BA Hons English and Creative Writing & Psychology

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Key facts

  • UCAS Code: Q3C8
  • Ranked: 5th for English (Times/Sunday Times Good University Guide 2024) / 1st in Scotland for Creative Writing (Complete University Guide 2025)

  • Study abroad: available

  • Applicant visit day: March each year

Study with us

Our BA (Hons) Humanities & Social Sciences degree, explained.

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Why this course?

Our approach to the English & Creative writing course is innovative, modern and friendly, giving you a comprehensive understanding of English literature as a core basis for your creative work. The emphasis is on helping you develop a range of applicable skills to grow your future career, including textual analysis and interpretation.

With us, you can study everything from poetry, the novel and drama (stage, screen, and radio) as you would expect on an English and Creative Writing degree, but in addition, at Strathclyde, we offer the opportunity to use creative writing skills as part of your approach to literary criticism. You'll have the opportunity to work with award-winning scholars and creative writers.

Our main focus in psychology is the study of human behaviour.

You'll study conditions of behaviour; how we learn, remember, coordinate our actions and interact with others. You'll also study the reasons for differences between individuals, such as personality or intelligence.

Due to the popularity of the course and performance criteria for entry into Honours (Year 4), numbers admitted to Years 2 and 3 of the course are limited.

Our BA degrees in Humanities & Social Sciences are broad-based to start with. In Year 1 you'll study three subjects, including your chosen subject(s).

THE Awards 2019: UK University of the Year Winner

What you’ll study

English & Creative Writing

Year 1

An introduction to literary studies, reading novels, plays, short stories and poetry, including contemporary and older texts. Classes also introduce techniques in creative writing. 

Year 2

Core classes focus on literary history. Option classes focus on Scottish literature, and on the literature of humans and animals.

Year 3

There are two creative writing classes in year 3, currently on drama and on fiction. In addition to these, you can choose from options which currently include classes on Renaissance, Victorian, Twentieth Century and American literature, among others including an optional work placement.

Year 4

You can choose to write a short creative writing dissertation, consisting of a creative piece (fiction, poetry, drama, etc) and a critical commentary. In addition, there are specialized classes in creative writing.

Postgraduate study

We offer these taught masters degrees:

Masters degrees can be the first step to a PhD or help with career and personal development. We welcome overseas students, including visiting students. We also offer PhD and Masters research degrees, and these can involve creative work with a critical commentary.

Psychology

Year 1

The first year covers the basic principles of learning including biological bases of behaviour, thinking and memory.

Years 2 & 3

Due to the popularity of the course, performance-related criteria may be in place to manage entry into Honours (Year 4); this means that the numbers admitted to Years 2 and 3 of the course are limited. Years 2 & 3 provides a greater understanding of human development and interaction, cognitive processes, individual differences and biological influences on behaviour.

Year 4

In Year 4, you'll take a variety of classes that allow you to study an area of psychology in greater depth. You’ll study conceptual and historical issues in psychology and write a dissertation based on your research project.

International placement

There's an opportunity for you to take an optional international research placement through Erasmus.

The School of Psychological Sciences and Health has Erasmus exchange agreements with several European universities including:

  • Humboldt University zu Berlin, Germany
  • Universidad de A Coruna, Spain
  • University of Twente, Netherlands
  • University Tubingen, Germany
  • Radboud University, Nijmegen, Netherlands

Major projects

You can undertake an optional summer research project working with a member of staff. In addition, there are opportunities to apply for funding to complete summer internships between year 3 and 4.

Facilities

Our high-quality facilities include six purpose-built experimental research laboratories:

  • driving simulator lab
  • memory lab
  • perception and action lab
  • psychophysiology lab
  • psycholinguistics lab
  • oculomotor lab

Postgraduate study

Psychology graduates can progress into postgraduate training to become professional psychologists. We currently run a number of post-graduate courses which provide additional research training:

Student competitions

The British Psychological Society Undergraduate Award is awarded annually for outstanding academic performance in the final year. 

Single & joint Honours information

English, English and Creative Writing, History, Politics and International Relations and Psychology may be studied to Single or Joint Honours level.

Education, French, Spanish, Law, Journalism, Media and Communication and Social Policy are available only as Joint Honours Programmes. Economics, Human Resource Management, Marketing, Mathematics and Tourism can also be studied alongside a Humanities and Social Sciences subject.

The available subject combinations may change each year. Once accepted on the programme you'll be allocated an advisor of studies who will be able to let you know which subjects can be combined, in first year, and beyond.

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Course content

English & Creative Writing

English 1A & 1B

This first semester module offers an introduction to the study of English at university level. It offers a foundation for students who are interested in the historical and critical analysis of literary texts and for those who want to write creatively for themselves. It's the first module in the English degree and the English and Creative Writing degree.

In taking this module you'll have an opportunity to understand how particular historical and social contexts shape literature and to discuss ways in which historical literature continues to live and have relevance to the contemporary reader.  You'll also study in detail the ways in which literary texts are constructed. In understanding the mechanisms that make literary texts work – the choices made by an author about genre, form, and language – you'll become a subtler, more-attentive reader and a better-informed and better-equipped writer.  

Reading lists:

Psychology

Psychology 1a

You'll take this class in semester 1 and are not expected to have any prior knowledge of psychology. It explores learning theory, developmental psychology, personality, biological psychology, and the scientific basis for psychology.

Psychology 1b

This class is taught in semester 2 and covers sensation and perception, cognitive psychology, social psychology, abnormal psychology, and research methods.

