This unit examines historical and current psychological theories and practices. Positivist, social constructionist, and critical theory approaches are explored. This unit will also offer a critical examination of the relative merits and limitations of schools of psychology such as; psychoanalysis, behaviourism, cognitivism, biological psychology and critical psychology. The evolution of psychological theory and practice will be explored, with a particular emphasis on what constitutes ethical, culturally appropriate, and evidence-based assessment and intervention practice. 

Unit details

Study level:
Credit points:
Unit code:


APP2013 - Psychology 2A

APP2014 - Psychology 2B

APP2101 - Intercultural and Developmental Issues in Psychology

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this unit, students will be able to:
  1. Elucidate understandings of psychology as a discipline;  
  2. Critique the tenets and methods of inquiry within particular schools of psychology;  
  3. Critically reflect upon what constitutes ethical and culturally appropriate assessment practice;  
  4. Critically evaluate the scientific evidence base for psychological interventions; and  
  5. Elucidate their preferred theoretical approach to psychology.  


Assessment type Description Grade
Essay Reflective critical essay on theories of psychology (2000 words) 30%
Presentation Presentation of psychological survey (1000 words equivalent) and submission of powerpoint slides (15 minute presentation) 30%
Test Test on theoretical content (1.5 hours) 40%

Where to next?

As part of a course

This unit is studied as part of the following courses. Refer to the course page for information on how to apply for the course.

You can choose to study this unit as part of the following courses. Refer to the course page for information on how to structure your course to include this unit.

Course Study as part of
Bachelor of Arts Psychology - Major

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