FdSc Psychological Studies

Petroc is one of the largest colleges in Devon and is committed to driving forward educational success in further and higher education. 

We are passionate about raising the aspirations, knowledge and skills of individuals, and year after year our students produce exceptional results, enabling them to progress further in training or employment. 

Petroc has been delivering a range of degree-level courses for over 30 years and is proud to be able to provide a wide variety of programmes (from HNCs and Foundation Degrees to Higher Apprenticeships and Honours Degrees) in subject areas including education, computing, science, engineering, and health and care. 

Petroc has three campuses situated across North and Mid Devon with modern and stimulating learning environments. We also offer small classes, extensive student support and exceptional links to local industry. 

Visit the Petroc website to find out how we can help you go further in life.

Course details

  • Year 1

  • Core modules

    • Social, Developmental and Behaviourist Psychology (NORD1053)

      This module introduces some of the basic theories and research findings in developmental psychology, Behaviourist Psychology and social psychology. Alongside this it will investigate the historical and conceptual basis for our current understandings within these areas of psychology.

    • Cognitive and Biological Psychology (NORD1054)

      This module aims to allow students to acquire a broad foundation of knowledge of the core areas of cognitive psychology and biological psychology. It will investigate specific areas and allow students to interpret findings from studies to enhance understanding of the brain and nervous system and how it works.

    • Research Methods (NORD1082)

      This module introduces the rationale for scientific research in psychology. It also introduces a range of approaches and research methodologies, together with their benefits and drawbacks. Basic aspects of experimental design are covered, together with statistical analysis and the use of computers for basic data manipulation and analysis. The module also provides training in the writing of research reports.

    • Developing Graduate Skills (PETR1081)

      This module is designed to enable students to demonstrate that they have all the qualities and transferable skills necessary for appropriate academic work and employment requiring the exercise of responsibility and decision making, including the ability to relate their professional practice to underlying theory and principles. 

  • Year 2

  • Core modules

    • Social Development of Children (NORD2052)

      This module will explore the social development of children and adolescents. It will build upon previous broad knowledge of both developmental and social psychology in order to explore topics in more depth. These topics will be taken from different aspects of child development with the aim to explore and challenge commonly held beliefs with the use of relevant psychological research.

    • Applying Psychology (PETR1148)

    • Psychology and Crime (PETR1149)

    • Research Methods II (PETR2120)

      This module extends training in experimental research methods as well as covering the design, running, analysing and reporting of qualitative research. The ethical implications of psychological research are considered. It aims to consolidate and extend competence in statistical analysis, and covers a range of psychometric principles, inferential statistical techniques and the use of statistical software.

  • Final year

  • Core modules

    • Individual Differences (NORD2054)

      This module examines research into individual differences. Theories of personality and intelligence are critically considered. Personality and IQ tests construction and use are considered. Students will construct their own scale and use this within a research study.

    • Psychopathology (NORD2055)

      This module covers the main approaches to psychology (biological, cognitive, behavioural and psychodynamic) by addressing the question of abnormality, how it is defined and diagnosed, its aetiology and how it is treated according to these approaches.

    • Psychology of Health and Illness (PETR2119)

      This module will explore the psychological and behavioural processes in health, illness and healthcare. Health Psychologists use their knowledge of theory and practice to promote wellbeing and healthier lifestyles and to understand physical illness. This module will provide a basic introduction to these areas and professions related to health and illness

    Optional modules

    • Counselling Studies (PETR2144)

The modules shown for this course are those currently being studied by our students, or are proposed new modules. Please note that programme structures and individual modules are subject to amendment from time to time as part of the University’s curriculum enrichment programme and in line with changes in the University’s policies and requirements.

Fees, costs and funding

As this course is delivered by one of our partner colleges, please contact the college directly for information on fees and funding.

How to apply

For further information and to apply for this course, please contact the college's admissions team directly using the contact details below. 

Progression routes

Completing this course enables you to progress onto these related courses and programmes with the University of Plymouth at level 5 or level 6, as specifically defined by this programme’s progression agreement.

For further information, including the progression from foundation degree form, please visit

Our partnership with Petroc

The University of Plymouth has developed partnerships with institutions around the world with the sole purpose of making higher education more accessible to those people who need something just a little different.

Our Academic Partnerships enable students to enrol for a degree at a partnership institution closer to home, or engage in distance learning – even when they’re in the middle of the ocean. They are there for those people looking to return to education, or enhance their professional development. Full- or part-time; foundation degree to masters-level – we cater for a huge variety of needs and aspirations.

Many of our partners offer specialist degrees, unique facilities, and smaller class sizes at a competitive price. And as a student of two institutions, you get the best of both worlds; a supportive learning environment as part of a close-knit community, and a university-level qualification awarded by the University of Plymouth. You’ll enjoy not only the facilities and services your partnership institution provides, but also all of the additional support and resources you need from us, and you’ll automatically become a member of our Students’ Union, too.

We are continuing to grow the number of partner institutions and expand our academic community to new locations around the UK and overseas. Why not visit the Academic Partnerships page on our website for a full list of partners and for more details on studying with us?

One of our partners delivers this particular course – so please visit their website for full course details, entry requirements, tuition fees and information on what student life is like there. 

Please contact Petroc to apply for this course:

Old Sticklepath Hill
EX31 2BQ

Tel: +441271345291

Open days

Partner college open days

This course is run at one of our partner colleges. Open days are held at the college and more details of these can be found on the college website. You'll find contact details below, on this page.

University of Plymouth open days

You are also very welcome to attend a University of Plymouth open day, to get a flavour of the courses you can progress to from a partner college. There will however be limited information on this specific course and college.

Studying with Petroc

With main campuses in Barnstaple, Tiverton and Brannams, if you decide to study at the combined college, you’ll be able to take advantage of increased resources and the plethora of learning opportunities associated with them.
Plymouth students working on a group project