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PSYC5222 Perception and Cognition Advanced

Graduate Diploma Unit


One Trimester


Graduate Diploma of Psychological Science – AQF Level 8

Credit Points:

6 (out of 54)



Mode(s) of Delivery:





This unit examines biological, environmental, perceptual, and cognitive processes that contribute to our understanding of human behaviour. The unit will provide a historical perspective on psychologists’ explanations of human behaviour as an introduction to current thinking and methods used in psychological research and practice. Psychology, and the study thereof, will be considered in light of the biopsychosocial model – which explains human behaviour to be the result of biological/genetic components, personal individualistic characteristics, and the environment in which the individual grows and lives.

Unit Description

The aim of this unit is to expand the understanding of issues addressed in the introductory psychology units, providing a more in-depth focus on human perception and cognition. Topics to be addressed include perception of chemical senses, touch and the vestibular system, hearing and speech, visual and colour perception, language, attention, working memory, cognitive control, and judgement and decision-making.

Learning Outcomes

On completion of this unit students should be able to:

  • Describe the process by which stimuli are perceived by the senses.
  • Articulate how the stimuli received by the senses result in perception
  • Elaborate on how individuals know about their world, make judgements and solve problems
  • Identify the links between perception, cognition and emotion
  • Demonstrate the ability to apply knowledge to complex problems
  • Demonstrate an advanced understanding of the topics covered

Unit Content

  • Introduction to Perception
  • The Chemical Senses
  • Touch and the Vestibular System
  • Hearing
  • Visual Perception
  • Attention
  • Memory
  • Language
  • Problem Solving and Reasoning
  • Judgement and Decision-Making

Learning and Teaching Process

This unit is taught over 10 weeks and totals approximately 3 student contact hours per week.

Students will participate in teaching and learning activities including:

a)       Recorded Lectures and post-learning activities

b)       Live Tutorials and skill development activities

c)       Formative quizzes 

This unit comprises ten (10) weekly 2.5 hour recorded lectures and nine (9) weekly 1 hour tutorials. The recorded lectures will be made available under the Echo Capture link on the Class Space. All students are provided with secure online access to comprehensive unit learning resources via the Student Class Space (Moodle). 

Study Schedule

N.B. This unit is at a higher level than that taken by the Bachelor’s degree students, and therefore students will be expected to adopt a critical and evaluative position on the topics and be ready to engage with the tutor at an advanced level.

Assessment Summary

Assessment information provided at the commencement of the unit in the online class space

Recommended Text(s)

For more information regarding recommended texts for specific units, please see the Psychological Sciences Textbook List.

Academic Misconduct

Ethical conduct and academic integrity and honesty are fundamental to the mission of ACAP. Academic misconduct will not be tolerated by the college. This includes plagiarism of any nature. It is your responsibility to make sure that you understand what constitutes plagiarism in order to ensure that you do not engage in it. Please refer to the full details of the Academic Misconduct Policy.

Parallel teaching statement

This unit involves parallel teaching. In order to ensure the required coverage of psychology and meet the Australian Psychology Accreditation Council Standards, students enrolled in this unit will attend the same lectures as undergraduate students enrolled in the second and third years of the psychology sequence. To ensure learning at the appropriate level, however, students enrolled in this unit will attend separate laboratory and/or tutorial sessions from the undergraduate students. These sessions, rather than focusing on reinforcing the learning of material presented in lectures, are designed to extend this learning in more depth and at an advanced level. This will involve students preparing for these sessions by reading more advanced material. Assessment tasks also differ from the parallel undergraduate unit to ensure students are able to demonstrate the higher level of learning that is required for successful completion of the unit.


This unit outline may be updated and amended from time to time. To ensure you have the correct outline please check it again at the beginning of trimester on the online class space.