Faculty of Arts

Undergraduate - Unit

This unit entry is for students who completed this unit in 2014 only. For students planning to study the unit, please refer to the unit indexes in the the current edition of the Handbook. If you have any queries contact the managing faculty for your course or area of study.

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6 points, SCA Band 1, 0.125 EFTSL

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered, or view unit timetables.

FacultyFaculty of Arts
OfferedSouth Africa First semester 2014 (Day)
South Africa OCT-MSA01 2014 (Day)
Coordinator(s)Mr M Maboe


Introducing the student to the science of psychology, topics to be studied include human behaviour and the biological bases thereof; personality; an introduction to theories of learning and development; sensation and perception; and an introduction to the historical origins of the discipline. Contributions of South African psychologists to these topics will be delineated and the South African and African history of psychology will be explored. Laboratory classes enhance students' understanding of the lecture material. and provide training in research techniques.


On completion of the unit, the students will be able to:

  1. Describe key historical and philosophical developments which have resulted into the modern discipline of psychology.
  2. Discuss the contributions of key South Africans to the international development of psychology.
  3. Define key concepts in the following topics: biological psychology, sensation and perception, developmental psychology, personality, and learning.
  4. Appraise the need for an objective understanding of human behaviour.
  5. Write technical reports and documents.
  6. Build critical arguments.


Lecture topic quizzes: 10%
Class participation assignments: 10%
Critical thinking exercises: 30%
Examination: 50%

Chief examiner(s)

Workload requirements

2 hours lecture contact for 12 weeks
2 hours tutorials contact for 10 weeks
8 hours for private study, including reading of prescribed and recommended literature, review of and familiarisation with a wider range of publications on the core content topics of the unit, work on assignments, preparation for class discussions and presentations.

This unit applies to the following area(s) of study



PSY1011, WEL1320, WEL1340, BHS1320, BHS1340, GSC1306, GSC1307, APY1910, PSS1711, PSS1712