|Delivery length / details
|11 x 2 Hour Lectures
|3 x 2 Hour Seminars
|Assessment length / details
|Group Project: observation and analysis of humour 2500 words
|Essay 2500 words
|Individual Project: observation and analysis of humour 2500 words
|Essay 2500 words
On successful completion of this module students should be able to:
Examine and evaluate humour research.
Describe, understand and critically evaluate the different theories and approaches to studying humour.
Describe, understand and critically evaluate individual and gender differences in the humour experience.
Critically evaluate the proposed applications of humour research.
Critically evaluate research methods used in the study of humour.
Understand and appreciate the importance of studying everyday behaviours and positive emotions.
Develop and apply research design and analytical skills in observing, measuring and analysing humour.
The purpose of this module is to introduce to students the scientific study of humour and the latest research findings in the field. Multi- and interdisciplinary approaches will be presented in class, with some emphasis on the evolutionary mechanisms that can explain humour. Students will learn the theories that have been developed over the years to explain why we use humour, why we laugh, and what makes others laugh. The module will also examine individual and sex differences in the way people appreciate and produce humour, as well as the biological and evolutionary bases for humour and laughter.
- Humour as a scientific discipline: its history, concepts, methods and applications.
- What is humour? Theories of humour.
- Biological and evolutionary bases of humour and laughter.
- Social aspects of humour, cross cultural humour, ethnic humour, racist humour and sexist humour.
- Individual and sex differences in humour.
- Humor and health.
- Creating humour.
- Negative/Aggressive Humour, Black Humour, Sick Humour.
- Measuring humour.
- Applications of humour.
Studying humour can illuminate broader aspects of personality and gender, as well as social, cognitive, behavioural, developmental, emotional, cultural, and biological facets that affect all humans.
|Application of Number
|Not directly applicable, although students will be introduced to the key concepts of statistical analysis through the examination of research designs used in humour research.
|Students will be required to communicate often complex theories and research, sometimes explaining the same phenomenon from various scientific approaches.
|Improving own Learning and Performance
|The module aims to promote self-management but within a context of assistance from both the facilitator and the fellow students alike. Students will be expected to improve their own learning and performance by undertaking their own work and to exercise their own initiative, including searching for sources, and deciding the direction of their essay. The need to meet an essay deadline will focus students’ attention on the need to manage their time and opportunity resources well.
|Good use of word processing, database, search engine (Web of Science; PsychArticles) will be required and reference management programmes recommended.
|Personal Development and Career planning
|The module will help students gain greater insights into one of the most unique? human experiences. The module will promote the understanding that psychology deals with every day behaviours which are relevant and applicable to every student’s life.
|Students will be required to solve problems, such as how to measure humour in practice, and other common research problems that researchers in the field face.
|Students will be required to practice research first-hand and test the feasibility of their proposed research. They will learn to assess various methods of data collection and evaluate their own research critically. They will also be required to evaluate various research methods used in the field of humour research, interpret the findings and criticise them. They will be able to test whether their own research is consistent with the research in the field and to identify criteria that facilitate the discrimination of good and bad research practices.
|Subject Specific Skills
|Students will acquire the skill of interpreting humour research, and appreciate the complexity of the phenomenon and the importance of studying every day behaviours and experiences.
|Students will be required to work in pairs when observing humour and work in small teams on various in-class humour questions.
This module is at CQFW Level 5