MSc Health Psychology

Year of entry: 2019

Overview

Degree awarded
Master of Science
Duration
FT 12 months, PT 24 months
Entry requirements

We require an honours degree (minimum Upper Second) with evidence of attaining a minimum of an Upper Second in all BSc research method units and dissertation, or overseas equivalent, in psychology.

For the MSc to be recognised by the BPS as the Stage 1 qualification for becoming a Health Psychologist, you need to hold Graduate Basis for Chartership (GBC).

You can join the MSc without holding GBC, but for the MSc to be recognised as a BPS-accredited Stage 1 qualification, you will need to gain GBC. This can be completed later. See the BPS website for more information.

Full entry requirements

Number of places/applicants
Approximately 15 places
How to apply

Please apply via our online application form . See the application and selection section in for information on the supporting documents we require.

Please note that the part-time option is only available to home/EU students. The full-time option is available to all.

Applications are assessed at periodic academic review panels. Depending on the number of offers made after the final review panel, we may continue to accept applications, impose a new closing date or place any late applications on a waiting list. We reserve the right to close applications if the course is full.

Course options

Full-time Part-time Full-time distance learning Part-time distance learning
MSc Y Y N N

Course overview

British Psychological Society logo
This course is accredited by the British Psychological Society (BPS).
  • Build your understanding of how psychology can be applied to health.
  • Begin training as a health psychologist through our BPS-accredited Stage 1 course, enabling you to continue to Stage 2 training upon graduation.
  • Study at one of the top 10 universities in the UK for psychology (2018 QS Rankings).
  • Course commended by the BPS for approachable and enthusiastic staff and innovative assessments that allow the application of knowledge to real world tasks.
  • Be part of one of the largest group of Health Psychologists and researchers in the UK.
  • Study alongside students on our MSc in Clinical and Health Psychology in Semester 1.
  • Have the opportunity to take a 72 hour work placement.

Open days

Attending an open day is a great way to find out what studying at Manchester is like. Find out about our upcoming open days .

Fees

For entry in the academic year beginning September 2019, the tuition fees are as follows:

  • MSc (full-time)
    UK/EU students (per annum): £10,000
    International students (per annum): £23,000
  • MSc (part-time)
    UK/EU students (per annum): £5,000

The fees quoted above will be fully inclusive for the course tuition, administration and computational costs during your studies.

All fees for entry will be subject to yearly review and incremental rises per annum are also likely over the duration of courses lasting more than a year for UK/EU students (fees are typically fixed for international students for the course duration at the year of entry).

For general fees information please visit postgraduate fees . Always contact the department if you are unsure which fee applies to your qualification award and method of attendance.

Self-funded international applicants for this course will be required to pay a deposit of £1,000 towards their tuition fees before a confirmation of acceptance for studies (CAS) is issued. This deposit will only be refunded if immigration permission is refused. We will notify you about how and when to make this payment.

Policy on additional costs

All students should normally be able to complete their programme of study without incurring additional study costs over and above the tuition fee for that programme. Any unavoidable additional compulsory costs totalling more than 1% of the annual home undergraduate fee per annum, regardless of whether the programme in question is undergraduate or postgraduate taught, will be made clear to you at the point of application. Further information can be found in the University's Policy on additional costs incurred by students on undergraduate and postgraduate taught programmes (PDF document, 91KB).

Scholarships/sponsorships

Bursaries

There are 8 bursaries of £2,000 each for MSc Health Psychology students. To be eligible for these scholarships you will need to be a home/EU student and to have accepted a place on the course starting 2019. Recipients will be chosen by the course director on the basis of academic excellence judged by grades and the research proposal.

Centenary scholarship

To celebrate over 100 years of psychology at Manchester, we are offering centenary scholarships on MSc courses in the Division of Psychology and Mental Health.

