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We're committed to developing our postgraduates into skilled researchers who can conduct rigorous research using a variety of methodologies and methods- http://www.gold.ac.uk/pg/mphil-phd-psychology/. Read more
We're committed to developing our postgraduates into skilled researchers who can conduct rigorous research using a variety of methodologies and methods- http://www.gold.ac.uk/pg/mphil-phd-psychology/

Supervision can be offered in any of the areas of departmental activity.

During your first year you may take a range of taught modules including research design and analysis, methodology, theoretical issues, and statistics; requirements will vary depending on any postgraduate research training you have already undertaken.

The MPhil programme offers the opportunity for you to continue your research to a PhD.

You will attend and contribute to research seminars, and through departmental and Goldsmiths-wide modules you are also encouraged to develop practical skills such as public speaking, poster preparation, scientific writing, and how to deal with the media.

You meet regularly with your supervisor at every stage, and develop a structured approach to designing, executing, analysing and writing up your research.

You will have access to the Department of Psychology's range of laboratories, testing rooms and research equipment. You have an annual allowance to contribute towards your research expenses and participation in at least one national or international conference.

What kind of research could I do?

We are able to support research in most areas of psychology. Some students have already formulated specific research ideas before they apply here, and find a supervisor in the department who is able to help them develop these into a doctoral research programme; if this applies to you, see information on the expertise of all our staff and contact any who you think may be able to help you to pursue these.

Other students are attracted by the research interests of our staff, and may decide to undertake a project which has been suggested by them and which relates to their ongoing research. To explore these or other research ideas, start by emailing the member of staff whose research interests you. Each staff member will discuss research ideas with you via email, skype or phone; and you are very welcome to visit staff at Goldsmiths to discuss your options further.

Contact the department

If you have specific questions about the degree, contact Denise Barry.


Our postgraduate students are offered a stimulating study environment in which to research their higher degree.

We have a thriving postgraduate school with some 40 current students on full-time and part-time programmes, including mature students and students from the EU and overseas.

We provide training modules in research methods in your first year, a regular report/presentation schedule, and excellent computing/research facilities.

If you are thinking of doing an MPhil at Goldsmiths, the first step is to get in touch with any members of our staff whose research is in line with your interests.

The MPhil programme offers the opportunity for you to continue your research to a PhD.

Training and support

All our MPhil students are assigned a specific research supervisor (or sometimes joint supervisors).

As well as receiving ongoing support and guidance from their allocated supervisor(s), our students undergo comprehensive training in psychological research methods (unless they already hold an MSc approved by the ESRC) in line with current ESRC training guidelines, which includes quantitative and qualitative research methodologies. This is mainly during the first year of registration (or first two years for part-time students. Our MPhil students also attend various short generic research skills and methods training (CRT) modules run by the College, also in their first year (or first two years if part-time).

Our students have full access to the Department's excellent facilities for lab and field research, and first-rate technical support is available from the Department's five-strong team of full-time technical staff.

Your progress

You may have the option to upgrade to a PhD after 12 months full-time, or 20 months part-time.

Your progress on your thesis is regularly monitored by the Department's Postgraduate Programmes Committee. The Head of Department can recommend suspension from the programme at any stage if progress is not satisfactory.

Postgraduate facilities

All full-time students have their own workplace and a networked computer with access to programmes for their research needs, plus email and internet facilities. Part-time students also have access to a networked computer, generally shared between two or three students. In addition, we have a lab solely for the use of postgraduates, and a postgraduate computing room. We also run a psychological test library for staff and students.

Seminars and presentations

Our postgraduates have regular opportunities to meet up with other students and to make contact with staff.

The Department runs a number of active visiting lecturer seminar programmes and a weekly Postgraduate Seminar Series, at which students learn about the research of their colleagues, and receive guidance on topics such as giving presentations or writing up a thesis. There are also several specialised research groups (including affective neuroscience, consciousness studies, development and social processes, occupational psychology, visual cognition) open to staff, researchers and postgraduate students which hold regular discussion sessions and talks.

All postgraduates are invited to attend an annual Research Seminar Weekend in an informal setting at Cumberland Lodge in Windsor Great Park, which is funded by the Department. Here, we have a programme of internal and external speakers.

