The object of the course is to impart to students the skills, including theoretical orientation, which are required for conducting research, especially in the fields of developmental and social psychology, for which the Department (4-rated in the 2001 RAE) has a longstanding and international reputation. It is designed to acquaint students with all aspects of the research process and to introduce them, mainly through active participation, to a wide variety of research techniques.
This enables students either to qualify for posts involving such skills in academic or research settings or, subject to the approval of the Higher Degree Committee of the University, to transfer to a course leading to a PhD.
The course is also highly relevant to those entering such professional fields as educational or clinical psychology where research skills form an important part of job requirements.
Course structure Instruction in basic research methods, as applied to selected research fields among those listed below, will be given by means of lectures, tutorials and seminars. Emphasis will be placed throughout on practical exercises in the laboratory and in appropriate field settings such as schools and hospitals.
Course components are: • Quantitative methods – including statistical methods and computing • Ethical and professional issues • Survey research methods and questionnaire design • Interviewing and assessment methods • Language and discourse analysis • Observational methods and use of video in the laboratory and in the field • Cognitive-developmental research methods • Practical research skills: oral presentation; critical analysis; grant application.
During the last stage of the course, students will be required to design an empirical study and present a thesis on it of not more than 20,000 words.
Assessment Final assessment will be based on coursework and the thesis. An oral examination may be held at the discretion of the Board of Examiners.
It is expected that some students will subsequently continue the investigation pursued in their thesis work with a view to obtaining a PhD.
Start date and duration The course commences at the beginning of the academic session in late September/early October and is of 12 months’ duration on a full-time basis only.
Entry requirements The entry requirements will normally be a first or second class Honours degree in Psychology, or an equivalent qualification recognised for Graduate Membership of the British Psychological Society.
The Department The Department offers facilities for postgraduate study and research in a number of fields focusing around the following main areas: • Interactive Learning • Developmental and Educational Psychology • Road Use Behaviour • Applied Social psychology • Cognitive Neuropsychology
The Department has two Research Centres within it. The Centre for Research into Interactive Learning has a broad remit concerned with: • Learning through peer interaction • Expert-novice interaction • Interaction with and around computers
The Centre for Applied Social Psychology carries out strategic and policy-oriented research into, amongst other topics: • Use and misuse of illicit drugs • Health and eating • Problems of alcohol use in society • Human factors and safety • Aids
How to apply Application forms may be obtained from: