Psychology BSc (Hons) – 2021 entry
Why choose this course
Our research-led BSc (Hons) Psychology course will provide you with a combination of personal, professional and academic opportunities.
Taught by research-active lecturers, our graduates are well-placed to train as practising psychologists and therapists and are also highly valued in any sector that requires transferable skills like critical thinking, data analysis and communication.
Our teaching was recognised as outstanding when we received the TEF Gold award. As a student, you will also have access to excellent teaching facilities to maximise your learning experience.
As one of the few universities to offer work experience as part of the course, we’ve established links with many outstanding professional training partners. This course is also accredited by the British Psychological Society.
You’ll also be able to benefit from our brand new £5m teaching facilities that opened in Spring 2019.
What you will study
Psychology is the scientific study of behaviour, mental health and neuropsychological functioning. It seeks to understand what makes us who we are, how our minds work, and what influences our behaviour and social relationships.
Using a range of cutting-edge equipment, you will learn about core areas of psychology, research methods and statistics. You will also be able to tailor your degree by choosing your final-year modules and dissertation research topic. You can also pursue an optional Professional Training placement in a field relevant to your career aspirations.
Our BPS accredited course is informed by leading research conducted by our multidisciplinary research groups, including developmental psychology; environmental psychology; social emotions and equality in relations; health psychology; clinical interventions and practice; and the Surrey BabyLab.
- In your first year, you will study core areas of psychology and research methods to develop the foundations of psychological literacy. This will be supported by small-group skills tutorials.
- In Year 2, you’ll study more advanced level modules that deal with contemporary issues in each area of psychology. You’ll also take a unique module that supports your professional skills development, which will cover placement or job preparation and career options available in the psychology field.
- In Year 3, you will take an advanced critical thinking module and four specialist optional modules as well as complete a research dissertation under the supervision of a staff member.
Each year we offer a selection from the full range of optional modules listed in the course catalogue. This selection will include clinical, health, occupational and environmental psychology, as well as a range of specialist modules from across the breadth of psychology led by staff in their own active areas of research. The specific list will vary each year due to staff availability.
We’ve invested in a major refurbishment of our teaching and research facilities to ensure you are equipped for success. This includes a brand new psychology computer lab with a large number of workstations for use in classes, group work and individual study, plus a suite of small break-out project rooms.
The School also has a range of dedicated laboratories for conducting a wide variety of psychological research, including brand new spaces and cutting-edge research equipment.
Our labs include observation suites for infant and social interactions; labs for eye-tracking, perception and psychophysiological experiments; and high-tech neuroscientific equipment such as an electroencephalogram (EEG), transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS), and the use of a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scanner. We also have an extensive library of psychometric and clinical tests.
Throughout your course, you’ll use a range of this equipment and lab space as part of taught workshops and group projects, and can also choose to participate in our Volunteer Research Apprentice scheme in your second year to gain more experience.
In your final year, you’ll have the opportunity to work closely with a supervisor for your dissertation and make use of the facilities that suit your chosen research topic.
BSc (Hons) - British Psychological Society (BPS)
Accredited against the requirements for the Graduate Basis for Chartered Membership (GBC) of the British Psychological Society (BPS).
Careers and graduate prospects
We offer careers information, advice and guidance to all students whilst studying with us, which is extended to our alumni for three years after leaving the University.
If you successfully complete this course with a minimum of a 2:2, you’ll have met the Graduate Basis for Chartered Membership of the British Psychological Society (BPS). This is a pre-requisite for many postgraduate courses, where you can train to become a chartered psychologist. You’ll also have the academic experience needed to apply for graduate membership with the BPS. This membership also entitles you to use the following post-nominal letters: MBPsS.
94% of our graduates from this course go on to employment or further study.* Typical career paths include clinical psychologists, consultants, crime analysts, human resources specialists, market researchers, rehabilitation assistants, social therapists and wellbeing practitioners.
Our alumni can be found in commercial, charity, private, and public sectors across the UK, with recent graduates working for Forensis, GlaxoSmithKline, Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children NHS Foundation Trust, Hays plc, Salesforce and St George's University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.
Many students also use this course to apply for careers in law, management and teaching, or go on to further study, including postgraduate research, to specialise in clinical, environmental, health, occupational and social psychology, as well as research methods.