In addition, our annual Postgraduate Poster Party gives students the opportunity to update the Department on their work.


Besides the yearly presentation to the Department, our postgraduates are strongly encouraged to present their work, eg as a paper or poster, at external conferences and financial support is set aside for this. Some recent presentations by postgraduates include:

-Priming for depth-rotated objects depends on attention. (Vision Sciences, Sarasota)
-Imagining objects you have never seen: Imagery in individuals with profound visual impairment. (BPS Annual Conference)
-Modelling dopaminergic effects on implicit and explicit learning tasks. (Annual Summer Interdisciplinary Conference)
-Individual differences in affective modulation of the startle reflex and emotional stroop task. (BPS Conference)
-Evolution and psi: Investigating the presentiment effect as an adapted behaviour. (Society for Psychical Research 25th International Conference)
-Presence: Is your heart in it? (4th Annual International Workshop on Presence)
-The effects of state anxiety on the suggestibility and accuracy of child eyewitnesses. (11th European Conference of Psychology and Law)
-The psychosocial sequelae of aneurysmal subarachnoid haemorrhage. (6th Scientific Meeting of the Stroke Association)
-The role of Electrophysiology in Human Computer Interaction. (HCI Conference)
-Categorical shape perception. Experimental Psychology Society and Belgian Psychological Society)
-Schizotypy, eye movements, and the effects of neuroticism. (10th Biennial Meeting of the International Society for the Study of Individual (ISSID))
-Eye movements in siblings of schizophrenic patients. (World Congress of Biological Psychiatry, Berlin, Germany)


Thesis and viva voce.


Psychology at Goldsmiths is ranked joint 3rd in the UK for the quality of our research**

**Research Excellence Framework 2014, Times Higher Education research intensity subject rankings

How does music affect mood?
Why do some people believe in the paranormal?
How do people with autism think?

In the Department of Psychology we try and investigate questions like this, conducting research that’s relevant to a range of sectors and industries – from advertising to education, and from banking to the public sector.

You’ll be taught by experts in the field, who are carrying out research that’s world class. And you’ll learn in a department with excellent specialist and general-purpose research laboratories, including:

EEG and brain stimulation labs for neuroscience research
a visual perception and attention laboratory equipped with state-of-the-art eye tracking systems
an infant lab
in-house technical support staff

Skills & Careers

You will receive training in and develop wide-ranging research skills, including:

database searching and bibliographic skills
managing and analysing data
presentation and communication skills
quantitative and qualitative research methods
handling legal and ethical issues in research
research design
project management

How to apply

Before you apply for a research programme, we advise you to get in touch with the programme contact, listed above. It may also be possible to arrange an advisory meeting.

Before you start at Goldsmiths, the actual topic of your research has to be agreed with your proposed supervisor, who will be a member of staff active in your general field of research. The choice of topic may be influenced by the current research in the department or the requirements of an external funding body. Supervision can be offered in any of the areas of departmental activity, as reflected in the research interests of our staff. Please contact a member of staff in the department, before making a formal application, and establish that they would be willing to supervise you in a research area of common interest.

If you wish to study on a part-time basis, you should also indicate how many hours a week you intend to devote to research, whether this will be at evenings or weekends, and for how many hours each day.

Research proposals

Along with your application and academic reference, you should also upload a research proposal at the point of application.

An approximate timeline of training and research plans and an outline of a previous research project in which you have played a leading role (for instance, a study you conducted for your undergraduate or MSc degree). The personal statement in the Departmental form will be structured in a different way to that on the College form. Please see guidelines on the form itself. Finally, your supervisor will be required to provide a statement detailing ways in which the project fits into their overall research programme and the wider research interests and facilities of the Department. Guidance on how to structure these is given on the form. Please do not exceed the word length, and DO NOT submit additional material emanating from your previous research (e.g. copies of dissertations, published papers) as this will not be read. Note that all aspects of the application are required for an application to be considered.


Please visit http://www.gold.ac.uk/pg/fees-funding/ for details.

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Study for a higher degree by research in our Materials and Engineering Research institute. You train in research methods and complete a high level research project in a research institute where 75 per cent of our staff were judged to be internationally leading. Read more
Study for a higher degree by research in our Materials and Engineering Research institute. You train in research methods and complete a high level research project in a research institute where 75 per cent of our staff were judged to be internationally leading.

