School of Psychology

BSc (Hons) Psychology

Interested in how people think, act and interact? Discover how thoughts, feelings and motivations shape our behaviour. A hands-on approach to learning across social, developmental, clinical, cognitive psychology and neuroscience will provide you the skills relevant across a range of careers, from education and health to business and the media. Shape the psychology graduate you want to be, and carve out your future in anything from professional psychology to marketing and management.

Careers with this subject

Advice from graduate Antony James: 

"Some advice which I go by in everything that I do is to make sure I am happy. If you enjoy your work, then it’s not really work at all. I apply this golden rule to all areas of my life, whether its work, studies, or training."

Read more from Antony in his case study.

Our Psychology students have tremendous opportunities to gain the knowledge and skills necessary for employment in a variety of work settings, from professional psychology, management and teaching, to social services, health services, probation and marketing. Our hands on approach to experiential learning embedded in the course will provide you with the topical skills and experience that you can apply to the wide range of career options open to psychology graduates.

Key features

  • Hands-on learning in our psychology experiential learning lab. We embedded practical activities throughout the course, so you can put new knowledge into practice and build the practical skills for future careers. 
  • Shape the psychologist you want to be. Course choices and our option-based final year gives the freedom to explore the areas of psychology that interest and benefit you the most.
  • Free core e-textbooks, saving you over £1,500.
  • As a successful graduate, you are eligible for Graduate Basis for Chartered Membership with the British Psychological Society.
  • Gain valuable real-world experience by putting your skills and knowledge into practice with an optional placement year, or take part in an international exchange year by studying abroad.

Course details

  • Year 1
  • Your first-year modules provide a foundation of knowledge and skills across the breadth of psychology. Immersive modules integrate theory and practical workshops to provide a deeper exploration and of the psychology of learning and relationships. Other modules provide an understanding of a scientific approach to the study of psychology and the current debates within the discipline. You will also learn how psychology connects with and informs other disciplines, from politics to animal welfare.

    Core modules
    • PSYC411 Learning

      This module explores how we gather information, with an emphasis on the scientific method. The module will introduce students to different perspectives on learning, including how to learn effectively, the biological and cognitive basis of learning, and social learning.

    • PSYC412 Psychological Science

      This module will provide an introduction into a broad range of fundamental topics in psychology. Across eight independent topics, from across the entire breadth of psychology, students will learn key theories. Students will also learn how those theories have been applied to real-world situations and will be asked to explore these theories in practice in Labplus activities.

    • PSYC413 Debates in Psychology

      This module covers both current and historical debates in topics drawn from across the breadth of psychology, involving discussion of theoretical issues and application and practice. The module will involve independent study sessions exploring some of the empirical differences seen in the literature and practice, and tutorial sessions will support extended writing development.

    • PSYC414 Relationships

      This immersive module focuses on the Psychology of Social Relationships across the lifespan. This topic is introduced and analysed from different disciplines in Psychology, including Developmental, Social, Biological, Clinical and Individual Differences perspectives. Lectures introduce methodologies, key findings and concepts for understanding Social Relationships. Lectures will be supported by workshops and tutorials.

    • PSYC415 Topics in Psychology

      This module will provide an in-depth exploration of four topics from core areas of psychology. Each of the topics will run for four weeks with interspersed group-based linked Labplus activities. These will allow students to get involved in a continued project, within the scope of a particular topic, which might involve data collection and subsequent statistical analysis of that data.

    • PSYC416 Connecting Psychology

      This module will link psychology to other disciplines by exploring how the study of human and animal behaviour is investigated in collaboration with scientists and practitioners in a variety of other fields. A series of topics will be interspersed with independent study activities that allow students to get involved in a continued project, involving data collection and analysis.

  • Year 2
  • With a focus on developing research and practical skills, you will get additional hands-on experience in designing and testing your own experiments to explore a range of topics. You also continue to build upon your knowledge of the core areas of psychology, getting to grips with key concepts from across cognitive, developmental, social and clinical psychology.
    Core modules
    • PSYC201 Conducting Psychological Research A

      This module extends the treatment of research methods and statistics to more advanced topics and introduces the student to the principal concepts in the history and philosophy of psychology.

    • PSYC202 Individual Differences, Clinical, Social and Developmental Psychology

      This module examines four areas of psychology: individual differences in abilities and personality and their influence on behaviour, clinical approaches to psychological disorders and their treatment, contemporary approaches to social cognition, social interaction, and group behaviour, and the development of cognitive and social abilities in infants and children.

