Introduction to Research Methods
In a nutshell
Language plays a role in most human activities. It influences how we think about the world and it has an impact on how we communicate with others. Psychology focuses on human behaviour, covering topics such as how we develop, how we interact with others, and how we process information.
This course combines the study of English language with the study of the human mind. You will explore the nature, acquisition, origins, and use of the English language and learn how this links to human development and the acquisition of skills.
This course has an emphasis on applying theory to practice and will prepare you for a wide range of careers including teaching, speech and language therapy, advertising, and media and communications.
- Gain an in-depth knowledge of a wide range of psychological concepts and will be able to use these to analyse English language from a variety of perspectives
- Learn valuable research skills including quantitative and qualitative methods
- Be able to undertake an independent research study, utilising your research skills
This is for you if...
You are interested in how English language links to human behaviour
You are curious about the range of human behaviours
You are intrigued with how we learn language
You have a desire to explore all areas of psychology
You want to develop your research and communication skills
You are interested in a career in an area such as teaching, speech therapy, journalism or advertising
All about the course
The first year of your course will give you an introduction to the core areas of psychology: biological, cognitive, developmental, social, and individual differences, and you will study research methods in depth. It will also provide you with a foundation in English Language and demonstrate the importance of psychology to language, and the interaction between the two.
In the second year, you will learn about the different aspects of psychology in more depth and you will start to tailor your degree by selecting from a range of English language modules.
In the final year, you will complete an independent research project on a subject of your choice, enabling you to combine your interests in psychology and English language. You will also have the opportunity to choose from a range of optional modules in both psychology and English language, so that you can explore those topics that most interest you.
Find out more about the team and what we do on our blog and Twitter account:
This module is an introduction to statistics and research methods used in psychology and related fields, including the conversation analysis. This module will give you the skills you need to conduct your own research projects, as well as interpret the research papers you read over the course of your degree.
Introduction to Developmental and Social Psychology
You will be introduced to key factors in human development including social, emotional, cognitive and biological foundation, as well as how children learn to talk. Within social psychology you will look at how individuals perceive, influence and interact with others, including through verbal and non-verbal communication.
Introduction to Individual Differences
This module introduces the study of personality, intelligence, gender and mental health. Understanding these differences can be applied later in your studies to understand, for example, why some children learn language faster than others, or why men’s and women’s language use is sometimes so different.
Introduction to Biological and Cognitive Psychology
You will be introduced to the basic biological processes and cognitive principles necessary for understanding human psychology. Language is a key cognitive skill, and this module covers topics such as reading and listening, automatic word identification, resolving linguistic ambiguities, and aphasia.
Foundations of Language I
This module is a basic introduction to the grammatical properties and sound patterns of English. It starts with the description of speech sounds, it moves to the study of word structure, and it ends with a description of the basic architecture of sentences in the language and develop the ability to discuss language in relation to its historical and social contexts.
Psychology of Language
This module will introduce you to the psychological underpinnings of language acquisition, comprehension and production. You will gain hands-on experience of experimental methods and develop an understanding of the mental processes and representations involved in learning and using language.
Further Research Methods
This module extends quantitative and qualitative research methods training to more complex designs and forms of analysis. You will build on the skills developed in year one; designing, carrying out research, and analysing your results. You will also spend time looking at discourse and discursive analysis for analysing speech.
Further Biopsychology and Cognition
You will explore the links between biological and cognitive processes and examine how this relationship influences performance in real-world contexts. You will also go into more depth in topics such as language and thought, reading, understanding language, and speech production.
Building on study of this area in the first year, the module invites you to explore the latest theories and research into personality and intelligence, gender differences and mental health. Understanding individual differences will enable you to think about differences in language use and language acquisition.
Developmental and Social Psychology
This module covers the influences of nature and nurture on human development, including exploring how these influence children’s communicative and language development. You will gain practical experience of conducting social psychological research, and examine the implications of research for education, policy, and clinical practice.
Optional modules - choose two from:
Corpus Approaches to Language
The British National Corpus is a vast collection of over 4,000 English texts, providing a unique record of contemporary spoken and written English. In this module you will gain hands-on experience in using this and other computer-based corpora of English to answer questions about language structure and use.
History and Diversity in English
You will be introduced to key periods in the history of the English language and characteristic features of the language in these periods. You will explore language change with reference to the different levels of language and regional variation and change in English dialects.
