MSc Psychology by Research

The MSc Psychology by Research allows you to complete a programme of supervised research and present and defend a thesis of up to 40,000 words.

The School of Psychology and Therapeutic Studies at the University of South Wales is home to internationally-recognised academics with diverse research interests, and has a vibrant research culture. 

We offer a comprehensive range of equipment and laboratory space, and a supportive atmosphere in which to conduct your research.

2020/21 update: Blended learning approach for USW courses.

The wellbeing and health and safety of our students and staff is paramount to us. We are committed to delivering all of our courses and services as safely as possible. Due to the pandemic, the methods and activities adopted for the coming year may differ from those previously published and may be subject to further change through the course of your study if such change is necessary due to public health concerns, health and safety guidance or in response to Government Guidelines. USW is committed to providing you with a fantastic student experience and a wealth of support, and you can hear how students have benefitted from this approach here: Learn more about blended learning.

Study Mode
2020
Duration Start Date Campus Campus Code
Full-time 1 Year September Treforest A
Full-time 1 Year October Treforest A
Part-time 2 Years September Treforest A
Part-time 2 Years October Treforest A
Study Mode
2021
Duration Start Date Campus Campus Code
Full-time 1 Year October Treforest A
Part-time 2 Years October Treforest A

You can choose an area of psychology that interests you most and pursue a relevant research project in that area. Research topics include, but are not restricted to:

 

  • Health Psychology
  • The Psychology of Addiction
  • Online Romantic Relationships
  • The Psychology of Deception
  • The Psychology of Dysfunctional Phone Use
  • Social Identity
  • Psychology of the Paranormal
  • Child Development
  • Sports Psychology

You will also receive training in research methodology, covering both qualitative and quantitative approaches. A prior knowledge of statistics is preferable, although you will get formal training in statistics and relevant computer applications.

Teaching

You will work independently for the most part, but you will be supported by close supervision from academic members of staff, with whom you will meet on a regular basis to assess your progress.

A full time candidate will normally devote on average at least 35 hours per week to the research; a part time candidate on average at least 12 hours per week.

To share and develop your ideas, you will be encouraged to present your research to colleagues at regular seminars throughout the year, and to interact and discuss your work with other research students.

Please visit our Graduate School pages for details of support for research students.

Assessment

The MSc Psychology by Research involves completing your Research Methodology training and submitting a thesis of your own research of around 40,000 words, at the end of which you will receive an oral examination by an internal and external assessor.

Facilities

Facilities include observation and interview rooms equipped with a two-way mirror, CCTV and audio, which allows research and interview practice sessions to be conducted and recorded. We also have a custom-built air conditioned PC laboratory which provides access to specialist software for running psychology experiments and conducting careers guidance interviews.

The Cognitive Neuropsychology Suite houses specialist psychology equipment such as eye tracking equipment, EEG (electroencephalogram) and ECG (electrocardiogram) facilities for recording electrical activity in the heart and scalp and a driving simulator.

The University offers a wide range of psychological services to the general public through our psychology clinics which include autism, behaviour analysis, health and sport psychology interventions.

Lecturers

An applicant for the Masters by Research shall normally hold one of the following:

  • A UK first or upper second class honours degree (or equivalent)
  • Appropriate, relevant qualification or relevant experience which is regarded by the University as equivalent

All applications must include two references on headed paper from your referees which should be uploaded as a supporting document. Please note, we can not accept applications without these two references. At least one referee should be able to comment on your academic/professional ability. References provided by relatives are not acceptable.

All applicants for research degrees must submit an application form accompanied by a research proposal to the Faculty’s Research Application Panel (RAP). Please read our information on how to write a research proposal.

You can find more information on our Graduate School website.



Full-time fees are per year. Part-time fees are per 20 credits. Once enrolled, the fee will remain at the same rate throughout the duration of your study on this course.

August 2019 - July 2020 Fees


  • Full-time UK and EU:  £4327

  • Full-time International:  £13900 

  • Part-time UK and EU:  £2164

August 2020 - July 2021 Fees


  • Full-time UK and EU: TBC

  • Full-time International:  £15000 

  • Part-time UK and EU: TBC

August 2021 - July 2022 Fees


  • Full-time UK and EU: TBC

  • Full-time International: TBC

  • Part-time UK and EU: TBC

Additional Costs

Students have access to a wide range of resources including textbooks, publications, and computers in the University’s library and via online resources. In most cases they are more than sufficient to complete a course of study. Where there are additional costs, either obligatory or optional, these are detailed below. Of course students may choose to purchase their own additional personal resources/tools over and above those listed to support their studies at their own expense. All stationery and printing costs are at a student’s own expense.

* Obligatory

Item Cost
DBS (Optional) £47.20
This fee includes £40 for the enhanced DBS certificate, the Post Office Administration fee and the online administration fee.

The Masters Psychology by Research will provide a good basis for anyone who wants to pursue a career in research. It is also ideal for those who wish to improve their research skills to a professional level to support applications for a PhD, or for a clinical or educational professional training programme.

Find out more about Research at USW