Research Methods in Psychology MSc

Postgraduate ( full-time, part-time)


January, September

Full-time: September start 12 months; January start 15 months.

Part-time: September start 2 years; January start 2.5 years.

Teaching times
All teaching is on a Friday. One optional module in Trimester 2 is available on a Monday.


Develop the advanced technical expertise you need for a successful career in a range of professions. You’ll explore the many branches of psychological research, from neuroscience to consumer behaviour.

Full description
The course is run smoothly, is perfectly organised and best of all, it's flexible and tailored to our needs


Whatever your plans you’ll emerge from this course with highly transferrable lifelong skills.

75% of our Graduates are taking PhDs or DClins or are working as research assistants. Others are working in fields such as market or audience research, clinical psychology and government. You’re also in the perfect position to continue your academic career and move up to our Psychology PhD.

Modules & assessment

Core modules

  • Issues in Scientific Research
    This module is designed to help introduce you to the theoretical and practical complexities of the research process. The module will cover both qualitative and quantitative techniques, and it is aimed as a series of taster sessions. If you feel any of the techniques suits your research, your supervisor, and expert members of staff, will help you learn more about your chosen technique. Research training in the form of literature searching, constructing literature reviews, communicating and publicising your work will also be covered. Additional areas to be covered in this module include: The research process, research techniques, research ethics and scientific writing skills. This module is delivered face-to-face over 24h of lectures (2h per week) and requires 264h of student managed learning (11 hours for workshop preparation, 75h for reading and writing essays and 78 h for writing the portfolio) totalling 288h hours of learning activities.
  • Quantitative Research Methods
    Develop a critical understanding of the principles of data collection and analysis for psychology and consider the theoretical basis of advanced quantitative methods. You will analyse example data sets using general linear models such as ANOVA, MANOVA, ANCOVA, multiple linear regression, and factor analysis. You will learn about good reporting practices and will learn how to report and interpret complex results. These chosen statistical methods have been directed by the Economic and Social Research Council's Postgraduate Training Guidelines (fourth and fifth editions).
  • Qualitative Research Methods
    Gain a critical understanding and practical skills in advanced qualitative techniques, including interpretative phenomenological and discourse analysis. We have created the content of this module with direction from the Economic and Social Research Council's Postgraduate Training Guidelines (fourth and fifth editions).
  • Masters Project
    You'll chose an independent research topic from an area of expertise within our department (subject to availability of suitable supervision) and will conduct a significant research project in that area which may involve a literature review, data collection, analysis and a write-up. The final piece of work should be equivalent to a maximum of 12,000 words.

Optional modules

  • Current Issues in Cognitive Neuroscience
    In this module we will cover the theoretical foundations of the cognitive neuroscience approach and address many of the leading topics in the field. These include memory and learning, face and visual object processing, language, central executive function and intelligence. We will cover past and present research, although the emphasis will be on currently unresolved theoretical debates.
  • Developmental Psychopathology
    Explore the developmental cause, risk factors and implications to everyday life in children with both developmental disorders and child-related mental health problems. Within developmental disorders, the topics covered will include normative development, autism and pervasive developmental disorders and language and communication disorders. Within child mental ill health the topics covered will include affective disorders, eating disorders and substance abuse, and childhood trauma.
  • Applied Consumer Psychology
    This module will focus on Social Psychological Approach to Consumer Psychology. Its overall aim is to provide an insight into the psychological and social factors that influence consumer behaviour at various stages of consumption. The module will emphasise the reasons why the study of contemporary consumerism is important in fully understanding human behaviour as well as modern economies. The module will discuss social-psychological aspects of consumers’ functioning such as social influence tactics used in sales, persuasion, advertising or e-commerce alongside the role of consumer’s personality and identity. Application of theories and research to topics such as sustainable consumption, food consumption, branding and advertising will be considered. The module is designed to illustrate the diversity of schools of thought, paradigms and methods present in the field and to demonstrate the multiple ways that the psychology of the individual and groups can be applied to understanding consumers. During the course of the module emphasis will be placed on critical consideration of the application of theory to consumer context. The module will equip students with a range of key transferable skills useful in the workplace, such as oral presentation skills, critical thinking, analysis of cases and application of theory to aid understanding of consumer behaviour. This module is delivered face-to-face over 12h of lectures and 12h of seminars (2h per week) and requires 276h of student managed learning (96 hours lecture/seminar reading and 180 hours reading and preparation for coursework and exam) totalling 300h hours of learning activities.


You’ll be assessed in a variety of ways including essays, portfolios, presentations, debates, data analysis tasks and your dissertation.

Where you'll study

Your faculty

The Faculty of Science & Engineering is one of the largest of the four faculties at Anglia Ruskin University. Whether you choose to study with us full-time or part-time, on campus or at a distance, there’s an option whatever your level – from a foundation degree, BSc, MSc, PhD or professional doctorate.

Whichever course you pick, you’ll gain the theory and practical skills needed to progress with confidence. Join us and you could find yourself learning in the very latest laboratories or on field trips or work placements with well-known and respected companies. You may even have the opportunity to study abroad.

Everything we do in the faculty has a singular purpose: to provide a world-class environment to create, share and advance knowledge in science, technology and engineering fields. This is key to all of our futures.

Where can I study?

Lord Ashcroft Building on our Cambridge campus

Our campus is close to the centre of Cambridge, often described as the perfect student city.

Explore our Cambridge campus

Fees & funding

Course fees

UK & EU students starting 2020/21 (per year)


UK & EU students starting 2020/21 (part-time, per year)


International students starting 2020/21 (per year)


International students starting 2020/21 (part-time, per year)


Important fee notes

The part-time course fee assumes that you're studying at half the rate of a full-time student (50% intensity). Course fees will be different if you study over a longer period. All fees are for guidance purposes only.

How do I pay my fees?

Paying upfront

If you're a UK or EU student, you won't need to pay fees until you've accepted an offer to study with us – though you must pay your fees upfront, in full or in instalments.

How to pay your fees directly

International students

You can pay your fees upfront, in full or in two instalments. We will also ask you for a deposit of £4,000 or a sponsorship letter. Details will be in your offer letter.

Paying your fees

Funding for UK & EU students

It’s important to decide how to fund your course before applying. Use our finance guide for postgraduate students to learn more about postgraduate loans and other funding options.

We offer a fantastic range of ARU scholarships, which provide extra financial support while you're at university. Find out more about eligibility and how to apply.

Funding for international students

We offer a number of scholarships, as well as an early payment discount. Explore your options:

Entry requirements

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Important additional notes

Our published entry requirements are a guide only and our decision will be based on your overall suitability for the course as well as whether you meet the minimum entry requirements. Other equivalent qualifications may be accepted for entry to this course, please email for further information.

English language requirements

If English is not your first language, you'll need to make sure you meet our English language requirements for postgraduate courses.

International students

We welcome applications from international and EU students, and accept a range of international qualifications.

Improving your English language skills

If you don't meet our English language requirements, we offer a range of courses which could help you achieve the level required for entry.

We also provide our own English Language Proficiency Test (ELPT) in the UK and overseas. To find out if we are planning to hold an ELPT in your country, contact our country managers.

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Get more information

UK & EU applicants

01245 68 68 68

Enquire online

International applicants

+44 1245 68 68 68

Enquire online