BSc/BSc (Hons) Psychology

On this British Psychological Society (BPS) accredited course you will learn the skills and the analytical abilities that employers in a range of careers are looking for. You will learn across six core areas of psychology (cognitive, biological, historical, developmental, social and individual differences) and gain extensive practical training in research methods. You can focus on a particular area of interest through our module choices.

Why do humans think, feel and behave the way we do? As a psychology student you will find answers to some of the most fundamental and fascinating of questions. When you graduate, you’ll be able to join the British Psychological Society (BPS), an essential step on the ladder to becoming a professional psychologist.

Why QMU?

  • The course will equip you with the transferable skills that top employers are actively looking for in their graduates.
  • You’ll learn the valuable skills needed to think critically and scientifically and will engage in empirical research throughout your degree.
  • Enhance your broad psychological knowledge by specialising in your choice of dissertation topic and elective modules.
  • Our class sizes are smaller compared with some universities, so you have closer and more personal support and guidance from our staff.

View open day course presentation

About the course

You’ll learn to use scientific methods and evidence to understand, measure and modify behaviour. It’s an incredibly diverse field, and you will enjoy a broad introduction to six core areas of psychology, including cognitive, developmental and social psychology. Later in the course you’ll focus your learning on the specialist areas that interest you. Crucially, you’ll learn how to think, write and critique in a scientific way, giving you the core skills you need to follow a career in the field.

In Year One you’ll learn the building blocks of classic and contemporary theory and research in psychology, and will look at the historical dimensions of the discipline as a whole. You can also select from optional classes in other disciplines, including Sociology and Physiology.

In Year Two you’ll move towards evaluation of the core domains of social, developmental, individual, cognitive and biological psychology through a variety of teaching and learning methods, including group work, skills practice, and problem-based learning. You’ll be encouraged to participate in and reflect on current research taking place in the Division of Psychology, Sociology and Education at QMU. You’ll also study another chosen subject for the first semester of Year Two.

In Year Three you’ll continue to critically reflect on the historical underpinning of psychology and progress your knowledge and critical awareness within the core areas. Your research skills will be further refined with the opportunity to gain experience of both quantitative and qualitative research, as well as the critical appraisal of research ethics and the identification of your Year Four dissertation project.

In Year Four you can choose modules that suit your interests and focus on real-world applications of psychology. For example, in the Contemporary Issues in Psychology module you will reflect on how you can use your psychology knowledge to approach current problems and issues in society. This year, now that you are immersed in the student research culture, you can carry out a research-based dissertation in a specific area. 


You can opt to study for an honours degree over four years or an ordinary degree over three years. You will complete a range of modules each year as outlined in the following modules section. 


Year One

  • Introduction to Psychology 1
  • Foundations of Psychology: Core Concepts and Practices
  • Introduction to Psychology 2
  • plus 60 credits from another topic

Optional modules may be in sociology, biological sciences or education. Please note that optional modules may vary year on year and may not always be available. 

Year Two

  • Social and Developmental Psychology
  • Exploring Research in Psychology
  • Biological and Cognitive Psychology
  • Individual Differences, Wellbeing and Ethical Practice
  • plus 20 credits from another topic

Optional modules may be in sociology, biological sciences or education. Please note that optional modules may vary year on year and may not always be available. 

Year Three

  • Social Psychology and Social Justice
  • Psychobiology in Context
  • Historical Perspectives in Psychology
  • The Skilled Researcher
  • Developmental Psychology
  • Cognitive Psychology

Year Four

  • Psychology for Contemporary Issues
  • plus 60 credits from a range of modules

Available optional modules may include: Dissertation Research Project/ Community Engagement/ plus three modules from the following options: Memory: Origins and Structures/ Cognitive Science of Belief/ Evolutionary Psychology in the Modern World/ Eyewitness Psychology/ Happiness and Wellbeing/ Psychology of Pain/ Peer Relations in Childhood and Adolescence/ Political Psychology

The modules listed here are correct at time of posting (Feb 2020) but may differ slightly to those offered in 2021. Please check back here for any updates. 

Teaching, learning and assessment

You will be taught in lectures, seminars, practical workshops and laboratories. Outside these timetabled sessions you will be expected to continue learning through self-study. You will be assessed by essays, case studies or group projects and written exams. 

Please see for an idea of teaching, learning and assessment for this course for 2020 entry. 2021 information will be added when it is available.




Exchange opportunities

In Year Two, you have the opportunity (where available) to study for one semester at a university overseas. For more information, see Exchanges and Study Abroad

Please note that exchange opportunities are subject to availability. In addition, please note that where exchange opportunities are arranged in the EU, Erasmus+ funding is available for 2021/22 only.


From sports to sales, research to nursing, media to marketing, our graduates have used their psychology skills to forge a huge variety of careers. You can also go on to develop your expertise via postgraduate study.  

Entry requirements

Scottish Higher: Standard - BBBCC, Minimum - BCCCC

A Level: BBC

Irish Leaving Certificate: H3 H3 H3 H3 H3

International Baccalaureate: 30 points

International: IELTS of 6.0 with no element lower than 5.5

Required subjects: Maths and English at Nat 5/ GCSE

Mature/Access: See related Access courses. www.qmu.ac.uk/college-qualifications 

We welcome applications from mature students with relevant qualifications and/or experience.

Direct Entry:

Year Two:

  • HNC in a related subject with A in the graded unit or HND with CB in the graded units may be considered

For details of related HNC and HND courses, see www.qmu.ac.uk/college-qualifications

Associate student places

You can study this course as an associate student completing the first year at Newbattle Abbey College. For more information, see www.qmu.ac.uk/study-here/access-to-higher-education/associate-student-scheme/

Professional registration/ accreditation

The course is accredited by the BPS. Successful completion of this degree (2:2 or above) confers Graduate Basis for Chartered Status (GBC) with the BPS, enabling access to professional training as a Chartered Psychologist (educational, organisational or forensic psychology).

Teaching staff, class sizes and timetables

For more information, please see ‘How we teach and how you’ll learn’.

Awarding body

QMU. For more information, please see ‘External Review’.

Please note:

The delivery of this course is subject to the terms and conditions set out in our 2021/22 Entry - Terms and Conditions (Undergraduate). 

Teaching staff may be subject to change.

Course Overview

3/4 years full-time
Start Date
September 2021
On campus
Study Abroad
School of Arts, Social Sciences and Management
Fees & Funding

Related Professional Bodies


A Student Story - more at foot of page

Matthew Gibson - MRes psychology "Studying psychology and the MRes at QMU has enabled me to develop knowledge in a number of areas and acquire a range of skills, including critical thinking & research skills as well as an awareness of issues like ethical practice, all of which are relevant to a number of graduate careers." Read my story...