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Masters Degrees (Forensic Speech Science)

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The MSc has been designed in conjunction with one of the world's leading forensic speech laboratories, JP French Associates. The director of the laboratory, Professor Peter French, will deliver some of the taught components and will supervise some research projects. Read more
The MSc has been designed in conjunction with one of the world's leading forensic speech laboratories, JP French Associates. The director of the laboratory, Professor Peter French, will deliver some of the taught components and will supervise some research projects.

Students are given the opportunity to go on site visits that will allow them to observe the working practices of the laboratory, as well as those of cognate institutions such as courts. They will carry out analyses of recordings from real forensic cases and will have the opportunity to develop expert witness communication skills by undergoing cross-examination from a practising barrister in the University’s moot court.

Areas of the MSc overlap with those central to speech and recording technology and students will have the opportunity to gain hands-on experience of the latest generation of automatic speaker recognition software used in banking and law enforcement, made available through the Department’s partnership with Nuance.

Aims

The MSc in Forensic Speech Science provides a comprehensive foundation in the aims, practices, and principles of speech analysis for forensic purposes. The course will:
-Provide a thorough grounding in the theoretical underpinnings of forensic speech analysis, especially in phonetics, acoustics, and sociolinguistics/language variation
-Introduce students to the practical techniques used in forensic speech and audio analysis
-Provide students with an appreciation of theoretical and methodological problems in performing forensic speech and audio analysis
-Enable students to apply their skills and knowledge to recorded materials from real criminal cases
-Enable students to perform original research in speaker comparison and speech content analysis
-Impart understanding of the role and responsibilities of the forensic speech scientist as expert witness

Applicants

The course will be of interest to:
-Graduates with a background in linguistics, acoustics, English or other language-based disciplines
-Graduates in law, criminology or psychology
-Professionals in legal practice, government agencies, law enforcement agencies or other branches of forensic science
-Potential practitioners of forensic speech science

Careers

The MSc is not intended as a stand-alone vocational qualification. However, successful completion of the programme will provide students with the requisite skills, understanding, and knowledge to work effectively and increase their employability in forensic domains as well as in related fields such as the police, prison service, emergency call services and security services.

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Developmental Psychology MSc develops your understanding of the psychological processes that underlie an individual's social, emotional and cognitive development throughout their life. Read more
Developmental Psychology MSc develops your understanding of the psychological processes that underlie an individual's social, emotional and cognitive development throughout their life.

To understand any psychological phenomenon fully it is necessary to understand how it develops. The Master’s programme at Kent gives you a deep understanding of the advanced methods, analytical techniques, and theoretical and practical approaches to developmental psychology and developmental psychopathology.

You focus on questions such as: What psychological changes occur during infancy, childhood, and adolescence? What psychological processes drive the development of children? What can psychologists do to promote healthy development in neurotypical individuals and support development among individuals with developmental disorders?

The MSc in Developmental Psychology at Kent is taught by academics and professionals such as educational psychologists, clinical psychologists, child therapists, and speech and language therapists.

The programme draws on the strengths of academic staff and researchers working in the field of developmental psychology, with expertise including language development, representational ability and early social-cognitive understanding of others, singing, infant face processing, the development of prejudice and social exclusion, and developmental psychopathology. MSc students also have the opportunity to use the Kent Child Development Unit (KCDU) (http://www.kent.ac.uk/psychology/childdevelopmentunit/index.html), a resource including child-friendly lab space and a register of 3,000 potential child participants.

Visit the website https://www.kent.ac.uk/courses/postgraduate/66/developmental-psychology

About the School of Psychology

As a student within the School of Psychology at Kent, you benefit from our supportive, dynamic and diverse environment for creative research and learning.

All of our taught Master’s (MSc) programmes have been recognised by the UK Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) as meeting the nationally recognised criteria for preparation training for PhD research.

Conducting both basic and applied research in several areas, Psychology at Kent is highly regarded as a leading European centre for postgraduate research. Our cutting-edge, internationally recognised research in developmental, cognitive, social, and forensic psychology underlies our reputation for research excellence across these areas. We attract excellent visiting scholars and postgraduate students from both within the UK and overseas.

