Study Experimental Psychology with our Oxford Summer School 2017 | Students aged 16-18

Also available for students aged 13-15.

Class Summary

Experimental Psychologists have addressed some of the most intriguing questions of life: What makes you you? What makes you different from other people? Is there always a clear difference between Good and Evil? This class provides students with the opportunity to study, discuss and debate these alongside a wide range of other fascinating and controversial issues.

This course will cover some of the most fundamental psychological concepts and introduce some of the most influential theorists. Students are encouraged to evaluate the material critically, to engage in discussion and debate, to gain insight into their own personalities and development and to relate the material to their own lives and experiences. Topics will be explored through a combination of structured teaching, varied activities and exercises, class discussion, and video sessions.

Students get the chance to engage with the discipline on a practical level too, designing their own lab-based experiment in small groups. This may be on any research topic that students think might be particularly interesting; there may be a question they have always pondered or a theory they would like to put to the test. This task enables students to learn about the process and practicalities of conducting psychology research, including writing a full psychological report. Students also undertake research on a topic of their own choice, before presenting their findings to the class the form of an oral presentation.

During the two-week course, students learn about the fundamental concepts of experimental psychology. They come to understand the multi-faceted nature of the discipline, and familiarise themselves with some of the major issues and debates in experimental research. They will learn practical skills, in exploring the basics of several different research methodologies, and will practise critically evaluating experimental research presented in the media. Furthermore, they look at famous psychological experiments, note their ethical issues and implications, and evaluate them in light of these shortcomings.

Students also become acquainted with the format of university tutorials – a useful part of the course for any student hoping to study at a British university in future – by reading original research articles and discussing these in a classroom setting.

Expectations/Prerequisites

All that is required from students is an enthusiasm for Psychology and a keen approach to collaborative work. Students who have studied Psychology before will benefit from the range of topics covered, and will have the opportunity to pass on their own knowledge during class activities and discussions.