Children master the basics of their first language without formal instruction from a very early age. How do they do it? What exactly do they learn? What stages do they go through? You will examine the answers to questions like these by studying the cognitive mechanisms behind the acquisition process.
Sounds of English
The sound system of English is organised by subconscious principles that shape the content of speech sounds and their patterns of occurrence. This module introduces you to the sounds of speech, syllable structure and word stress in English. You will learn how to describe and classify consonants and vowels, transcribe speech sounds, and identify and analyse syllable structure and word stress.
Attitudes to English
This module will trace the origins and development of prescriptive attitudes and linguistic insecurity, and the extent to which these ideas are relevant to contemporary users of English. Topics include received pronunciation, grammar and ‘morality’, and politically correct language.
Structure of English
Starting from an investigation of a wide range of grammatical phenomena and constructions in modern standard English, you will develop a firm grounding in the analysis of the structure of English sentences. You will learn how to analyse and think critically about data, how to formulate rules and hypotheses, and how to test them.
Key Concepts and Skills in TESOL
This module introduces you to key concepts underlying TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages) methodology. You will become familiar with the basic approaches, materials and procedures and the principles of lesson planning and classroom management.
Language in Society
This module will introduce you to the intricate relationship between language use and aspects of social structure. Building on the work done in previous modules, you will examine the role of linguistic variation in the negotiation and construction of individual and group identity. Topics studied include multilingualism, bilingualism, language contact and language change.
Truth and Meaning
How can we understand the meaning of sentences we have never heard before? You will examine the role that truth plays in the study of meaning, and learn how to analyse the meaning of English words and sentences. The module will also prepare you to seek answers to further questions about meaning in English.
You will carry out a research project on a topic of your interest, which may include aspects of English language as well as psychology. Recent dissertation topics have included the influence of parent-child interaction on child language acquisition, and the relationship between bilingualism and social anxiety. The range of skills you develop as you navigate the process of research design, completing an ethics form, recruiting participants and carrying out your research, performing appropriate analysis and writing up your work, will be invaluable in all workplaces.
Optional modules (psychology) - choose two from:
A practitioner based module which will provide you with a tour of relevant theories and topics (including stress, selection techniques and change at work), as well as an assessment opportunity to apply these in real-world settings, including your own experience in the workplace.
Brain and Behaviour
This module examines in detail the relationships between behaviour and the nervous system. You will explore these relationships through the consideration of key topics in the field of neuroscience including learning, psychopharmacology, brain damage, aphasia/alexia, organic brain disorder, and mental health.
Develops your understanding of the relevance of psychology to education and provides opportunities to apply psychological theory and principles in the field of education and professional practice.
The Psychology of Mental Health
You will explore conceptualisations of mental health, explanations of mental health, legal and social ramifications of mental ill health, the range of conditions treated within psychiatry, and therapeutic modalities and agencies. You will also think about the language used in the field, such as the shift from talking about ‘abnormal psychology’ to less stigmatising terms, and also the linguistic origins of the terms used to describe mental health conditions.
Effective and Affective Thinking and Processing
During this module, you will learn to apply theories and methodologies from cognitive psychology to real-world behaviour. You will explore the influence of emotional processing on human cognition and performance and reflect on the optimal conditions for thinking and decision-making.
Psychology of Ageing
Explore positive models of ageing and lifespan development in the 21st Century including: identity, physical and mental health, and the psycho-social implications of ageing.
The Psychology of Extreme Violence
The psychology of serial homicide, mass shooting, and terrorism. The module also explores the neurodevelopmental and psychosocial risk factors in serial killers and mass shooters, the pathway to intended violence in such extreme cases of violence and the neuropsychodynamics of individuals who commit serial homicide and single homicide.
An applied module which will introduce you to offender profiling, lie detection techniques and psychological theories of criminal behaviour; guest speakers have includes a serving chief investigating officer, a forensic psychologist and a probation officer.
Psychology and Health
This module aims to introduce you to the concepts, theory, methods and applications of health psychology. It is concerned with the psychological aspects of physical illness, their treatment and management, and includes what it is that keeps people healthy and well.
Psychology of Global Issues in the 21st Century
A new module which considers the role of psychology in a global context. You will have the opportunity to use your psychological knowledge to explore the issues of the day.
