PSYC333-23S1 (C) Semester One 2023

Biological Psychology

30 points

Start Date: Monday, 20 February 2023
End Date: Sunday, 25 June 2023
Withdrawal Dates
Last Day to withdraw from this course:
  • Without financial penalty (full fee refund): Sunday, 5 March 2023
  • Without academic penalty (including no fee refund): Sunday, 14 May 2023


Neural and biochemical bases of behaviour including topics in behavioural pharmacology, behavioural neuroscience, and neuropsychology. Laboratory classes cover basic brain structure and function.

This course addresses some of the neural and biochemical bases of behaviour and cognition (higher mental activity) including topics in neuropsychology, behavioural neuroscience and behavioural pharmacology. It concerns the relationships between brain and behaviour, including higher mental activity. It includes evidence from both humans and animals.  The principal aim is to give students a sound experience of the interplay between neural and psychological processes.  The subject falls within the broader realm of neuroscience, an increasingly multidisciplinary area of scientific research that is advancing at an ever-accelerating pace. Psychologists make important contributions to neuroscience. Selected examples of these contributions will be provided in this course.

Learning Outcomes

At the end of the course, students should:
1. Know the basics of neuroscience in terms of neural function and neural processes.
2. Be familiar with the geography and primary brain regions of the mammalian brain.
3. Be familiar with some neuroscience methods in animals and in humans, including brain imaging.
4. Understand the psychopharmacological effects of some drugs, including some of those influencing addiction and early neurodevelopment.
5. Understand a selection of neuropsychological issues, including memory impairment and neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease.


PSYC206. RP: 15 further points from PSYC200/300.

Recommended Preparation

15 further points from PSYC200/300.

Timetable Note

Students are expected to attend ALL lectures: Mon 3-4pm; Tues 2-3pm; Thurs 11-12pm.

Course Coordinator

John Dalrymple-Alford


Anna Mitchell

Guest Lecturer

Dr Tracy Melzer (NZBRI, MRI manager)


Assessment Due Date Percentage 
50-minute Test on Lab material 10%
Mid-course Lecture Material Test (2 hours) 45%
Final Examination 45%

Textbooks / Resources

Students are expected to have familiarity with some sections (to be advised in class) of the textbook, Carlson, N. Physiology of Behavior (12th or 11th edition; previous editions will be relevant also). Note that beyond introductory chapters this text is not closely followed; in most cases, lecture handouts and/or extra material will instead cover the topic in question.

Course links

Library portal

Indicative Fees

Domestic fee $1,833.00

International fee $9,500.00

* All fees are inclusive of NZ GST or any equivalent overseas tax, and do not include any programme level discount or additional course-related expenses.

For further information see School of Psychology, Speech and Hearing .

All PSYC333 Occurrences

  • PSYC333-23S1 (C) Semester One 2023