Compulsory

English & Creative Writing

Writing Through Time 1&2

These will situate texts in context, from genre to historical period and theory. The texts include poetry, drama, novels,  short stories, life writing, and screenplays and you'll have the chance to choose between critical and creative writing responses for one assessment on each class.

Elective

The Construction of Scotland

This class explores how Scottish fiction and drama of the 20th and 21st centuries creates the idea of Scotland.

Making the Modern Human

This class looks at a range of literary texts and how they interpret and create the idea of ‘human’ at different points in history.

Psychology

Cognition & Neuropsychology

This class reveals how our understanding of higher mental functions has been enhanced through:

  • theoretical and experimental studies of normal human cognition
  • neuropsychological studies of how cognitive functions may be damaged as a result of brain lesions
Topics covered include disorders of the perceptual system, memory and attention, and the role of the frontal lobes in planning, motivation, emotion, and personality.

Social & Health Psychology

This class introduces social psychological theories and research that provide insights into why people believe what they believe, and why they behave the way they do.

Topics covered include attribution theory, aggression, prosocial behaviour, group influence, norms, conformity, obedience, and attitudes.

It ends with an introduction to health psychology, demonstrating how social psychological principles covered earlier in the class are applied to pressing, real-world health issues such as dietary behaviour, smoking/alcohol-use, and suicide.

Introduction to Research Design & Analysis

You'll be introduced to the main features of measurement, research design, and statistical analysis in psychology.

Following a general introduction, the course presents fundamental concepts, issues, and debates in the field of research methods.

You'll also become familiarised with the conceptual basis for inferential statistical testing, and introduced to different inferential statistics. Finally, a brief introduction to qualitative research methods takes place.

Compulsory

English & Creative Writing

Writing Short Fiction & Poetry

Writing Short Fiction and Poetry is a module studying contemporary short stories and lyric poetry. Generally speaking, the aim of this class is to get you writing as soon as possible – each week is aimed at teaching some of the basics of Creative Writing alongside a case study of a writer and their particular approach to elements of the craft.

Dramatic Writing

We'll be reading screenplays, talking about them, and writing our own. What is the difference between writing for the page and writing for the screen? Screenplays are, in practice, a series of instructions: for actors, for crew members, for potential financiers. A screenplay is a dual-purpose document. It exists as proof of concept (i.e., proof of narrative); and it is there to communicate the spirit and tone of the finished film. More than anything, our first job as writers for the screen is to make the reader hear and see. Primarily it is to make the reader see. There are many ways in to a life in writing for the screen. But, as with any good work of fiction, it begins with engaging characters. Do they appear to us fully formed? Or does it take development? How can we get them onto the page? What are the decisions we make at the start of a project? What is visible and the invisible writing? This class encourages you to consider the shape of your story in order to point yourself—and your narrative—in the right direction.

Optional

The American Novel

This class aims to introduce you to some of the major forms and themes in the 20th century American novel with some more contemporary content. The module investigates how major social and historical issues have shaped some of the most important American novels and how the novel, as a form, has developed and adapted to describe new and different realities. Some of the historical and social issues covered in the class include:

  • the suburbs and the city
  • the legacy of slavery
  • queer life in the US
  • stories of migration and travel

This module is designed to equip students who wish to pursue studies in American literature or culture in more depth with an overview of the period. It's also designed to expand the knowledge of students with a general interest in the novel.

Victorian Literature

This class will study the literature of the Victorian period (1837-1901) and will focus on fiction, poetry, drama and non-fictional prose. It aims to situate this writing both in its contemporary political, social and cultural contexts and in the light of recent critical and theoretical debates. Themes to be covered may include:

  • the 'crisis of faith'
  • science and evolutionary theory
  • realism and the Victorian novel
  • medievalism and Victorianism
  • literature and the visual arts
  • key poetic genres, including elegy and dramatic monologue
  • popular fiction
  • the 'Woman Question'
  • Empire and travel writing
  • the new journalism and Victorian reading publics
  • representations of the city and technology
  • issues of canon and periodisation

Twentieth Century Literature

This class explores twentieth-century English literature with a focus on fiction, poetry, and drama. The survey examines major literary figures from the first half of the century, such as Woolf and Stein, along with their contemporaries and successors. Particular attention will be paid to the literary culture of Modernism before exploring the texts, culture and politics of the later 20th century through writers such as Spark, McGrath and Smith. Emphasis will be placed on understanding a diverse range of literature in historical, critical and theoretical contexts as a means of engaging with the rich literary heritage of the twentieth century, and what the twenty-first century might bring.

Sex, Revenge & Corruption in Renaissance Drama

This module will focus on drama, a key genre in the period from the 1580s to the closure of the playhouses in 1642. Reading work by major dramatists, we'll engage with a form that addressed a highly literate audience as well as a popular one, and is thus a particularly interesting place to trace ways of thinking in the period. The common thread that ties this selection of plays together is their interest in transgression: what happens when humans cross the limits set by tradition, religion and the state?

In the process of this theatrical interrogation, the plays pose questions about violence, identity, gender, desire, citizenship and the role of the theatre itself. We'll read tragedies and comedies; alongside these, you'll also be asked to think about the moral and theological debates that were taking place at the time these works were produced and consumed. Thus, for example, we'll read plays by Shakespeare, Christopher Marlowe, Ben Jonson and Thomas Middleton alongside writing by Robert Burton, Sir Francis Bacon and Niccolo Machiavelli. This will enable us to explore how ideas about sex, revenge and corruption in the period are developed and contested between the stage and the work of some of the most influential thinkers at the time; it will also allow us to consider how some of these early modern limit cases still ask questions of us today.