Some of our PhD students are self-funded, and others are funded by grants or awards either from the School, UK or their countries of origin. Some are also paid to undertake part-time teaching within the School. We have a strong track record of attracting ESRC research studentship funding, which involves partnerships with external organisations such as Age UK and the Equality and Human Rights Commission and collaborative studentships with partners such as People United.

Course structure

We provide you with specialised knowledge of a range of theoretical and practical approaches to developmental psychology and developmental psychopathology, including an understanding of how research in developmental psychology can inform policy and practice across educational, health, forensic and clinical professional practice (eg research on language and reading development, social and emotional development).

You study four compulsory modules and two option modules. The compulsory modules are Advanced Statistics and Methodology (SP801), Advanced Topics in Cognitive Development (SP581), Advanced Topics in Developmental Psychopathology (SP854) and a supervised empirical or theoretical dissertation (SP998).

Modules

The modules below are indicative of those offered on this programme. This list is based on the current curriculum and may change year to year in response to new curriculum developments and innovation.

SP801 - Statistics and Methodology (40 credits)
SP851 - Advanced Topics in Cognitive Development (20 credits)
SP854 - Advanced Topics in Developmental Psychopathology (20 credits)
SP998 - Advanced Research Project in Psychology (60 credits)
SP802 - Current Issues in Social and Applied Psychology Part 1 (20 credits)
SP813 - Advanced Topics in Intergroup Relations (20 credits)
SP850 - Advanced Cognitive (Neuroscience) Methods in Practice (20 credits)
SP817 - Current Issues in Social and Applied Psychology II :Applications (20 credits)
SP842 - Advanced Developmental Social Psychology (20 credits)
SP852 - Developmental Psychology in Professional Practice (20 credits)
SP853 - The Psychology of Eyewitness Testimony (20 credits)

Assessment

The programme includes lecture, workshop, and seminar-based teaching, as well as practical demonstrations of modern methods for studying child development (eg behavioural techniques, eye-tracking, electroencephalography), and an individually supervised empirical research project. Assessment is mainly by coursework assignment (4000-6000-word essays), examination (for the Advanced Statistics and Methodology, and the Advanced Topics in Developmental Psychopathology modules only), plus the dissertation.

Programme aims

This programme aims to:

- foster your intellectual development by providing you with specialised knowledge of a range of theoretical approaches to developmental psychology and statistical and methodological expertise in order that you should be well equipped to make your own original contribution to psychological knowledge

- provide teaching that is informed by current research and scholarship and that requires you to engage with aspects of work at the frontiers of knowledge

- help you to develop research skills and transferable skills in preparation for entering academic or other careers as practicing professional psychologists

- satisfy the academic requirements of the knowledge base specified by the British Psychological Society

- enable you to manage your own learning and to carry out independent research

- help you to develop general critical, analytic and problem-solving skills that can be applied in a wide range of settings.

Careers

Our Developmental Psychology MSc graduates commonly go into the fields of health, teaching, or further education. Many of our graduates take up roles as assistant psychologists in the NHS with a view to becoming a professional clinical psychologist, or pursue doctoral study and academic careers at higher education institutions. Because the MSc Developmental Psychology programme is taught by academics and professionals, it offers students wide opportunities to pursue a variety of careers.

The programmes we offer help you to develop general critical, analytic, and problem-solving skills that can be applied in a wide range of settings. For example, last year’s graduates have taken up full-time salaried/funded positions as assistant psychologists, as PhD trainees, as healthcare advisers/workers in the private sector and in Childhood and Adolescent Mental Health Services, and as specialist charity workers.

Find out how to apply here - https://www.kent.ac.uk/courses/postgraduate/how-to-apply/

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Explore the real-world applications of psychological research, from memory and children’s use of video games to using websites for the public communication of scientific knowledge. Read more
Explore the real-world applications of psychological research, from memory and children’s use of video games to using websites for the public communication of scientific knowledge. On this course, you gain a deeper understanding of the contemporary issues that researchers are addressing today.

Our MSc Advanced Psychology provides specialist training across a broad range of core areas in the field, such as developmental psychology, neuroscience and neuropsychology, perception and cognition, and social psychology.

