Faculty of Arts

Monash University

Undergraduate - Unit

This unit entry is for students who completed this unit in 2015 only. For students planning to study the unit, please refer to the unit indexes in the the current edition of the Handbook. If you have any queries contact the managing faculty for your course or area of study.

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6 points, SCA Band 1, 0.125 EFTSL

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered.

FacultyFaculty of Arts
OfferedGippsland Second semester 2015 (Day)
Gippsland Second semester 2015 (Off-campus)
Coordinator(s)Ruth McFarlane


Humans are social animals, though their interaction is not always harmonious. This unit explores social interaction and behaviour - both positive and negative. Developing such an understanding of the self and others enables individuals to gain and exert more control over and get more from relationships, and understand the mechanisms of persuasion and behaviour change. Topics include attitudes, obedience, conformity, group processes, prejudice, aggression, and attraction.


On successful completion of this unit students will be able to:

  1. Understand how social behaviour can be studied through a variety of perspectives involving different levels of analysis and varying research methods;
  2. Describe the application of a range of key concepts such as schemata, stereotypes, categorisation, causal attribution, obedience, conformity and minority influence;
  3. Appreciate how views of some concepts of social behaviour change over time;
  4. Understand the powerful role group membership can exert on social behaviour and how outcomes such as aggression, racism, and sexism can be represented as interactions between groups


Within semester assessment: 60%
Exam: 40%

Workload requirements

Minimum total expected workload to achieve the learning outcomes for this unit is 144 hours per semester typically comprising a mixture of scheduled learning activities and independent study. A unit requires on average three/four hours of scheduled activities per week. Scheduled activities may include a combination of teacher directed learning, peer directed learning and online engagement.

See also Unit timetable information

Chief examiner(s)


ATS1840 or ATS1359 or equivalent


BHS2713, GSC2713, PSY2042