With the critical thinking, analysis, problem solving, decision-making, and communication skills learnt throughout the course, you’ll be highly valued in the workplace, whichever career you choose to pursue.
*Graduate Outcomes survey 2020, HESA.
Academic year structure
The academic year is divided into two semesters of 15 weeks each. Each semester consists of a period of teaching, revision/directed learning and assessment.
Modules listed are indicative, reflecting the information available at the time of publication. Please note that modules may be subject to teaching availability, student demand and/or class size caps.
Important: In light of the Covid-19 pandemic the University has revised its courses to incorporate the ‘Hybrid Learning Experience’ in a departure from previous academic years and previously published information. The University has changed the delivery (and in some cases the content) of its programmes. Further information on the general principles of hybrid learning can be found at: Hybrid learning experience | University of Surrey.
We have updated key module information regarding the pattern of assessment and overall student workload to inform student module choices. We are currently working on bringing remaining published information up to date to reflect current practice in time for the start of the academic year 2021/22. This means that some information within the programme and module catalogue will be subject to change. Current students are invited to contact their Programme Leader or Academic Hive with any questions relating to the information available.
The University operates a credit framework for all taught programmes based on a 15-credit tariff. Modules can be either 15, 30, 45 or 60, 75 and 120 credits, and additionally for some masters dissertations, 90 credits.
Please note: If there is an optional Professional Training placement as part of your course you can view the full module listing for this on the relevant programme specification.
The structure of our programmes follows clear educational aims that are tailored to each programme. These are all outlined in the programme specifications which include further details such as the learning outcomes:
Timetables are normally available one month before the start of the semester. Please note that while we make every effort to ensure that timetables are as student-friendly as possible, scheduled teaching can take place on any day of the week (Monday–Friday). Wednesday afternoons are normally reserved for sports and cultural activities. View our Timetabling Policy (PDF).
A range of teaching methods are employed on our courses as appropriate for the individual modules, ranging from lectures, seminars and workshops, to small group practicals and tutorials, to one-to-one dissertation supervision.
In addition to lectures, tutorials will support your learning in the core areas of psychology. In Year 1, you'll have additional tutorials designed to support your transition to university and develop important academic skills such as searching for and critically evaluating research, writing essays and research reports, and preparing for exams. These tutorials take place in small groups of about 12 students and are led by the same tutor throughout the year.
Tutorials in your first and second years will introduce you to core research methods and techniques, and workshops will provide you with key statistical and qualitative methods for analysing research data.
You’ll also have access to our new multimillion-pound psychology teaching facility, featuring state of the art labs well-equipped with cutting-edge technology and specialist equipment to give you hands-on training.
There may be occasions when the delivery of your teaching is supported by graduate teaching assistants. The University has a set of procedures that govern the use of postgraduate research students in this way.
We assess modules individually and award credits for the successful completion of each one.
Assessment takes place through a variety of methods that are carefully designed to develop and support a range of both academic and transferable skills, including written essays, research reports, posters, presentations, reflective work and examinations.
Contact hours can vary across our modules. Full details of the contact hours for each module are available from the University of Surrey's module catalogue. See the modules section for more information.
As a student at Surrey, you can also sign up to our free courses in the following areas:
Living in student accommodation is a great way to meet new people and spark friendships.
Do I meet the requirements for this course?
We require you to submit a full application so that we can formally assess whether you meet the criteria published. Unfortunately, we are unable to provide an outcome based on an enquiry (via email, webform enquiry, phone or live chat).
Other international qualifications
If you are an international student and you don’t meet the entry requirements to this degree, we offer the International Foundation Year, run by the Surrey International Study Centre.
English language requirements
IELTS Academic: 6.5 overall with 6.0 in Writing and 5.5 in each other element.
View the other English language qualifications that we accept.
If you do not currently meet the level required for your programme, we offer intensive pre-sessional English language courses, designed to take you to the level of English ability and skill required for your studies here.
We normally make offers in terms of grades.
If you are a suitable candidate you will be invited to an Applicant Day. During your visit to the University you can find out more about the course and meet staff and students.
On this course, you can choose to study a foundation year, designed to develop your skills and make it easier for you to get started at university. This access route is ideal if:
- You don’t have the grades required to apply for the three-year or four-year (with Professional Training placement) versions of this course
- You have non-traditional qualifications or experience
- You’re starting university after some time away from education
- You’re looking for more support during the transition into university study.
