History and Philosophy of Psychology - 2018

Unit summary


  • Level of Study: Undergraduate Level 3
  • Study load: 0.125 EFTSL
  • Delivery method: Fully Online
  • Prerequisites: Yes
  • Duration: 13 weeks
  • Government loans available: FEE-HELP, HECS-HELP
  • Availability for 2018: SP1 , SP3
  • Assessment: Essay (35%) , Journal (40%) - Learn more

Unit provided by

2018 Fees
Domestic 2,860.00
HECS 820.00
International 3,110.00

This unit provides students with a broad and eclectic view of the history and philosophy of psychology. It surveys a selection of interesting and influential events, people, and ideas and uses these as a focus to critically examine issues that directly and indirectly shape the discipline as it is practiced today.

Please note: assessment values are indicative only, details will be advised at the start of the unit.


Students who successfully complete this unit will be able to:

  1. Describe significant figures, events, and ideas in the history of psychology
  2. Interpret the significance of these figures/events/ideas with respect to their context
  3. Identify the impact of these figures/events/ideas on evolution of psychology as a discipline
  4. Critically evaluate the philosophical, social, and scientific basis for psychological concepts and methods
  5. Synthesise arguments concerning psychological opinion, theory, and practice.

  • Essay (35%)
  • Journal (40%)
  • Peer Evaluation (25%)

Mandatory prerequisites

You must have successfully completed the following unit(s) before starting this unit:

If you have completed equivalent study at another university, please contact a Student Advisor for advice.

This unit addresses the following topics.

1The nature and limits of psychology
2Philosophical and physiological precursors to psychology
3The emergence of modern scientific psychology
4Big theories and movements in psychology, such as: psychoanalysis/psychodynamic, Gestalt, behaviorist, humanistic, cognitive, cognitive neuroscience
5Philosophy of mind, philosophy of science, and psychology as a science
6Psychological theory and methods
7Philosophical, scientific, social aspects of issues in psychology, e.g., mental illness, therapy, gender, sex, culture, consciousness

This unit is delivered using the following methods and materials:

Instructional Methods

  • Audio/Video conferencing
  • Blogs
  • Chat rooms
  • Discussion Forum/Discussion Board
  • E-Portfolios
  • Embedded Multimedia
  • Online Quizzes/Tests
  • Online assignment submission
  • Podcasting/Lecture capture
  • Standard Media
  • Streaming Multimedia
  • Web links
  • Wikis

Print based materials

  • Welcome Letter

Online materials

  • Printable format materials

This unit is a core requirement in the following courses:

This unit may be eligible for credit towards other courses:

  1. Many undergraduate courses on offer through OUA include 'open elective' where any OUA unit can be credited to the course. You need to check the Award Requirements on the course page for the number of allowed open electives and any level limitations.
  2. In other cases, the content of this unit might be relevant to a course on offer through OUA or elsewhere. In order to receive credit for this unit in the course you will need to supply the provider institution with a copy of the Unit Profile in the approved format, which you can download here. Note that the Unit Profile is set at the start of the year, and if textbooks change this may not match the Co-Op textbook list.

Textbook information for this unit is currently being updated and will be available soon. Please check back regularly for updates. Alternatively, visit the The Co-op website and enter the unit details to search for available textbooks.

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