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Session: 2022/23

Last modified: 20/01/2023 09:55:37

Title of Module: PS: Understanding Self & Society

Code: PARA07005 SCQF Level: 7
(Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework)
Credit Points: 20 ECTS: 10
(European Credit Transfer Scheme)
School:School of Health and Life Sciences
Module Co-ordinator:Allan  Donnell

Summary of Module

This module explores the contribution of sociology and psychology to the understanding of human development, across the lifespan. It focuses both on the student's own development and on the broader aspects of the determinants of health and illness within a range of social and cultural contexts.  

The module also explores conceptualisations of mental health to provide students with an underpinning knowledge of a range of interventions used in the provision of mental health care. Biological, behavioural, cognitive, humanistic and socio-cultural models of mental health will be examined. The concept of the therapeutic use of self is introduced and, through simulated practice and reflection on their own health related behaviours explores how they may help others to adopt a healthy lifestyle.  

  • The module comprises 7 weeks of campus based and eLearning activities followed by a review session towards the end of the first term, aiming to provide an opportunity to begin to examine concepts such as personhood, identity, culture and the social construction of reality.  


  • The module begins with an examination of the self and looks at the factors that shape each of our personalities. The self in society is examined and an exploration of cultural and social determinants of self will encourage the student to study the individual and communities both subjectively through reflection and the use of narrative and objectively through examination of data.   


Skills will be developed through simulation.   

Module Delivery Method
Face-To-FaceBlendedFully OnlineHybridCHybridOWork-based Learning
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Term used to describe the traditional classroom environment where the students and the lecturer meet synchronously in the same room for the whole provision.

A mode of delivery of a module or a programme that involves online and face-to-face delivery of learning, teaching and assessment activities, student support and feedback. A programme may be considered “blended” if it includes a combination of face-to-face, online and blended modules. If an online programme has any compulsory face-to-face and campus elements it must be described as blended with clearly articulated delivery information to manage student expectations

Fully Online
Instruction that is solely delivered by web-based or internet-based technologies. This term is used to describe the previously used terms distance learning and e learning.

Online with mandatory face-to-face learning on Campus

Online with optional face-to-face learning on Campus

Work-based Learning
Learning activities where the main location for the learning experience is in the workplace.

Campus(es) for Module Delivery
The module will normally be offered on the following campuses / or by Distance/Online Learning: (Provided viable student numbers permit)
Paisley:Ayr:Dumfries:Lanarkshire:London:Distance/Online Learning:Other:




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Term(s) for Module Delivery
(Provided viable student numbers permit).
Term 1check markTerm 2


Term 3


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Learning Outcomes: (maximum of 5 statements)

On successful completion of this module the student will be able to:

L1. Outline the main sociological and psychological theories in relation to the understanding of human development and mental well being.

L2. Demonstrate foundational knowledge of conceptualisations of mental health and illness based on these theories.

L3. Demonstrate self-awareness and empathy in clinical contexts through peer review and skills simulation.

L4. Demonstrate understanding of the demands and impacts of professional practice on self and sources of support to manage development and resilience.

Employability Skills and Personal Development Planning (PDP) Skills
SCQF Headings During completion of this module, there will be an opportunity to achieve core skills in:
Knowledge and Understanding (K and U) SCQF Level 7.

Understanding the development of psychology and sociology as disciplines.

Understanding different models and approaches used to explore human behaviour (behavioural, cognitive, psychodynamic, humanistic models).

Developmental psychology including social and emotional development and personality development.

Understanding sociological concepts including social stratification, role theory, deviance, and stigma.

The role of art and literature in understanding personhood.

Practice: Applied Knowledge and Understanding SCQF Level 7.

Applying key sociological and psychological theories to an understanding of one's own identity and personality development.

Developing self-awareness and reflective skills to enhance personal development.

Demonstrating empathic responses to promote therapeutic relationships and the therapeutic use of self.

Generic Cognitive skills SCQF Level 7.

Developing skills of self-awareness and reflection to clarify personal values and beliefs that may affect care.

Developing self-confidence and self-awareness of strengths to be able to enhance the therapeutic relationship.

Communication, ICT and Numeracy Skills SCQF Level 7.

Presenting and evaluating the information and ideas discussed within the module to a variety of audiences and in a range of settings.

Understanding numerical and graphical information when examining evidence.

Developing IT skills to support learning and professional practice.

Autonomy, Accountability and Working with others SCQF Level 7.

Exercising autonomy, initiative and accountability in relation to personal and professional development.

Take responsibility for the evaluation of the work of self and others in defined areas of work and provide constructive feedback to colleagues.

Demonstrating knowledge of a range of professional, ethical and legal considerations which inform professional practice.

Work collaboratively and cooperatively with a range of people to examine self and others.