Lectures will provide context for tutorials, which will be organised around worksheets that will be circulated in advance, and so will give you the chance to prepare for each class, and will allow everyone the chance to contribute to discussions.

Language in Business & Organisations

This class explores the ways in which language is used in businesses and other organisations. The class assumes no prior knowledge of linguistics, and teaches technical skills in discourse analysis, conversation analysis, and the analysis of other types of verbal interaction, in speech, writing and electronic communications. The analytical skills learned in this class, and the theoretical ideas, will be useful also in the analysis of literature or any other aspect of language in use. Seminars give you practice in the analytical skills. The class assumes that you have no prior knowledge or experience in discourse analysis, conversation analysis, pragmatics, etc.

The Body: Theories & Representations

What does it mean to ‘write the body’? How has the world of sensory experience been rendered in theory, literature, and film? What metaphors do we summon to understand physical experiences of joy, sickness, health, desire, exhaustion, and intoxication?

This class will approach these questions (and more) by studying literary, visual, and theoretical engagements with the body in late 20th and 21st -century culture. Over the course of the semester, you'll encounter some key debates about the body and its representation in literature and film. You'll engage with the fields of gender theory, queer theory, critical race theory, and disability theory. You'll also learn some strategies for analysing contemporary culture through the ‘lens’ of theory, developing skills you can take into other areas of your study.

TextLab

Textlab is one of several Vertically Integrated Projects (ViPs) running across the University. Each ViP brings together a team of undergraduates, postgraduates, and staff to work on a research-based project.

TextLab brings together students and staff from English/Humanities and Computer and Information Science. We work on research projects in the field of Digital Humanities (the application of computer-based technologies to the study of texts) – specifically using computers to analyse Shakespeare’s language, and building a website aimed at schools.

English & Creative Writing Work Placement

This placement module offers you the opportunity to gain practical, work-based experience (minimum 60 hours) in an area that is professionally related to or relevant to your BA. For your degree this might be working with a publisher, or literary agency, or in an office environment where you are using your skills in reading, interpretation and writing. Or you might use this as an opportunity to look towards a future career: so, if you plan to go into teaching, for example, you could look to get a placement working in a subject-related environment with young people.

The Glasgow Novel

This class will trace the development of fictional representations of Glasgow from the beginnings of industrialism to the present age. In doing so, it will consider a wide variety of historical and literary approaches to depicting the city. Beginning with a brief history of the pre-C20th Glasgow novel, the course goes on to consider some of the most famous literary depictions of Glasgow, including McArthur and Long’s No Mean City, Archie Hind’s The Dear Green Place and Alasdair Gray’s Lanark.

Psychology

Research Methods in Psychology

This class builds on year 2 and equips you with a broader, more advanced set of methodological and analytic skills. These skills are essential for carrying out the year 4 dissertation and for being able to read and understand articles published in academic journals.

Individual Differences

You're encouraged to think scientifically about conceptual and practical issues related to the study of individual differences, with specific reference to intelligence and personality. You'll gain the chance to put this knowledge into practice by designing your own measurement instrument.

Cognition

You'll be introduced to some of the core topics in cognitive psychology

  • Perception and action, particularly how we perceive time and recognise faces
  • Memory and learning, including models of episodic and working memory
  • Language, including word production, sentence comprehension, and discourse processing
  • Thinking, specifically problem solving, deductive reasoning and judgement and decision making.

Development

This class reviews the ways that children develop from infancy right through to the end of adolescence. Key theories are presented and used to explore the extent to which children’s development is continuous or stage-like and whether specific skills develop more quickly than others. Issues relating to infancy, ‘theory of mind’ (understanding others’ thoughts and beliefs), executive function (planning and monitoring abilities), language, and communication form the core themes in the class.

Psychobiology

The purpose of this class is to provide the opportunity for you to learn the basic principles of brain function, and to encourage you to address the implications of this understanding for their own view of how behaviour is generated. It includes coverage of electrophysiology and psychopharmacology, neuroanatomy, research methods in neuroscience. There are focused sections relating to the visual system and the motor system.

Social Psychology

This class allows you to consider current ideas and positions within social psychology. Four themes drive the class

  • Attitudes and attitude change, covering the Theory of Planned Behaviour and the Health Belief Model
  • Identity, with a focus on social, personal and group identities
  • Prejudice, connecting both attitudes and identities, and covering a broad range of areas such as social representations, stereotyping, prejudice and conflict
  • Epistemology, where consideration is given to the theory of knowledge, how social psychological knowledge is produced, and to what effect

The Dissertation is compulsory for single honours students and optional for joint-honours students.

English & Creative Writing

Dissertation

This individual project involves original academic research under one-on-one supervision with a member of staff. In addition, you will choose from a range of research and practice led options.

Elective

Writing Gender in Contemporary Literature

This class examines how contemporary authors make sense of gendered experience. We'll investigate cultural practices of writing (and rewriting) gender in the twenty-first century, paying particular attention to the relationships between gender and literary genre, from transgender memoirs to autofictional masculinities, twenty-first-century romance novels, and the queer graphic novel. We'll also investigate the impact of feminist political activism on the publishing industry, from the indie press to the Women’s Prize for Fiction. The class will introduce you to key theories of gender and equip you with strategies for reading literature through the lens of feminist theory. Over the course of the semester, you'll encounter some of our most exciting contemporary writers and deepen your understanding of literary gender politics in the present day.

