Why this course?
Our main focus in psychology is the study of human behaviour.
Studying with us, you'll look at conditions of behaviour – how we learn, remember, co-ordinate our actions and interact with others – and the reasons for differences between individuals, such as personality or intelligence.
Due to the popularity of the course, performance-related criteria are in place to manage entry into Honours (Year 4); this means the numbers admitted to Years 2 and 3 of the course are limited and dependent on performance.
Education is essential if you're hoping to study initial teacher education courses. We offer you the chance to develop knowledge of the education systems of Scotland and beyond, looking at issues including policy, social justice, equity and inclusion.
Combining education with other subjects provides opportunities for those who wish to work in professions associated with education, but who don't wish necessarily to become teachers. Please note that this course doesn't allow you to qualify as a teacher, though joint honours Education graduates will be able to explore postgraduate routes into teaching careers (via the Professional Graduate Diploma in Education).
Our BA degrees in Humanities & Social Sciences are initially broad-based. In Year 1, you'll study three subjects, including your chosen subject(s).
What you’ll study
The first year covers the basic principles of learning:
- biological bases of behaviour
- social influences on behaviour
- changes in behaviour through the lifespan
- research methods
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.
We offer 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.
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. We currently have active exchanges with:
- Humboldt University zu Berlin, Germany
- Universidad de A Coruna, Spain
- University of Twente, Netherlands
- University Tubingen, Germany
- Radbout University, Nijmegen, Netherlands
For general queries about exchanges to and from the School of Psychological Sciences and Health, please contact Dr Kellyanne Findlay.
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.
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
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:
We currently award two prizes to exceptional psychology students.
The Gustav Jahoda Prize founded in 1997 in honour of Emeritus Professor Gustav Jahoda, the first Head of the Department of Psychology, is awarded annually on the recommendation of the Board of Examiners to a psychology Honours student for outstanding academic performance in their final year.
The British Psychological Society Undergraduate Award is also awarded annually for outstanding academic performance in the final year.
What you'll study
Education issues explored include:
- the impact of poverty and social class on children and society
- the role of culture and community in education
- how people learn and the place of policy and politics in education.
You'll undertake a placement with children between the ages of 0-14.
In second year you'll look more closely at how people learn. You'll study how children learn from before they are born to learning in later life. You'll also learn about informal education and have the opportunity to study an education-focused module of your choice.
This year explores the history and philosophy of education as well as looking at adult education. You'll also review how children and childhood are represented in film and literature.
As a fourth year student, you'll have an element of choice in your study modules. You can look at policy and politics in education and/or broader social issues in education.
As part of the first year in the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences all students choosing to study education must undertake a placement. This placement involves working with children between the ages of 0-14 for 70 hours across the course of the year. The placement can be in a range of options other than a mainstream primary school setting.
Please read our important information about the Protecting Vulnerable Groups (PVG) Scheme. This is for all applicants applying for courses which involve placement opportunities (working with children or vulnerable adults).
Students enjoy a wide range of professional development opportunities. These might be ones run by students or by organisations that are invited in to speak with students. There are currently leading professional development opportunities in the likes of British Sign Language, anti-sectarian education and working with children abroad. Students will have the opportunity to lead some professional development for staff and students if they have a particular strength or expertise relevant to education. There are extra-curricular education activities such as a philosophy café and film group.
Within the joint honours in Education you’ll be able to undertake a dissertation that allows you to do research in an area of particular interest to you.
Education students have access to the Education Resources Centre. This is a library dedicated to education materials. It is the best resource of its kind in the country.
Students completing the BA joint honours in Education will be well-placed to apply for PGDE primary or secondary courses. They will also be able to continue onto the Strathclyde MEd.
The University of Strathclyde is the only university in Scotland to offer a joint honours Education degree.
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.
This class is taught in semester 2 and covers sensation and perception, cognitive psychology, social psychology, abnormal psychology, and research methods.
