Open University

Open University

Foundation in Psychological and Social Inquiry (DD820)

Psychological and social research is all around us: you may be stopped while shopping by a person with a clipboard asking you to offer your thoughts on local police services; you could read a front-page newspaper report that describes how levels of workplace stress are increasing at a worrying level; or perhaps you notice the organisation of food at a supermarket checkout designed to encourage healthy choices. This online module aims to equip students with the tools to critically evaluate various forms of psychological and social research, encouraging them to ask questions about how and why research is conducted and used by practitioners.

Entry requirements

This module is not available for standalone study. The minimum entry requirement is a recognised UK honours degree (2.2) or its equivalent. Although the Honours degree can be in any subject, you are unlikely to be prepared for this module if you have not had a prior academic grounding in psychology or the social sciences. This is because your postgraduate studies will assume you are familiar with psychological or social scientific language and concepts, and the characteristic ways in which psychologists and social scientists construct arguments and handle evidence. In consequence, if you do not have an honours degree that includes substantial psychological or social scientific content, we would strongly advise you to consider studying at least one Open University Level 3 psychology or social sciences module before you embark on postgraduate study. Before you start your postgraduate studies it is expected that you will have the ability to: write accurately, clearly and concisely; read large quantities of text quickly, accurately and critically; marshal evidence to support a logical argument. All our postgraduate modules are taught in English, so your spoken and written English must be of an appropriate standard for postgraduate study. If English is not your 1st language, we recommend that you will need a minimum overall score of 6 and minimum score of 5.5 in each of the 4 components: reading, writing, speaking and listening under the International English Language Testing System (IELTS). Please see the�IELTS website for details. If you are unsure whether your skill level in English is adequate you may find it helpful to look at our Skills for OU Study site.

Assessment methods

2 Tutor-marked assignments (TMAs), 1 Interactive computer-marked assignment (CMA), end-of-module assessment. Students must use the online eTMA system to submit their tutor-marked assignments (TMAs).


Qualification Study mode Fee Course duration
Distance learning - 6 months

Campus details

Campus name Town Postcode Region Main campus Campus Partner
Distance Learning

Key information

Student Registration and Enquiry Service
Telephone number: 
0845 300 6090