Elective Course - Culture, Communication and Learning

Course content

This course will introduce key social scientific concepts and theories, which can be applied to the study of the relationship between culture, communication and learning. It will explore the complexities of the vast theory base underpinning the role of communication and language in learning settings. Its aims are to introduce to students issues concerning (1) the dynamic role of social interaction in language use, culture as resource for development of children and young people, (2) language use and thinking and remembering together and the process of socialisation (3) learning as communicative action and (4) gender issues in language and literacy practices or disability issues. It will enable a critical assessment of the construction of problems and proposed solutions in practices in psychology, education and other related fields.

Delivery will be in the form of a weekly brief lecture followed by seminars and tutorials involving individual and/or group work and student presentations. Students are expected to arrive at sessions having read required pre-session reading beforehand and prepared to discuss the reading in the seminar.

At the completion of this course students would be able to develop:

  • Awareness and understanding of issues concerning the role of social interaction in a given culture in formal or informal learning settings
  • Understanding of issues concerning culture, language, communication and learning in classrooms with reference to their professional experience in early educational settings
  • Critical skills to evaluate research into culture, communication and learning in early years and other educational settings.                                                 


Learning outcome

The purpose of these modules is to expand knowledge or put the psychological subject area into perspective through theoretical or empirical specialisation within subject areas within or related to psychology.

Upon completion of the elective subject module within the Department of Psychology, students are able to:

  • describe and account for relevant concepts and themes within the elective subject
  • describe and account for relevant methodological approaches in relation to the subject matter for the elective subject
  • explain contexts, analyse and/or conduct procedures relevant to the elective subject under supervision.
Type of assessment
Written assignment
Title: Select one of the themes, theories or/and concepts introduced in the course. Present an argument with a critical review the literature on the chosen theme/concept/theory with one or two illustrative examples. To be submitted according to the exam schedule.

Interpretation of Marking Criteria for assignments and extended examination questions:
During Session 1, and then again at least one point during the semester, there will be explanation and discussion of the marking criteria in relation to this assignment.

Extent: The course concludes with an assignment of max. 14 pages for one student, 21 pages for two students and 24 pages for three students.
All aids allowed
Marking scale
passed/not passed
Censorship form
No external censorship
Criteria for exam assessment
  • Category
  • Hours
  • Class Instruction
  • 28
  • English
  • 28