Psychology Teaching at the University of Westminster, London, United Kingdom

Dewart, Hazel
Snelgar, Rosie
University of Westminster,
London, UK

This paper will discuss the teaching of Psychology degrees at the University of Westminster, London, United Kingdom. Nationally the undergraduate curriculum is guided by the accreditation requirements of the British Psychology Society (BPS). The BPS has two levels of accreditation, Graduate Membership and the Graduate Basis for Registration. For Graduate Membership, it is necessary that 50% of the degree be in psychology. For the Graduate Basis for Registration, courses need also to cover the topics of the BPS qualifying examination: cognitive, individual differences, social, developmental, the biological foundation of behaviour, research methods and a practical component. At the University of Westminster, our courses have both Graduate Membership status and the Graduate Basis for Registration. A major feature of our provision is that we provide the opportunity for students to study part-time and in the evening as well as in the day. This flexibility allows students to combine careers and family commitments with life-long learning. In addition to the topics required by the BPS, we offer at undergraduate level, a wide variety of specialist areas including: critical social psychology, psychology of women, psychology of education, neuropsychology, psychopharmacology, counselling, business, forensic, health, internet psychology and the psychology of prejudice. To accommodate this wide curriculum and variety of student profile, teaching and assessment methods are diverse. Teaching methods include lectures, seminars, workshops, practicals, tutorials, IT based exercises, work experience, and self-directed learning. Assessment methods include: traditional examinations, group and individual presentations, multiple-choice methods, practical tests, essays, critical reviews and laboratory reports.