21st Century Science Fiction

This class introduces you to twenty-first-century science fiction from across the globe. Contemporary science fiction creates alternative technological bodies and worlds, allowing us to address questions around what it means to be human, what our relationship is to technology and how we might build worlds that are less destructive. With these major themes in mind, this class will focus on four key critical lenses:

  • race
  • colonialism
  • disability
  • sexuality and gender

Questions to be explored include:

  • how are worlds reconfigured through queer sexualities and genders
  • what futures are brought into being for previously marginalised peoples
  • what is science fiction’s relation to the past
  • how does contemporary science fiction challenge tropes of colonialism
  • what bodies emerge in these future worlds and why?

Each week you'll read, watch or listen to a contemporary, global science fiction text exploring how histories, worlds, bodies and relations are represented and reimagined.

New Narratives

The publishing world is changing rapidly with the advent of digital publishing and the ebook. This class will enable students to explore new possibilities and write for new markets and platforms. It will also look at skills that students need for a career in both traditional and digital publication such as editing, submitting work and performing/reading work in front of an audience.

This class aims to hone the skills students have acquired in previous years to produce new work for print, performance and for a range of digital platforms. It will also provide an up-to-date examination of the publishing world and will include reflective element.

Present Day Victorians

Neo-Victorian cultural products have been recognised as a crucial site for the critical rediscovery and reinterpretation of Victorian literature and culture (in particular the themes of class, race, gender and sexuality). Evoking the genres of crime and mystery fiction, themes of science, technology and alternative futures, the figure of the Victorian author and the voices of marginal characters from Mrs Rochester to the ghosts of the séance circle, neo-Victorian writing seeks to understand the continuing impact of the nineteenth century on the present day. This class will consider how and why these texts have problematised Victorian discourses (e.g. imperialism, madness, sexual deviance, technology, the cultural roles of reading and writing). We'll draw on a range of interpretative strategies from post-colonial, feminist, queer, adaptation, appropriation, heritage and film studies.

The Power of Underlying Material: Adaptation, book to film & beyond

This class is an elective option in fourth year English that encourages students to look at the layering process involved in adapting a piece of underlying material either for literature or for the screen. We will examine a comprehensive range of source texts that inform many literary works and much of the screen drama available in the late 20th century and, in particular, in the current marketplace.

The class will complement the third year core class in Creative Writing, and will also be useful to those undertaking honours dissertations in Creative Writing. As well as exercises in close reading, and theoretical analysis, the class will emphasise the commercial realities of basing work on underlying material.

Songs: music & literature

This class looks at the relation between language and music in songs, treating songs as literature adapted to music. We'll look at the ways in which the forms and meanings of songs can be studied, in ways similar to the study of poetry, but also in ways specific to song. The class considers technical aspects, including technical aspects of music, but you're not expected to have prior knowledge of music. We look at ways in which songs relate to identity and how they produce emotion. We consider the ways in which songs tell stories, or relate to stories.

Victorian Gothic

This class traces the development of the Gothic across the nineteenth century, from its origins in the Romantic period to its heights in works like Bram Stoker’s Dracula. The class is organized around key concepts of the Gothic genre, including the sublime, the unseen, textual hybridity, un narrative unreliability.

We'll also look at subgenres like the Female Gothic and Eco-Gothic, examining how the Gothic allows authors to explore cultural anxieties including women’s rights, deviant sexualities, urbanisation, migration, and environmental devastation. Iconic monsters like Frankenstein’s monster, Mr Hyde, and Dracula will thus be situated within their specific cultural milieu, helping us to understand both their origins and their continued popularity.

Wild in the Renaissance

The concept of 'the wild' is one that emerges in many different ways in the writings of the Renaissance; in relation to self-cultivation (holding back the wildness within), the control of one's world (taming the ever-present wilderness); and in relations with fellow humans in a changing world (in savage domination). These ideas get played out in numerous ways in the period - from poetic use of the symbolic resonance of gardens and gardening; the religious underpinnings of the 'missionary endeavour' in the New World and what that says about the concept of human nature; to the anxious self-examination of humanity's inevitable sinfulness.

This class will thus introduce you to key canonical texts from the period – plays, poetry, and court masques – by writers including Shakespeare, Jonson, and Milton, and will also engage with a critical and theoretical debates about the relationships between humans and the natural world from the new fields of animal studies and ecocriticism.

Contemporary Travel Writing

This class engages with some of the key tensions in contemporary travel writing from race and sexuality, to issues of cultural stereotyping and ‘foreignness’. By working through a series of international case studies ranging from India to North America, the class will address why travel continues to be an important metaphor for thinking about our experience of the world, as well as offering a framework for how we understand it.

Forms of Feminism in Contemporary Literature

The class will explore how feminist concerns are represented in contemporary literature, and how literary forms shape contemporary feminism. Students will encounter some of the most important literary works of the post-1990 period, and learn to make connections between literary analysis and feminist theory. Engaging with a diverse range of literary forms—from novels, poems and plays to comics and manifestos—students will leave the course with an advanced understanding of the role literature plays in contemporary feminist politics.

Psychology

Dissertation in Psychology

The dissertation is an opportunity for you to undertake an original piece of research, closely supervised by a single member of staff. Dissertations can be of such high standards that they are subsequently published in peer-reviewed academic journals.

Elective

These classes are subject to change year-on-year and may not be the same for each academic year.

Psychology Work Placement

This class will support students' development in applying their knowledge and understanding of psychological theory and evidence in a work setting, as well as their ability to articulate the knowledge, understanding, and skills they have developed through the placement, their studies, and other extra-curricular activities.

The class aims to provide students with an opportunity to gain practical, work-based experience in an area that is professionally relevant to psychology. The placement experience should encourage the transfer of academic psychological knowledge, understanding, and subject-specific skills to an applied context. Students will also be supported in developing reflective and professional skills, and the ability to articulate these skills. This class is intended to support students' transition into employment and/or further study after graduation. It is also anticipated that there will be benefits to placement providers in the roles fulfilled by students, and in the longer term in supporting the development of the future workforce.