Workplace Psychology Placement
You will complete a work placement where you will get the opportunity to put what you have learnt on the course into practice. This can be in a setting of your choice, e.g. a school, a media organisation, an advertising firm, or a clinical setting such as assisting a speech and language therapist.
This module explores the effects that exposure to media has on people, as well as how people process information from media. It looks at advertisement, persuasion, news journalism, social media and internet use, including the use of metaphors in the media. It also covers conversation analysis and discursive psychology.
Child Language Development
This module will develop your knowledge of how children learn language, from sounds, words and grammar, to the complexities of human communication. You will explore data from real children to increase your understanding and test out the theories discussed in class.
Atypical Child Development
This module explores what it’s like for children growing up with various conditions like autism spectrum disorder, Down’s syndrome, deafness, and developmental language disorder, and well as the impact on development of growing up in adverse environments such as poverty.
Optional modules (English language) - choose two from:
Contemporary Trends in the Study of Language
This is a ‘hybrid’ module that builds on concepts, theories and methods you have studied in your degree programme, further developing your knowledge of the latest research in English language and linguistic inquiry. Some of the themes you will study are the following: The relation between language and thought; language and its relation to other systems of the mind; atypical language development. You will also be introduced some of the most important theoretical debates in the study of language in the 20th and 21st century such as the contrast between Chomskyan linguistics and earlier Structuralist and Behaviourist approaches, and the contrast between formalism and functionalism.
Language and Communication
How does communication work? In this module you will examine key aspects of communication which result from the interaction of linguistic meaning, context and principles of human cognition. You will study how language is used in context by analysing data drawn from your own experience in communication.
Current Issues in Pragmatics
You will examine issues of current relevance in the study of language use from the interdisciplinary perspective of psychology, linguistics and the philosophy of language, such as the relationship between explicit and implicit aspects of communication or the interpretation of figurative language.
The Grammar of Words
Words play an integral part in our ability to use language creatively. This module is a detailed introduction to the study of words. You will explore the processes of word formation in the language and the rules governing the internal structure of English words.
How does the brain transform thoughts into speech? How can we process the language we hear so effortlessly? You will examine the psycholinguistic models that aim to explain our unique ability to produce and understand speech, and to communicate through language.
What does it mean to be ‘northern’? Where is the north and where does it begin and end? Using both archive and contemporary recordings of northern speech, this research-based module will enable you to carry out a project on an aspect of northern identity as expressed through language in the interactional and media domains.
Critical Issues in TESOL
You will develop an understanding of the global context of English language teaching and of the approaches, materials, and techniques of English language teaching to non-native speakers. You will be introduced to language learning needs analysis and develop the ability to plan and manage sequences of English language lessons.
The Language of Names
Names are all around us, and this module explores the linguistic structure, history, development and political significance of names and naming, focusing on the UK but with reference to other countries as well. You will have an opportunity to examine the names of people and places in real life and in literary and other creative contexts.
Please note that it may not be possible to deliver the full list of options every year as this will depend on factors such as how many students choose a particular option. Exact modules may also vary in order to keep content current. When accepting your offer of a place to study on this programme, you should be aware that not all optional modules will be running each year. Your tutor will be able to advise you as to the available options on or before the start of the programme. Whilst the University tries to ensure that you are able to undertake your preferred options, it cannot guarantee this.
What will I be Doing?
Reports and essays
This course is delivered by staff from English language and from psychology and the team are research active and have been recognized at national and international levels for their research. You will be supported by expert lecturers with a range of specialisms. Members of the team have appeared on national television and radio, and many of them have been nominated for the University of Salford teaching awards.
We aim to engage with students in a variety of ways, including through the use of technology with the SalfordPsych blog, and the @SalfordPsych and @EngLang_Salford Twitter feed. The team are proud of the quality of courses we deliver and are committed to providing stimulating and rewarding opportunities to study psychology with language.
This course is delivered through a combination of:
- Lectures: Presentations or talks on a particular topic
- Seminars: Discussions or classroom sessions focusing on a particular topic or project
- Tutorials: Meetings involving one-to-one or small group supervision, feedback or detailed discussion on a particular topic or project
- Dissertation supervision: Meetings with a supervisor to discuss your research
- Practical classes and workshops: Sessions involving the development and practical application of a particular skill or technique
- External visits: Visits to a location outside of the usual learning spaces, to experience a particular environment, event, or exhibition relevant to the course of study.
