Postgraduate MSc

Forensic Psychology

School of Health and Society

Attendance

Full-time

Part-time

Course

One year

Three year

Next enrolment

September 2024

Introduction

In a nutshell

This course will equip you with valuable professional insight and skills necessary to progress into a career in Forensic Psychology. Building on our expert research and practice in the discipline area, you will critically evaluate the current knowledge, theory and evidence base in Forensic Psychology, and will also develop the skills and capabilities relevant to progression to professional practice.

The programme will use a range of unique techniques and research methods applicable to psychological enquiry. 

Forensic Psychology is a growth area in the UK and offers multiple employment routes. 

Please note, an application for accreditation has been submitted to The British Psychological Society.

You will:

  • Understand psychological theories that have a central role to play in modern Forensic Psychology Practice.
  • Receive support from a highly qualified team of research/practice-informed psychology staff.
Course details

All about the course

This course aims to enable you to develop a detailed knowledge and critical understanding of Forensic Psychology.

The full-time route is structured over 12 months and comprises of three 13-week semesters. In semesters one and two you will complete two taught modules in each semester. In semester three you will complete your dissertation under the supervision of one of the course tutors. If you choose to follow the part-time route you will complete the course over three years, completing two taught modules in each of the first two years and the dissertation in your third year. 

The dissertation module on this course will also give you the opportunity to pursue an area of Forensic Psychology directly related to your own work or interest. 

Year one

Psychology of the Legal System and Courtroom

This module will examine the psychological aspects of each step of the legal process in the criminal justice system. A range of practical and theoretical models will be covered and applied. 

Psychology of Criminal Behaviour and Investigation

This module will cover the range of contemporary approaches to understanding criminal behaviour within psychology and will also explore the psychology of the criminal justice system including approaches to investigation from detection to interrogation and conviction and the treatment of offenders. 

Psychological Assessment and Applications

This module will explore the psychological aetiology of offenders in the criminal justice system and how offenders are managed and treated with a range of treatment and intervention approaches and the evidence for their efficacy. The diversity of offenders will also be addressed as will how an initial assessment can be undertaken and can then lead to suitable management and intervention pathways for, where appropriate, rehabilitation and avoiding recidivism and the policy and practice implications of such approaches. 

Research Methods in Psychology

You will develop a critical understanding and a creative and rigorous approach to the process of research. This will prepare you to complete a research dissertation in the field of Forensic Psychology. 

Dissertation

Here, you will be provided with the opportunity to pursue research in an area of Forensic Psychology that directly relates to your own work or interests, or your future career aspirations. 

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.

What will I be doing?

TEACHING

This course is taught using a mixture of approaches including the following:

  • Lectures
  • Seminars
  • Workshops
  • Tutorials
  • Discussion/debates
  • Video presentation
  • Research seminars and workshops
  • Guest speaker presentations
  • Student presentations
  • Directed study

 

ASSESSMENT

Assessment on this programme will consist of written work (including a dissertation) totalling 90%, and an oral presentation equating to 10%.

The School of Health and Society

We are focused on enhancing the health and wellbeing of patients, service users and athletes and our commitment to public involvement help us retain our strong focus on real-world issues. 

 

Facilities

We provide a comfortable and friendly environment for you to carry out a wide range of psychological testing. These include:

  • The eye tracker laboratory uses the Tobii x50 eye tracker to monitor conscious and unconscious gaze movements
  • Functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS)
  • Immersive environments
  • An observation suite with a two-way mirror
  • A video game analysis laboratory where you can analyse the psychological and physiological effects of violent video games
  • A dedicated computer suite that allows access to a range of psychological programs such as ERTSLab and E-Prime

  

Programme tutors

Dr Helen Hart

Helen is a Chartered Forensic Psychologist and has worked in the area of forensic psychology for 25 years, completing her training via HM Prison Service where she was Head of Departments in medium and maximum secure prisons. She specialised in the assessment and treatment of very high-risk men who had committed violent and sexual offences, the assessment of psychopathy and personality disorders.  She works across the criminal justice system, supporting professionals working within complex areas such as sexual exploitation and terrorism and provides expert witness reports for the court system, specifically within complex areas such as non-accidental injury and domestic violence.  She has completed a doctorate looking at trauma and community resilience following the Manchester Arena bomb.  Helen also supports the work of the British Psychological Society’s Division of Forensic Psychology as part of their Qualification Board and is an Associate Fellow of the BPS. 