As a foundation student, you’ll study full-time for one year at foundation level. During this time, you’ll complete three modules, designed to inspire, challenge and prepare you for later study:
- In our Thinking Psychologically module, you’ll be introduced to the world of psychology. You’ll learn how to think like a Psychologist, and you’ll develop the skills to work at a university level.
- In our Psychology in the Real-World module, you’ll explore how psychology operates in our day-to-day lives in several different fields of psychology. You’ll learn from research active staff who’ll apply their research to your teaching, and you’ll discover how to work and research academically.
- In our Research Project module, you’ll enhance your research skills and submit a mini report.
After successful completion of this year, you’ll move onto the standard three-year or four-year (with Professional Training placement) versions of this course.
Recognition of prior learning
The University of Surrey recognises that many students enter their higher education course with valuable knowledge and skills developed through a range of professional, vocational and community contexts. If this applies to you, a process called recognition of prior learning (RPL) may allow you to enter your course at a point appropriate to your previous learning and experience, or to join the start of a course without the formal entry requirements. This means that you may be exempt from certain elements of study in the course for which you have applied and be awarded credit based on your previous qualifications/experience. There are restrictions on RPL for some courses and fees may be payable for certain claims.
Please see the code of practice for recognition of prior learning and prior credit: taught programmes (PDF) for further information. Please contact Admissions on +44 (0)1483 682222 with any queries.
The annual tuition fees for courses starting in October 2021
BSc (Hons) (with foundation year)
BSc (Hons) (with professional training year)
Professional training £1,850
BSc (Hons) (with foundation and professional training year)
Professional training £1,850
- Fees for UK students: The University will apply annual regulated increases in the fee rates as set by Government each year, in order to maintain the same value in real terms.
- Fees for EU students: The UK is now no longer part of the EU, we are awaiting further instruction from the UK government and we will publish this as soon as it is provided. Find out more information about Studying in the UK and the Scholarships for EU students.
- Fees for international students: Annual fees will increase by 4% for each subsequent year of study, rounded up to the nearest £100, subject to any overriding applicable legislative requirements.
- Fees for international students with an integrated foundation year: The programme fee for Year 0 will match the lowest Year 1 overseas fee rate from across the substantive programmes for that year of entry. Students subsequently progressing into Year 1 will be liable for the same fee as overseas students joining at Year 1 for the same programme in that year. Annual fees after Year 1 will increase by 4% for each subsequent year of study, rounded up to the nearest £100, subject to any overriding applicable legislative requirements.
The University will assess your fee status. If you are unsure whether you are likely to be considered a home, EU or overseas student for fees purposes, the UKCISA website offers more information.
- Students in receipt of a Tuition Fee Loan: will have their fees paid by the Student Loans Company in line with their schedule.
- International students, or UK/EU students who have not taken out a Tuition Fee Loan: are required to pay their fees either in full at the beginning of the programme or in two instalments as follows:
- 50% payable 10 days after the invoice date (expected to be early October of each academic year)
- 50% in January of the same academic year.
The exact date(s) will be detailed on invoices. Students on certain part-time programmes, where fees are paid on a modular or stage basis, are not eligible to pay their fees by instalment.
If you are sponsored: you will provide us with valid sponsorship information that covers the period of your study.
Professional Training placement fees
If you are studying on a programme which contains a Professional Training placement year there will be a reduced fee for the academic year in which you undertake your placement. This is normally confirmed 12 to 18 months in advance, or once Government policy is determined.
See the information about 2020/21 academic year Professional Training placement fee.
Scholarships and bursaries
We're committed to making sure that we offer support for students who might need it.
Sheffield Professional Training Year (PTY) Scholarship
David Ebsworth Overseas Professional Training Year (PTY) Scholarship
You have the option to complete a Professional Training placement as part of this course. This will give you the opportunity to develop your professional, academic and personal potential, helping to prepare you for your future career.
A significant proportion of placement students at Surrey are offered graduate-level jobs or go onto postgraduate study.
Find out more about Professional Training placements and discover how these have transformed our students’ lives and career choices.
Most of our students choose to do a Professional Training placement year. These normally begin at the end of the second academic year and finish in time for you to begin your third year of study (the fourth year of your course).