Pre-requisites: Before undertaking this module the student should have undertaken the following:
Module Code:
Module Title:
Co-requisitesModule Code:
Module Title:

* Indicates that module descriptor is not published.

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Learning and Teaching
A variety of learning and teaching methods will be used to facilitate achievement of the learning outcomes. Modified lectures introduce students to key concepts and open up key areas for further exploration and development. Learning is enhanced through the use of self-reflection, peer evaluation and role rehearsal supported by simulation technology where appropriate. Extensive and structured e-learning activities will enable students to prepare for practice and develop their critical understanding. Group-work will be an important aspect of the workshops where paramedic students will work together in a safe and supported environment to rehearse the skills required of this specific professional group.

In addition, students will be required to carry out independent learning
The learning and teaching strategies on this module contribute to the development of UWS graduate attributes:
• Universal: Ethically minded, research-minded, collaborative
• Work-ready: Knowledgeable, motivated
• Successful: Creative, driven
Learning Activities
During completion of this module, the learning activities undertaken to achieve the module learning outcomes are stated below:
Student Learning Hours
(Normally totalling 200 hours):
(Note: Learning hours include both contact hours and hours spent on other learning activities)
Lecture/Core Content Delivery6
Tutorial/Synchronous Support Activity12
Laboratory/Practical Demonstration/Workshop12
Personal Development Plan6
Asynchronous Class Activity18
Independent Study146
200 Hours Total

**Indicative Resources: (eg. Core text, journals, internet access)

The following materials form essential underpinning for the module content and ultimately for the learning outcomes:

Barry, A. and Yuill, C. (2016) Understanding the Sociology of Health. An Introduction. 4th ed. London: Sage Publications.

Gross, R. and Kinnison. (2014) Psychology for Nurses and Health Professionals. 2nd ed. London: Taylor Francis Group.

Macionis, J. (2015) Sociology: a global introduction. [Online] Available: [Accessed: 13 February 2017

Punch, S., Harden, J., Marsh, I. and Keating, M. (2013) Sociology: Making Sense of Society. 5th ed. [Online] Available: [Accessed: 13 February 2017].

Walker, J. (2012) Psychology for Nurses and the Caring Professions. [Online] Available: [Accessed: 13 February 2017].

Gubbins, K.; Lillyman, S.; Ghave, T. (2012) Reflection for Paramedics in University and Beyond. 2nd Edition. London, New Vista Publications.

(**N.B. Although reading lists should include current publications, students are advised (particularly for material marked with an asterisk*) to wait until the start of session for confirmation of the most up-to-date material)

Engagement Requirements

In line with the Academic Engagement Procedure, Students are defined as academically engaged if they are regularly engaged with timetabled teaching sessions, course-related learning resources including those in the Library and on the relevant learning platform, and complete assessments and submit these on time. Please refer to the Academic Engagement Procedure at the following link: Academic engagement procedure

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Supplemental Information

Programme BoardBiological Sciences and Health
Assessment Results (Pass/Fail) No
Subject PanelHealth L7-11
ModeratorGarry Collins
External ExaminerM Willis
Accreditation DetailsHCPC
Version Number


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Assessment: (also refer to Assessment Outcomes Grids below)
Students will provide a reflective exploration, reflecting on psychological and social factors which have influenced their personal and professional growth. (60%)
Group presentation on a topic or concept from the module outlining its relevance to mental health practice (40%)
(N.B. (i) Assessment Outcomes Grids for the module (one for each component) can be found below which clearly demonstrate how the learning outcomes of the module will be assessed.
(ii) An indicative schedule listing approximate times within the academic calendar when assessment is likely to feature will be provided within the Student Handbook.)

Assessment Outcome Grids (Footnote A.)

Component 1
Assessment Type (Footnote B.) Learning Outcome (1) Learning Outcome (2) Learning Outcome (3) Learning Outcome (4) Weighting (%) of Assessment ElementTimetabled Contact Hours
Essaycheck mark check mark 600

Component 2
Assessment Type (Footnote B.) Learning Outcome (1) Learning Outcome (2) Learning Outcome (3) Learning Outcome (4) Weighting (%) of Assessment ElementTimetabled Contact Hours
Presentation check mark check mark401
Combined Total For All Components100% 1 hours

A. Referred to within Assessment Section above
B. Identified in the Learning Outcome Section above

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  1. More than one assessment method can be used to assess individual learning outcomes.
  2. Schools are responsible for determining student contact hours. Please refer to University Policy on contact hours (extract contained within section 10 of the Module Descriptor guidance note).
    This will normally be variable across Schools, dependent on Programmes &/or Professional requirements.

Equality and Diversity

UWS Equality and Diversity Policy
(N.B. Every effort will be made by the University to accommodate any equality and diversity issues brought to the attention of the School)

2014 University of the West of Scotland

University of the West of Scotland is a Registered Scottish Charity.

Charity number SC002520.