PSY2042 - Personality and social psychology - 2018

6 points, SCA Band 1, 0.125 EFTSL

Undergraduate - Unit

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


Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences

Organisational Unit

School of Psychological Sciences

Chief examiner(s)

Dr Anne-Marie Ternes


Mr Jake Hoskin (Australia)
Dr Karim Bettache (Malaysia)

Unit guides




  • Second semester 2018 (Off-campus)
  • Second semester 2018 (On-campus)


  • Second semester 2018 (On-campus)


PSY1011 and PSY1022.


This unit explores key concepts in social psychology and personality theory, including the history and philosophy of, and evidence for, competing theories. Personality theories that are covered include: 1) psychodynamic theories of Freud and Jung; 2) phenomenological theories of Kelly and Rogers; 3) Eysenck's trait approach; 4) Costa and McCrae's five factor model; and, 5) Bandura's social learning theory. Social psychology concepts that will be covered include: 1) social cognition and influence; 2) social identity and attribution; 3) group dynamics and intergroup behaviour; 4) attitude and attitude change; and, 5) attraction and aggression. In each case, these theories will be applied and critiqued in light of contemporary evidence. Lectures and laboratory classes will help students to apply psychological concepts, and gain an understanding of how personality and social psychology influences individual and interpersonal behaviour.


Upon successful completion of this unit, students should be able to:

  1. Critically evaluate, compare, and explain the origins and underlying assumptions of the personality theories of Freud, Jung, Eysenck, Costa and McCrae, Bandura, Kelly, and Rogers;
  2. Summarise, critically analyse, and evaluate the major theoretical and research approaches within the field of social psychology;
  3. Compare and contrast historical and current theory on social processes, and relate these to both individual factors and interpersonal relationships;
  4. Apply social psychology theories to a range of contemporary social questions, including belonging, identity, attraction, aggression, conflict and negotiation; and;
  5. Examine the practical applications and experimental procedures associated with the above social psychology and personality theories.


  • Examination (MCQ) (2 hours) (45%) (hurdle)
  • Laboratory assignment (2,500 words) (35%)
  • Class presentation (3 minutes) (20%)

In accordance with Faculty assessment policy, students must achieve at least 45% on the exam to pass the unit.

Workload requirements

Lecture attendance: 2 hours per week;

Lab attendance: 2 hours per fortnight;

Discussion forum activity: 2 hours per fortnight (alternating with lab attendance)

Preparation: 8 hours background reading/preparation for lectures, tutorials, and assessment tasks per week.

Attendance at labs/tutorials is required in order to successfully complete in-class activities and related assessment tasks.

See also Unit timetable information

Off-campus attendance requirements

Tutorials are online for off-campus students.

This unit applies to the following area(s) of study

Additional information on this unit is available from the faculty at: