Cognitive Psychology

Subject PSYC20007 (2014)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2014.

Credit Points: 12.50
Level: 2 (Undergraduate)
Dates & Locations:

This subject has the following teaching availabilities in 2014:

Semester 2, Parkville - Taught on campus.
Pre-teaching Period Start not applicable
Teaching Period not applicable
Assessment Period End not applicable
Last date to Self-Enrol not applicable
Census Date not applicable
Last date to Withdraw without fail not applicable

Lectures and Laboratories

Timetable can be viewed here. For information about these dates, click here.
Time Commitment: Contact Hours: 24 hours of lectures and 12 hours of laboratories
Total Time Commitment:

36 contact hours, estimated total time commitment 120 hours


There are no prerequisites for this subject


There are no corequisites for this subject

Recommended Background Knowledge:

Prior coursework in the two Level 1 psychology subjects, Mind Brain and Behaviour 1 and Mind Brain and Behaviour 2 is recommended.

Non Allowed Subjects:

51224 Cognitive Psychology 2

512226 Cognitive Psychology

Core Participation Requirements:

For the purposes of considering request for Reasonable Adjustments under the Disability Standards of Education (Cwth 2005), and Students Experiencing Academic Disadvantage Policy, academic requirements for this subject are articulated in the Subject Description, Subject Objectives, Generic Skills and Assessment Requirements of this entry.

The University is dedicated to provide support to those with special requirements. Further details on the disability support scheme can be found at the Disability Liaison Unit Website:


Dr Meredith Mckague


Melbourne School of Psychological Sciences

12th floor Redmond Barry Building (Building 115 Map)

Telephone: + 61 3 8344 6377



Subject Overview:

Mental processes such as attention, memory, language and categorisation form the basis of our creative human cognitive abilities. An understanding of these cognitive abilities and the methods used by cognitive psychologists to study them provides an essential foundation for ongoing study in psychology. Classic and current research findings will be discussed to reveal what is known about the workings of the human mind.

Specific topics may include: Perceptual processes and their role in cognition; the nature and function of selective attention; categorisation and the mental representation of knowledge; the structure, function and organisation of the human memory system; human linguistic ability. including language acquisition, language disorders, and models fo spoken and written language processes; higher order cognitive processes such as explanation formation and decision making.

A quantitative methods component will be integrated into the lecture, tutorial and assessment structure of this subject. The aim is to provide an understanding of, and practical experience with, the appropriate experimental design and statistical analysis techniques used to evaluate theories in Cognitive Psychology.

Learning Outcomes:

On completion of this subject, students should be able to:

  • give a critical account of the main theories in one or more areas of cognitive psychology
  • derive testable empirical predictions from a theory that is expressed in abstract, informational processing terms
  • assess the adequacy of a cognitive theory in relation to a given set of experiemental findings, and
  • summarise and analyse data in a way that is appropriate to the empirical test of a cognitive theory.

Written laboratory report of 2,000 words due mid semester (30%);

Multiple choice examination of no more than two hours to be completed during university examination period at the end of semester (50%);

Progressive on-line tests of lecture content throughout semester (10%);

Small group-work task due weeks 10-12 (e.g., oral presentation, debate, short report, online blog) (10%).

Prescribed Texts: None
Breadth Options:

This subject potentially can be taken as a breadth subject component for the following courses:

You should visit learn more about breadth subjects and read the breadth requirements for your degree, and should discuss your choice with your student adviser, before deciding on your subjects.

Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Generic Skills:

Students will be given appropriate opportunity and educational support to develop skills to:

  • conceptualise theoretical problems
  • form hypotheses and arguments and communicate them through written work and tutorial discussion
  • participate in team work through small group discussions
  • develop skills related to the ability to research an area and analyze the information critically
Related Course(s): Graduate Diploma in Psychology
Related Majors/Minors/Specialisations: Psychology
Psychology Major
Science credit subjects* for pre-2008 BSc, BASc and combined degree science courses
Science-credited subjects - new generation B-SCI and B-ENG.
Selective subjects for B-BMED
Related Breadth Track(s): Perception and Cognition

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