An Overview of Psychological Literacy in Practice from the UK.

Authors: Taylor, J. and Hulme, J.

Editors: Rich, G.J., Lopez, L.A.P., de Souza, L.K., Zinkiewicz, L. and Jaafar, J.L.S.B.

Volume: 4

Pages: 362-379

Publisher: Cambridge Scholars Publishing

Place of Publication: Newcastle upon Tyne

ISBN: 978-1-5275-1411-9

This chapter introduces an overview of a set of case studies that have been submitted to us over a four year period following requests in psychology conferences and publications, and through professional networks. The full versions of the case studies can be found in the 1st and 2nd editions of the Psychological Literacy Compendium of Practice (Taylor & Hulme, 2015; Taylor & Hulme, 2018). This chapter will begin with a brief review of international perspectives on psychological literacy, taking the concept forward from the initial work by Cranney & Dunn (2011) and Halpern (2010), and will outline the interpretation of the conceptual framework as it is being applied in the UK. The review will then highlight the work by academics within the UK who are using psychological literacy within curricula and the impact from bodies such as the BPS and HEA. Section 2 will present the results of a categorisation of the case studies and a brief synopsis of each case study. Categories include: when the activity takes place in the curriculum; whether it is a core or elective unit, or optional activity, and assessment strategies. It is hoped that this will help academics considering introducing psychological literacy activities to easily compare and contrast different approaches. In the third section of this chapter, we evaluate each case study in terms of which of the nine psychological attributes identified by McGovern et al (2010) each case study illustrates. This information can be used to assist curriculum design and quality assurance procedures, and highlights the need to define the attributes of psychological literacy that activities are designed to address. Finally, in section 4 we conclude with a discussion and some suggestions for future work and activities. This article aims to highlight practical ideas to develop psychological literacy and to encourage academics and practitioners to use the Compendium to develop activities to embed psychological literacy within the psychology curriculum.

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