For this module, you have two assessments in Week 8. The first is a presentation on applications of positive psychology, and the second is an intervention plan based on the topic in the presentation.
Week 8 Presentation (70%) (MO1,2)
Presentation on the contribution of positive psychology to an applied area
In this presentation, you should identify an area of interest in positive psychology, and critically evaluate the literature in that area. You should discuss how positive psychology contributes something different to our understanding of the human experience in comparison to traditional approaches that focus on deficits. This should be related to a particular applied context (e.g., work, study, health, ageing, forensic and clinical settings etc). You will submit two separate files:
• A PowerPoint slide deck with voiceover, and
• A Word or Pdf formatted transcript of the voiceover
The transcript should be 2000 words (+/- 10%). Depending on the speed of your talk, transcripts of this length are usually around 15 minutes. However, as there are individual variations in how fast we talk, the length is determined by the word count in the transcript (rather than the length of the presentation). Remember to use references in backing up the points you make during the presentation. The transcript should have a reference list at the end (which is not part of the word count). You should include the references in your PowerPoint slides too. This could be done in different ways. Just as a few examples, you could have them as APA in-text references after you make a statement, as a screenshot of the front page of the slideshow, or as a footnote at the bottom of the slide. Whichever format you use, make sure that it is clear for the audience where the information came from. You don’t always have to discuss the references in greater detail (for example, you can say that ‘multiple studies have found that’… without introducing each study). Or, sometimes, you may want to discuss one or two example studies in greater detail, which is fine too.
Explore different applied areas of positive psychology and choose one that is of most (personal or professional) interest to you. As positive psychology is a highly applied science, you will be able to choose from a wide range of topics considered during the teaching weeks. You can also identify topics from outside the module-based teaching. You must, however, be able to apply positive psychology theory and research to the topic. Immerse yourself in learning about this field- how is it approached traditionally from the deficit perspective? What has positive psychology contributed to it? What positive psychology theories and models are relevant in this field?
You should work on developing a script which has a length of 2000 words. The script is not exactly like an academic essay. Think in terms of what you would say if you were presenting the observations to academic audiences. It should be more conversational than a written essay typically is, but still using academic vocabulary.
For a 2000-word transcript, we would envisage your slide show being a maximum of ten slides long (plus additional if you choose to add the reference list to the final slide(s)). Your slides must not include a replication of the written/spoken narrative (transcript) but must include defined bullet points that you elaborate upon in the voiceover (transcript).
You may use images in your slideshow, but each one must be clearly referenced.
Remember that this piece is for discussing theories and research in an applied context. Although you can mention interventions (as they are intrinsically linked with the theories), don’t have this as the main focus of the presentation. The Intervention Plan assessment is the place where you can discuss these in more detail.
At the beginning of the presentation, have a title page, where you introduce yourself, and the title of the talk. After this, include a slide with the outline of your talk: What is it that you are going to discuss in the next 10-15 minutes?
The main body of the presentation should contain an introduction to your applied field outlining what it is? What are the traditional approaches in this field? For example, if you discuss ageing, you could talk about how traditional psychology has focussed on the negative aspects of ageing (e.g., decline in abilities; mental health difficulties associated with decline etc). Remember that in order to have a convincing introduction, you should find relevant references for your introduction too.
You should then bring in positive psychology research and theories:
▪ What positive psychology theories have been utilised in this field, and what have they contributed to our knowledge?
▪ What research has been done?
▪ What kinds of methods/findings? For instance, in the example of ageing, you could discuss ideas from the strengths-based approach to ageing, or talk about what research on happiness (e.g., eudaemonic and hedonic) has demonstrated regarding positive ageing. In order to remain within the word count of the script, you are unlikely to be able to include ALL the positive psychology ideas that have been applied in that field. Choose the ones that you can find most support/research for and which enable you to offer a critical insight into the topic area
▪ Can you think of any critique for the theories and research in this area? For example, can there be any negative aspects to positive psychology of ageing? For example, has the research considered differences in collectivist and individualistic cultural contexts? Or is it fair to use the concept of grit in elderly populations living in poverty? Whatever points of critique you include, remember to use references to back it up, and make it relevant to applying positive psychology in your specific chosen field!
It is up to you to decide how to structure the main body of the presentation. Think of how to do this so that the audience has a clear and comprehensive introduction to positive psychology in an applied field of study. When developing the slides, make sure you use them as visual aids. Use pictures/bullet points rather than too much text. Try to think of ways of how you can captivate the audience. You can use any freely available pictorial materials that are approved by the Creative Commons Licence.
Remember to include a slide for concluding remarks too, where you bring together all the important points from your presentation.
To recap, the structure is:
• Main body
Microsoft provide guidance for adding audio
Links to an external site.
to your presentation. Please note that if you use the web version of PowerPoint, you can only insert a pre-recorded audio file. To record audio directly from PowerPoint, you will need to use the full, downloaded version and have a laptop or desktop computer with a microphone. PowerPoint is available through your student account.
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