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) and Master of Philosophy (MPhil)
A higher degree by research involves training in research methods and systematic, high level study of a research project. The nature of the work and the time it takes to finish the research means a research degree is demanding and needs great commitment.

You must present your results in a thesis, explain the methods used in your research and defend them in an oral examination.

To get an MPhil you must critically investigate and evaluate an approved topic and display an understanding of suitable research methods. For a PhD you must also make an independent and original contribution to knowledge.

Split PhD

A split PhD is a research degree programme which is ideal if you are an international student wanting to study from your home country. You register for a Sheffield Hallam University PhD and spend some time studying in Sheffield but are substantially based in your home country. The balance of study between us and the overseas university is agreed between you and your supervisors, depending on the needs of your research programme.

The benefits of studying on the split PhD scheme include
-You can complete fieldwork in your home country, in an area directly linked to your professional or career development interests.
-Access to local facilities and supervisory support in your home country combined with the expert supervisory guidance of our academics.
-Short, intensive periods of face-to-face working with a dedicated supervisory team in Sheffield, while enjoying the educational, social and cultural benefits of studying in the UK.

Materials and Engineering Research Institute (MERI)

MERI is a multi-disciplinary research institute encompassing four research centres each with their own specialist groups operating within them. We undertake high quality academic research across a range of disciplines and apply this research knowledge in a commercial and industrial context. Research areas include: polymers and composites, solar energy, structural integrity and corrosion, functional coatings, simulation and modelling, and robotics.

In the 2008 Research Assessment Exercise we were the leading post–92 university in metallurgy and materials (UoA29). 75 per cent of our staff were judged to be internationally leading and we obtained a Times Higher Education average score of 2.15 reflecting the quality of our work and world class staff.

Our staff include: chemists, materials scientists, physicists, computer scientists, mechanical, electronic and electrical engineers, all working on individual or collaborative projects shared between research centres. Supported by a £6m equipment base, which will shortly undergo a £4m refurbishment, this inter-disciplinary approach enables us to solve complex problems ranging from fracture of artificial implants through to designing surfaces that can withstand frictional temperatures in excess of 1,000 degrees centigrade. Solutions to these kinds of problems put MERI at the top in terms of industrial collaboration.

The Materials Research and Analysis Service (MARS) is also a key strength in the research institute, established to provide regional business with access to research facilities and analysis, which enhances the capability of companies in terms of new and improved products.

Evidence of MERI’s research strength is reflected in the patent portfolio that currently consists of 22 granted patents with another 17 applications in progress.
MERI is made up of five centres of excellence
-The Thin Films Research Centre
-The Centre for Automation and Robotics Research
-The Polymers Nanocomposites and Modelling Research Centre
-The Structural Materials and Integrity Research Centre
-Materials Analysis and Research Services, Centre for Industrial Collaboration (MARS) (CIC)

For more information, see the website: https://www.shu.ac.uk/study-here/find-a-course/mphilphd-research-degrees--materials-and-engineering-research-institute

Course structure

Full time – 2 years research
Part time – 3 years research

This course can be developed into a PhD, for more information see the website: https://www.shu.ac.uk/study-here/find-a-course/mphilphd-research-degrees--materials-and-engineering-research-institute

Split PhD

Students normally spend most of their time in their home country but come to the University for at least three months a year.
Research training
When you begin your research, we allocate you a director of studies and a supervisor. Regular meetings between you and your supervisors are scheduled, with targets set for written and oral presentation of research progress. The research training includes:
-University student induction session
-Research methods module
-MERI seminar.
-Presentation skills course
-MERI student seminar day

Assessment: thesis followed by oral examination.

Other admission requirements

Overseas applicants from countries whose first language is not English must normally produce evidence of competence in English. An IELTS score of 6.0 with 5.5 in all skills (or equivalent) is the standard for non-native speakers of English. If your English language skill is currently below an IELTS score of 6.0 with a minimum of 5.5 in all skills we recommend you consider a Sheffield Hallam University Pre-sessional English course which will enable you to achieve an equivalent English level. An offer of a research degree place may be made subject to a completing our Pre-sessional English for Academic Purposes course.

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