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How we will deliver your course in 2021: Psychology, Culture and Evolution (postgraduate)

Programmes this information applies to: 

MSc Psychology, Culture and Evolution 

1. Content of the course 

There are no planned changes to the course content.

2. Length of the course 

There are no planned changes to the length of the course.

3. How your course will be delivered 

New students 

As with all courses at Brunel, we would prefer to teach as much of our course as possible in-person, on-campus sessions. The degree to which teaching will be online versus on-campus will vary by module, and below we describe our delivery plans for all modules on the course. Full-time students will take all of the below modules in 2021/22, whereas part-time students will take some in 2021/22 (indicated with one asterisk), and the rest in 2022/23 (indicated with two asterisks).

TERM 1

PY5612 Historical and Contemporary Issues in Psychology (10 credits)**

PY5612 is a lecture-based module that can be effectively taught either online or on-campus. Accordingly, it will be delivered synchronously (on campus and online). Lectures will also be made available asynchronously as recordings that students can watch at any time, if they were not able to attend that lecture (lecture slides will also be available).

PY5630: Research Methods and Statistics (30 credits)*

In PY5630, students will learn how to analyse quantitative data with statistical software, often working in lab-based practical classes. Such hands-on learning of research methods and statistics tends to be especially well-suited for in-person learning environments, so teaching in PY5630 will tend to focus on on-campus delivery.

PY5704: Foundations of Evolutionary Psychology (15 credits)**

PY5704 involves lecture and discussion sessions that can be effectively conducted online, as well as supplemental taught material (quizzes, videos, suggested readings, etc.) that can only be accessed online. Accordingly, teaching in PY5704 will tend to focus on online delivery. Online taught sessions will be recorded and made available online, as will additional materials such as slides, quizzes, links to videos, supplemental readings, etc.

TERM 2

PY5614: Evolutionary Perspectives on Culture (10 credits)**

PY5615: Special Topics in Culture and Evolution (10 credits)**

PY5705: Foundations of Cross-Cultural Psychology (15 credits)*
As with PY5704 in Term 1, these three Term 2 modules involve lecture and discussion sessions that can be effectively delivered online, as well as supplemental taught material (quizzes, videos, suggested readings, etc.) that can only be accessed online. Accordingly, teaching in PY5614, PY5615, and PY5705 will tend to focus on online delivery. Online taught sessions will be recorded and made available online, as will additional materials such as slides, quizzes, links to videos, supplemental readings, etc.

PY5611: Preparation for Research (10 credits)** PY5613: Cross-Cultural and Evolutionary Psychology Research Methods (20 credits)*

Like PY5630 in Term 1, these two modules will involve hands-on learning of new research methods and statistical analysis techniques, and so are particularly well-suited to an in-person teaching environment. Both PY5611 and PY5613 will therefore tend to emphasise on-campus delivery.

*Part-time students take in year 1

**Part-time students take in year 2

Assessments

All but one assessment on the course are non-exams (e.g. coursework, lab reports, posters) and as normal, these will be submitted online via Wiseflow. The exam (assessment block PY5803) is a synoptic assessment that covers material taught in PY5704 (Foundations of Evolutionary Psychology) and PY5705 (Foundations of Cross-Cultural Psychology). We plan on conducting it as indicated on the PY5803 assessment block outline as a two-hour unseen on-campus examination.

Academic Support and Pastoral Care

Each of our MSc students is assigned an academic staff member from the Centre for Culture and Evolution (CCE) as their Personal Tutor. Tutors will provide information and support to help students navigate university life, and meetings with tutors can be conducted effectively either on-campus or online. Academic support is also available from module instructors and other CCE academic staff. All staff hold student feedback and consultation hours each week (two hours per week, split over two different days). These are specifically designated times when staff are available to meet, either in person or online, with students who have questions or would like feedback about their work.

Returning students 

PY5611: Preparation for Research (10 credits)

PY5611 will involve hands-on learning of new research methods and statistical analysis techniques, and so is particularly well-suited to an in-person teaching environment so teaching will be focussed on campus.

