Psychology and Music - SP643

Location Term Level Credits (ECTS) Current Convenor 2019-20
(version 2)
View Timetable
6 15 (7.5) DR M Forrester




Available as a wild module.
Available to short term credit students at the discretion of the module convenor and/or school.



This module introduces you to a wide range of areas in the field of the psychology of music, including psychoacoustics and auditory perception, the development of musicality, the cognitive neuroscience of music and the relationship between music and emotion. The primary aim of the module will be to describe and explain the different theoretical approaches and research methodologies employed in the psychology of music in order to understand this most interesting aspect of human experience. Consideration of the ways in which we perform, listen to, engage with and learn about music allows us to address key issues in the areas of language processing, brain function, creativity, problem solving and memory. In addition, this module will example contexts where the psychology of music has practical applications, for example in health psychology and in the media. You will be introduced to a number of different perspectives, including neurocognitive, developmental and social psychological aspects of music. The module will facilitate an understanding of how the field of the psychology of music builds on and connects with your background knowledge of general psychology.


This module appears in:

Contact hours

Total contact hours: 22
Private study hours: 128
Total study hours: 150

Method of assessment

50% coursework, 50% examination.
(NB: In the case of short-term exchange students whose registration ends before the summer term, the examination may be replaced by a single piece of coursework of increased length.)

Indicative reading

The module reading list can be found online at

See the library reading list for this module (Canterbury)

Learning outcomes

The intended subject specific learning outcomes. On successfully completing the module students will be able to:
8.1 Demonstrate a systematic understanding of the key aspects of the psychology of music, which will include the acquisition of coherent and detailed knowledge informed by research at the forefront of this research area of psychology (e.g., the neurocognition of music; music perception; music imagery)
8.2 Devise and sustain arguments central to an understanding of the psychology of music, so as to be able to describe and comment upon particular aspects of current research in the field.
8.3 Deploy accurately established techniques of analysis and enquiry within the psychology of music (e.g., developing a critical understanding of experimental evidence in relevant areas);
8.4 Demonstrate an enriched conceptual understanding that will enhance their appreciation of the uncertainty, ambiguity and limits of knowledge of the domain of the psychology of music.
8.5 Apply the methods and techniques that they have learned in order to review and consolidate their knowledge and understanding in the psychology of music
8.6 Critically evaluate arguments, assumptions, abstract concepts and data such that they are in a position to make appropriate evaluations of problems in the psychology of music.

On successfully completing the module students will be able to:
9.1 Demonstrate skills needed so as to manage their own learning, and to make use of scholarly reviews and primary sources.
9.2 Reflect and be self-critical in their work
9.3 Communicate information, ideas, problems, and solutions to both specialist and non-specialist audiences.
9.4 Plan work and study independently.

University of Kent makes every effort to ensure that module information is accurate for the relevant academic session and to provide educational services as described. However, courses, services and other matters may be subject to change. Please read our full disclaimer.