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The University of Southampton

PSYC6070 Cognitive Elements of Learning 1

Module Overview

This module looks at learning and development and the theoretical models that underpin these. By focusing on core areas of skills development (e.g. language, literacy, intelligence), and considering the role of the adult in reducing cognitive load and in mediating learning, the module ensures that you have a sound underpinning knowledge of typical child and adolescent development, as well as an understanding of how to intervene with children and young people to support learning and development. It runs alongside the Psychology in the Professional Practice 1 and Consultation, Assessment and Intervention 1 modules where the key knowledge and skills are put into practice in your field placements. Part way through the module you will select a topic on which to write a 4,000 word essay which considers this topic with regard to learning and development and explores the practical implications for educational psychologists.

Aims and Objectives

Learning Outcomes

Learning Outcomes

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • Articulate knowledge of theories of psychology relevant to: cognitive development and learning; language and communication; physical and sensory development; and literacy and numeracy learning
  • Evidence an understanding of biological, cultural, and social influences on learning, cognitive, and developmental processes.
  • Evidence a knowledge of evidence-informed curriculum and instructional strategies.
  • Develop skills in the critical evaluation of research and produce systematically conducted research syntheses to inform practice and policy decisions.
  • Show evidence of the ability to generalise and synthesise knowledge and experience to enable application and adaptation in different settings and novel situations


This module looks at typical learning and development and the theoretical models that underpin these. Specific topics include theories of learning, language, literacy, mathematics, concepts of intelligence, working memory, Early Years.

Learning and Teaching

Teaching and learning methods

The core content in this module is covered through problem based learning sessions at the University, with some taught sessions used to complement key learning. These sessions are supplemented by a programme of phased skill development on placement with a Field Tutor. Aspects of the seminar and field work in this module will focus on and relate closely to PSYC6071 Emotional and Behavioural Development, Psychology in Professional Practice and Consultation, Assessment and Intervention

Independent Study25
Total study time200

Resources & Reading list

Frederickson, N., & Cline, T. (2009). Special Educational Needs, Inclusion and Diversity. 

Long, M., Wood, C., Litttleton, K., Passenger, T. & Sheehy, K (2010). The Psychology of Education. 

Petty, G. (2009). Evidence based teaching. 

Willingham, D (2009). Why don't students like school?. 

Muijs, D., & Reynolds, D (2018). Effective teaching. 

MacBlain, S. (2014). How Children Learn. 

Benassi, V. A., Overson, C. E., & Hakala, C. M. (2014). Applying science of learning in education: Infusing psychological science into the curriculum. 

Cline, T., Gulliford, A., & Birch, S. (Eds.). (2015). Educational Psychology: Topics in Applied Psychology. 

Dean, C. B., Hubbell, E. R., Pitler, H., & Stone, B. J. (2012). Classroom Instruction That Works: Research-Based Strategies for Increasing Student Achievement. 

Woolfolk, A. (2013). Educational Psychology. 


Assessment Strategy

In the event of a trainee failing the assessment, the trainee is required to liaise with the first marker and submit either a substantially revised, or a new piece of work. Resubmission is within an agreed timescale, usually with a six week limit. Trainees can only re-submit a piece of work once, and resubmitted work is capped at a low pass


MethodPercentage contribution
Essay  (4000 words) 100%


MethodPercentage contribution
Essay 100%
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