Taught course


Birkbeck, University of London · School of Psychological Sciences

Entry requirements


  • A second-class honours degree (2:2) or above from a UK university, or overseas equivalent. Mathematics at GCSE grade C or grade 4 or equivalent qualification.
  • Please ensure your application is complete with a transcript of your previous degree, especially when statistics or research methods were part of this.
  • In most cases, if you do not have relevant prior study of research methods for psychology, you will need to take a free online course and pass an entrance exam.


  • A second-class honours degree (2:2) or above in psychology or a relevant discipline, with prior advanced training (normally graduate level) in psychological research methods.
  • Applicants with undergraduate qualifications only should normally apply for the MSc Psychological Research Methods.
  • You must submit a research proposal upon application. Please refer to our staff research interests to help you with this.

Applications are reviewed on their individual merits and your professional qualifications and/or relevant work experience will be taken into consideration positively. We actively support and encourage applications from mature learners.

Months of entry

January, October

Course content

MSc Psychology: Our MSc conversion course is designed for students from non-psychology backgrounds. The course is accredited by the British Psychological Society (BPS) and provides Graduate Basis for Chartered Membership (GBC) essential for pursuing your career path in a range of recognised psychology professions.

Psychology is an exciting and dynamic field that is concerned with how people think, feel and behave. Birkbeck's School of Psychological Sciences is renowned for its research in neuroscience, cognition, development, health and lived experience, and you will be taught by world-leading academics.

The course provides opportunities for you to develop knowledge and understanding of:

  • key principles of psychological theory, including perception, attention and performance, developmental psychology, learning, memory and cognition, social psychology, neuroscience and individual differences
  • practical skills in research methodology, including the formulation of hypotheses, designing and reporting experiments using a range of research methodologies, and subject-specific IT skills
  • transferable skills in critical thinking, learning how to evaluate hypotheses, presentation writing and delivery, and report and essay writing.

You can choose to start this MSc in October or January. October entry is evening study only, whereas January entry is a combination of daytime and evening study.

MRes Psychology: Our MRes covers:

  • the critical appreciation of existing research and research methods in a chosen research area
  • designing, managing and reporting on an extended research project
  • subject-specific IT skills.

It enables you to conduct extended supervised research in a focused area within contemporary psychology, such as psychosocial studies, brain and cognitive development, or computational cognitive neuroscience. You will have the opportunity to attend research seminars organised by Birkbeck and other local research centres and institutes.

The course is designed for graduates in psychology and related disciplines who have prior research skills training and who are seeking to complete a specific, well-defined research project. If you would like to carry out research in any area of contemporary psychology, either at PhD level or in the private sector, it will prepare you with a range of appropriate research skills and experiences.


Careers and employability

Graduates can pursue career paths in psychology, education, human resources and management. Possible professions include:

  • clinical psychologist
  • further education lecturer
  • human resources officer
  • counsellor
  • careers adviser
  • educational psychologist.

We offer a comprehensive careers service - Careers and Enterprise - your career partner during your time at Birkbeck and beyond. At every stage of your career journey, we empower you to take ownership of your future, helping you to make the connection between your experience, education and future ambitions.

Information for international students

If English is not your first language or you have not previously studied in English, the requirement for this course is the equivalent of an International English Language Testing System (IELTS Academic Test) score of 6.5, with not less than 6.0 in each of the sub-tests.

If you don't meet the minimum IELTS requirement, we offer pre-sessional English courses and foundation programmes to help you improve your English language skills and get your place at Birkbeck.

Qualification, course duration and attendance options

  • MSc
    full time
    12 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification
    part time
    24 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification
  • MRes
    part time
    24 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification
    full time
    12 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification

Course contact details

Student Advice Service
+44 (0)20 3907 0700