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Semester 1

The Psychology of Conversation (PSYL10175)







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Visiting students must be studying Psychology as their degree major, and have completed at least 3 Psychology courses at grade B or above. We will only consider University/College level courses. There are limited spaces available for visiting students on 3rd/4th year Psychology courses, so please email the CAHSS Visiting Student Office to request your preferred courses and students cannot be guaranteed enrolment on ANY Psychology courses (unless you are nominated to study with us on a Psychology exchange programme, including a Psychology-specific Erasmus exchange). **Please note that all Psychology courses are very high-demand, meaning that they have a very high number of students wishing to enrol in a very limited number of spaces.** Visiting students are advised to bear in mind that enrolment in specific courses can never be guaranteed, and you may need to be flexible in finding alternatives in case your preferred courses have no available space. These enrolments are managed strictly by the Visiting Student Office, in line with the quotas allocated by the department, and all enquiries to enrol in these courses must be made through the CAHSS Visiting Student Office. It is not appropriate for students to contact the department directly to request additional spaces. **This course cannot be taken alongside Psychology 2A or 2B**

Course Summary

The course addresses the question of how people engage in conversation - that is, the nature of the psychological processes that underlie our ability to communicate interactively. It considers such questions as how we build up shared knowledge with our interlocutors, how we make our utterances appropriate for them, and how we manage to take turns without the conversation breaking down. It draws on psycholinguistics, social psychology, the psychology of joint activity, and interactive neuroscience.

Course Description

Students will learn about the psychology of conversation, from a perspective grounded in the study of language processing, but in relation to a social (interactive) context. The course will therefore provide an unusually close integration of psycholinguistics with aspects of social interaction, and will also make reference to cognitive neuroscience, the psychology of memory, theory of mind, aspects of linguistics, and cross-cultural research. Students should appreciate the importance and difficulties involved in studying everyday communication in a rigorous scientific manner, and should learn how the study of conversation is relevant to psychology as a whole. Typical topics covered will include: 1. An interdisciplinary approach to conversation. 2. Conversation as a collaborative activity. 3. Conversation as the alignment of representations. 4. Conversation in groups and across communities. 5. Perspective taking while speaking. 6. Perspective taking while comprehending. 7. Turn-taking: Preparing a response. 8. Turn-taking: Timing articulation. 9. The neuroscience of conversation. 10. Memory for conversation

Assessment Information

Written Exam 70%, Coursework 30%, Practical Exam 0%

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