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Psychological and Behavioural Sciences reading list

Student reading in the Library

For prospective students

We advise you to read the Psychological and Behavioural Sciences page thoroughly. For reading and preparation advice you should find the following sections particularly useful:

For offer holders

Congratulations on your offers! We are very much looking forward to seeing you in October.

The beginning of term is always a busy time, and you’ll no doubt find yourself being bombarded with lots of paperwork and invitations to all sorts of events: ‘please set up your e-mail account…’; ‘How to get a University Card…’; ‘Want to row? Come to the bar tonight at …’ etc etc. You’ll also be thrown into an entirely new set of surroundings. Hopefully you’ll find all of this exciting - but it can also be overwhelming at times.

Just to ease your landing a little, do look at the PBS handbook, which is published each year with details of the course you’ll be taking. This contains lots of useful information about the general organisation of the course, as well as the structure of different papers (options). You can also find plenty of important information on the PBS website.

As you will see from the available information, in the first year of the PBS course (known as PBS Part I), students take four papers: two compulsory core papers (PBS1 and PBS2) and two further papers chosen from a range of options. The two core papers provide an introduction to psychology. The optional papers allow students to explore a variety of subjects, from archaeology and biological anthropology, to computer science, philosophy and politics. Each paper has its own 'guide', where the objective and requirements for the paper are laid out and the teaching arrangements are explained. Most paper guides also contain detailed reading lists and sample essay questions.

Please do make a start with the reading lists. The more you read before coming to Cambridge, the easier and more enjoyable things will be. Try and take notes too, as there is a lot of reading, things move at a fast pace and it’s easy to forget what you read all those months ago in the summer holidays.

I hope this information proves useful. We really look forward to seeing you in October!

With our best wishes,
Mirjana Bozic and David Good

Further information

Reading lists | For offer holders | Undergraduate study