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School of Psychology

MPsych (Hons) Psychology

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UCAS tariff 120 - 136
UCAS course code C802
Institution code P60
Duration

4 years

(+ optional placement)
Course type

Full-time

Study location Plymouth

With our flagship four year programme you'll stand out with a masters level qualification in psychology tailored to your chosen career. Building on foundations of clinical, social, developmental, and cognitive psychology, the specialist advanced modules offered in the fourth year will put you on the ladder to your chosen career in professional psychology.

Careers with this subject

The programme provides advanced training and experience that puts graduates at a competitive advantage in academic or professional psychological practice. Insight and instruction of core psychological research competencies provide a foundation for the exploration of the knowledge and skills specific to particular career-pathways. Selection amongst the wide-range of elective modules provides experiential-learning of advanced topics relevant to clinical practice, techniques in behaviour change, and human neuroscience. These options allow you to shape the psychologist that you want to become, with the skills and experience requisite for doctoral training, or immediate professional or commercial practice.
Understanding where your degree subject could take you is an important first step in career planning. Due to the transferrable nature of the skills you gain from your studies, you may discover that there is a much wider range of opportunities open to you within this profession that you may first appreciate. Find out more about where your degree could take you 

Key features

  • Our hands-on approach to learning embeds practical activities throughout the programme, so you can put new knowledge into practice and build the skills for future careers.
  • Wide range of elective modules allows you to shape the psychologist you want to become, allowing a deep-dive on techniques in clinical practice, neuroscience and behaviour change.
  • Taught lectures are concentrated on three specific days of the week (although some sessions may fall outside this pattern), allowing full or part-time study to be combined with research, work experience, or external commitments.
  • Advanced instruction on all aspects of the research cycle: from the formulation of the research question, experiment design, data analysis, through to the written and oral communication of your findings and applications for further research funding.
  • Work with world-leading researchers and practitioners in the exploration of a research topic of your own choosing.
  • Our extensive range of specialist facilities and laboratories, including neuroimaging, observation, virtual reality, and the Plymouth Babylab, allow you to make an original contribution to your chosen area of specialism.

Course details

  • Year 1

  • Your first-year modules provide a foundation of knowledge and skills across the breadth of psychology. You will learn about how we think, perceive the world, and interact with each other. You will also study key topics in clinical and developmental psychology, how we interact with our environment and how it shapes us, and how we are motivated to achieve our goals.

    Core modules

    • Cognitive Psychology (PSYC421)

      This module introduces some of our fundamental mental processes, such as learning, memory, attention and reasoning. Across a series of lectures and practical workshops you’ll explore some of the core concepts in cognition – designing and testing your own experiments to build skills and experience in basic research skills, such as problem solving, hypothesis testing, data collection and the communication of your findings

    • Clinical and Developmental Psychology (PSYC422)

      This module will establish an understanding of clinical and developmental psychology. You will learn about contemporary issues relating to mental health and neurodiversity, as well as the history of how conditions are classified, diagnosed, and treated. You also examine how cognitive, social and emotional abilities develop and change over childhood, informing our understanding of their origins and limitations on maturation.

    • Environmental Psychology (PSYC423)

      Examining the interplay between people and their environment, in this module you will explore the psychology behind how we interact with our environment, and the effect our environment has on our mental state and wellbeing. In embedded practical workshops you will design a project to examine these relationships and understand how best to analyse and present your findings.

    • Social Psychology (PSYC424)

      Introducing fundamental topics forming the basis of social psychology you will learn about the formation of personality, relationships and our perceptions and prejudices of others, as well as our understanding of how particular social situations affect our thoughts and behaviours. Embedded workshops provide practical training on the research skills and techniques specific to the study of social psychology.

    • Perception and the Brain (PSYC425)

      In this module you will learn about the biological bases of behaviour and the mechanisms of sensory perception. One strand of lectures focuses on the fundamentals of neuroscience, brain anatomy and function, and research methods in neuroscience including studies of disorders of the mind and brain. Another lecture strand concerns perception, with a particular focus on the mechanisms of human vision and hearing.

    • Motivation and Performance (PSYC426)

      In this module you will explore the psychology behind individual and group motivation and performance. Drawing upon principles from sports psychology, military and commercial excellence, and personal development, you will learn about the psychological theories and principles that shape our future potential. In embedded practical workshops you will explore the motivational factors that allow individuals and teams to fulfil their goals and improve performance.