Scholarships of £2,500 are available to students applying to the Clinical and Health Psychology MSc and Health Psychology MSc. To be eligible for these scholarships you will need to be a home/EU student and to have accepted a place on one of these courses starting in 2019. Recipients will be chosen by the respective course directors on the basis of academic excellence judged by grades and where applicable, the research proposal.

Alumni bursary

The Faculty of Biology, Medicine and Health offers an alumni bursary of a 10% reduction towards tuition fees for successful applicants who are recent University of Manchester graduates and who are commencing one of our postgraduate taught master's programmes in 2019.

The bursary is available to students or alumni who:

  • have graduated since 2013;
  • hold a first class or 2:1 honours degree;
  • have home or overseas fee status;
  • are applying for full- or part-time study;
  • are self-funded and not in receipt of any other funding support.

The bursary will be applied as a fee reduction automatically for those students and alumni who meet the alumni bursary criteria.

Contact details

School/Faculty
Faculty of Biology, Medicine and Health
Telephone
+44 (0)161 306 0270
Email
Website
https://www.bmh.manchester.ac.uk/psychology/
School/Faculty
Faculty of Biology, Medicine and Health

Courses in related subject areas

Use the links below to view lists of courses in related subject areas.

Entry requirements

Academic entry qualification overview

We require an honours degree (minimum Upper Second) with evidence of attaining a minimum of an Upper Second in all BSc research method units and dissertation, or overseas equivalent, in psychology.

For the MSc to be recognised by the BPS as the Stage 1 qualification for becoming a Health Psychologist, you need to hold Graduate Basis for Chartership (GBC).

You can join the MSc without holding GBC, but for the MSc to be recognised as a BPS-accredited Stage 1 qualification, you will need to gain GBC. This can be completed later. See the BPS website for more information.

English language

International students must demonstrate English proficiency through a secure and approved testing system.

We ask for English language proof if you are from non-majority English speaking countries (a list of majority English speaking countries, as defined by the UK Home Office, can be found here).

Specifically, we require a minimum of:

  • IELTS: 7.0, including 7.0 in the written section
  • TOEFL: 100, including 25 in the written section.

See further information about requirements for your country .

English language test validity

Some English Language test results are only valid for two years. Your English Language test report must be valid on the start date of the course.

Application and selection

How to apply

Please apply via our online application form . See the application and selection section in for information on the supporting documents we require.

Please note that the part-time option is only available to home/EU students. The full-time option is available to all.

Applications are assessed at periodic academic review panels. Depending on the number of offers made after the final review panel, we may continue to accept applications, impose a new closing date or place any late applications on a waiting list. We reserve the right to close applications if the course is full.

Advice to applicants

When applying, you must send us two academic references and detailed academic transcripts, and also outline an idea for an original research project within the area of health psychology that has not been previously conducted (max 250 words). This need not be a project that you would undertake within an MSc, but is intended to demonstrate your ability to identify a research question and appropriate methodology. When evaluating this, we pay attention to your research question and methods.

Applications will be assessed on an ongoing basis. Please submit your application as soon as possible.

The panel will seek strong grades in research methods/statistics units (usually a minimum of an Upper Second). If your course does not include dedicated research methods/statistics units, please provide details of the parts of your degree that included research methods and your grades.

Personal statements and CVs will not be considered - only fully completed applications with all the required supporting documents. International students must upload a scanned copy of their passport.

How your application is considered

Applicants will be rated on the following criteria:

  • a good first degree in psychology (at least Upper Second);
  • the academic style of your research proposal, including the ability to identify a reasonable research question within the field of health psychology and translate this into a research project using an appropriate methodology.

Deferrals

We are unable to accept deferral requests, but if you are offered a place it is because we believe that your application is strong and we would welcome a repeat application. You may be asked to explain your reasons for declining the original offer before a decision is made.

Re-applications

If you applied in the previous year and your application was not successful, you may apply again.

Your application will be considered against the standard course entry criteria for that year of entry. In your new application you should demonstrate how your application has improved.

