Research Methods in Psychology (MSc) 2016 entry
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.
Postgraduate; leading to a Master of Science (MSc)
One year full time
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. See English language tests and qualifications.
UK and EU: £6,800
- personal statement (500 words)
- sample of academic written work (2,000 words)
- two original signed academic references
- academic transcripts and degree certificates
- English language requirements certificate.
For more guidance, see supporting documents and references for postgraduate taught programmes.
If you are looking to start this programme in 2017, you can find information about 2017 entry on the 2017 Research Methods in Psychology MSc page. Information about all programmes from previous years of entry can be found in our archive.
- 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 approved course.
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. Over two semesters, students will take four 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 focused on writing the final assessment piece, a 15,000-word dissertation.
The modules in this programme have varying methods of delivery and assessment. For more details of each module, including weekly contact hours, teaching methods and assessment, please see the latest module catalogue.
- 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.
- Quantitative Research in Social Science: provides a user-friendly introduction to the fundamental concepts of quantitative analysis.
- Methods of Data Analysis in Psychology: advanced training in common statistics, qualitative methods and statistical modeling.
- Qualitative Methods in Social Research: offers both a theoretical and practical introduction to the collection, analysis and writing of qualitative social science research.
Students choose two optional modules.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- Computer-Aided Research: builds on statistical techniques learned in previous modules and introduces modelling techniques, imaging, stimulus presentation and data visualisation.
The modules listed ran in the academic year 2015-2016 and are indicative of this course. There is no guarantee that these modules will run for 2016 entry.
Take a look at the most up-to-date modules in the module catalogue.
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.
Conferences and events
The School of Psychology and Neuroscience hosts a weekly seminar programme at 3.30pm on Fridays in the Old Library of the Psychology Building. These seminars include public lectures, open school discussions and papers presented by a variety of guest lecturers from the UK and abroad. Following the seminar, a wine reception is held in the staff common room.
The School also hosts an annual Jeeves Lecture as part of its seminar programme. The lectures are given by eminent psychologists and neuroscientists. Staff, students and members of the public are welcome at this lecture.
After the MSc
Many of our graduates continue their education by enrolling in PhD programmes at St Andrews or elsewhere.
The School offers a Doctor of Philosophy degree in Psychology. The PhD comprises three years of full-time study and the submission of an 80,000-word thesis.
The Medical Research Council and the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council offers studentships for PhD research in health, biological and related sciences covering up to four years funding and, in some cases, accommodation fees.
Many of our students progress from the MSc to PhD study, and some of our graduates have been successful in applying for EPSRC PhD stundentships. Others has 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.
Admission to the University of St Andrews is governed by our Admissions policy.
As a research intensive institution, the University ensures that its teaching references the research interests of its staff, which may change from time to time. As a result, programmes are regularly reviewed with the aim of enhancing students' learning experience. Our approach to course revision is described online. (PDF, 72 KB).
The University will clarify compulsory fees and charges it requires any student to pay at the time of offer. The offer will also clarify conditions for any variation of fees. The University’s approach to fee setting is described online. (PDF, 84 KB).