Professional Training placements offer students an invaluable opportunity to gain work experience and gain insight into a degree-relevant job. You’ll also refine a host of skills that employers look for, giving you an employable edge as a psychology graduate which can lead to rewarding graduate jobs.
The extensive professional networks and research activities of our staff will enable you to choose from a range of Professional Training placement settings to reflect your individual interests and needs.
Opportunities are available throughout the UK and beyond in any sector that employs psychology graduates, including placements in hospitals and clinics, schools, social survey companies, personnel and occupational guidance services, industry and commerce.
Our psychology students have taken placements at organisations such as:
- Home Office
- National Crime Agency
- Metropolitan Police
- Hays Specialist Recruitment
- National Centre for Young People with Epilepsy
- Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services for Surrey
- Centre for Brain and Cognitive Development
- Social Communication Disorders Clinic at Great Ormond Street Hospital
Applying for placements
You can apply for numerous opportunities via an open and free-to-all process. Placement providers use their own recruitment and selection procedures and the majority of students will secure their placement in this way.
Students are generally not placed by the University, however we offer support and guidance throughout the process alongside access to a vacancy portal representing thousands of placement opportunities each year. We also provide support if you wish to source your own placement.
Find out about more about the application process.
Please be aware there may be travel costs incurred when attending interviews and assessment centres at the placement provider’s premises.
Study and work abroad
We give our students the opportunity to acquire international experience during their studies by taking advantage of our exchange agreements with overseas universities or by completing a Professional Training placement abroad.
Want to study at an overseas institution as part of your degree or work abroad during your Professional Training year? Perhaps you would like to volunteer in India or learn about Brazilian business and culture in São Paulo during your summer holidays? With more than 200 partnerships, from 50 different countries worldwide, there is something for everyone.
Not only is the opportunity to go abroad a hugely enjoyable experience, you will develop key skills and knowledge that will strengthen your CV and increase your employability.
View our study and work abroad exchange information to find out more and see where you can go.
You will have the opportunity to take up a Professional Training placement abroad at one of our partner universities, currently including:
- University of Salzburg
- Humboldt University, Berlin
- Oldenburg University
- University of Turin
- University of Milano-Bicocca.
These European universities offer the possibility of doing a research-based placement year in one of their laboratories with possible Erasmus+ funding. There are also Professional Training placement opportunities in other parts of Europe, the US and Australia.
Terms and conditions
When you accept an offer of a place at the University of Surrey, you are agreeing to comply with our policies and procedures, the student regulations , and our terms and conditions. These terms and conditions are provided in two stages: first when we make an offer and second when students who have accepted their offers register to study at the University. View an example of our offer terms and conditions and our registration terms and conditions (PDF) from the 2020/2021 academic year as a guide as to what to expect.
Please note: our offer terms and conditions will generally be available in the September of the calendar year prior to the year in which you begin your studies. Our registration terms and conditions will vary to take into account specifics of your course and changes for the specific academic year.
This online prospectus has been prepared and published in advance of the academic year to which it applies. The University of Surrey has used its reasonable efforts to ensure that the information is accurate at the time of publishing, but changes (for example to course content or additional costs) may occur given the interval between publishing and commencement of the course. It is therefore very important to check this website for any updates before you apply for a course with us and before you accept an offer. Read more.
In particular we wish to draw your intention to the following matters affecting the academic year 2021/2022:
- Covid-19 - In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, the University has had to change the delivery (and in some cases the content) of its programmes, together with certain University services and facilities for the 2020/2021 academic year. These changes include the implementation of a hybrid teaching approach, details of which can be found here [link]. It is anticipated that these programme changes and the hybrid learning approach will be adopted throughout the academic year 2021/2022, however, given the changing nature of the pandemic, this is being kept under continuous review. Detailed information on all changes as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic is available at the coronavirus course changes page. The linked pages set out information relating to general University changes and will also direct you to consider additional information relating to specific programmes.
- Brexit - The UK is now no longer part of the EU. We are awaiting further information and instruction from the UK government and we will publish this as soon as it is provided. EU students applying for programmes in the academic year 2021/2022 and students applying for courses with placements abroad should visit our dedicated webpages for the latest information on how the UK’s departure from the EU will affect their courses.
Campus locationStag Hill
Stag Hill is the University's main campus and where the majority of our courses are taught.
As part of this course you have the option to complete a Professional Training placement which would require attendance off campus, depending on where you secure your placement.