PY5614: Evolutionary Perspectives on Culture (10 credits)

PY5615: Special Topics in Culture and Evolution (10 credits) As with PY5704 in Term 1, these two Term 2 modules involve lecture and discussion sessions that can be effectively delivered online, as well as supplemental taught material (quizzes, videos, suggested readings, etc.) that can only be accessed online. Accordingly, teaching in PY5614 and PY5615, will tend to focus on online delivery. Online taught sessions will be recorded and made available online, as will additional materials such as slides, quizzes, links to videos, supplemental readings, etc.

PY5612 Historical and Contemporary Issues in Psychology (10 credits)

PY5612 is a lecture-based module that can be effectively taught either online or on-campus. Accordingly, it will be delivered synchronously (on campus and online). Lectures will also be made available asynchronously as recordings that students can watch at any time, if they were not able to attend that lecture (lecture slides will also be available).

PY5704: Foundations of Evolutionary Psychology (15 credits)

PY5704 involves lecture and discussion sessions that can be effectively conducted online, as well as supplemental taught material (quizzes, videos, suggested readings, etc.) that can only be accessed online. Accordingly, teaching in PY5704 will tend to focus on online delivery. Online taught sessions will be recorded and made available online, as will additional materials such as slides, quizzes, links to videos, supplemental readings, etc.

4. Cost of the course 

There are no changes to the cost of the course.

Access to a laptop or desktop PC is required for joining online activities, completing coursework and digital exams, and a minimum specification can be found here

Please note that a Windows or Mac laptop will be necessary for this course (Chromebooks are not suitable). 

If you have any concerns about accessing a suitable device, please complete and return this form to enquire about the University’s loan laptop scheme.

5. Award

There are no planned changes to the qualification that is being awarded.

6. Feedback and consultation

We provide set times where you can talk to your lecturers and module leaders about academic matters relating to your course. You can also use these opportunities to obtain and discuss feedback on an assessment. You can find these hours on Blackboard Learn and in your module booklets.  

You can book your slot by emailing your lecturer. We will be holding these virtually until it is safe to hold these appointments on campus.

7. Personal tutoring

Your personal tutor is responsible for monitoring and supporting your academic and personal development both in your transition to university and between years. It is someone you can discuss, in confidence, your academic progress with or any special requirements you may need. 

If you are a first year student, these sessions will be included in your timetable every other week. 

If you are a second year, final year, or postgraduate student you can request to have a session at a time that is convenient for you.  

You can attend our virtual ‘drop-in’ sessions which are advertised on Blackboard Learn, or request a session by emailing your personal tutor.

8. Departmental communications and events

You can keep up with subject and module updates through Blackboard Learn. We will also send important updates to your student email account, including a newsletter once a term, so please keep an eye on your emails. 

We host department assemblies where you will receive department updates and get to hear from lecturers and your peers. These take place at least once a term and you’ll receive an email invitation. 

Our programmes feature a range of opportunities including trips and visits, once it is safe to do so we will resume these.

9. Student-led academic representation

Student reps are elected to represent the views of their course, department or college to improve the academic experience at Brunel. They gather views and opinions from students on things such as lectures, exams, assessment and feedback and then take a collective view to the university and Union in order to develop the student experience at Brunel.

We welcome feedback from our student community on matters relating to your experience through your student representatives or through your programme leaders. 

Find out who your course rep is here. You’ll also receive an email from your programme leader who will confirm your contact.

10. Peer-to-peer opportunities

You can join our student societies, we have one for each subject area including Politics, History, Sociology, and Anthropology. You can join these societies through the Union of Brunel Students or contact your Course Rep to find out more. We have Facebook groups for these societies too.

Our department also has a Postgraduate Research Society, if you would like to join this please contact your PGR Director.

You can join our social media groups to keep in touch with your peers and exchange knowledge.  Find out how to do this by contacting your course rep.

Contact us 

If you have any specific questions about the above information, please email: CHMLS-TPO-biosciences@brunel.ac.uk

 

Disclaimer: We have used our best endeavours to plan for the coming academic year and to ensure the information on this page is correct at the time of publication. The information provided here is intended for the general guidance of students studying the University’s degree programmes listed above in the academic year 2021/22. The University will deliver the course of study as described unless there are changes outside of our control related to COVID-19. In such circumstances, the University will adjust the delivery of the course accordingly, and use its best endeavours to ensure equivalence.

Date of publication: 16.07.21