    • Interprofessional Learning 1 (HIPL400)

  • Year 2

  • With a focus on developing research and practical skills, you will get additional hands-on experience in designing and testing your own experiments to explore a range of topics. You also continue to build upon your knowledge of the core areas of psychology, getting to grips with key concepts from across cognitive, developmental, social and clinical psychology.

    Core modules

    • Career and Placement Planning (CPIE202)

    • Cognition and Biological Psychology (PSYC513)

      This module provides a comprehensive examination of the core topics in cognitive and biological psychology. Here you will learn about the key phenomena, theories and biological mechanisms that underpin our cognitive processes and emergent behaviour in learning, memory, reasoning, and language.

    • Individual Differences, Social and Developmental Psychology (PSYC514)

      This module provides an in-depth and critical understanding of research in individual differences, social and developmental psychology. Here you will critically examine the leading theories that compete to explain our social behaviour and underlying psychological processes, how they developed, and why they can lead to such different outcomes.

    • Health and Wellbeing (PSYC515)

      This module examines the relationships between health, clinical and forensic psychology that influence our health-related behaviours and potential for criminality. Here you will learn about the issues and contemporary approaches to the classification of symptoms and behaviours, and critically explore the relative contributions of inherited traits and the social and environmental circumstances that influence our behaviours.

    • Applied Psychology (PSYC516)

      During this module you will explore the contribution of psychology to success in education and work. This will include a critical examination of a range of different approaches in educational assessment and risk communication, and how best to effect behaviour change strategies to encourage diversity and promote productivity and well-being.

    • Research Skills in Practice 1 (PSYC519)

      Here you will develop your understanding of both qualitative and quantitative research methods through practical experience. Across a series of workshops, you will formulate a research question, design an experiment, collect data and learn about a range of statistical and qualitative techniques to analyse your findings. This will provide increasing confidence with the research process, project management, and ethics.

    • Research Skills in Practice 2 (PSYC520)

      Building upon prior learning, in this module you receive practical instruction on how to undertake and communicate research of increasing complexity. Working in supervised groups across a series of workshops you will develop and empirically test research questions on inter-group differences, presenting your findings in oral presentations and a written report.

    • Interprofessional Learning 2 (HIPL500)

  • Optional placement year

  • If you choose, you can take an optional work placement after your second year, expanding your knowledge of psychology in a real world context across the UK. Apply to spend a year honing your skills on a psychological professional/work placement. Gain invaluable experience, make professional contacts and receive a Certificate of Professional/Industrial Placement. Please note some placements may require Occupation Health and/or Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) checks.

    Core modules

    • Placement: Psychology (CPIE501)

      In this professional placement you will develop and apply your psychological knowledge in the workplace, gaining invaluable working experience and connections in a psychological discipline. Our placement team will help you to secure a placement in a vocation of your choosing and, alongside your personal tutor, will guide and support you to achieve your desired learning outcomes and vocational experiences.

  • Year 3

  • Shape the psychologist that you want to become with freedom of choice across a wide range of current psychology topics. With the study of morals, psychopharmacology, music and emotion, deception, and animal behaviour to name just a few of the topics, you are free to explore the areas of psychology that interest and benefit you the most. These studies are also augmented by a supervised research project, where you will work alongside one of our world-class research academics on a question of your own choosing.

    Core modules

    • Careers Planning (PSYC600)

      This zero-credit module is home to careers talks.

    • Current Topics in Psychology 1 (PSYC601)

      In this module you have a free choice of two topics drawn from across the breadth of the psychology, delivered by specialist academic or practitioner from that field. This choice will allow you to focus and develop an in-depth critical appreciation, knowledge, and skill base in areas of particular interest and utility to you and your future vocation.

    • Current Topics in Psychology 2 (PSYC602)

      In this module you have a free choice of two topics drawn from across the breadth of the psychology, delivered by specialist academic or practitioner from that field. This choice will allow you to focus and develop an in-depth critical appreciation, knowledge, and skill base in areas of particular interest and utility to you and your future vocation.

    • Current Topics in Psychology 3 (PSYC603)

      In this module you have a free choice of two topics drawn from across the breadth of the psychology, delivered by specialist academic or practitioner from that field. This choice will allow you to focus and develop an in-depth critical appreciation, knowledge, and skill base in areas of particular interest and utility to you and your future vocation.