Since you study the topics our researchers are currently working on, exact themes are determined by staff interests. Examples of topics studied include:
-Mirror neurons and the representation of touch
-Augmenting human memory with technology
-Aggression and solitary behaviour in children
-Communicating emotions in speech
-Trypophobia and the fear of holes
-Facial recognition

Our research is challenging and ground-breaking, with 90% rated ‘world-leading’ or ‘internationally excellent’ (REF 2014), placing us in the top 15 in the UK. We are supported by some of the most prestigious funding bodies, including the European Commission and the Leverhulme Trust.

We are a warm and friendly Department, and we wish to welcome both psychology graduates who have recently completed their studies, and mature students who may wish to upgrade their qualifications, refresh their CV, or return to academic study after a period of time away from education.

Our expert staff

Our academic staff include award-winning teachers and prize-winning researchers who are international experts in their own research areas.

The Cognitive and Developmental Psychology Group are researching attention, language, decision-making, and memory. Recent projects have investigated the psychology of energy reduction, the enhancement of human memory through technology, and improvements in the usability and design of transport maps.

The Social and Health Psychology Group work on motivations, needs, intercultural contact, and sexual attraction. Recent projects include the impacts of living and studying abroad, and how personal relative deprivation is linked to problem gambling.

The Cognitive and Sensory Neuroscience Group research brain function and human behaviour. Recently they have been working on projects on the neural processes underlying language production, how motivations are communicated through tone of voice, and how the brain performs 3D vision. They previously developed the BioAid mobile phone app that turns an iPhone into a biologically inspired hearing aid.

Our department is expanding, and has recently appointed a number of excellent researchers whose expertise increases the diversity and depth of our skills base.

Specialist facilities

We are committed to giving you the best access to state-of-the-art facilities in higher education, housed entirely within our purpose-built psychology building on our Colchester Campus:
-Dedicated laboratories including a virtual reality suite and an observation suite
-Specialist areas for experimental psychology, visual and auditory perception, developmental psychology and social psychology
-Study the development of perceptual and cognitive abilities in infants in our Babylab
-Our multimillion pound Centre for Brain Science (CBS) contains specialist laboratories, office space for research students, and research rooms and social spaces which foster opportunities for innovation, training, and collaboration

Your future

With the skills and knowledge you acquire from studying within our Department of Psychology, you will find yourself in demand from a wide range of employers. Our graduates have been employed in clinical psychology, educational psychology, criminal and forensic psychology.

We also have excellent links with the research community; we are recognised by the ESRC as providing excellent postgraduate training and are an accredited Doctoral Training Centre, offering several studentships.

Our recent PhD students have taken up post-doctoral positions in other top UK universities and international universities (in the US, Italy and Australia), as well as being appointed to lectureships.

Example structure

Postgraduate study is the chance to take your education to the next level. The combination of compulsory and optional modules means our courses help you develop extensive knowledge in your chosen discipline, whilst providing plenty of freedom to pursue your own interests. Our research-led teaching is continually evolving to address the latest challenges and breakthroughs in the field, therefore to ensure your course is as relevant and up-to-date as possible your core module structure may be subject to change.

MSc Advanced Psychology
-Special Topics in Social Psychology
-Research Project (MSc)
-Special Topics in Individual Differences and Developmental Psychology
-Special Topics in Neuroscience and Neuropsychology
-Special Topics in Perception and Cognition
-Fundamentals of Neuroscience and Neuropsychology (optional)
-Research Management (optional)
-Cognitive Neuropsychology of Language (optional)
-Critical Literature Review (optional)
-Methods in Cognitive Neuroscience (optional)
-Psychology at Work and in the Real World (optional)
-Visual Attention: From lab to life (Advanced) (optional)
-Psycho Analytic Theory (optional)
-Psychoanalysis of Groups and Organisations (optional)
-Psychosocial Perspectives on Human Rights (optional)
-Thinking Psychoanalytically (optional)
-Advertising: Commerce and Creativity (optional)
-Interviewing and Qualitative Data Analysis (optional)
-Formative Debates in Criminology (optional)

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