    • PSYC203 Biological and Cognitive Psychology

      This module covers several core areas of psychology: psychobiology (basic neurophysiology and neurochemistry of brain function); neuropsychology (the functional architecture of the brain); perception (visual and auditory processing) and language (language comprehension and production).

    • PSYC204 Applied Topics in Health and Cognition

      This module explores applications of basic research and psychological theory in two areas: health psychology and cognitive psychology. (This module is subject to availability)

    • PSYC205 Workplace Learning and Skills Development

      This module aims to allow students to learn about specific areas of psychological practice. Students will gain an understanding of how psychology is applied to specific problems, and will learn about the relevant theory and practice, developing relevant skills where appropriate. Learning about psychology in practice will encourage the student to explore their own vocational self-concept

    • PSYC206 Conducting Psychological Research B

      This module extends training in research methods and gives students practice in translating research questions into feasible studies and their design, execution, analysis and interpretation. Other elements develop students¿ understanding of statistical methods and give practice in relating psychological theory to applied problems

    • PSYC210 Personal and Professional Development

      This zero-credit module is home to a range of personal and professional development activities that focus on development through practice and reflection. Some activities are timetabled, such as tutorials and careers talks. In addition, this module is designed to assist Stage 2 students with their search and preparation for a work placement.

  • Year 3
  • If you choose, you can take an optional work placement after your second year, applying your knowledge of psychology in a variety of real-world contexts offered through established partners across the UK or abroad.

    Core modules
    • PSYC310 Personal and Professional Development

      During this 36 week placement, students will begin to apply their psychological knowledge in the workplace and develop the range of skills required to work within the specific placement setting. This zero-credit module is also home to timetabled careers talks and information for Stage 3 students who are away on placement.

  • Final year
  • Shape the psychologist that you want to become with freedom of choice across a wide range of current psychology topics. With the study of morals, psychopharmacology, music and emotion, deception, and animal behaviour to name just a few of the topics, you are free to explore the areas of psychology that interest and benefit you the most. These studies are also augmented by a supervised research project, where you will work alongside one of our world-class research academics on a question of your own choosing.

    Core modules
    • PSYC401 Social and Developmental Psychology

      This module has two elements. In the social psychology element, students will examine advanced topics in social cognition, social influence and persuasion, group behaviour, intergroup behaviour and sociological social psychology. In the developmental psychology element, students will focus on language development, theories of children's mind and the development of socialisation.

    • PSYC402 Psychobiology and Cognition

      This module provides advanced coverage in the core areas of psychobiology and cognition. In psychobiology, the module deals with evolutionary and comparative approaches to understanding human perception, emotion and self-awareness, goal-directed behaviour and social engagement. In cognition, the module deals with three key topics in higher cognition: language, memory, and thinking and reasoning

    • PSYC403 Current Topics in Psychology A

      This course allows students to develop an in depth and critical appreciation of two areas of psychological research (two topics drawn from the current research programmes of the school's staff).

    • PSYC404 Current Topics in Psychology B

      This course allows students to develop an in depth and critical appreciation of two areas of psychological research (two topics drawn from the current research programmes of the School's staff).

    • PSYC405 Psychology Dissertation

      This module aims to consolidate and put into practice the research training carried out in earlier stages by exploring a particular research problem. Students are required to conduct a complete piece of research, from establishing a research area, formulating a research question, conducting a literature search, designing and conducting the study, analysing the data, through to writing up a report of the project

    • PSYC410 Personal and Professional Development

      This zero-credit module is home to timetabled tutorials and careers talks. Tutorials include group and reflective work which tutors provide feedback for.

Every undergraduate taught course has a detailed programme specification document describing the course aims, the course structure, the teaching and learning methods, the learning outcomes and the rules of assessment.

The following programme specification represents the latest course structure and may be subject to change:

BSc Hons Psychology Programme Specification 0191

The modules shown for this course are those currently being studied by our students, or are proposed new modules. Please note that programme structures and individual modules are subject to amendment from time to time as part of the University’s curriculum enrichment programme and in line with changes in the University’s policies and requirements.

Entry requirements

UCAS tariff

112 - 120

A Level: 112-120 points from a minimum of three A levels from any subjects (excluding General Studies). Must include Biology if applying for Psychology with Human Biology.

Other combinations and non-A level qualifications considered; please contact admissions@plymouth.ac.uk.

International Baccalaureate: 26 points overall.

BTEC: DMM-DDM in any subject.

Access courses: Pass an Access to HE course in science, humanities or combined social sciences with at least 33 credits at merit.

