BA (Hons) / BSc (Hons) Psychology

Our innovative and award-winning psychology course will give you the edge and the skills for your career.

Key facts

  • Award BSc (Hons), BA (Hons)
  • Start date September 2023, January 2024
  • Duration 48 months (or 36 months following direct entry to Year 2)
  • Mode of study part time, full time
  • Delivery on campus
  • UCAS Code C801 (BA), C800 (BSc)
  • Study abroad opportunities

Accreditations

British Psychological Society

The British Psychological Society accreditation logo for Undergraduate Psychology

Overview

Why do we behave the way we do, and what drives our behaviour? If you’re interested in the mind, and in human (as well as animal) behaviour, then Psychology is for you.

Our award-winning Psychology course sits at the cutting edge of inter-disciplinary scientific research. We focus on important societal problems such as detection of criminals and improvement of health outcomes. After introducing Psychology to you as a biological and social science, we’ll cover topics as diverse as brain functioning, child development, and social behaviour.

You’ll get hands-on experience designing and conducting experiments, working in high-end specialist labs and in our on-site kindergarten, the only such facility in the UK. You’ll develop a deep knowledge and understanding of mind and behaviour, coupled with excellent practical skills, all of which will offer you a wide and diverse choice of careers.

The course is delivered by what the British Psychological Society (BPS) commended as a proactive, approachable and engaged programme team. The BPS also recognised our innovative, student-led teaching initiatives, which help students’ personal and professional development, and our personalised system of student support and feedback, which helps to nurture a close-knit academic community.

 

Top reasons to study with us

* Rankings are based on institutions within the Guardian University Guide

Professional accreditation

The Psychology Single Honours, and the majority of the Psychology Combined Honours degree courses, are accredited with the British Psychological Society (BPS). They confer eligibility for Graduate Basis for Registration, provided the minimum standard of a Second Class Honours is achieved. This is the first step towards becoming a Chartered Psychologist.

Prizes or awards

The Vicki Bruce Prize: A prize of £100 is awarded to the Psychology student with the best final year project.

The British Psychological Society Undergraduate Award: This prize is awarded to the Psychology student with the highest overall grade. The prize is free membership of the BPS for one year, a copy of the Society’s Book of the Year and a certificate.

The Ivana Marjova Prize: A prize of £100 is awarded to a Psychology Final Year student for outstanding wider achievement.

The Phyllis Lee Prize: A prize of £100 is awarded to the best combined Honours Psychology Final Year student.

The Peter McEwen Prize: A prize of £100 is awarded to the best Single Honours Psychology Final Year student.

The McCall/Whittaker Prize: A prize of £100 is awarded to the Psychology student for recognition of outstanding demonstration of Psychologically Literate Citizenship.

Research Based Learning Prize for Outstanding Demonstration of Integrating Research into Learning: a prize of £200 is awarded by the Faculty.

Entry requirements

Year 1 entry – Four-year honours

SQA Highers 

AABB – by the end of S5
AABBB – by the end of S6

GCE A-levels
BBB

IB Diploma
30 points

BTEC (Level 3)
DDM

Widening access students
Widening access students may be eligible for an adjusted offer of entry. To find out if this applies to you go to our widening access pages.

Care-experienced applicants will be guaranteed an offer of a place if they meet the minimum entry requirements.

Year 2 entry – Three-year honours

SQA Advanced Highers
ABB - one sitting

GCE A-levels
ABB

IB Diploma
35 points

Essential subjects
To include Psychology

Other Scottish qualifications

Scottish HNC/HND
Year one minimum entry - Bs in graded units.

Access courses
University of Stirling access course - for mature students only. You must pass the course with 50% or above.

SWAP access course - for mature students only. Please check the SWAP progression routes document for details.

Email our Admissions Team for advice about other access courses.

Foundation Apprenticeships
Considered to be equivalent to 1 Higher at Grade B

Other qualifications

English, Welsh and Northern Irish HNC/HND
Merits and Distinctions

English, Welsh and Northern Irish access courses
Access to Higher Education - 60 credits, minimum 45 at QCF Level 3, pass at 60% or above.

International entry requirements

Advanced entry

Year 2 entry
Entry into Year 2 may be possible depending on your HNC/HND course. To find out more go to our articulation pages.