The placement involves completing a minimum of 60 hours of active engagement within a suitable organisation. An additional 50 hours has been added to account for travel time.

Students will be responsible for setting up a placement with an organisation relevant to their interests. We hope to provide students a list of organisations who have indicated a willingness to receive applications from students seeking a placement. 

In the assessment for the class, students are required to submit a 2000 word written assessment that covers:

  • An account of their role within the placement organisation, including a critical reflection on the student's professional practice in fulfilling the requirements of the role. The student will also relate back to the self-evaluation assessment written at the beginning of the placement;
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the application of psychological theory and evidence relevant to the placement organisation and/or experience in the placement role;
  • Discussion of their personal and professional development, following the placement, with a view to their future development.

Advanced Organisational Behaviour

Advanced Organisational Behaviour is an Honours year elective, which runs over two semesters, offered in the degree subject Human Resource Management (within the Department of Work, Employment and Organisation). It is also an elective in Psychology. There is no prerequisite for Psychology students and it is expected that students with no prior experience of HRM courses will be able to fully engage with this class. The class draws from organisational behaviour, work psychology and work sociology to explore current topics within work and employment, and the implications for people management.  

Cross-cultural Psychology

This optional class aims to help students gain an understanding of the ways in which human psychology is influenced by cultural context. This class builds upon your third-year psychology classes, attempting to expand the topics covered in these classes by emphasising the role culture plays in the mental life of human beings. This class will start with an introduction to cross-cultural psychology, discussing its various definitions and general theoretical orientations. Then, the class will explore the similarities and differences in social behaviour across cultures, and how culture influences people’s emotions and values. This class will also discuss intercultural contact (i.e., acculturation, cross-cultural competence).

This optional class will be delivered by a combination of lectures and seminars. An experiential/problem-based learning approach is adopted. Relevant theories and empirical research will be discussed, and students will have the opportunity to explore how the knowledge can be used to in real-world scenarios. Overall, this class will enhance students’ understanding of different perspectives on psychology and increase their awareness of cultural differences in psychology.

 

 

Psychology of Mental Health

Mental health problems are a growing public health concern worldwide, at both personal and societal levels. This class will explore the application of psychology to the field of mental health, with the consideration of the theoretical, practical and ethical underpinnings of the mental health field. The class will also explore approaches to psychological assessment, formulation and treatment that are commonly used in mental health practice.

  • Lectures will cover the following key areas:
  • Psychological assessment
  • Psychological formulation
  • Overview of most common mental health problems (e.g. depression, anxiety)
  • Clinical practice and psychological interventions
  • Positive mental health

Critical Thinking and Common-sense Reasoning

This class has two broad aims: 1) to provide students with an introduction to critical thinking and review some of the theoretical and empirical literature around critical thinking and epistemological thinking, and 2) to give students the opportunity to practice critical thinking and thereby develop and sharpen their skills in this important area. Literature on critical thinking and epistemological thinking will be reviewed, and both everyday aspects of critical thinking (such as interpretation of articles published in newspapers and on the world wide web) and more technical aspects (such as critiquing journal papers within psychology) will be covered. Following three lectures setting out the theoretical background, teaching will be workshop-based, in which students will work in tutorial groups engaging in critiquing exercises. Different kinds of articles will be jointly critiqued, beginning with ‘everyday’ materials such as newspaper opinion pieces, thence moving on to informal presentations of psychological material in the form of discussion articles published in magazine-style journals such as ‘The Psychologist’, and ultimately building up to the critique of published articles in psychology journals. This will therefore simultaneously broaden the students’ knowledge on a psychological topic of great practical significance (just how good are ordinary members of the public at thinking critically?) and at the same time help to develop their skills in a way that should positively impact their studies of psychology at Honours level.

Belief and Anomalistic Experience

This class introduces students to the scientific study of belief in religion and belief in / experience of ‘paranormal’ phenomenaThe content is not concerned with the veracity of experiences or beliefs but rather how psychology can measure associated variables, explain the formation and maintenance of beliefs and examine the effect that holding such beliefs or having such experiences can have, both physically and psychologicallyStudents will be expected to critically evaluate experimental methodology and theories of cognition in relation to the class content. 

 

Critical Review

This is a one semester class in which students will select an approved psychology topic for intensive, non-empirical study. Students will demonstrate an in-depth understanding of the conceptual and theoretical content of an area of psychology drawn from a list of approved topics. This class affords Honours students an opportunity to develop and demonstrate skills in literature search, information assimilation, evaluation and in depth critical analysis of a chosen topic. The class places emphasis on independent student learning. The course will help the student to develop critical writing skills over a period of time through independent writing and self-directed study. The aims are:

i. to develop an extensive in-depth knowledge of one key topic area in psychology.

ii. to develop critical thinking skills such as questioning the assumptions and conclusions of others and looking at alternative ways of dealing with questions, facts, and arguments.

iii. to develop and refine skills relating to the systematic acquisition of information.

iv. to develop and extend essay writing skills, including discussing and formulating arguments, summarizing, and presenting materials.

Introduction to Sleep Health

This class provides an introduction to the field of sleep health, which is a developing area of sleep psychology that focuses on the evaluation and treatment of sleep disorders by addressing behavioural, psychological, and physiological factors that interfere with sleep. Sleep disorders impair quality of life and contribute to physical and mental health problems. Despite this, they are an under-recognised and under-treated threat to public health. Sleep experts have long recognised the need for greater public awareness of the impact of poor sleep and the importance of promoting the evidence-base for appropriate assessment and treatment. This class will introduce students to the specialist, multidisciplinary area of sleep health with a very clear focus on insomnia disorder, the most common sleep disorder and the one of the most prevalent mental health complaints in Europe. 

