M3005 - Bachelor of Psychology (Honours) - 2017

Honours - Course

Commencement year

This course entry applies to students commencing this course in 2017 and should be read in conjunction with information provided in the 'Faculty information' section of this Handbook by the Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences.

Unit codes that are not linked to their entry in the Handbook are not available for study in the current year.

Course code


Credit points


Abbreviated title




Managing faculty

Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences


Dr Sean Cain

Contact details

Tel: +61 3 9905 3968

Admission and fees


Course progression map

M3005 (pdf)

Course type


Standard duration

4 years FT, 8 years PT

Students have a maximum of 10 years to complete this course including any periods of intermission and suspension, and must be continuously enrolled throughout.

Mode and location

On-campus (Clayton)


Bachelor of Psychology (Honours)

Alternative exit

Bachelor of Psychological Science

Refer to 'Alternative exits' entry below for further requirements and details.


This course is designed for those with a growing passion for the understanding of human cognition and behaviour. It provides you with a comprehensive understanding of human psychology from normal to abnormal psychology and from the genetic/molecular level to the individual and group behavioural level. The study of human psychology is ever-growing and changing and the program provides you with up-to-date thinking on our understanding of the human brain, thought and behaviour. The knowledge gained in this course will give you the foundations to make your own new and exciting scientific discoveries, help to promote mental health and to influence how those in the community think about mental health and the workings of the human brain and mind.

You will gain broad, interdisciplinary knowledge of psychology and a deep understanding of specific areas, such as addiction, brain injury and rehabilitation, memory and consciousness, neurodevelopment, neurodegeneration and psychopathology, as well as how sleep and circadian rhythms influence cognition and mental health. Your required study includes the core sequence of units accredited by the Australian Psychology Accreditation Council (APAC) and neuroscience-related units designed to give you a deep understanding of the biological basis of human cognition and behaviour. Through a focus on neuroscience study, you will gain an in-depth knowledge of brain function and dysfunction. This understanding will form the basis of knowledge for the pursuit of research in the cognitive neurosciences and/or clinical psychology.

Your lecturers are active researchers, many of whom are world-leaders in their fields. They will teach cutting-edge research, often not yet seen in textbooks, giving you up-to-date information on our understanding of neuroscience, psychology and mental health treatment.

Many opportunities exist for our graduates, including academic and industry research, teaching, clinical neuropsychology and many other related careers. You could also undertake further steps to qualify to practise as a professional psychologist or pursue work as a researcher, participating in the revolution taking place in psychology, thanks to unparalleled advances in molecular genetics, developmental cognitive neuroscience, neuropsychology and brain imaging.


These course outcomes are aligned with the Australian Qualifications Framework level 8 and Monash Graduate AttributesAustralian Qualifications Framework level 8 and Monash Graduate Attributes (http://www.monash.edu.au/pubs/handbooks/alignmentofoutcomes.html).

On successful completion of the course you will be expected to able to:

  1. describe and discuss theories and research, and investigate and critically evaluate issues in the core discipline areas of psychology - perception, cognition, learning, motivation, emotion, language, social and biological bases of behaviour, abnormal psychology, lifespan development, individual differences, history and philosophy of psychology, testing, assessment, intercultural and indigenous psychology
  2. contribute to discipline knowledge through research, including critical review of scientific literature, identification of research problems, design and conduct of research, application of statistical analyses to evaluate research outcomes, and clear communication of findings according to the professional requirements of the discipline
  3. describe and discuss the ethical standards and legislative frameworks governing research and practice in psychology, and demonstrate an appreciation of the role of ethics in maintaining the integrity of the profession
  4. recognise the importance of the relationship between knowledge of the scientific discipline of psychology and the application of this knowledge in the practice of psychology, and to demonstrate this understanding across a number of applications of the discipline
  5. demonstrate the skills required to maintain professional competence by keeping up with recent developments and contemporary issues in the field and appreciate the importance of ongoing professional development and training and demonstrate a foundation knowledge in a selected range of related discipline areas that complement the theoretical and practical application of psychology.

Professional recognition

The Bachelor of Psychology (Honours) is currently accredited as the 'Bachelor of Psychological Science Advanced (Honours) by the Australian Psychology Accreditation Council (APAC). The name change is subject to APAC approval.


The course develops through three themes of psychology fundamentals and foundational skills, research methods and critical thinking and psychology in practice and society, that together underpin the discipline of psychology.

Part A. Psychology fundamentals and foundational skills

These studies will address core areas of psychology, including the theoretical and empirical basis of our current understanding of human psychology, brain function and evidence-based approaches to psychological intervention. Building a strong foundation in your understanding of psychology and neuroscience will enable you to appreciate the major challenges in psychology today and in the future.

