PE7028 - Individual Differences

What will I learn on this module?

In this module you will have the opportunity to learn about psychological approaches to intelligence and personality, and how psychologists have evaluated the methods and tools employed in their assessment. The intelligence component will examine a range of topics, e.g. historical approaches to intelligence with an emphasis upon contemporary cognitive approaches such as working memory, intelligence and cognitive interventions, and individual differences in cognition such as lifespan differences. Personality topics will consider the construct of personality, factors in personality, and applications. Psychometric aspects of the module will consider topics such as test classification and development, standardisation, reliability, validity, interpretation and applications.

How will I learn on this module?

The module is delivered entirely online via our electronic learning platform (elp). You will interact with a range of materials on the module site. The module home page provides you with quick access to detailed information about the module in an interactive, easily accessible format. The syllabus topics will be introduced using video lectures. On occasions the activities will be driven by you within an online group context. Psychometrics exercises will provide hands-on experience of research tools/test evaluation. Discussion board forums will be used to encourage students to exchange ideas with their peers. Together, the lectures, directed and independent learning and online discussion will enable you to gain greater depth of knowledge in the fields of personality and intelligence.

How will I be supported academically on this module?

You will be an autonomous, self-motivated learner within a supportive distance learning environment. You will be introduced to the module by the module tutor in an introductory video. The online module sessions and interactive tasks form the cornerstone for supporting you during your study. Academic support is available from the teaching team and each session includes a link to enable you to email a question directly to the tutor from within the session. Responses will be fed back either directly or via the module discussion board. In advance of each assessment a video presentation is uploaded to support you in your preparation for this session. This is followed by an online live question and answer session prior to submission of your assessed work. Focused academic support coupled with timely formative and summative feedback should enable you to meet your full academic potential within this module..

What will I be expected to read on this module?

All modules at Northumbria include a range of reading materials that students are expected to engage with. The reading list for this module can be found at:
(Reading List service online guide for academic staff this containing contact details for the Reading List team –

What will I be expected to achieve?

Knowledge & Understanding:
• MKU1: By the end of the module you will be expected to discuss, and critically evaluate current knowledge derived from theoretical and empirical evidence drawn from the field of individual differences.
• MKU2: By the end of the module you will be expected to critically examine and interpret psychometric data.
• MKU3: By the end of the module you be expected to apply your knowledge of individual differences and psychometrics to real world contexts.
Intellectual / Professional skills & abilities:
• MIPSA1: By the end of the module you will be expected to deploy your understanding of constructs and psychometric procedures in novel ways in order to tackle applied issues.
• MIPSA2: By the end of the module you will be expected to employ a range of techniques relevant to psychological enquiry.

How will I be assessed?

The first assessment will be a 2 hour multi-choice Examination covering your critical understanding of Intelligence and of Personality. (MKU1, MIPSA2)

The second assessment, with a 50% weighting is a written Psychometrics assignment with a word limit of 3000 words. Written in the form a research article, you will critically assess the development of a new research tool. (MKU1, MKU2, MKU3, MIPSA1, MIPSA2)
Specific Feedback will be provided on scripts and generic feedback on the elp.





Module abstract

The aim of this module is to provide you with an opportunity to understand and critically reflect upon how psychologists have approached the constructs of intelligence and personality. The weekly sessions are designed in order to introduce you to the research and theoretical literature and with further independent reading be able to reflect on the contemporary debates associated with intelligence and with personality. The module will enable you to develop an understanding of how these constructs are measured through tests and how psychologists critically evaluate the properties of these measures. You will also have the opportunity to critically assess the properties of a newly developed research tool. Thus, you will be able develop not only the conceptual knowledge associated with these fields, but the research skills associated with the development of new research procedures.

Course info

Credits 20

Level of Study Postgraduate

Mode of Study 2 years Part Time (Distance Learning)
3 other options available

Department Psychology

Location Northumberland Building, Newcastle City Campus

City Newcastle

Start Upcoming Intakes: July 2024, October 2024

Fee Information

Module Information

All information is accurate at the time of sharing. 

Full time Courses are primarily delivered via on-campus face to face learning but could include elements of online learning. Most courses run as planned and as promoted on our website and via our marketing materials, but if there are any substantial changes (as determined by the Competition and Markets Authority) to a course or there is the potential that course may be withdrawn, we will notify all affected applicants as soon as possible with advice and guidance regarding their options. It is also important to be aware that optional modules listed on course pages may be subject to change depending on uptake numbers each year.  

Contact time is subject to increase or decrease in line with possible restrictions imposed by the government or the University in the interest of maintaining the health and safety and wellbeing of students, staff, and visitors if this is deemed necessary in future.


Useful Links

Find out about our distinctive approach at

Admissions Terms and Conditions

Fees and Funding

Admissions Policy

Admissions Complaints Policy