We may draw upon all information from your previous applications or any previous registrations at the University as a student when assessing your suitability for your chosen course.

Transfers

Students enrolled on the MSc Health Psychology may transfer to MSc Clinical and Health Psychology at the end of Semester 1 should they wish to do so.

Course details

Course description

Are you interested in how psychology can be applied to health, illness and healthcare, and how interventions can be used to improve outcomes and the experience of healthcare?

Our MSc in Health Psychology is designed for students interested in a career in health psychology and has been accredited by the British Psychological Society (BPS).

On successful completion of a BPS-accredited MSc in Health Psychology, students who hold BPS Graduate Basis for Chartership can continue to Stage 2 training to become Chartered Psychologists with the BPS and to become registered with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) as Registered Health Psychologists.

You will learn from staff at the Manchester Centre for Health Psychology , covering topics such as:

  • key theories in health psychology and how to apply them;
  • current approaches to changing health-related behaviour at individual, population and regulatory levels;
  • the interaction between psychological processes (cognitions, emotions, behaviour) and disease and illness;
  • the ways in which social-cultural factors contribute to health;
  • advanced research methods and analysis techniques in both quantitative and qualitative research;
  • the role and scope of health psychology within academic and healthcare settings.

You will also have the opportunity to attend seminars and a research conference showcasing new health psychology research at Manchester.

Special features

Training in a research-active environment

Our training covers a broad range of research methods taught by leading experts in their field.

We prepare you for a future research-active career, whether as an academic, health psychologist or other research or practitioner role.

You will benefit from being part of a dynamic department with opportunities to attend research seminars and learn about the work of staff, students and health psychology trainees.

Flexible learning

You can choose to study full-time or part-time, enabling you to fit learning around your other commitments.

Conference award scheme

We are keen to support our students' career development. As a student on this course you will be able to apply to our conference award scheme.

The student with the best abstract will be awarded funding to attend a national conference where they can showcase their research. This is a great opportunity to develop your skills and network with others in the field.

Work placements

Voluntary work placements are available. These are up to 72 hours (2 weeks) and can be taken over the summer or throughout the full year. Work placements include working in a variety of settings (eg schools, hospitals, universities and other organisations) with trained Stage 2 health psychologists and research teams.

Teaching and learning

You will learn through face-to-face interactive sessions consisting of some lecture material with discussions and group work, as well as audio-visual stimuli.

All course units are supported by the use of Blackboard (a virtual learning environment) through which you can access lecture slides, reading lists and other accompanying material.

Each course unit on Blackboard also has its own discussion board, where you can post questions and interact with staff and other students on the course.

A significant amount of teaching and learning will take place through the dissertation unit (60 credits), where you will be expected to take a lead role in developing a research project with regular support, input, and mentorship from their project supervisor.

This course is co-led by Dr Tracy Epton and Dr Kimberley Dienes .

Find out more about postgraduate teaching and learning methods at Manchester.

Coursework and assessment

Our team are passionate about your learning and development.

We combine traditional and contemporary teaching methods and formats to provide a varied and engaging learning experience. These include lectures, group discussions, seminars, workshops, problem-based learning exercises, self-paced online training, student presentations and independent supervised study.

You will learn first-hand from researchers, practitioners and individuals who have lived experience of psychological and physical health problems, giving you an invaluable insight into these difficulties.

Our programme team work to support the individual needs of our students. You will be allocated a personal academic advisor who will guide your academic and professional development, but also provide pastoral support.

You will have the opportunity to work collaboratively with influential research-active staff, to produce a high quality dissertation using qualitative, quantitative or mixed research methods.

This course is co-led by Dr Tracy Epton and Dr Kimberley Dienes .

Find out more about postgraduate teaching and learning methods at Manchester.

Course unit details

Full-time students will take four 15-credit taught units in each of Semester 1 and Semester 2. Two of these units will be taught on Mondays, the other two on Thursdays. Part-time students will take two taught units each year of their studying (such that they will be expected to attend classes on one day of the week each year).

