module specification

PC5055 - Development Across the Lifespan (2021/22)

Module specification Module approved to run in 2021/22
Module title Development Across the Lifespan
Module level Intermediate (05)
Credit rating for module 15
School School of Social Sciences and Professions
Total study hours 150
114 hours Guided independent study
36 hours Scheduled learning & teaching activities
Assessment components
Type Weighting Qualifying mark Description
Coursework 50%   Essay (1500 words)
Unseen Examination 50%   MCT
Running in 2021/22
Period Campus Day Time Module Leader
Autumn semester North Friday Afternoon

Module summary

The module is designed to allow students to learn how both cognition and social behaviours change across the lifespan, including examples of typical and atypical development and applied aspects of developmental psychology. Students will develop an understanding of some classic and contemporary theories of human development in their historical and cultural contexts, as well as the evidence base on which the theories are based. To this end, students will learn about some of the classic studies in human developmental psychology and how they have shaped our understanding of the developmental process from birth to death. Student will also learn about the ethical implications of research in this branch of psychology.

Prior learning requirements

An introductory Psychology module


Topics will be drawn from: life-span development (e.g. memory; personality; language); developmental Theories (e.g. theory of mind; development of reasoning and executive function; research in developmental psychology (e.g. classic and contemporary studies; children and older adults as research participants and associated ethical considerations).

Learning Outcomes LO 1 - 3

Balance of independent study and scheduled teaching activity

The module is delivered through a variety of teaching and learning methods. A combination of group and individual activities will take place within a framework of lectures, seminars and workshops. Supplementary guided learning via WebLearn and directions for self-managed private study will be provided when appropriate

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module students will:

1. possess in-depth knowledge and critical awareness of a range of core topics and related research in developmental psychology;
2. have comprehensive and critical awareness of different research methods used in developmental psychology and of associated historical, cultural and ethical considerations;
3. be able to summarise theoretical developments in developmental psychology and evaluate them critically in the light of empirical evidence.

Assessment strategy

An essay and a multiple-choice test (MCT) will address the depth and breadth of students’ knowledge and understanding of the material covered in the module. Formative assessments and constructive feedback will be provided via web-based exercises and seminar work throughout the module, which will help students to prepare for the summative assessments. Students must obtain a minimum aggregate grade of 40% across the two assessments to pass the module.


Croker, S. (2012). The development of cognition. Andover: Cengage Learning [core]
Erber, J. T. (2005). Aging and older adulthood (2nd edition). Chichester: Wiley-Blackwell