Postgraduate Research/Doctorate PhD/MPhil/MSc by Research

MSc by Research in Psychology

School of Health and Society





One year

Two year

Next enrolment

May 2024


In a nutshell

Students on the MSc by Research in Psychology will conduct independent research under the supervision of an academic supervisor within one of the psychology research groups.

Our research groups are committed to advancing the understanding of human behaviour at a theoretical level whilst translating knowledge into real-world applications and interventions to improve mental health & wellbeing, cognition, and performance. Our research adopts a rigorous approach to studying the human mind, brain, and behaviour with a focus on delivering positive societal impact. Supported by extensive facilities our research is centered around the following main themes: Applied Cognition; Neurodiversity, Psychological Health and Wellbeing across the Life Course; and Politics, Policy, and Practice. We are also home to the Autism and Criminal Justice Hub.

Details of our research can be found here

You will:

  • Join an inclusive, nurturing, and supportive community passionate about psychological research
  • Conduct psychological research that can be applied to real-world problems
  • Develop skills that prepare you for a research career in industry or academia
  • Have access to excellent facilities and laboratories
  • Develop transferable skills sought by charity, public and private sector employers

students accepted

Course details

All about the course

The MSc by Research in Psychology will enable you to develop valuable skills in conducting research, ethical research practice, data collection, data analysis, open and reproducible science practices, oral and written communication, and scientific writing. You will have access to a wide range of training, supervisory expertise, and excellent research facilities. The research training you receive will be individually tailored to your needs and programme of research. Your supervisory team will discuss this with you once you join the programme.

Find out more about the Doctoral School here

You will be fully immersed within our thriving research community and there is the possibility to transfer to a PhD towards the end of your initial programme of study.

For further information please contact the Programme Leader Dr Robert Bendall:

Please note that it may not be possible to deliver the full list of options every year as this will depend on factors such as how many students choose a particular option. Exact modules may also vary in order to keep content current. When accepting your offer of a place to study on this programme, you should be aware that not all optional modules will be running each year. Your tutor will be able to advise you as to the available options on or before the start of the programme. Whilst the University tries to ensure that you are able to undertake your preferred options, it cannot guarantee this.


The MSc by Research in Psychology is awarded upon the completion of a thesis reporting original research under the guidance of an academic supervisor. You will present a thesis in an oral examination (viva voce). This oral examination is usually attended by two academic examiners (one examiner from University of Salford not involved in your research and one examiner from a different University), a viva chair and the student.

Dr Robert Bendall

Dr Robert Bendall

Robert is the Programme Leader for the MSc by Research in Psychology, Co-Lead of the Applied Cognition Research Group, and Co-Chair of Salford Open Science and Reproducibility Group. Robert is a Chartered Psychologist (CPsychol, AFBPsS) who conducts research in affective science – an interdisciplinary field seeking to understand affective and emotional processes. Adopting a range of methodological approaches including behavioural experiments, neuroscientific techniques, and psychometric questionnaires, Robert’s research is currently focussed on the following main themes:

  • the influence of emotion and affective stimuli on visual attention (e.g., visual search and change detection)
  • the impact of individual differences including emotion regulation and personality traits on mental health and cognition (e.g., visual attention)
  • the relationships between affect, emotion regulation and sleep
  • cognitive restoration, nature-based interventions and ecotherapy

Robert welcomes applications from postgraduate research students (MSc by Research and PhD) relating to affective science, emotion regulation, visual attention, sleep, cognitive neuroscience, mental health, cognitive restoration, nature-based interventions and ecotherapy.

School of Health and Society

The School of Health and Society is a forward-thinking, dynamic school with a commitment to lifelong learning and real-world impact.

Our courses are informed by the latest research and we work closely with organisations from both the public and private sector to ensure our teaching is at the forefront of practice.

Psychology Research at Salford

You will have access to an extensive range of excellent research facilities. These include a range of dedicated psychological, physiological, and neuroimaging testing suites. Psychology has functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) systems, electroencephalogram (EEG) systems including an ANT Neuro 64 channel mobile EEG system, transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) system with Brainsight neuronavigation software, several eye-tracking systems including mobile wearable eye trackers, and Biopac physiological recording systems. We also have an observation suite and testing space for children.


Please see for a description of our psychology labs.

Contact us

Are you a current or prospective research degree candidate in need of further guidance? Contact our dedicated research team who can help you find the right research programme for you:

Call us: +44 (0)161 295 6435 (9am-5pm)

Email us:

Employment and stats

What about after uni?

Our MSc by Research in Psychology degree provides excellent preparation for further academic research study (e.g., PhD). It also equips graduates for postgraduate training in a future career as a professional psychologist (e.g., clinical, forensic, organisational, or educational psychologist) or for a career in charity, public and private sectors.

In addition to subject-related knowledge, our MSc by Research in Psychology degree provides valuable transferable skills frequently sought by employers including data analysis and statistics, written and oral communication, data synthesis and critical analysis, teamwork, project management and time management.

Our MSc students have gained places on prestigious academic training programmes (e.g., Doctorate in Clinical Psychology) and academic positions at world-class universities. Graduates have also secured employment within organisations including BBC, Channel 4, Google, Home Office, HMRC, Deloitte, Barclays, NHS, and Charities Aid Foundation.


What you need to know


Applicants for the MSc by Research in Psychology come from a variety of backgrounds. Often applicants can demonstrate some previous research experience (e.g., an undergraduate dissertation) and have a basic knowledge of research methods and either qualitative or quantitative approaches to data analysis. Most applicants will have been awarded an undergraduate degree in psychology or a related discipline such as biology/biological sciences, neuroscience, nursing, social work, criminology, engineering, computer science, or human geography.

Standard entry

Undergraduate/postgraduate degree

A minimum of an upper second class (2:1) undergraduate degree or equivalent in psychology or a related discipline.

English Language Requirements

International applicants will be required to show a proficiency in English. An IELTS score of 6.5 (with no element below 5.5) is proof of this. If you need to improve your written and spoken English, you might be interested in our English Language courses.


Scholarships for international students

If you are a high-achieving international student, you may be eligible for one of our scholarships.
Explore our International Scholarships.

Alternative entry

Accreditation of Prior Learning (APL)

We welcome applications from students who may not have formal/traditional entry criteria but who have relevant experience or the ability to pursue the course successfully.

The Accreditation of Prior Learning (APL) process could help you to make your work and life experience count. The APL process can be used for entry onto courses or to give you exemptions from parts of your course.

Two forms of APL may be used for entry: the Accreditation of Prior Certificated Learning (APCL) or the Accreditation of Prior Experiential Learning (APEL).

How much?

As a postgraduate research student, you will need to pay annual tuition fees. These vary according to the programme you are studying. Both we and other organisations offer a range of scholarships and discounts to postgraduate research students.

More information about fees and funding.

Salford graduates, including those who studied a programme delivered by Robert Kennedy College, are entitled to a 20% discount on programme fees.

You should also consider further costs which may include books, stationery, printing, binding and general subsistence on trips and visits.

Type of study Year Fees
Full-time home 2024/25 £4,780.00per year
Full-time international 2024/25 £16,000.00per year
Part-time 2024/25 £2,390 (Home) £9,540 (International)

Additional costs

You should consider further costs which may include books, stationery, printing, binding and general subsistence on residential travel and accommodation visits.

Apply now

All set? Let's apply

Enrolment dates

May 2024

September 2024

January 2025

May 2025

September 2025