Professor Clare Alley

Clare is a Professor in Forensic Psychology at the University of Salford in Manchester, England and is an affiliate member of the Gillberg Neuropsychiatry Centre at Gothenburg University, Sweden. Clare holds a PhD in Psychology from the University of Manchester and has previously graduated with an MA (hons.) in Psychology from the University of Glasgow, an MRes in Psychological Research Methods from the University of Strathclyde and an MSc in Forensic Psychology from Glasgow Caledonian University. Clare is also an Honorary Research Fellow in the College of Medical, Veterinary and Life Sciences affiliated to the Institute of Health and Wellbeing at the University of Glasgow. She is also an Associate of the Centre for Youth and Criminal Justice (CYCJ) at the University of Strathclyde. Clare also acts as an expert witness in criminal cases and HCPC fitness to practice cases and also contributes to the evidence base used in the courts on psychology and legal issues through her published work. 

Dr Rachael Thompson

Rachael completed a first degree in Psychological Studies and Master’s by Research with the University of Huddersfield. Currently, Rachael is completing a PhD titled ‘Morality and Offending: A Comparison between Sexual and Non-Sexual Offenders and Public Perceptions of These Offender Groups’. Rachael has also undertaken a Lifelong Learning Postgraduate Diploma in Education, is a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy and is a member of the British Psychological Society as well as the British Criminological Society. Furthermore, Rachael is currently an Associate Editor for the Journal of Criminal Psychology. 

Dr Simon Cassidy

Simon is a Chartered Psychologist, Associate Fellow of the British Psychological Society, Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy, and recipient of the Vice Chancellor’s Distinguished Teaching Award. Simon’s current research focusses on understanding aspects of psychological resilience and exploring interventions to develop resilience. 

Dr Rod Dubrow-Marshall

Rod is a psychologist and graduate member of the BPS (MBPsS) and is a member of the BPS Division of Social Psychology. An experienced lecturer in psychology and researcher including in psychology, policy, education and mental health, Rod has co-led the development of this course. He has also worked for over 20 years in the areas of coercive control and abuse and cultic studies and undue influence and is co-editor of the International Journal of Coercion Abuse and Manipulation. Rod also co-founded the Re-Entry Therapy Information and Referral Network in the UK. Rod is a fellow of the Higher Education Academy. 

Dr Linda Dubrow-Marshall

Linda is an HCPC Registered Clinical and Counselling Psychologist, a BACP Accredited Counsellor/Psychotherapist, and a fellow of the Higher Education Academy. Linda designed the in-house counselling service for the University of Salford and is the Co-Chair of the Ethical Approval Panel for Taught Programmes for the School of Health and Society. She researches CBT and physical health, technology-enhanced psychotherapy, self-care and ethical issues for psychological therapists, and cultic influences. 

Employment and stats

What about after uni?

You may also progress into leadership positions within the field of forensic psychology. Some of our graduates will go on to complete a doctorate in Forensic Psychology. 

A taste of what you could become

Forensic Psychologist

Criminal Profiler

Researcher

Prison Psychologist

Victim Support Worker

and more...

Requirements

What you need to know

APPLICANT PROFILE

The programme will appeal to graduates with a sound understanding of core psychology and an interest in forensic psychology. Students will want to help further research in this field and become leaders in their profession. 

Standard entry requirements

Undergraduate degree

Upper second-class (2.1) honours degree in psychology. 

 

International applicants

International applicants must have eligibility for BPS Graduate Basis of Chartered (GBC) membership which would usually be acquired by having studied a BPS-accredited undergraduate degree in psychology. We are unable to accept applicants without such eligibility. 

English Language Requirements

International applicants will be required to show proficiency in English. An IELTS score of 6.0 (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

Alternative entry requirements

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?

Type of study Year Fees
Full-time home 2024/25 £8,820.00per year
Full-time international 2024/25 £16,380.00per year
Full-time home 2025/26 £9,100.00per year
Full-time international 2025/26 £17,000.00per year

Additional costs

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

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

Apply now

All set? let's apply

Still have some questions? Register for one of our Open Days or contact us:

By email: enquiries@salford.ac.uk
By phone: +44 (0)161 295 4545

Enrolment dates

September 2024

September 2025