You will be assessed through a variety of different methods, including:
- Research reports
School of Health and Society
We are focused on enhancing the health and wellbeing of patients, service users and athletes and our commitment to public involvement help us retain our strong focus on real-world issues.
You will have access to dedicated psychology laboratory cubicles, private interview rooms, and a dedicated social learning space. You will also be able to carry out a range of psychological experiments using:
- An observation suite with a two-way mirror, to study human interaction
- A video game analysis laboratory where you can analyse the psychological and physiological effects of interacting with different media
- Desk-mounted and remote eye-trackers to monitor conscious and unconscious gaze in a range of tasks and situations, including reading and speech processing
- A brand new cognitive neuroscience laboratory including fNIRS, TMS, EEG, and VR equipment, so you can study what is happening inside the brain as people take part in different activities
In addition, the English language modules will primarily be taught within the New Adelphi building, home to the School of Arts and Media. You will have access to state-of-the-art facilities including a theatre, performance and rehearsal spaces, photography and recording studios, café areas, computer suites, and a roof terrace.
What about after uni?
By studying two complementary yet diverse disciplines together, you will gain the skills required to work in a wide range of settings. The course is targeted towards the needs of employers, and possible career options include teaching in the UK or abroad, business and management, speech and language therapy, journalism, marketing, and research.
You can also further your studies with a postgraduate qualification and may specialise in areas such as educational psychology, clinical psychology, or occupational psychology.
The University's careers and employability staff work across campus throughout the year to provide students with access to useful resources. You can ask questions at drop-in sessions, get expert help with your CV and job applications, and more.
This course responds to the needs of industry in developing subject expertise and transferable skills appropriate to a wide range of careers.
The psychology team has links with the British Psychological Society, and consult with a range of external partners on topics such as child development, media and politics. This informs the teaching on the course, and students will gain insight from industry experts who deliver guest lectures on the programme.
The English team has close associations with industry and professional bodies such as:
- The BBC and ITV
- The International Anthony Burgess Foundation
- The Working Class Library Museum
- The Imperial War Museum North
- The Royal Exchange Theatre, Manchester
- The Octagon Theatre, Bolton
- Oxford University Press
- The Linguistics Association of Great Britain
- The Linguistic Society of America
- The British Library
- The National Library of Scotland
- Scottish Language Dictionaries
- The Scottish Parliament
There are also employability-linked opportunities with a large number of primary and secondary schools, enabling vital experience for would-be teachers.
What You Need To Know
This course is ideal for anyone who is interested in the use of language, particularly English language, and how this links to human behaviour. We are looking for students who have an aptitude for research and a desire to use the discipline of psychology to explore the English language. Your application should demonstrate an understanding of psychology and English, you will have strong written skills, and you will have the motivation to discover a range of human behaviours.
ENGLISH LANGUAGE REQUIREMENTS
International applicants will be required to show proficiency in English. An IELTS score of 6.0, with no element below 5.5, is proof of this.
Please note: The entry criteria below are related to entry onto this course in the 2020/2021 academic year. If you’re interested in a future intake year, please check the course entry on UCAS.
Five GCSE subjects at grade C/grade 4 or above preferred. Must include GCSE English language and mathematics at grade C/ grade 4.
You must fulfil our GCSE entry requirements as well as one of the requirements listed below.
UCAS tariff points
BTEC National Diploma
60% pass mark
Access to HE
112 points BBBCC
Irish Leaving Certificate
Pass in Diploma of at least 65%
Salford Alternative Entry Scheme (SAES)
We welcome applications from those who may not meet the stated entry criteria but who can demonstrate their ability to pursue the course successfully. Once we have received your application we will assess it and recommend it for SAES if you are an eligible candidate.
There are two different routes through the Salford Alternative Entry Scheme and applicants will be directed to the one appropriate for their course. Assessment will either be through a review of prior learning or through a formal test.
|Type of study||Year||Fees|
|Full-time home/EU||2020/21||£9,250per year|
|Full-time international||2020/21||£15,240per year|
You should also consider further costs which may include books, stationery, printing, binding and general subsistence on trips and visits.
Scholarships for international students 2020/21
If you are a high-achieving international student, you may be eligible for one of our international scholarships worth up to £5,000. Our international scholarships include the Salford International Excellence Scholarship.
For more information go to International Scholarships.
All Set? Let's Apply
Course ID C804