Introduction to Applied Behavioural Science



This is an exciting new module which will equip you with an understanding of the drivers of human behaviour, and with the necessary skills to apply these insights to improve decision making, engagement and performance within your organisations.   

The module will provide participants with an analytical framework and set of concepts that can be used to explain human behaviour. The course uses ‘classic’ findings and cutting-edge research from the social sciences, psychology, and neuroscience to document the interplay of forces which explain human behaviour.

We begin by interrogating the assumption that humans behave ‘rationally’. We discuss examples of departures from rationality and the insights these afford into the human condition. In doing so, we examine the impact of emotions, ‘automatic’ processes/habits, cognitive biases and ‘heuristics’ (mental shortcuts) on decision-making and behaviour. We examine the extent to which human behaviour is shaped by the environment and context rather than individual agency and choice and discuss the possibility of using ‘nudges’ to steer behaviour. We then explore how social identities and processes (such as belief systems) influence behaviour and examine the extent to which models of behaviour change can inform the design and testing of behavioural interventions. Finally, we discuss the ethics of applying behavioural insights, particularly within a digital environment. 

While the module will provide participants with a solid grasp of the theory which underpins behavioural science, there will be a strong emphasis on teaching participants how to apply this knowledge in a variety of real-life organisational contexts. 

On completion of the module, you will: 

  • Understand the psychological, sociological and economic processes that drive human behaviour. 
  • Appreciate the role of context in shaping decisions and choices. 
  • Grasp how behavioural insights can be applied to change behaviour and to improve a wide-range of outcomes within organisations. 

What Topics will you Cover? 

  • What is behavioural science?  
  • Why do we make poor decisions, based on our cognitive biases and heuristics? 
  • How does the social context influence our behaviour? 
  • How can behavioural science insights, including ‘nudges’ and ‘choice architecture’, be used to change behaviour? 
  • How can the effectiveness of behavioural science applications be tested? 
  • Real-world applications of behavioural science, such as in recruitment, market research, product design, negotiation, and worker wellbeing. 
  • What are the ethical implications of using behavioural science to change behaviour?   
  • Behavioural science in a digital environment, such as nudges in website design.  

Who is this Course for? 

Anyone interested in understanding how insights from behavioural science can be used to drive business success, and keen to learn from the experiences of other professionals from a wide range of organisations will benefit from this course. 

The module is likely to be particularly relevant for managers; HR professionals; product developers; market researchers and brand managers; service providers; and compliance officers from the financial, insurance, legal, IT and consumer industries. 

Who Teaches the Course? 

The module will be delivered by Professor Diane Pelly of the Department of Sociology, School of Social Sciences and Philosophy, Trinity College Dublin. Diane has qualifications in business and economics as well as in psychology and worked for nineteen years in banking and finance. She is currently completing a doctoral degree in behavioural economics on work practices and worker wellbeing. 

Time, Date, and Place

Start Date: Thursday February 8th 2024.

Lectures will take place every Thursday (6.30pm-8.30pm) for 8 weeks, finishing up on Thursday March 28th.

 There will also be nine hours of asynchronous material. 

In order to be awarded the Certificate of Completion in Applied Behavioural Science participants will need to attend and actively participate. 

For more information, download our brochure:

School of Social Sciences and Philosophy CPD brochure 2024

Applied Behavioural Science

Insights into the fundamental patterns of individual and group behaviour from this CPD programme. Speaker: Ms. Diane Pelly

Admission Requirements

Participants will need to have access to a laptop with a working camera and microphone. They will be encouraged to critically engage with the materials and to actively contribute to group discussions and activities. 

Course Fees



Registration for this CPD closes on Thursday 1st February. 

Places are limited as class sizes are small, with up to 30 per class, so enroll as soon as possible to secure your place on the course. 

You can enroll on the course directly via the PayPal link below. The course fee includes access to the course materials via Blackboard (Trinity’s virtual learning environment) for the duration of the course. Participation in this CPD course does not include access to the Trinity Library or any other student services (including a student identity card). 

For employers wishing to pay for employees' registration via invoice, please contact

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Applied Behavioural Science - €1,500

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Get in Touch

Please contact for further details on applying for this CPD.

For further details about the content of the CPD, please contact Professor Diane Pelly at

Register Your Interest

Register your interest at Trinity College Dublin, the University of Dublin.

As Ireland’s leading university, we offer a wide range of postgraduate programmes at masters, diploma and certificate level.

Trinity is an international university steeped in history, with a reputation for excellence in education, research and innovation.

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I work in recruitment, and I wanted to understand the world of Behavioural Science, without doing a full-time course. The Trinity online lecture series exceeded my expectations.  Our lecturer, Diane Pelly, is a subject matter expert. Diane curated a brilliant 8-week course, with lots of visuals and support reading material. The weekly, two-hour evening lectures were delivered in an engaging manner. Our online class gelled, thanks to Diane’s skilled management.

You can choose to read and review as much or as little of the support material as you want, I personally found the additional material both interesting and accessible. This is a very practical course with an academic (not too much) scaffolding. There is no exam, I would say however, the more you put in, the more you will get out of it.

At a competitive price point, with excellent course materials and a lecturer in Diane who bring Behavioural Science to life, what is stopping you? 

Paul McArdle – Managing Partner, The Panel