Part B. Research methods and critical thinking

These studies will develop your understanding of scientific methodology and its application in psychology. You will learn to critically evaluate contemporary and historical claims relating to human behaviour and mental processes and apply your understanding to the generation of new research questions.

Part C. Psychology in practice and society

These studies will enable you to understand and apply psychological principles to personal, social, organisational, technological and global issues and use knowledge of psychology and its practice in an ethical manner, for the benefit of society in general. They will introduce you to the real-world practice of psychology in today's society.

Part D. Free electives

This will enable you to further develop your knowledge of psychology through a choice of electives covering contemporary topics in the field, or to select units in which you are eligible to enrol from across the faculty or the University.


The course comprises 192 points, of which 168 points are focussed on the study of psychological science and neuroscience and 24 points are free electives.

The course develops through theme studies in: Part A. Psychology fundamentals and foundational skills (72 points), Part B. Research methods and critical thinking (36 points), Part C. Psychology in practice and society (60 points) and Part D. Free electives (24 points).

Students must complete 144 credit points and achieve a minimum of a distinction average (70 per cent) in PSY3041, PSY3051, PSY3032 and PSY3062 in order to proceed to the fourth year of study.

Students who successfully complete the first three years (144 points) of the course but do not meet the academic standard hurdle for the fourth year will graduate with the Bachelor of Psychological Science.

Direct entry into fourth year of this course is not possible. Students wishing to apply to undertake an honours year in psychology (including those who graduate with the Bachelor of Psychological Science) must apply directly to the School of Psychological Sciences. Other fourth-year psychology programs at Monash include M5003 Graduate Diploma in Psychology Advanced and D5002 Graduate Diploma of Professional Psychology.

The course progression mapcourse progression map (http://www.monash.edu.au/pubs/2017handbooks/maps/map-m3005.pdf) will assist you to plan to meet the course requirements, and guidance on unit enrolment for each semester of study.

Units are 6 credit points unless otherwise stated.

Part A. Psychology fundamentals and foundational skills (72 points)

Students complete:

Part B. Research methods and critical thinking (36 points)

Students complete:

  • PSY3062 Research methods and theory
  • PSY4100 Psychology honours: Research project (24 points)
  • PSY4210 Statistics and research design for professional psychology

Part C. Psychology in practice and society (60 points)

Students complete:

a. The following nine units (54 points)

  • PMH1011 Mental health in the community
  • PSY3041 Psychological testing, theories of ability and ethics
  • PSY3120 Introduction to counselling
  • PHA2022 Drugs and society
  • BMS1042 Public health and preventive medicine
  • PSY3180 Human neuropsychology: Developmental and neurodegenerative disorders
  • PSY3190 Addiction studies
  • PSY4220 Ethical and professional issues in psychology
  • PSY4270 Psychological assessment and intervention

b. One unit (6 points) from the following:

  • PSY4110 Psychology in society
  • PSY4120 Mental health and illness
  • PSY4130 Developmental psychology and clinical neuroscience

Part D. Free elective study (24 points)

Elective units may be chosen from the faculty or across the University so long as you have the prerequisites and there are no restrictions on admission to the units. The units may be at any level, however, no more than 10 units (60 points) at level 1 can be credited to this course.

Free electives can be identified using the browse unitsbrowse units (http://www.monash.edu.au/pubs/handbooks/units/search) tool and indexes of unitsindexes of units (http://www.monash.edu.au/pubs/handbooks/units/) in the current edition of the Handbook. The level of the unit is indicated by the first number in the unit code; undergraduate units are those that commence with the numbers 1-3. You may need permission from the owning faculty to enrol in some units taught by other faculties.

Alternative exits

Students may exit this course early and apply to graduate with the following award, provided they have satisfied the requirements indicated for that award during their enrolment in this master's course:

  • Bachelor of Psychological Science after successful completion of 144 credit points of study, including all units listed for Parts A and B for the Bachelor of Psychology (Honours).

You may then apply for other fourth-year psychology programs at Monash.

Progression to further studies

To be eligible for provisional registration as a psychologist in Australia you must meet the requirements of the Psychology Board of Australia. The first step to becoming a psychologist is to complete four years of approved study in psychology. This normally comprises a bachelor degree (or graduate diploma) that includes the three-year APAC-accredited sequence of 10 units in psychology, followed by an accredited fourth year course in psychology. The honours year of the Bachelor of Psychology (Honours) provides this fourth year, as does D5002 Graduate Diploma of Professional Psychology and M5003 Graduate Diploma of Psychology Advanced.

In order to be eligible for general registration as a psychologist, a further minimum two years of approved study must be undertaken at master's or doctoral level or alternatively two years of supervised practice.

By satisfying Victorian registration, students will comply with the registration requirements of other states in Australia.