Other qualifications
Advanced entry may by possible depending on your qualifications. To find out more go to our advanced entry page.

Additional information

General entrance requirements apply

If you’ve taken exams over two sittings, repeated an exam, or been upgraded, the entrance requirements may be higher.

English language requirements

If English is not your first language you must have one of the following qualifications as evidence of your English language skills:

  • IELTS Academic or UKVI 6.0 with 5.5 in each skill
  • Cambridge C1 Advanced (CAE) 169 overall with a minimum of 162 in each sub-skill
  • Cambridge C2 Proficiency (CPE) 180 overall with a minimum of 162 in each sub-skill
  • Pearson Test of English (Academic) 60 overall with a minimum of 59 in each sub-skill
  • IBT TOEFL 78 overall with a minimum of 17 in listening, 18 in reading, 20 in speaking and 17 in writing
  • IBT TOEFL Special Home Edition 78 overall with a minimum of 17 in listening, 18 in reading, 20 in speaking and 17 in writing
  • Trinity ISE II Pass overall and Pass in each sub-skill, ISE III Pass overall and in all sub-skills, ISE IV Pass overall and in all sub-skills
  • Aptis (4 skills) CEFR B2 overall and B2 in all sub-skills
  • LanguageCert International ESOL B2 Communicator -  Pass with minimum 33 in each sub-skill

Last updated: 23 August 2022

For more information on ways that you can meet our English language requirements, including options to waive the requirement, please read our information on English language requirements.

Pre-sessional English language courses

If you need to improve your English language skills before you enter this course, our partner INTO University of Stirling offers a range of English language courses. These intensive and flexible courses are designed to improve your English ability for entry to this degree.

Find out more about our pre-sessional English language courses

Course details

We focus on important societal problems, such as detection of criminals and improvement of health outcomes, so our degree is relevant to real-life issues. We cover topics as diverse as brain functioning, development and social behaviour, ensuring you develop a deep knowledge and understanding of mind and behaviour.

Semesters 1-2 will include an introduction to Psychology as the scientific study of mind and behaviour.

In Semesters 3 and 4, the taught modules are designed to emphasise the links between different parts of the subject. A module on The Social Mind explores the psychology of human and non-human communication; a module on the Brain and Behaviour – Health Psychology explores abnormal psychology from the perspectives of Neuroscience and Clinical Psychology. Also included in Semesters 3 and 4 is an introduction to Psychological Research Methods. In Semesters 5-8, you’ll take advanced modules in all of the core areas.

Your final year will focus on an individual research project and you’ll be doing cutting-edge research, supervised by an academic mentor. You can choose from a wide variety of topics that interest you and build your employability skills for the job market. There are also opportunities for placements with prospective employers, in our research labs, and for engaging in student-led teaching.

Psychology at Stirling is internationally renowned for our high-quality research and this feeds into our teaching. Our modules will teach you how research furthers our understanding of mind and behaviour.

Recommended reading
The essential text for Year 1 of the course, is:

Schacter, D., Gilbert, D., Wegner, D. and Hood, B. (2016). Psychology. (3rd European ed.). London. Palgrave. ISBN 978-1352004830

Non-essential reading to support written assessments (also used in 3rd and 4th semester psychology modules):

Beech, J. R. (2009). An interactive approach to writing essays and research reports in Psychology. John Wiley and Sons Australia Ltd.

Forshaw, M. (2012). Critical Thinking For Psychology. Jon Wiley and Sons Ltd.

Modules

The module information below provides an example of the types of course module you may study. The details listed are for the current academic year (September 2022). Modules and start dates are regularly reviewed and may be subject to change in future years.

Course details

Teaching

Our research-led teaching is at the core of your learning as our staff conduct world-leading research.

Our teaching makes use of both our campus-based teaching facilities and online learning environment. Everything you learn will reflect the latest thinking and developments in Psychology. Our teaching is delivered using lectures, workshops, small discussion groups and practical sessions such as laboratory work or field work.

Fieldwork

Some students have the opportunity to undertake fieldwork as part of their final year project options. For example, students studying animal behaviour may visit the Blair Drummond Safari Park or Edinburgh Zoo (travel costs may be incurred).

