Department of Psychology

Masters study

A student looking across at a person mostly out of shot, just to the left of the photographer.

Explore your intellectual passion

In the Department of Psychology, you are a part of a truly diverse academic community, where different levels of experience and expertise are brought together by shared passions and interests.

Some of our courses are accredited by the British Psychological Society (BPS), giving you professional status. 

The variety of our Masters level courses allow you the flexibility to determine your own academic and career path, whether that’s as a child psychologist, clinical psychologist, or forensic psychologist, continuing in to a research degree, or something that lies entirely outside of the discipline.

Explore our Masters courses
Why choose us?
  • We offer scholarships and bursaries to talented postgraduates, ranging from research council studentships and University of Essex scholarships to awards funded by charities and other external organisations.
  • We have an outstanding range of specialist labs and facilities, suitable for a wide variety of psychological experimentation.
  • We are part of the South East Network for Social Sciences (SeNSS) DTP, recognising our excellent research.

So, what do we have to offer?

Outstanding research facilities

We have a variety of specialist labs and facilities for experimental psychology, visual and auditory perception, developmental psychology and social psychology.

Our facilities include our purpose-built Centre for Brain Science, which provides extensive laboratory space for neuroscientific studies. This state-of-the-art facility is dedicated to the study of brain activity in relation to psychological processes.

South East Network for Social Sciences (SeNSS) Doctoral Training Centre

Our department is part of the ESRC-funded South East Network for Social Sciences (SeNSS) Doctoral Training Partnership psychology pathway. This recognises the world-leading research carried out by our academics. Our research feeds in to our teaching, so you learn about the latest work in our areas of expertise.

You will be joining a department with a strong commitment to research, covering many areas of empirical psychology. The research community includes academic staff, research fellows, research officers and postgraduates engaged on many research projects.

More than a taught Masters

If you're not sure that an MSc degree is right for you then you can consider our Master of Science by Dissertation (MSD).

The MSD is a one year research degree, without the formal structure than an MSc degree as it doesn't include taught modules. Instead you will focus on a particular area of research with support from an academic supervisor.

Your MSD can be carried out with the exit award "MSD Psychology". Alternatively if your research is progressing well then you may be able to upgrade to a PhD, with agreement from the department and your supervisor.

'I completed both my Bachelors and Masters degrees at Essex before starting my PhD. I developed an excellent working relationship with the staff and I found my Department to be an innovative and stimulating environment.'
Annelie Harvey BSc Psychology '10, MSc Research Methods in Psychology '11, PhD Psychology '14

Teaching and Covid-19

Information for applicants

In the Department of Psychology, we want and expect you to join us on our campuses for the start of term. We are planning for our programmes to be delivered in a way that blends in-person classes with a range of online lectures, teaching, learning and collaborative support to deliver a high-quality education.

You will be taught through a combination of lectures, seminars, tutorials, and lab classes. We aim to teach many of these classes face to face on campus, with other classes delivered online via Zoom. Our planning has been informed by feedback that has been provided throughout the current academic year.

By attending campus you will benefit from access to our purpose-built facilities, which support your learning through laboratory and computer access, as well as access to technical and academic guidance.

If there are further waves of infection in the UK that result in restrictions being imposed, we will do all we can to make sure that your teaching and learning continues uninterrupted over the course of the year. Our approach ensures that if things need to change, we can move to online only teaching at any point.

Joining us on campus

While we expect you to come to campus this academic year, we do understand that COVID-19 restrictions may affect you. We will continue to offer a level of flexibility for those of you who are unable to arrive at our campus for the start of term due to travel restrictions.

Details of the steps you should take if you are unable to arrive on our campus for the start of term will be made available before the start of the academic year where it will be possible.

Regardless of your location or method of accessing your learning, you will be able to register in the normal way at the start of the academic year through our online system.

Read our Covid-19 advice for applicants
Find Out More
Stay with us

We'll give you a loyalty discount of up to 33% on the tuition fee for your first year of postgraduate study at Essex, if you're one of our graduates, studied abroad with us, or have a spouse or partner studying here as a full-time international student paying overseas fees.

Get your Essex loyalty discount
Get in touch
Psychology postgraduate enquiries