Human development involves changes in thoughts, feelings and behaviours. In this unit students investigate the structure and functioning of the human brain and the role it plays in the overall functioning of the human nervous system. Students explore brain plasticity and the influence that brain damage may have on a person's psychological functioning. They consider the complex nature of psychological development, including situations where psychological development may not occur as expected. Students examine the contribution that classical and contemporary studies have made to an understanding of the human brain and its functions, and to the development of different psychological models and theories used to predict and explain the development of thoughts, feelings and behaviours.

This unit is delivered in Year 11.

Unit details

Study level:
Vocational and further education (TAFE)
Unit code:
PY011

Assessment

Assessment tasks will be designed to reinforce and extend knowledge in accordance with each unit's learning outcomes, including the setting of practical application tasks designed to provide evidence of competence outcomes, within periodic and scheduled timelines. Students will be expected to demonstrate the following knowledge: Outcome 1 On completion of this unit the student should be able to describe how understanding of brain structure and function has changed over time, explain how different areas of the brain coordinate different functions, and explain how brain plasticity and brain damage can change psychological functioning. Outcome 2 On completion of this unit the student should be able to identify the varying influences of nature and nurture on a person's psychological development, and explain different factors that may lead to typical or atypical psychological development. Outcome 3 On completion of this unit the student should be able to investigate and communicate a substantiated response to a question related to brain function and/or development, including reference to at least two contemporary psychological studies and/or research techniques. Assessment will follow the requirements set out in the VCE Psychology Study Guide: The award of satisfactory completion for a unit is based on whether the student has demonstrated the set of outcomes specified for the unit. A variety of learning activities and assessment tasks will provide a range of opportunities for students to demonstrate the key knowledge and key skills in the outcomes. Assessment will be a part of the regular teaching and learning program and will be completed mainly in class and within a limited time-frame. All assessments at Units 1 and 2 are school-based. For this unit students are required to demonstrate achievement of three outcomes. As a set these outcomes encompass all areas of study in the unit. Practical work is a central component of learning and assessment. As a guide, between 3½ and 5 hours of class time should be devoted to student practical work and investigations for each of Areas of Study 1 and 2. For Area of Study 3, between 6 and 8 hours of class time should be devoted to undertaking the investigation and communicating findings.

Where to next?

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