    • Current Topics in Psychology 4 (PSYC604)

      In this module you have a free choice of two topics drawn from across the breadth of the psychology, delivered by specialist academic or practitioner from that field. This choice will allow you to focus and develop an in-depth critical appreciation, knowledge, and skill base in areas of particular interest and utility to you and your future vocation

    • Research Project (PSYC605)

      In this module you will undertake a comprehensive research project to investigate an original psychological research question in an area of your own choosing. Research training is provided across a wide range of workshops such that, with close support from your research supervisor, you will design and conduct an experiment or study to address your question, analyse data and communicate your findings verbally and in writing.

    • Interprofessional Learning 3 (HIPL600)

  • Final year

  • In your final year, having completed three years to at least a second-class degree standard, you will progress to the study of masters level topics in psychology. These advanced studies build upon the specialist knowledge gained in the previous year, providing a greater depth of experience designed to prepare you for a future career in professional psychology or research. Core modules provide the training on the core concepts and skills used in research and practice. This includes advanced instruction in data fluency, experiment design and the communication of research, and the role of qualitative and interpretative techniques in the application of psychology to everyday problems. A wide range of specialist techniques are offered as options, allowing you to build a suite of specific techniques required for your future career in research or practice clinical psychology, neuroscience, or behaviour change techniques.

    Core modules

    • Personal and Professional Development (PSYC750)

      This module will enhance students awareness of the transferable skills they possess, focus thinking about future employment, spur reflection on recent learning, and promote the effective use of feedback to enhance academic performance.

    • Advanced Psychology Research Project (PSYC722)

      This module requires students to undertake an original project in an area associated with their specialist area of interest. It comprises an independent piece of research work conducted by the student and written up as a research report.

    • Advanced Research Design and Data Fluency for Psychology (PSYC760)

      This module explores approaches to formulating psychological research questions, the design of studies to effectively investigate such questions, and how to work fluently with common types of psychological data.

    • Advanced Research Practice and Data Analysis for Psychology (PSYC761)

      This module teaches students to communicate their research in a conference-style presentation setting, to work collaboratively and make an impact in their academic and professional life, and to analyse psychological data using best practices for reproducibility and transparency in psychological science.  

    Optional modules

    • Models of Intervention in Psychology (PSYC762)

      What makes a psychologically based intervention effective? This module covers a range of contemporary interventions for clinical psychological and behavioural problems, focusing on a critical analysis of the psychological mechanisms underlying interventions and explores how laboratory research can be translated into new interventions. 

    • Advanced Skills and Techniques for Psychological Research Part 1 (PSYC763)

      The module introduces students to a range of approaches to data collection including interviewing, surveys, computer programming, systematic reviewing and EEG. It also provides students with a grounding in core research skills such as writing, literature reviewing and conducting service evaluation. 

    • Advanced Skills and Techniques for Psychological Research Part 2 (PSYC764)

      The module introduces students to a range of approaches to data analytic and data handling methodologies including qualitative approaches such as thematic analysis and content analysis and methods of analysing and data handling approaches to quantitative data such as JAMOVI/JASP and excel. The module will also cover specific elements of analysis such as clinical significance, psychometrics and research dissemination through academic posters.  

    • Neuropsychology and Neuroscience: From lab to community (PSYC765)

      To show how different cognitive science and neuroscience techniques can be used to advance understanding cognition and how this relates to neurological conditions. Students are introduced to a range of neuropsychological conditions including Acquired Brain Injuries, Parkinson’s and dementia and approaches to intervention from lab through to hospital and community settings.  

Every undergraduate taught course has a detailed programme specification document describing the course aims, the course structure, the teaching and learning methods, the learning outcomes and the rules of assessment.

The following programme specification represents the latest course structure and may be subject to change:

MPsych Hons Psychology Programme Specification 23-24 _7309

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.

Entry requirements

UCAS tariff

120 - 136

A Level: 120–136 points from a minimum of three A levels from any subjects (excluding General Studies).
BTEC 18 Unit National Diploma/QCF Extended Diploma: DDM.
International Baccalaureate: 32-34 points overall.
Access courses: Pass Access to HE Science/Combined Science/Humanities/Social Sciences course, to include 45 credits at Level 3, of which 30 credits must be at distinction and 15 credits at merit or higher.
T level
Distinction in any subjects.
GCSE
5 GCSE subjects at grade C/4 or above are preferred and this does not necessarily need to be Mathematics and English subjects.
Extended entry requirements
  • English language requirements 
  • We welcome applicants with international qualifications. To view other accepted qualifications please refer to our tarif glossary. 
  • Other international qualifications considered – please contact admissions@plymouth.ac.uk.
  • Students under the age of 18 at the start of the programme are eligible to apply for this programme.