 

The Psychology and Cognitive Neuroscience of Face Recognition

In this class, we will cover the psychology, cognitive neuroscience, and real world applications of face perception and recognition. The class will cover current theory in relation to face recognition, but importantly we will also assess the critical use of faces in real world and forensic contexts. For example, faces are of critical importance in criminal identification in policing and the justice system (e.g. from CCTV, bystanders, juries and the victims of crime), and in the prevention of identity fraud (e.g. should we put our faces on our credit/debit cards?). There will also be a clinical aspect to this class as we’ll look at individual differences in face recognition, looking at patients with prosopagnosia and Metropolitan Police Super-recognisers. Each of these areas will be explored in detail, to show how our understanding of the science of face perception can inform us about our interest in, and reliance on, faces. 

 

 

Psychology and Ageing

It is understood that our population is ageing; for example, the fastest growing age group comprises those aged over 85 years. The potential for health, economic, and social burden due to ageing is therefore increasing. With a better understanding of ageing processes, the burden of an ageing population could be minimised, successful ageing and better quality of life promoted, and the contributions of older adults to society celebrated. Contemporary psychological theories of ageing will be presented from a number of perspectives, and the class will draw upon research that has used a variety of methodological approaches. Students will also be encouraged to engage with the material via a range of teaching methods, including traditional lecture content, video clips, and interactive tasks. Typically, we will address: theoretical and methodological approaches to studying psychology and ageing; cognitive ageing; lifestyle factors; emotion in older age; ageing in society, including stereotyping; ageing in the workplace/retirement; wisdom; the positive influences of older adults in society. Teaching delivery is anticipated to be via 5 on-campus sessions and an online peer review task.  

Psychological Assessment

This class will build upon knowledge developed in second (Cognition & Neuropsychology C8201) and third year level (Cognition C8304). Specifically, it will provide further understanding on how to apply principles of psychological assessment in broader contexts. The class will pursue three aims: 1) promote understanding and knowledge about the contributions and challenges of psychological assessment in various contexts and settings, 2) familiarise with aspects related to the selection of appropriate testing procedures and 3) the generation of hypotheses to guide such procedures and interpret their outcomes.

The class will offer a critical appreciation of a range of tests, procedures and techniques used to better understand a person’s psychological makeup and behaviour. Knowledge will be acquired on how such tests and procedures are used in experimental and applied settings. Learning will involve case discussions, discussion of commonly used tests, with students investigating cases and procedures. Students will develop an appreciation of the types of psychological testing.

Psychology of Physical Activity

The aim of the class is to facilitate the development of knowledge and understanding of theories and evidence-based research in relation to the psychology of physical activity. This class will provide opportunities for students to develop their critical evaluation skills of theory and research and to gain experience of measurement and behaviour change techniques in this area. The aim is also to give students the opportunity to apply what they have learned to a ‘real-world’ case study by implementing a behaviour change intervention to increase active behaviours.  This class extends material covered in previous years in biological, social, cognitive and health psychology but is applied to physical activity behaviour. Level 4 classes are very popular with students as they cover focussed, specialist topics and staff expertise.   

Evolutionary Approaches to Human Mate Preferences

This lecture series will critically examine the contribution that evolutionary theories have made to our understanding of human mate preferences. It will cover fundamental questions in the area, such as how mate preferences are shaped by environmental and hormonal factors, and will have a strong focus on recent methodological and theoretical controversies in the literature. 

Considering Sleep Through the Behavioural Lens

Sleep is a multidisciplinary field and is relevant for a variety of medical fields such as neurology, respiratory medicine, cardiology, and psychiatry. The focus thereby lies on the physiological aspects of sleep, as well as the organic sleep disorders such as sleep apnoea or narcolepsy. However, sleep is also a behaviour, and examining sleep through the behavioural lens has implications for the field of psychology at the individual and also the public health level. If we can understand how to change sleep behaviour, we can initiate change in the individuals and the public's health and wellbeing. In this class, we will explore the importance of examining sleep at the behavioural level, which can be modified to improve health and wellbeing. 

Neuropsychology of Ageing and Dementia

The class will offer you the opportunity to acquire an in-depth understanding of the theories and empirical data that are relevant within the field of neuropsychology of ageing and dementia. It will cover the differences between normal and pathological decline in old age and will provide information on the neuropsychological profiles and pathologies which characterize different forms of dementia. It will provide you with a solid foundation in neuropsychology. You will learn to identify the features which can aid early diagnosis and differential diagnosis of the dementias (e.g. Alzheimer's disease, Vascular dementia and Lewy body dementias). You will become familiar with how different aspects of cognition are distributed within the brain and will be aware of the consequences of impairment.

Different methodologies that are used for the study of the dementias will also be explored (e.g. neuropsychological assessment, functional and structural neuroimaging) and you will learn to critically evaluate the benefits and pitfalls of each method.
Overall, the class will provide you with key knowledge that will be relevant for the study of neurological conditions, for health-based research more broadly, and relevant should you choose to work in academia, healthcare or other industries (linked to older adults or neurological populations).

Theory and practice of learning and cognition

Cognitive Psychology (CP) is central to the understanding processes that are required for memory, attention, and learning. It can also provide insights into cognitive conditions that affect how people function and behave. CP underpins all aspects of psychological theory and practice (synonymous with developmental, social, educational and neuro psychology). The class will explore and critically examine key learning theory and consider transference and application from theory to real life contexts.  

