The MSc in Research Methods in Psychology is designed to train students wishing to pursue a higher research degree in Psychology and equips them with the specific skills necessary for undertaking a career as a research psychologist.
The MSc in Research Methods in Psychology is a full-time taught postgraduate programme run by the School of Psychology and Neuroscience. The course is based on an initiative to provide interdisciplinary training in the social sciences plus advanced research training in psychology.
- The course provides interdisciplinary training in the social sciences plus advanced research training in psychology.
- Students have access to laboratories in neurophysiology, psychopharmacology, psychophysics, animal learning and cognition, cognitive psychology, developmental psychology and social psychology.
- The MSc is recognised by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) as an accredited course.
Over two semesters, students will take five compulsory modules, a research project module and two optional modules. These are taught through lectures, seminars, workshops and tutorials. Assessment comprises entirely of coursework; there are no exams. On average, class sizes range up to 80 students for lectures and 20 students for seminars.
The final three months of your course will be dedicated to a 15,000-word research project dissertation.
The modules in this programme have varying methods of delivery and assessment.
- Generic Research and Professional Skills in Psychology: introduces students to the various skills and issues that are important to academic psychologists irrespective of their particular area of research.
- Methods of Data Analysis in Psychology: advanced training in common statistics, qualitative methods and statistical modelling.
- Philosophy and Methodology of the Social Sciences: an introduction to the basic theoretical approaches in the social sciences, making connections between the methodological and epistemological issues involved in conducting social scientific research.
- Qualitative Methods in Social Research: offers both a theoretical and practical introduction to the collection, analysis and writing of qualitative social science research.
- Quantitative Research in Social Science: provides a user-friendly introduction to the fundamental concepts of quantitative analysis.
Students must choose one optional module.
- Being a Social Scientist: explores the fundamental skills required by all social scientists, focusing on how to design and produce a research dissertation and addressing issues of professional development.
- Computer-Aided Research: builds on statistical techniques learned in previous modules and introduces modelling techniques, imaging, stimulus presentation and data visualisation.
- Methodologies for Psychology and Neuroscience: practical experience in a number of laboratory techniques and research methodologies as are employed by the principal investigators in the School.
Optional modules are subject to change each year, and some may only allow limited numbers of students.
Student dissertations will be supervised by members of the teaching staff who will advise on the choice of subject and provide guidance throughout the research process. The completed dissertation of not more than 15,000 words must be submitted by a date specified in August.
The modules listed here are indicative, and there is no guarantee they will run for 2019 entry.
Many of our students progress from the MSc to PhD study, and some of our graduates have been successful in applying for EPSRC PhD studentships. Others have successfully applied for research assistantships to initiate their research careers. Finally, some of our graduates have applied for positions in government, health care, and management services.
The Careers Centre offers one-to-one advice to all students on a taught postgraduate course and offers a programme of events to assist students to build their employability skills.
- A good 2.1 Honours undergraduate degree in Psychology or a related discipline.
- If you studied your first degree outside the UK, see the international entry requirements.
- English language proficiency.
The qualifications listed are indicative of minimum requirements for entry. Some academic Schools will ask applicants to achieve significantly higher marks than the minimum. Obtaining the listed entry requirements will not guarantee you a place, as the University considers all aspects of every application including, where applicable, the writing sample, personal statement, and supporting documents.
- CV or résumé. This should include your personal details with a history of your education and employment to date,
- personal statement (500 words),
- a sample of academic written work (2,000 words),
- two original signed academic references,
- academic transcripts and degree certificates,
- evidence of English language proficiency (required if English is not your first language).
Recent Graduate Discount
The University of St Andrews offers a 10% discount in postgraduate tuition fees to students who are eligible to graduate or who have graduated from St Andrews within the last three academic years and are starting a postgraduate programme with the University of St Andrews.
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