PSY4401 - Psychology research project: Statistics and research design for professional psychology - 2019

6 points, SCA Band 1, 0.125 EFTSL

Postgraduate - 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 Stephen McKenzie


Dr Janelle Levesque

Unit guides


Monash Online

  • Teaching Period 1 2019 (Online)
  • Teaching Period 3 2019 (Online)
  • Teaching Period 5 2019 (Online)


Completed Bachelor's Degree and a major sequence in psychology approved by the Australian Psychological Society, or qualification assessed as equivalent by the Australian Psychological Society, with a distinction average (70%) for third year psychology units.


Must be enrolled in Graduate Diploma of Psychology Advanced (M5003)


PSY4001, PSY4002, PSY4011, PSY4012, PSY4021, PSY4022, PSY4100 and PSY4210


Students are required to finalise the Monash University Human Research Ethics Committee (MUHREC) application and receive approval from MUHREC prior to commencement of enrolment in PSY4403.


The aim of this unit is to provide students with a thorough understanding of statistical concepts to enable them to be informed in their chosen field. The unit begins with a review of univariate statistics and introduction to the philosophy of research design and analysis. More advanced statistical techniques are then systematically introduced. There is a focus on the understanding of the issues that may arise around the choice of appropriate statistical technique and preparation of data; critiquing decisions made to assist in the interpretation of findings. The content will be set in a context of the needs of professional psychologists and researchers whose interests present unusual methodological demands, which in turn may influence choices in research approach and statistical technique.


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

  1. Describe a range of methodological and philosophical principles in research design, analysis and interpretation;
  2. Describe, apply and evaluate research designs and analyses used by psychologists;
  3. Apply scientific research principles to data in practice;
  4. Critique data with a view to preparation, analysis and interpretation;
  5. Operate SPSS to analyse data for analysis;
  6. Critique and record decisions made in the process of research examples distinguishing between fact and inference in sets of analyses.


  • Essay (1,500 words) (30%)
  • Lab report (2,000 words) (40%) (hurdle)
  • 6 x Secure multiple choice quizzes (20 minutes each) (30% total)

Workload requirements

Students should expect to spend an average of 20-25 hours per week per unit. Broadly, this time will cover:

Video materials (2hrs)

Synchronous & asynchronous discussion (2hrs)

Synchronous web-based 'class-time' for skills-based activities (2hrs)

Weekly readings (4-6hrs)

Weekly skills-based assessment (4-6hrs, including formative assessment)

Knowledge-based assessment (4-5hrs, including revision)

See also Unit timetable information

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