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Introduction to Psychology: Biological Psychology

Monash University via FutureLearn


Explore the intriguing world of biological psychology

Improve your scientific skills and explore the fascinating sphere of biological psychology

On this course, you’ll look at an intriguing branch of psychology; one which explores the links between behaviour and human biological functions, paying particular attention to the nervous-system.

You’ll study the role that genes, heredity, the nervous-system, brain and spinal cord all play in determining our physicality and behaviour, and gain an understanding of how heritable diseases and neurotransmitters affect our behaviour.

Discover the fundamentals of genetics, the nervous-system and the brain and spinal cord

This course covers a wide range of important topics, from genetics and the nervous-system, through to heredity, specific genetic disorders and the influence of the brain and spinal cord. Upon completion, you’ll be able to interpret examples of how heritable diseases affect behaviour and explain the role of neurotransmitters in psychology.

Get a solid grounding in modern biological psychology research

Once you’ve completed the course, you’ll be armed with your own unique insights into some of the world’s most important biological psychology research.

You’ll come away with an understanding of how genes and environment affect behaviour, and be able to define by some diseases may influence behaviour.

You’ll also build specific neurological knowledge of cell types, functions, how synapses communicate across the nervous system, and the role of the endocrine system in managing bodily functions.

This introductory course is for anyone interested in psychology - you don’t need any past experience.

It might be of particular use to learners who have already completed a Bachelor degree in other disciplines who are interested in expanding their science and research skills.


  • Biological factors
    • Getting started
    • Genetics and psychology
    • Genes and genetic disorders
    • End of week review, and preview
  • The nervous system, brain and spinal cord
    • Welcome to the week
    • The nervous system
    • The brain and spinal cord
    • End of course

Taught by

Assoc Prof Matthew Mundy


4.8 rating, based on 4 Class Central reviews

4.7 rating at FutureLearn based on 272 ratings

Start your review of Introduction to Psychology: Biological Psychology

  • Myette
    What an amazing course! I learned a lot and discovered many topics I haven't even heard of before! The course mentors were absolutely wonderful and it always brings me great joy to communicate with people who are passionate about what they do - it makes learning so much easier! I also loved the additional resources and videos to further my understanding of topics which really helped!
    Thank you so much for presenting quality knowledge for free. Knowledge is power!
  • Anonymous
    I think that this course gives everyone an encouraging first step into the world of Biological Psychology. I just love that there is a space for discussion, where we can share our thoughts, get feedback from the mentors and also see what other learners are thinking about particular subject.
  • Anonymous
    The course was informative and organised in a clear way. I liked that this course included mentors who answered questions and gave extra information.
  • Profile image for Luis Ribeiro
    Luis Ribeiro
    As with other Introduction to Psychology courses offered by Monash, Introduction to Psychology: Biological Psychology is well put together and has plenty of objective, albeit limited, information on the topic. Its main weakness is having no video lessons; it has only one/two videos at the beginning and end of the MOOC, which means that there are tons of reading activities. Fine by me, but it gets boring after some time. There are many quizzes, which contribute to student learning, and links to journal articles. Overall, it's a good MOOC if you like its reading-based format.

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