Fees, costs and funding

Student 2023-2024 2024-2025
Home £9,250 £9,250
International £16,300 £18,100
Part time (Home) £770 £770
Full time fees shown are per annum. Part time fees shown are per 10 credits. Please note that fees are reviewed on an annual basis. Fees and the conditions that apply to them shown in the prospectus are correct at the time of going to print. Fees shown on the web are the most up to date but are still subject to change in exceptional circumstances. More information about fees and funding.

School of Psychology: undergraduate scholarships for international students 

International students who have met the conditions of their University of Plymouth offer of study will be eligible to receive the School of Psychology Gold Scholarship to help towards the cost of tuition fees. You may also be eligible to apply for the University's Undergraduate International Academic Excellence scholarship.

Additional costs

This course is delivered by the Faculty of Health and more details of any additional costs associated with the faculty's courses are listed on the following page:  Faculty of Health additional costs.

Tuition fees for optional placement years

The fee for all undergraduate students completing any part of their placement year in the UK in 2023/2024 is £1,850.
The fee for all undergraduate students completing their whole placement year outside the UK in 2023/2024 is £1,385.
Learn more about placement year tuition fees

How to apply

All applications for undergraduate courses are made through UCAS (Universities and Colleges Admissions Service). 
UCAS will ask for the information contained in the box at the top of this course page including the UCAS course code and the institution code. 
To apply for this course and for more information about submitting an application including application deadline dates, please visit the UCAS website.
Support is also available to overseas students applying to the University from our International Office via our how to apply webpage or email admissions@plymouth.ac.uk.

Why choose Plymouth?

We've redesigned the way we teach psychology. We have listened to feedback from our students and created a curriculum where the focus is on active learning instead of attending lectures. As well as this hands-on approach there are many aspects to the course that we are immensely proud of. 
Facilities within the School of Psychology
We have 22 specialist laboratories which can be booked by students and staff. Labs range from single participant rooms through to labs with a range of networked or standalone computers and social interaction or group participation rooms.
Placement Year
All of our psychology students can opt to take a voluntary placement year, so you do not have to apply for a particular course. You will gain invaluable experience and cultivate professional contacts. The process starts in your second year, with information sessions to help you decide if a placement year is right for you.
Psychology Research Apprenticeship Scheme
Every year around 60-70 first and second-year students volunteer to work with a member of staff as a 'Research Apprentice'. With this informally run scheme, you'll get first-hand experience of carrying out research – everything from literature searching through experimental design and data collection to analysis and even publishing papers.
Peer-Assisted Learning Scheme (PALS)
Learning alongside other students on your course can give you a greater opportunity to discuss ideas, broaden your knowledge, gain confidence and make friends. You will benefit from regular, coordinated Peer-Led Study Sessions planned and delivered by student PALS leaders from the academic year above. Your group will be small enough to work together, discussing ideas, completing tasks and checking understanding in a relaxed and friendly environment. 
MPsych Clinical Psychology - image courtesy of Getty Images

Research in the School of Psychology

Plymouth is a centre of excellence in psychological research. In the 2021 Research Excellence Framework assessment, 100% of our research environment and research impact was rated as either world-leading (4*) or internationally excellent (3*), along with 73% of our research outputs (publications). Within Psychology, Psychiatry and Neuroscience, the proportion of our research impact rated as 4* or 3* was equal to or higher than institutions such as Nottingham, Aberdeen, Bath, UCL, Cambridge, and York. Overall, we were ranked above Durham and Bath on 4* and 3* research, and were the top rated department in a modern university.
We have a thriving PhD community, with around 80 doctoral students, as well as purpose-built research facilities.
Learn more about the research in the School of Psychology

Staff insight – Professor Caroline Floccia

...I was in my twenties, and I went to a party and I met somebody who told me for the first time about the existence of a field called cognitive psychology… a field in which people study how the brain and mind work… it was a revelation…
Find out why Professor Caroline Floccia is passionate about cognitive psychology.

Our labs

Academic staff