Assessment

Modules on the course are assessed through a combination of coursework and examinations. Assessment types include essays, individual practical reports, group practical reports, oral presentations, poster presentations and popular science articles.

Classroom hours

A typical 20 credit psychology module will involve between 30 – 50 hours of contact time (lectures, seminars, practicals etc). You might be expected to spend 40 - 50 hours working on assessments (essays, practical reports, exams), and around 100 hours studying independently. 

Work placement opportunities

In Semester 8 you’ll have the opportunity to apply for a Psychology placement. Successful applicants undertake a 50-hour placement with a host organisation. You’ll be assigned a mentor in the organisation who’ll agree the schedule for completion of the placement and discuss the precise roles, responsibilities and expectations of both the student and mentor during the placement. Support is provided by a series of workshops and through review meetings and feedback from the placement coordinator or module coordinator.

Our Careers and Employability Service is ranked 1st in Scotland and Top 5 in the UK (UK International Student Barometer (ISB) Benchmark and Global ISB Benchmark 2018). They will not only help you to secure placements but also offer all the support and advice you need to plan your career, develop your employability or think about further study.

Study abroad

Psychology at Stirling offers a wide variety of exchange opportunities during Year 3 of the degree course. We have established links with universities in North America and Australia, allowing students to continue their studies while gaining valuable experience of different cultures and education systems. Student destinations in 2018/19 included universities and institutions in Australia, Czech Republic, Canada, Hong Kong, USA and Malta. Find out more about studying abroad.

Fees and funding

Fees and costs

Academic year: 2022/23 2023/24
Scottish students £1,820* £1,820 *
Students from England, Wales, Northern Ireland and Republic of Ireland £9,250 £9,250
European Union students £18,800 £20,300
Overseas students (non-EU) £18,800 £20,300

Scottish students

* This fee is set by the Scottish Government and is subject to change.

You will be charged the annual tuition fee each year when you enrol.

Although you’re liable for annual tuition fees, students domiciled in Scotland can apply to the Student Awards Agency for Scotland (SAAS) to have tuition fees paid by the Scottish Government on their behalf. If you’re unsure of your fee status, you can check your eligibility.

If you need to take additional modules or resit modules, you’ll be liable for an additional fee.

For more information on courses invoiced on an annual fee basis, please read our tuition fee policy.

Students from England, Wales, Northern Ireland and Republic of Ireland

This tuition fee may be subject to change depending on guidance provided by the UK Government.

You will be charged the annual fee each year when you enrol. Your fees will be held at the same level throughout your course.

You can apply for financial assistance, including a loan to cover the full cost of your tuition fees, from your relevant funding body. Students from the Republic of Ireland are eligible for a tuition fee loan of up to £9,250 from the Student Awards Agency for Scotland (SAAS).

We also offer additional funding – such as our Honours Year Scholarship – for students from England, Wales, Northern Ireland and Republic of Ireland. See our funding opportunities below for more information.

If you need to take additional modules or resit modules, you will be liable for an additional fee.

For more information on courses invoiced on an annual fee basis, please read our tuition fee policy.

European Union students

For EU students starting studies in academic year 2022/23, we will award an automatic scholarship of up to £30k over the duration of your course. This is subject to eligibility criteria.

Students from the Republic of Ireland should see the fee and funding information under England, Wales, NI and Republic of Ireland.

You will be charged the annual fee each year when you enrol. Your fees will be held at the same level throughout your course.

If you need to take additional modules or resit modules, you will be liable for an additional fee.

For more information on courses invoiced on an annual fee basis, please read our tuition fee policy.

Overseas students (non-EU)

You will be charged the annual fee each year when you enrol. Your fees will be held at the same level throughout your course.

If you need to take additional modules or resit modules, you will be liable for an additional fee.

For more information on courses invoiced on an annual fee basis, please read our tuition fee policy.

Additional costs

There are some instances where additional fees may apply. Depending on your chosen course, you may need to pay additional costs, for example for field trips. Learn more about additional fees.

Funding opportunities

See what funding opportunities and loans are available to help you with tuition and living costs.

