About the course
The MSc Psychological Sciences conversion course provides a post-graduate qualification enabling students from a range of backgrounds to gain Graduate Basis for Chartered Membership in Psychology of the British Psychological Society (BPS).
Moreover, the conversion course provides a sound knowledge of the diverse approaches to the study of behaviour encompassed within the core areas of psychology. Finally, the course emphasises the development of transferable knowledge, analytic expertise and research skills, which will be useful across the diverse areas of employment that attract psychology graduates and as a basis for further advanced study within the discipline (e.g. PhD, ClinPsyD, DEdPsy).
Psychology is defined as the study of mind and behaviour. Psychology is simultaneously a biological science and a social science, providing an exceptionally broad range of conceptual perspectives and empirical skills that will enable students to compete effectively in the workforce upon graduation.
The programme aims to provide students with:
Coverage of all of the requirements for Graduate Basis for Chartered Membership in Psychology within the British Psychological Society (BPS).
A comprehensive understanding, and critical awareness, of how the theories, methods, and research findings of psychology draw upon and contribute to the natural sciences and the social sciences alike.
A comprehensive and systematic understanding of knowledge, and a critical awareness of current issues relating to important concepts, theoretical issues, research findings, historical issues, recent advances, and research methods in psychology.
Comprehensive knowledge and systematic understanding of relevant concepts, theoretical issues, research findings, recent advances, and research methods in biological psychology, cognitive psychology, developmental psychology, individual differences, and social psychology that are critical for research in psychology.
The opportunity to acquire comprehensive knowledge and systematic understanding of a particular topic in psychology and to conduct an original empirical research project in that area.
The opportunity to acquire important transferable, advanced research skills (e.g. research design, data analysis, report preparation).
Conceptual and Historical Issues in Psychology
Statistics in Psychology
Research Methods in Psychology
Psychology Research Methods in Practice
Biological and Cognitive Psychology
The dissertation is an empirical report (maximum 12,000 words) that enables students to:
Integrate elements of their learning from different parts of the programme
Demonstrate their accumulated knowledge and systematic understanding of a topic
Show an ability to interpret primary source material
Develop an innovative approach to the subject
Work independently of others, consistent with BPS guidelines.
Lectures and seminars provide students with in-depth knowledge of historical and contemporary perspectives in psychology.
Formative and summative essays provide reflection on historical and contemporary perspectives in psychology.
Statistics assignments, written research methods tests and laboratory reports will ensure proficiency in analytical skills - required to design research and interpret results.
Statistics assignment and lab reports will provide critical evaluation of the results of empirical research in psychology.
Formative summative essays, exams, and the dissertation will develop effective and critical written communication skills.
Individual meetings between students and dissertation supervisors will enable students to:
(a) Acquire knowledge concerning major theories and results of empirical studies that are relevant to the dissertation topic (including an understanding of the larger, real-world context within which the dissertation topic can be located); and
(b) Develop, analyse, and interpret theory-derived, testable hypotheses (and, perhaps, research questions) concerning links among the constructs to be studied in the dissertation.
Effective and critical written communication will be achieved via formative summative essays, exams, and the dissertation.
Coursework essays – demonstration of systematic understanding, critical analysis, and written communication skills.
Examinations – demonstration of comprehensive understanding and written communication skills.
Quantitative reports – ability to analyse and interpret empirical evidence.
Oral presentations – demonstration of knowledge and understanding, critical analysis and oral communication skills.
Dissertation – ability to plan, critically review, execute and communicate an advanced piece of research.
Deadlines are distributed through the year, allowing time for constructive feedback.
The MSc Psychological Sciences conversion course will provide a Graduate Basis for Chartered Membership (GBC) in Psychology, as conferred by the British Psychological Society (BPS). This is an entry requirement for all postgraduate training programmes leading to chartered status and the vast majority of postgraduate programmes accredited by the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) for registration as a practitioner psychologist.
There is a focus during the programme on developing students' sound knowledge of research methods and statistics - highly desirable skills in many areas of potential employment and so fundamental to the value added by the degree.
A wide range of options are available for students to pursue their own particular research interests (culminating in the dissertation) within the discipline.
BSc Psychology courses accredited by The British Psychological Society
The BSc Psychological Sciences programme at Brunel is accredited by The British Psychological Society.