Social Psychology of Autism - TZ866

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Module delivery information

Location Term Level1 Credits (ECTS)2 Current Convenor3 2020 to 2021
(version 3)
Autumn 7 10 (5) checkmark-circle


The aim of this module is to teach the basic facts about the nature and origins of autism, including definitions, epidemiology, biological, social and environmental causes. In addition, characteristics and needs of people with autism will be considered (including cognitive and social characteristics). All of this information will be set within the wider context of intellectual and developmental disabilities and students, although focusing primarily on autism, will be required to learn and know about these issues more widely. Over 50% of people with autism have a co-morbid condition and therefore this is an essential approach.


This module appears in the following module collections.

Contact hours

None. This module will be taught mainly through web-based material, core texts and additional reading provided via Moodle, combined with video-recorded materials, seminars, web-based discussion, and guided study.
Hours of study: 100


Autumn and Spring

Method of assessment

100% Examination

Indicative reading

For both pathways:
Grandin, T (2006) Thinking in pictures: My life with autism (second edition) Vintage Books
Tantam, D. (2012). Autism spectrum disorders through the lifespan. London: Jessica Kingsley Publishers.

For Pathway 1:
Attwood, T. (2007) The complete guide to Asperger's syndrome Jessica Kingsley publishers
Fein, D.A. (2011). The neuropsychology of autism. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Frith, U. (2003) Autism: Explaining the Enigma (second edition) Basil Blackwell.
Frith, U. (2008). Autism: A very short introduction. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Hobson, P.R. (2012) Autism and the Development of the Mind (second edition) Lawrence Erlbaum.
Kutscher, M.L. (2005) Kids in the Syndrome Mix of ADHD, LD, Asperger's, Tourette's, Bipolar, and More! : The one stop guide for parents, teachers, and other professionals. Jessica Kingsley Publishers.
Schopler, E. (2001). Treatment for Autism: From science to pseudo-science or anti-science. The Research Basis for Autism Intervention. E. Schopler, N. Yirmiya, C. Shulman and L. M. Marcus. New York, Kluwer Academic/Plenum Publishers.

For Pathway 2:
Bailey, J. S., & Burch, M. R. (2011). Ethics for behaviour analysts (2nd ed.). Hover: Taylor & Francis.
Behavior Analyst Certification Board. (2014). Professional and Ethical Compliance Code for Behavior Analysts. Retrieved from
Foxx, R. M., & Mulick, J. A. (Eds.) (2015). Controversial therapies for autism and intellectual disabilities: Fad, fashion and science in professional practice (2nd ed.). New York: Routledge.
Schreibman, L. (2007). The science and fiction of autism. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.
Silberman, S. (2016). Neurotribes: The legacy of autism and how to think smarter about people who think differently. Camden: Atlantic Books.
Waltz, M. (2013). Autism: A social and medical history. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.

Other recommended readings will be provided electronically through the University’s VLE.

See the library reading list for this module (Canterbury)

Learning outcomes

This module will be taught mainly through web-based material, core texts and additional reading provided via the University's Virtual Learning Environment (VLE), combined with video-recorded materials, seminars, web-based discussion, and guided study.

This module's objectives are primarily about the acquisition of professionally relevant knowledge. Accordingly, learning and teaching will include:

1) web-based and video-recorded material (15 hours) - allowing students to gain key information on the topic, a broad overview of the topic area and its organisation, and knowledge of further information sources which will allow the topic to be developed further.
2) web-based discussion and group activities (5 hours) – helping to ensure that students can understand the underlying concepts, and have the opportunity to summarise and present their reading to fellow students and staff.
3) private study (80 hours) – private study hours will primarily be spent on reading, exam revision and preparation for web-based discussions which allow students to consolidate concepts and supports reflection on their practice. Students will have access on the University's VLE to written material with links to relevant websites and Copy Write Licensing Agency (CLA) readings to support their independent study.


  1. Credit level 7. Undergraduate or postgraduate masters level module.
  2. ECTS credits are recognised throughout the EU and allow you to transfer credit easily from one university to another.
  3. The named convenor is the convenor for the current academic session.
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