Understanding Education in the 21st Century
Placement and Curriculum
This class introduces students to a large and rich seam of disciplinary knowledge. It is an introductory class of potential interest to all who want to understand more about Education. Some of the key content to be addressed in the module is around the following:
- the field of study that is education: what it is and how we know that
- the context of education: some contribution of political, historical and economic dimensions to curriculum, schooling, policy, globalisation
- education achievement: some contributions of psychological, sociological and philosophical perspectives to topics such as learning, diversity, gender
On this module, students from across disciplines work together to learn about children and the communities in which they live; children's health and wellbeing; child protection; children's voice; children's play and play places. The notion that the health and wellbeing of children and young people is central to the advancement of society is a seminal theme in this module.
The placement experience has been designed to allow students to undertake a work placement with children and young people from 0 - 14 years. Placements will be provided in a range of settings outwith the mainstream classroom.
Cognition & Neuropsychology
Social & Health Psychology
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.
Introduction to Research Design & Analysis
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.
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.
Learners & Learning
This class provides students with an essential understanding of human learning processes and the needs of learners across the life-course.
This module investigates philosophical and pedagogical interventions beyond the school curriculum in informal settings, with adults in particular. It'll also open up possibilities for informal education techniques and practices to be considered and adopted by a range of professions and to explore potential partnerships between informal education specialists and others.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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
History and Philosophy of Education
Children & Childhood
This module will support students in developing their knowledge and understanding of the roots of some key educational ideas in history. These will be considered from a philosophical perspective.
Social Pedagogy with Adults
This module will focus on children and childhood in contexts other than formal education settings that will be explored elsewhere. The aim of this module is to introduce students to the concepts of child and childhood through a range of representations. The class will draw on children in film, art and literature to explore representations of children and childhood and experiences of childhood.
This module is based on an understanding of the evolution of adult learning and the resultant principles that underline current practice and will illustrate how adult educators work and will also open up possibilities for adult education techniques and practices to be considered. It'll also explore potential partnerships between adult educators and others.
Dissertation in Psychology
Advanced Organisational Behaviour
The dissertation is an opportunity for you to undertake an original piece of research, closely supervised by a single member of staff. Planning for the dissertation begins in year 3, and dissertations can be of such high standards that they are subsequently published in peer-reviewed academic journals.
Advanced Psychological Theory & Practice
This class is offered by the Strathclyde Business School, and draws on current themes in Human Resource Management understood from the perspective of micro-organisational behaviour theory and research. Although the theoretical underpinning of the material covered is primarily about work and organisational issues at the level of individual behaviour in organisations, a contextual understanding of these issues is also encouraged.
Psychology Work Placement
Choice of topics may include:
- Belief & Anomalistic Experience
- The Psychology of Mental Health
- Artificial Intelligence
- Psychology & Ageing
- Psychology of Language
- Critical Review
- The Psychology & Cognitive Neuroscience of Face Recognition
- Neuropsychology of Ageing and Dementia
- Physiological Psychology
- Health Psychology
- Practical Aspects of Memory
Students have the opportunity to undertake a 20 credit work placement class where they will have the opportunity to apply their academic knowledge and skills in a workplace setting, and develop both personally and professionally. Students are supported to find a suitable placement and throughout the experience. Previous placements have included: the NHS, Schools, University departments and third sector organisations such as health support and rehabilitation charities.
Study abroadErasmus 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 the completed during semester 1 of year 4.
The Dissertation in Education is designed to further students’ development of a questioning, self-evaluative and reflective approach in a major in-depth piece of work demanding independent, self-motivated study and the sustained application of professional research and enquiry skills.
The widest possible range of topics, types of project, modes of enquiry and of research techniques is encouraged. What projects have in common is the individual student’s ownership and control of the project and the expectation of high quality work.
Choose from this listPolicy and Politics in Education
Social Issues in Education
This class will provide students with the opportunity to engage in debate about current issues in education through detailed exploration of the policy and political contexts. It will introduce students to frameworks for understanding how policy comes about and how it is inextricably linked with political issues.
Social Research Methods
This module will teach students about the responsibility of teachers for the education, health and well-being of all children, in the context of a complex and diverse society. It will also address the needs of those who will work with children, young people and adults in a variety of education-related contexts through its focus on a range of key social issues and the relevant national legislative and policy framework.
This class prepares you for designing and completing a research project. It will equip you with the skills and knowledge required in planning and delivering a research project.