Study abroad

International Work Placement

This class is an option which is available to a restricted number of students who'll apply to take part. It involves a placement with a European University partner working in a research team during the summer between years 3 and 4. Additional assessment is to be completed during semester 1 of year 4.

English & Creative Writing

Outreach

We're committed to working with people from other disciplines and walks of life. Each year, we welcome distinguished creative writers and academics to speak about their work and encourage students to come and meet them. The Faculty has hosted numerous international conferences on topics ranging from texts and architecture to cyberculture. We currently host internationally recognised networks on Animal Studies and Stories in Scotland which involve other universities and organisations.

Work placement

There is an optional third year work placement module which will allow you to take the skills you have gained from your study at Strathclyde out into the wider world.

Research-based teaching

You will be taught by researchers with international reputations. All of our staff not only teach but write books, articles, drama and poetry and appear in the media and on radio programmes. This keeps our students in touch with the latest ideas on the subject.

International connections

Every year, some of our students study abroad at universities overseas, including in Europe and the USA. We also welcome students from all over the world to study with us. We encourage international contact which enables staff and students to remain open to new ideas.

Facilities

Our location in the Lord Hope building provides a social hub and access to student services such as the library, cafés, meeting areas and exhibition spaces.

The Andersonian Library, directly opposite in the Curran Building, has around a million print volumes as well as access to one million electronic books and over 105,000 e-journals. The library covers all subjects taught at Strathclyde and offers over 550 networked computers with access to the internet, email, a wide range of software and databases and extensive Wi-Fi zones for laptops/tablets.

Learning & teaching

English & Creative Writing

In Year 1 and Year 2 core classes, each class involves two lectures and one tutorial per week. In the second year option classes there is one lecture and one tutorial per week.

The rest of your teaching is in your other two subjects.

In Years 3 and 4, most classes involve one lecture and one tutorial per week; some involve two-hour tutorials and no lectures.

A large part of your week will be spent reading in preparation for class.

Psychology

Our methods include lectures, small-group tutorials, practical labs, online tutorials, online wikis, group work, problem-based learning and one-to-one supervision.

These methods are used across all years of the degree and aim to provide you with opportunities to learn and work in different ways.

Assessment

English & Creative Writing

Most classes are assessed by a mixture of essays or other written work. For some classes there are exams, and in some cases, oral work is assessed.

Psychology

We assess you using class tests, essays, practical reports, dissertations, individual presentations, group presentations and degree exams. Online and face-to-face group project work is also included in the course. You'll also take part in practical assignments from first-year onwards.

Studying psychology at Strathclyde

Find out from our lecturers and students about what it's like to study psychology at Strathclyde.

Psychology's anything about people and how they behave, how they think, how they act in society, how they behave in different settings.

Dr Sally Wiggins, Senior Lecturer

How to become a psychologist

Find out all you need to know including what a psychologist does, the different types of psychologist and the steps you need to take to become one.

How to become a psychologist
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Entry requirements

Highers

Standard entry requirements*:

  • 1st sitting: AAAA 
  • 2nd sitting: AAAAB

(including English plus at least one other social science subject from those listed under preferred subjects below; plus National 5 Maths or Application of Maths at B to C.)

Minimum entry requirements**:

  • 1st sitting: AABB 
  • 2nd sitting: AABBB 

(including English at B plus at least one other social science subject from those listed under preferred subjects below; plus National 5 Maths or Application of Maths at C.)

Preferred subjects

  • Classical Studies
  • Drama
  • Economics
  • Gaelic
  • Geography
  • History
  • Modern Studies
  • Modern Language (German/French/Spanish/Italian)
  • Philosophy
  • Politics
  • Psychology
  • Religious, Moral and Philosophical Studies
  • Sociology
  • Biology
  • Human Biology
A Levels

ABB-BBB

(GCSE English Language 6/B or Literature 6/B, GCSE Maths 4/C)

International Baccalaureate

32-30

Irish Leaving Certificate

Two H2 passes and three H3 passes including English

 

HNC

Social Sciences:

Year 1 entry: A in Graded Unit; Maths National 5 B, or equivalent

International students

View the entry requirements for your country.

Deferred Entry

Not normally accepted

Additional Information

Students are required to register with the Scottish Government’s Protecting Vulnerable Groups scheme.

*Standard entry requirements

Offers are made in accordance with specified entry requirements although admission to undergraduate programmes is considered on a competitive basis and entry requirements stated are normally the minimum level required for entry.

Whilst offers are made primarily on the basis of an applicant meeting or exceeding the stated entry criteria, admission to the University is granted on the basis of merit, and the potential to succeed. As such, a range of information is considered in determining suitability.

In exceptional cases, where an applicant does not meet the competitive entry standard, evidence may be sought in the personal statement or reference to account for performance which was affected by exceptional circumstances, and which in the view of the judgement of the selector would give confidence that the applicant is capable of completing the programme of study successfully.

**Minimum entry requirements

Find out if you can benefit from this type of offer.

Widening access

We want to increase opportunities for people from every background. Strathclyde selects our students based on merit, potential and the ability to benefit from the education we offer. We look for more than just your grades. We consider the circumstances of your education and will make lower offers to certain applicants as a result.

Find out if you can benefit from this type of offer.

Placements

Every one of our flexible BA options gives students the chance to gain valuable industry experience as part of a credit-bearing work placement class in their third or fourth year.
 