In addition, all students will be allocated a supervisor for the dissertation (60 credits), a unit that runs for the full year (students are also expected to work on the dissertation over the summer). The dissertation consists of an independent piece of research.

Note: we are aware that you may have other commitments outside of the MSc (eg employment) and we fit teaching into two days of the week to help you to manage multiple commitments. However, this is an intensive, demanding course, so you need to make sure that you are able to fit in full-time (or part-time) studying hours around external commitments.

Semester 1:

  • Research Methods 1
  • Professional Issues
  • Facilitating Change (Part 1)
  • Health and Society

Semester 2:

  • Research Methods 2
  • Mind and Body
  • Health Behaviour Change
  • Illness and Healthcare

This course is taught in parallel with the  MSc in Clinical and Health Psychology and students on both courses take the same units for the first semester.

Students enrolled on the MSc Health Psychology may transfer to MSc Clinical and Health Psychology at the end of Semester 1 should they wish to do so.

Course unit list

The course unit details given below are subject to change, and are the latest example of the curriculum available on this course of study.

TitleCodeCredit ratingMandatory/optional
Research Methods I: Conducting Applied Research PSYC60001 15 Mandatory
Dissertation PSYC60010 60 Mandatory
Facilitating Change 1 PSYC69741 15 Mandatory
Research Methods II: Design and Analysis PSYC69802 15 Mandatory
Mind and Body PSYC69822 15 Mandatory
Health and Society PSYC69831 15 Mandatory
Professional Issues PSYC69841 15 Mandatory
Health Behaviour Change PSYC69842 15 Mandatory
Illness & Health Care PSYC69852 15 Mandatory
Health Psychology Placement PSYC66660 0 Optional

What our students say

'Health psychology is a broad and evolving field, and the course content definitely reflected this. Considering the current state of healthcare and medicine, health psychologists are set to become increasingly important. For example, applying psychological theory to help people adapt to new types of diagnosis or medical procedure is vital. The course allows you to explore these issues and ideas in a lively, complex and engaging way.

The highlight of the course for me was the dissertation. The choice of projects offers something for every interest, and staff are also open to discussing students' own ideas.

Half way through the course I got a job as a research assistant in the NHS, helped largely by the research skills I was developing on the MSc.

I've recently applied to do a PhD in Manchester, which will hopefully allow me to expand on the work I did for my dissertation.'

Faye Johnson, MSc Health Psychology graduate 2018

Facilities

You will be able to access and benefit from the excellent range of facilities throughout the University, including our libraries (one of the best resourced in the country), careers, student support and IT services.

Disability support

Practical support and advice for current students and applicants is available from the Disability Advisory and Support Service .

Careers

Career opportunities

The MSc in Health Psychology provides the knowledge and skills needed to start Stage 2 in Health Psychology training.

The strong grounding we provide in research and analytic methods is valuable to those wishing to progress onto a research career, a PhD, or training programmes where research skills are emphasised.

The knowledge and understanding we help develop in relation to theory, evidence and practice, will also help if you are considering careers in clinical and applied roles, as well as policy-making and service development positions.

Our unit on professional development has been designed to help further support you in pursuing your future career goals.

Our range of assessments across the course give you the skills to apply your knowledge real world activities.

  • Find out more about health psychology careers on the BPS website .
  • Find out more about research careers in psychology on the BPS website .

Accrediting organisations

This course is accredited by the British Psychological Society (BPS), which has commended various aspects of the course. Its comments include:

  • The programme team are highly accessible to students, as well as being enthusiastic and supportive programme leaders.
  • The programme has a variety of innovative and rigorous assessments that allow students to apply their knowledge to real-life tasks which will help them with their future employment or study, and with engaging with a wide variety of audiences.
  • There is a broad range of skills and experience within the Health Psychology team who, along with the range of external speakers that are involved, give students an excellent teaching and learning experience.