We assess students using:
- class tests
- practical reports
- individual presentations
- group presentations
- degree examinations.
Online and face-to-face group project work is also included in the course. You'll take part in practical assignments from first-year onwards.
In first year, you're supported in learning about academic reading, writing and referencing - skills that will help you become a successful undergraduate. Peer support encourages you to develop your own assessment skills and learn from each other. During the course, tutorials and presentations will be assessed and feedback will be provided, before you submit work for formal assessment.
Learning & teaching
Our methods include:
- small-group tutorials
- practical labs
- online tutorials
- online wikis
- group work
- problem-based learning
- 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.
You'll take part in workshops for practical aspects of the course, and have access to lab space and specialist teaching space for science and the expressive arts, including physical education. Field trips and the chance to study elective and optional classes are also available to you.
Throughout the degree programme, students will be invited to lectures by guest speakers that are visiting the School of Education. They'll also be invited to lectures specifically for Education students. As part of the work on professional development, students will have the opportunity to organise guest speakers from relevant organisations to speak with students. The School of Education aims to be responsive to the interests of its students as well as ensuring that they have access to leading educationists when they visit.
Required subjects are indicated following typically accepted grades.
Standard entry requirements
1st sitting: AAAA (Higher English, Maths/Applications of Mathematics National 5 B, or equivalent, plus one subject from the list of Highers below)
2nd sitting: AAAABB (Higher English, Maths/Applications of Mathematics National 5 B, or equivalent, plus one subject from the list of Highers below)
- Classical Studies
- Modern Studies
- Religious Moral & Philosophical Studies
We recognise a wide range of Highers, however, your profile must reflect a good grounding in essay-based subjects.
Year 1 entry
Typical entry requirement: ABB (GCSE English Language 6/B or English Literature 6/B, GCSE Maths 4/C)
Minimum entry requirement: BBB (GCSE English Language 6/B or English Literature 6/B, GCSE Maths 4/C)
36 (Maths SL5)
Year 1 entry
HNC Social Sciences: A in Graded Unit; Maths National 5 B or equivalent
Irish Leaving Certificate
Subjects and grades as for Highers
It is important to take care over your personal statement. We look for information about your academic and career interests, and your range of skills, abilities, and relevant experience. Your personal statement should show evidence you have a strong awareness and interest in the subject you are applying to.
Deferred entry normally not accepted.
Applicants with Highers
Due to the high level of competition for the number of available places, it is unlikely that Conditional Offers will be made to anyone attaining less than AAB at the first sitting of Highers.
Admission to Honours
All students will be admitted as potential Honours students. Students may exit with a Bachelor of Arts degree at the end of Year 3 of the programme if they have accumulated at least 360 credits and satisfied the appropriate specialisation requirements. For admission to the final year of the Honours course, a student must have achieved an approved standard of performance.
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.
Find out entry requirements for your country.
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.
Fees & funding
How much will my course cost?
All fees quoted are for full-time courses and per academic year unless stated otherwise.
Rest of UK
Assuming no change in Rest of UK fees policy over the period, the total amount payable by undergraduate students will be capped. For students commencing study in 2017/18, this is capped at £27,750 (with the exception of the MPharm and Integrated Masters courses); 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.
Dean’s International Undergraduate Scholarship
The Dean’s International Undergraduate Scholarship is open to new international students who will begin a full-time undergraduate course in the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences in September 2019. The award is a £3,500 scholarship per year for the duration of your degree. All offer holders are eligible to apply for this scholarship.
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.
Course materials & costs
All recommended texts and computer software packages are available from the University Library and Pegasus.
Students should purchase a standard calculator. It's required for the duration of the course.
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?
Students from Scotland and the EU
If you're a Scottish or EU student, 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.
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
International Students (Non UK, EEA)
We have a number of scholarships available to international students. Take a look at our scholarship search to find out more.
We have a wide range of scholarships available. Have a look at our scholarship search to find a scholarship.
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.
Many of our graduates gain employment in areas associated with education, such as law, psychology, the civil service and journalism. A joint Honours degree in education and another subject enables graduates to apply for the Professional Graduate Diploma in Education, in either primary or secondary education.