Student Pages
Undergraduate course

The Psychology of Social Oppression and Liberation

Main content

ECTS Credits


Level of Study


Teaching semester


Place of Instruction


Objectives and Content

Oppression, maintained by dint of violence, violates the personal, interpersonal and social integrity of individuals and societies. It is subtle in its manifestations, often internalised and replicated in behaviours that unwittingly dehumanise the self and others, eschewing the dignity and humanity of both oppressor and the oppressed.

This course aims to broaden the lens of social oppression to encompass both North and South perspectives. It will explore how the experiences of social oppression, in its subtle and overt manifestations impact on the daily lives of all who are drawn into its vortex. It will examine the individual and group complicity in its perpetuation in the contexts of the North and South. The course will invite students to engage critically with existing notions of the dialectical relationship between the oppressor and oppressed, with a particular focus on how one could address and knowledge and processes both internal and external to ameliorate and challenge this dynamic. Possible strategies of changing this pattern for the individual and the wider society will be explored, and actively debated with critical robustness.

Learning Outcomes

On completion of this course, the students should have the following learning outcomes:


The student has an in-depth knowledge of:

    • the various theoretical and praxis focused dynamics that contribute to social oppression in the contexts of the North and South contexts
    • how contemporary society shapes ones positionality and identity as oppressor or oppressed


The student has the ability to:

    • critically evaluate how social oppression is produced and perpetuated in societies
    • recognize the intrapersonal, interpersonal and structural violence that maintains a dynamic of oppression

General competencies:

By the end of the course the student has the ability to:

    • identify how one's own experience of overt and covert oppression impacts on one's health and well-being
    • understand and implement strategies that address the dialectics of oppression and to ameliorate these for the self and the other
    • contextualize the process of empowerment that addresses one liberation from the constraints of internalized oppression in service of humanity

Required Previous Knowledge


Recommended Previous Knowledge

One year of studies in psychology, education, or special education.

Credit Reduction due to Course Overlap


Access to the Course

Access to the course requires admission to a bachelor program in psychology, education, or special education at the Faculty of Psychology. Incoming exchange students at UiB have access to the course.

Teaching and learning methods

Lectures and seminars.

Compulsory Assignments and Attendance

    • Lectures, seminars and discussion section attendance are compulsory. As per the regulations of UiB, students are required to attend at least 80% of the course lectures and seminars.
    • 2 short seminar assignments of 600 words each

Forms of Assessment

A 72-hour take home exam essay of 2500 words (+/- 10%)

Examination Support Material


Grading Scale

The grading scale used is A to F Grade A is the highest passing grade in the grading scale, and grade F is a fail.

Assessment Semester


Reading List

Reading material will be provided to students before the start of the course. Students are also expected to source their own readings for the seminar assignments and course paper.

Course Evaluation

The students are expected to evaluate the course at the end of the semester according to procedures set by the Faculty of Psychology.

Programme Committee

Department of Health Promotion and Development (HEMIL).

Course Coordinator

Department of Health Promotion and Development (HEMIL).

Course Administrator

Faculty of Psychology


Student Information Center

Contact: UiBhjelp

Phone: (+47) 55 58 27 10

Exam information

  • Type of assessment: Home exam

    Assignment handed out
    02.05.2023, 10:00
    Submission deadline
    05.05.2023, 10:00
    Withdrawal deadline
    Examination system
    Digital exam