Has your undergraduate degree inspired you to learn more about the way people work?
Our MSc Psychology is an advanced fast-track conversion course for students with an undergraduate degree in a subject other than psychology, or for those whose undergraduate Psychology degree was not accredited by the British Psychological Society. Students may also take the course as an end in itself if they wish to obtain a Psychology Degree in one year.
This course combines the award of a Masters with eligibility for the Graduate Basis for Chartered Membership (GBC) of the British Psychological Society. The GBC is the minimum academic qualification required to work as a professional psychologist, so passing our course demonstrates that you have studied and acquired an advanced understanding in Masters-level study in psychology. With this qualification you will also be eligible to apply for professional training in any branch of professional psychology.
Our staff have a wide range of research interests, so you gain a critical and detailed understanding of the core areas of psychology, plus some specialisation, and learn research methods to an extent which will enable you to devise, carry out and analyse an empirical research project. The course gives students a critical and detailed understanding of the core areas of psychology (development, cognitive, social, biological, personality) plus training in research methods and statistics.
Topics studied include:
Our research is challenging and ground-breaking, rated as ‘world-leading’ or ‘internationally excellent’ (REF 2014). We are supported by some of the most prestigious funding bodies, including the European Commission and the Leverhulme Trust.
We are a warm and friendly Department, and we wish to welcome both graduates who have recently completed their studies, and mature students who may wish to upgrade their qualifications, refresh their CV, or return to academic study after a period of time away from education.
Our academic staff include award-winning teachers and prize-winning researchers who are international experts in their own research areas.
The Cognitive and Developmental Psychology Group are researching attention, language, decision-making, and memory. Recent projects have investigated the psychology of energy reduction, the enhancement of human memory through technology, and improvements in the usability and design of transport maps.
The Social and Health Psychology Group work on motivations, needs, intercultural contact, and sexual attraction. Recent projects include the impacts of living and studying abroad, and how personal relative deprivation is linked to problem gambling.
The Cognitive and Sensory Neuroscience Group research brain function and human behaviour. Recently they have been working on projects on the neural processes underlying language production, how motivations are communicated through tone of voice, and how the brain performs 3D vision. They previously developed the BioAid mobile phone app that turns an iPhone into a biologically inspired hearing aid.
Our department is expanding, and has recently appointed a number of excellent researchers whose expertise increases the diversity and depth of our skills base.
We are committed to giving you the best access to state-of-the-art facilities in higher education, housed entirely within our purpose-built psychology building on our Colchester Campus:
With the skills and knowledge you acquire from studying within our Department of Psychology, you will find yourself in demand from a wide range of employers.
Recent graduates of MSc Psychology have found employment as a research assistant at the Anna Freud Centre, a clinical psychologist for the NHS, a child psychologist for Children First and a lecturer at the University of Surrey. Other graduates have been employed in clinical psychology, educational psychology, criminal and forensic psychology.
Following this course, students can qualify for our specialist Masters courses or to a Masters in Research Methods or by research (MSD). We also have excellent links with the research community; we are recognised by the ESRC as providing excellent postgraduate training and are an accredited Doctoral Training Centre, offering several studentships.
Our recent PhD students have taken up post-doctoral positions in other top UK universities and international universities (in the US, Italy and Australia), as well as being appointed to lectureships.
“Studying MSc Psychology at Essex gave me a really good grounding which I’ve been able to use as a springboard for a new career. I loved the neuropsychology and cognitive psychology modules; looking at the intricacies of the brain and how it affects our behaviour in ways you don’t really even think of. I even enjoyed stats, because even though it was hard, it was very satisfying! I’ve definitely left Essex feeling more confident and positive about my future career prospects. Everyone – from the lecturers to the employability services and wellbeing support – has helped me get to where I want to be – starting a PhD!”
Carolyn White, MSc Psychology, 2017
A high 2.2 degree, or equivalent in any subject.
Applications from students with a 2:2 or equivalent will be considered dependent on any relevant professional or voluntary experience, previous modules studied and/or personal statement.
This course is not suitable for applicants who already hold a British Psychological Society Accredited degree.
If you already hold a BSc/BA Psychology and are not seeking BPS accreditation we advise you consider the MSc Cognitive Neuroscience & Neuropsychology or MSc Research Methods in Psychology .
We accept a wide range of qualifications from applicants studying in the EU and other countries. Get in touch with any questions you may have about the qualifications we accept. Remember to tell us about the qualifications you have already completed or are currently taking.
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If you do not meet our IELTS requirements then you may be able to complete a pre-sessional English pathway that enables you to start your course without retaking IELTS.
The University uses academic selection criteria to determine an applicant’s ability to successfully complete a course at the University of Essex. Where appropriate, we may ask for specific information relating to previous modules studied or work experience.
Most of our courses combine compulsory and optional modules, giving you freedom to pursue your own interests. All of the modules listed below provide an example of what is on offer from the current academic year. Our Programme Specification provides further details of the course structure for the current academic year.
Our research-led teaching is continually evolving to address the latest challenges and breakthroughs in the field, therefore to ensure your course is as relevant and up-to-date as possible your core module structure may be subject to change.
Fees will increase for each academic year of study.
We hold Open Days for all our applicants throughout the year. Our Colchester Campus events are a great way to find out more about studying at Essex, and give you the chance to:
If the dates of our organised events aren’t suitable for you, feel free to get in touch by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll arrange an individual campus tour for you.
You can apply for our postgraduate courses online. You’ll need to provide us with your academic qualifications, as well as supporting documents such as transcripts, English language qualifications and certificates. You can find a list of necessary documents online, but please note we won’t be able to process your application until we have everything we need.
All elements are required and applicants with a non-science background should be aware of the requirement to pass statistics. You will also learn research methods to an extent that will enable you to devise, carry out, analyse and write up an empirical research project during the last part of the course.
There is no application deadline but we recommend that you apply before 1 July for our taught courses starting in October. We aim to respond to applications within two weeks. If we are able to offer you a place, you will be contacted via email.
Home to over 13,000 students from more than 130 countries, our Colchester Campus is the largest of our three sites, making us one of the most internationally diverse campuses on the planet - we like to think of ourselves as the world in one place.
The Campus is set within 200 acres of beautiful parkland, located two miles from the historic town centre of Colchester – England's oldest recorded town. Our Colchester Campus is also easily reached from London and Stansted Airport in under one hour.
If you live too far away to come to Essex (or have a busy lifestyle), no problem. Our 360 degree virtual tour allows you to explore the Colchester Campus from the comfort of your home. Check out our accommodation options, facilities and social spaces.
Our staff travel the world to speak to people about the courses on offer at Essex. Take a look at our list of exhibition dates to see if we’ll be near you in the future.
At Essex we pride ourselves on being a welcoming and inclusive student community. We offer a wide range of support to individuals and groups of student members who may have specific requirements, interests or responsibilities.
The University makes every effort to ensure that this information on its course finder is accurate and up-to-date. Occasionally it can be necessary to make changes, for example to courses, facilities or fees. Examples of such reasons might include a change of law or regulatory requirements, industrial action, lack of demand, departure of key personnel, change in government policy, or withdrawal/reduction of funding. Changes to courses may for example consist of variations to the content and method of delivery of programmes, courses and other services, to discontinue programmes, courses and other services and to merge or combine programmes or courses. The University will endeavour to keep such changes to a minimum, and will also keep prospective students informed appropriately by updating our programme specifications.
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