Students domiciled in Scotland

The University of Stirling offers undergraduate funding opportunities for students domiciled in Scotland. To find out if you’re eligible to apply for an award, use our scholarship finder.

EU students

For EU students starting studies in academic year 2022/23, we will award an automatic scholarship of up to £30k over the duration of your course. This is subject to eligibility criteria.

Students domiciled in England, Wales, Northern Ireland and Republic of Ireland

The Undergraduate Choice Scholarship provides a £1,000 cash award to all students from England, Wales, Northern Ireland or Republic of Ireland who meet the conditions of their offer and select the University of Stirling as their Firm or Insurance choice on UCAS.

The University also offers the Undergraduate Merit Scholarship, which is awarded to selected students and provides a £1,000 cash award per year for years 1-3 of study. To be considered for the Merit Scholarship, students require a minimum of AAB at A-level or equivalent.

In addition, students from England, Wales, Northern Ireland and Republic of Ireland who enter in year 1 and progress successfully through years 2 and 3 will receive our Honours Year Scholarship, which covers the cost of undergraduate tuition fees in the Honours year of study.

You don’t need to apply for the awards listed above - we'll automatically identify your eligibility as part of the admissions process.

To explore other scholarships and learn more about funding opportunities, use our scholarship finder.

Students domiciled overseas

The University of Stirling offers generous undergraduate funding opportunities for overseas students. To find out if you're eligible to apply for an award, use our scholarship finder.

Cost of living

If you’re domiciled in the UK, you can typically apply to your relevant funding body for help with living costs. This usually takes the form of student loans, grants or bursaries, and the amount awarded depends upon your personal circumstances and household income.

EU and overseas students won’t normally be able to claim living support through SAAS or other UK public funding bodies. You should contact the relevant authority in your country to find out if you’re eligible to receive support.

Find out about the cost of living for students at Stirling.

Payment options

We aim to be as flexible as possible, and offer a wide range of payment methods - including the option to pay fees by instalments. Learn more about how to pay.

After you graduate

What jobs can you get with a Psychology degree?

An estimated 15-20% of Psychology graduates eventually become professional psychologists. Graduates can specialise in

  • clinical psychology
  • forensic psychology
  • counselling
  • educational psychology
  • occupational psychology
  • mental health
  • therapy
  • sport
  • health and wellbeing
  • crime

Many other careers will see psychology as a useful degree, such as:

  • psychotherapy
  • advice worker
  • market research
  • counsellor
  • life coach
  • human resources
  • play therapy
  • any job that requires insight into human behaviour

We help and encourage students to be active learners, working with academic staff as collaborators, and developing a portfolio of skills and practical experiences that are attractive to prospective employers. The knowledge and skills you’ll get from our Psychology degree will offer you a wide and diverse choice of careers.

Employability Facts and Statistics

94.3% of our graduates were in employment or further study 15 months after graduation (Graduate Outcomes 2019/20, HESA).

Employability skills

Engagement with potential employers, work-related learning and the dissertation project in your final year will develop your professional skills. Throughout the course you’re encouraged to develop personal effectiveness skills to allow you to complete work in a professional and timely manner.

In studying psychology you’ll develop key skills that are highly valued by employers, such as interpersonal and communication skills, numeracy and computer literacy, presentation skills, time management and critical thinking.

By the end of the course, you’ll have enhanced:

  • communication skills
  • confidence
  • interpersonal skills
  • network/future opportunities
  • independent, flexible working
  • problem solving/creativity
  • effective self-reflection on personal and work practice

Companies we work with

We have links with many local businesses and organisations in both the public and private sectors who have provided placement opportunities for our students in areas such as education, social care, healthcare and counselling.

What our students said

Friederike Schubert
Friederike Schubert
Germany
BSc (Hons) Psychology
I chose Stirling because it gave me the opportunity to study exactly what I wanted, and to study English to prepare me for an international world. I would not have had this amazing chance at home.
Read Friederike's story
Monica Dudley
England
BA (Hons) Psychology
What I really like about my course is that we've got the flexibility to choose our own research. Stirling has given me the confidence and skills to get into my dream career.
Read Monica's story

Flexible study

Are you interested in more than one of our courses? You might not have to choose between them. Here at Stirling, we believe in choice and offer more than 170 course combinations.