Learn about placements

The Flexible BA

With our BA (Honours) degree, you can choose from subjects in Humanities, Social Sciences and Business, with two of your three subject choices taught by the Faculty of Humanities & Social Sciences.

The BA degree is a four-year course allowing you try new subjects, develop your own ideas, build a broad range of knowledge and enhance your employability.

Download video transcript

Subject combinations

Use our subject picker tool to see the combinations available to you in Year 1 of the BA Humanities & Social Sciences degree. Please note that in Year 2 you'll continue with two of these subjects.

Explore the structure of the BA Humanities & Social Sciences degree for detailed information on Single and Joint Honours options.

 

 

Degree preparation course for international students

We offer international students (non-EU/UK) who do not meet the academic entry requirements for an undergraduate degree at Strathclyde the option of completing an Undergraduate Foundation year programme at the University of Strathclyde International Study Centre.

Upon successful completion, you will be able to progress to this degree course at the University of Strathclyde.

International students

We've a thriving international community with students coming here to study from over 140 countries across the world. Find out all you need to know about studying in Glasgow at Strathclyde and hear from students about their experiences.

Visit our international students' section

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Fees & funding

All fees quoted are for full-time courses and per academic year unless stated otherwise.

Fees may be subject to updates to maintain accuracy. Tuition fees will be notified in your offer letter.

All fees are in £ sterling, unless otherwise stated, and may be subject to revision.

Annual revision of fees

Students on programmes of study of more than one year (or studying standalone modules) should be aware that tuition fees are revised annually and may increase in subsequent years of study. Annual increases will generally reflect UK inflation rates and increases to programme delivery costs.

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Scotland

£1,820

Fees for students who meet the relevant residence requirements in Scotland are subject to confirmation by the Scottish Funding Council. Scottish undergraduate students undertaking an exchange for a semester/year will continue to pay their normal tuition fees at Strathclyde and will not be charged fees by the overseas institution.

England, Wales & Northern Ireland

£9,250

Assuming no change in fees policy over the period, the total amount payable by undergraduate students will be capped. For students commencing study in 2024/25, this is capped at £27,750 (with the exception of the MPharm and integrated Masters programmes), MPharm students pay £9,250 for each of the four years. Students studying on integrated Masters degree programmes pay an additional £9,250 for the Masters year with the exception of those undertaking a full-year industrial placement where a separate placement fee will apply.

International

£19,600

University preparation programme fees

International students can find out more about the costs and payments of studying a university preparation programme at the University of Strathclyde International Study Centre.

Available scholarships

Take a look at our scholarships search for funding opportunities.

Additional costs

International students may have associated visa and immigration costs. Please see student visa guidance for more information.

Please note: All fees shown are annual and may be subject to an increase each year. Find out more about fees.

How can I fund my studies?

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Students from Scotland

Fees for students who meet the relevant residence requirements in Scotland, you may be able to apply to the Student Award Agency Scotland (SAAS) to have your tuition fees paid by the Scottish government. Scottish students may also be eligible for a bursary and loan to help cover living costs while at University.

For more information on funding your studies have a look at our University Funding page.

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Students from England, Wales & Northern Ireland

We have a generous package of bursaries on offer for students from England, Northern Ireland and Wales:

You don’t need to make a separate application for these. When your place is confirmed at Strathclyde, we’ll assess your eligibility. Have a look at our scholarship search for any more funding opportunities.

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International Students

We have a number of scholarships available to international students. Take a look at our scholarship search to find out more.

Dean's International Excellence Award

This scholarship is for new international students who will begin a full-time undergraduate course in the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences in September 2024. The award is a £5,000 scholarship per year for the duration of their degree (total of £20,000 for a four year course). All offer-holders are eligible for this scholarship.

Dean's International Excellence Award

Two students in library.

Glasgow is Scotland's biggest & most cosmopolitan city

Our campus is based right in the very heart of Glasgow. We're in the city centre, next to the Merchant City, both of which are great locations for sightseeing, shopping and socialising alongside your studies.

Life in Glasgow

Chat to a student ambassador

If you want to know more about what it’s like to be a Humanities & Social Sciences student at the University of Strathclyde, a selection of our current students are here to help!

Our Unibuddy ambassadors can answer all the questions you might have about courses and studying at Strathclyde, along with offering insight into their experiences of life in Glasgow and Scotland.

Chat to a student ambassador
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Careers

Graduates from our English & Creative Writing programme have gone on to have success in a very wide range of careers including in publishing, the civil service, management, marketing, journalism, creative writing, administration and teaching. Employers value our graduates’ ability to express themselves well and think critically.

As a Psychology graduate, continuing your studies will help you become a professional psychologist, which can lead to working in areas such as clinical, educational or occupational psychology. Many graduates also work in research.

Other possible careers are teaching, human resource management, social work, counselling and management and professional positions throughout the private and public sectors.

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Apply

Please note that you only need to apply once for our BA degree programme.

For instance, if you have applied for BA Honours English and are considering your options for a Joint Honours degree, e.g. a BA Joint Honours in English and French you only need to apply for one or the other on UCAS.

If accepted on to the BA programme, you can study one of the many available subject combinations.

Start date:

English and Creative Writing & Psychology (1 year entry)

Start date: Sep 2024

English and Creative Writing & Psychology (1 year entry)

full-time
Start date: Sep 2024

UCAS Applications

Apply through UCAS if you are a UK applicant. International applicants may apply through UCAS if they are applying to more than one UK University.

Apply now

Direct Applications

Our Direct applications service is for international applicants who wish to apply to Strathclyde University at this time.

Apply now
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Contact us

Prospective student enquiries

Telephone: +44 (0) 141 444 8600

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