey

The study of gender is crucial to understanding many everyday aspects of our lives, as well as many contemporary social issues. This course provides an introduction to selected key issues in the critical psychology of gender, from a social constructionist perspective. Topics covered include gendered bodies, masculinity and femininity, sexuality, rape, therapy and mental health.

Prerequisite: 45 points in Stage II Psychology and 15 points from STATS 101-125,191 or 30 points at stage II from the Gender Studies schedule.
Coursework: 50% (one test worth 15%, one essay worth 25%, one seminar worth 10%)
Final exam: 50%
Plussage: Must hand in all coursework, and obtain a passing grade in each (and overall)

Recommended text: to be advised
Required readings: Will be available via the library website.

This course is limited to 80 places.

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PSYCH 320 Psychology and Culture


(15 points) S2

The course coordinator is Dr Shiloh Groot.

It is through culture that we make sense of ourselves and our world. Of key interest is how culture, ethnicity and context all play major roles in understanding human experience including behaviour, thoughts and emotions. Emphasis is placed on critical thinking and analytic skills, and helping students to think about their own values and norms from a cultural perspective.

Prerequisite: As per PSYCH 303
Coursework: Essay outline 500 words (20%), essay 2000-2500 words (40%)
Final exam: 40%
Plussage: Must complete all coursework and obtain a passing grade for coursework overall. May miss one tutorial.

Recommended text: There are no prescribed texts. Readings will be recommended on the topics covered.

This course is limited to 120 places.

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PSYCH 326: Life Span Development


(15 Points) S1

The course coordinator is Associate Professor Karen Waldie

This course focuses on the development of people across the life span. The course will describe key milestones in development and examine the causes and processes that produce stability and change in people’s development over time. Topics discussed will include aspects of cognitive, social and physical development with consideration given to biological, societal and family influences. Attention will also be given to development within the New Zealand context.

Prerequisite: 45 points in stage II Psychology and 15 points from STATS 101-125, 191
Restriction: PSYCH 316
Coursework: 50% (one test worth 25% and one essay worth 25%)
Plussage: Based on a student attaining 25/50 in the coursework and not missing more than one tutorial.

Required text: Sigelman, Rider, & De George-Walker Australian and New Zealand Edition, Life Span Human Development 2013

This course is limited to 120 places.

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Enrolment


Affirmative action for Māori and Pacific students will be applied.

Waitlist: Please see mailed information

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Important notes


  • Students must have passed three Stage II PSYCH courses (45 points) and one Stage I Statistics course (STATS 101-125) to be eligible to enrol in Stage III PSYCH courses.
  • Grade point average (GPA) cut-offs have been selected for each course. 
  • Students who have passed PHYSIOL 220 or MEDSCI 206 may enrol in PSYCH 305.
  • Students who have passed 30 points at stage II from the Gender Studies schedule may enrol in PSYCH 319.
  • Students who have passed 45 points at Stage II in Biological Sciences may enrol in courses PSYCH 317 and/or PSYCH 309.
  • PSYCH 306 (Semester Two course) is required if a student wishes to continue into a Psychology honours dissertation or masters thesis, (including the Clinical Psychology area of study).
  • PSYCH 310 is restricted against 461.315


For more information or general enquiries please contact:

Stage III level coordinator

Associate Professor Paul Corballis

Academic Advisers

Michelle Burstall
Andrea Mead

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