Fees, costs and funding

New Student 2018 2019
Home/EU £9,250 £9,250
International £13,000 £13,400
Part time (Home/EU) To be confirmed To be confirmed
Full time fees shown are per annum. Part time fees shown are per a number of credits. Please note that fees are reviewed on an annual basis. Fees and the conditions that apply to them shown in the prospectus are correct at the time of going to print. Fees shown on the web are the most up to date but are still subject to change in exceptional circumstances.

A range of studentships, fee waivers and other funding for psychology students is also available for both UK/EU and international students.

How to apply

All applications for undergraduate courses are made through UCAS (Universities and Colleges Admissions Service).

UCAS will ask for the information contained in the box at the top of this course page including the UCAS course code and the institution code.

To apply for this course and for more information about submitting an application including application deadline dates, please visit the UCAS website.

Intercalating students wishing to apply for the final year of this course should complete a direct entry form.

Support is also available to overseas students applying to the University from our International Office via our how to apply webpage or email international-admissions@plymouth.ac.uk.

We've redesigned the way we teach psychology

We have listened to our students' feedback and created a new curriculum, where the focus is on active learning instead of attending lectures.

We are building a brand new learning resource for our students, the Psychology Experiential Learning Lab or PsychEL, where you will get first hand experience of psychology. In PsychEL, and in tutorials, you'll work with other students, collaborating to apply your knowledge to solve problems.

You can read more about our new first year modules here.

Find out more by watching the short video, or get more detail from our web pages.

School of Psychology – ask a student!

Want to know more about living in Plymouth and studying with us in the School of Psychology?

Ask a current student a question

Psychology at Plymouth – find out what it's like to study with us

Plymouth stood out from the rest. It's got a really good vibe – there's so much going on!

Join Abi for a tour of the School of Psychology.

Find out about the psychology course

Staff insight – Dr Caroline Floccia

...I was in my twenties, and I went to a party and I met somebody who told me for the first time about the existence of a field called cognitive psychology… a field in which people study how the brain and mind work… it was a revelation…

Find out why Dr Caroline Floccia is passionate about cognitive psychology.

Read more about Dr Caroline Floccia’s teaching and research interests

Dr Phil Gee – Associate Head of School for Teaching says:

BSc Psychology at Plymouth is an excellent foundation for a career in psychology and many other fields. Our visits programme, research apprenticeship scheme and placements allow students to work with professional psychologists throughout their studies.

Dr Phil Gee's teaching and research interests

Free e-Books

To give you a great start, if you are studying psychology as your only or major subject, we'll give you a free set of eBooks when you start your first year.

The complete set of eBooks is worth over £1500 – your main recommended reading for your core psychology lectures covered at no cost to you!

Free eBooks from the School of Psychology

Study abroad year in the USA

I can proudly say that it has been one of the best and wisest choices I could have ever made!

Simge Engelkiran spent a year in Nebraska

A challenge year in​ the USA

Psychology Research Apprenticeship Scheme

One of the experiments I was helping with got published in the scientific journal and... my name got mentioned!

Every year around 60-70 first and second year students volunteer to work with a member of staff as a 'Research Apprentice'

School of Psychology Research Apprentice Scheme

Sporting Excellence Scholars

Learn how University of Plymouth is inspiring and enabling BSc (Hons) Psychology student and Team GB Olympic Swimmer Antony James to achieve his sporting and academic goals

Sporting Excellence Scholars

Learn how University of Plymouth is inspiring and enabling BSc (Hons) Psychology student and Welsh rugby player Molly Humphreys to achieve her sporting and academic goals

Teaching and learning

Your experience will be enriched by a variety of teaching methods and you'll have your own personal tutor who will provide academic and personal support during your time at Plymouth

Teaching and learning in the School of Psychology

Facilities in the School of Psychology

Make the most of our specialist facilities – we’re a well equipped department ready to support your research.

Read more about our facilities

Psychology staff – qualified to teach

80 per cent of staff in the School of Psychology have teaching qualifications, and many are Higher Education Academy Fellows. All new staff are required to qualify for a fellowship of the HEA.

Nationally only 38 per cent of university academics are qualified to teach – you deserve better than that.

Find out what qualifications our staff have

Studentships and funding for psychology

A range of studentships, fee waivers and other funding for psychology students is also available for both UK/EU and international students.

Find out more about the funding available

Psychology courses scholarship for international applicants

A £4000 fee waiver will be awarded to applicants paying international fees who meet the entry requirements, for the first year of their studies. 

There are 10 scholarships available and they will be awarded on a first come first served basis to those accepted onto one of the following courses.

People