Psychology (BSc): 3-year, full-time

Year of entry


Start date

October 2018


Central London


Subject to approval




Three years full-time


Four evenings a week

Psychology is an exciting, dynamic field that is broadly concerned with the scientific study of mental life and human behaviour: how people think, feel and behave as individuals and how they interact in groups. This degree introduces you to the various scientific models and methods that help psychologists observe, interpret and explain human behaviour, from monitoring infants as they grow to brain scanning and studying social networks. It will give you a deep understanding of the key subject areas and specialisms within psychology, including biological, cognitive, developmental and social psychology.

This degree is accredited by the British Psychological Society and will thoroughly prepare you for a career as a professional psychologist, working, for instance, as a clinical, educational, organisational, forensic or sports psychologist. A key feature of this course is its specialist pathways, which enable you to focus in your final year on a specialism within psychology, choosing from psychology, psychology with neuroscience, psychology with child development, or psychology in practice. 

You will be taught by world-leading academics who are undertaking cutting-edge research in a globally recognised department - psychology at Birkbeck is ranked fifth in the UK in the 2014 Research Excellence Framework (REF). We are renowned for our research in neuroscience, cognition, developmental science - and the links between them. Our research informs real-world policy and practice and is at the forefront of breakthroughs in our understanding of conditions such as autism and ADHD. We also offer excellent research laboratories and facilities, for both general and specialist use.

This programme will teach you how to engage critically with psychological literature, identify problems and formulate research questions and hypotheses, find appropriate methods for collecting and analysing data, and draw conclusions and integrate findings. You will learn essential research skills and undertake a research project on a topic that interests you, under the guidance of one of our academic experts. You will also gain a range of transferable skills that are highly sought after across a wide range of careers. If you are interested in continuing your studies, then this programme will give you the foundational knowledge and research skills you need to successfully pursue postgraduate training or research. 


Course structure

You complete compulsory, core and option modules to a total of 360 credits, including a 30-credit Project (BSc students) or Extended Essay (BA students) in your final year. Modules are taught at Level 4, Level 5 and Level 6.

A key feature of this programme is its specialist pathways, which enable you to focus in your final year on a specialism within psychology. All students take the same modules in Year 1 and Year 2, giving you a solid foundation in generic and subject-specific knowledge and skills. You then select a pathway in Year 3, choosing from a wide range of specialist option modules to tailor your programme to your interests and careers ambitions. You can follow pathways in Psychology, Psychology with Neuroscience, Psychology with Child Development, or Psychology in Practice.

Another distinctive feature of this course is that students who choose the Psychology or the Psychology in Practice pathway can choose to graduate with either a BSc or a BA.

Year 1 and Year 2, all pathways

In Year 1, all students take the same seven compulsory modules, to a total of 120 credits.

In Year 2, all students take the same eight compulsory modules, to a total of 120 credits, with the exception of BA Psychology and BA Psychology in Practice students, who have the option of completing a 15-credit Work-based Learning Project module in place of the final research methods course (Research Methods 2).

Year 3 BSc Psychology pathway

You select pathway option modules to a total of 90 credits and complete a 30-credit Project.

Year 3 BA Psychology pathway

You select pathway option modules to a total of 90 credits and complete a 30-credit Extended Essay.

Year 3 BSc Psychology with Neuroscience pathway

You take one compulsory module, select pathway option modules to a total of 75 credits and complete a 30-credit Project.

Year 3 BSc Psychology with Child Development pathway

You take one compulsory module, select pathway option modules to a total of 75 credits and complete a 30-credit Project.

Year 3 BSc Psychology in Practice pathway

You take one compulsory module, select pathway option modules to a total of 75 credits and complete a 30-credit Project.

Year 3 BA Psychology in Practice pathway

You take one compulsory module, select pathway option modules to a total of 75 credits and complete a 30-credit Extended Essay.

Module groups

Year 1

Year 2

BSc Psychology with Neuroscience Year 3

BSc Psychology with Child Development Year 3

BSc/BA Psychology in Practice Year 3

BSc/BA Psychology indicative option modules

BSc Psychology with Neuroscience indicative option modules

BSc Psychology with Child Development indicative option modules

BSc/BA Psychology in Practice indicative option modules

Please note that students who complete the BA Psychology and the BA Psychology in Practice will not be qualified to work as applied psychologists, while students who complete the BSc Psychology in Practice will not be qualified to work as applied psychologists until they undergo BPS-accredited postgraduate training.

  • Entry Requirements We welcome a wide range of qualifications, from the UK and abroad, and we will also consider your non-academic achievements.

    Entry requirements

    We welcome applicants without traditional entry qualifications as we base decisions on our own assessment of qualifications, knowledge and previous work experience. We may waive formal entry requirements based on our judgement of your academic potential.

    UCAS tariff points

    A typical offer is 120 UCAS tariff points, which is equivalent to BBB at A-level. (Please note that an A-level in General Studies is not accepted.) 

    The UCAS tariff score is applicable to you if you have recently studied a qualification that has a UCAS tariff equivalence. UCAS provides a tariff calculator for you to work out what your qualification is worth within the UCAS tariff.

    GCSE (or equivalent) at grade C or above in mathematics is also required.

    If you are unsure about your eligibility then please contact us. The Admissions Tutor may decide that our four-year, part-time, evening study BSc Psychology is more suitable for you.

    Foundation Year

    Birkbeck's BSc Psychology with Foundation Year offers an entry route on to this course. Students who achieve grades of 50% and above in all modules on the Foundation Year may progress to Year 2 rather than Year 1 of this course (at the discretion of the Examinations Sub-Board). This makes it possible for you to complete the BSc or BA in three rather than four years.

    Certificate of Higher Education

    Students who complete specified introductory modules from the Certificate of Higher Education in Psychology are always considered for entry on to this course.

    Alternative entry routes

    Access to Higher Education Diploma with a pass in a relevant subject.

    International entry requirements

    If English is not your first language or you have not previously studied in English, our usual requirement is the equivalent of an International English Language Testing System (IELTS Academic Test) score of 6.5, with not less than 6.0 in each of the sub-tests.

    If you don't meet the minimum IELTS requirement, we offer pre-sessional English courses, foundation programmes and language support services to help you improve your English language skills and get your place at Birkbeck.

    Visit the International section of our website to find out more about our English language entry requirements and relevant requirements by country.

    Credits and Accredited Prior Learning (APL)

    If you have studied at university previously, you may have accumulated credits through the modules you studied. It may be possible to transfer these credits from your previous study to Birkbeck or another institution. You should discuss this with the Programme Director when you are making your application.

    Find out more about credits and Accredited Prior Learning (APL).

  • Fees We are committed to doing everything we can to help you finance your studies.

    Fees (2017/8)

    Full-time home/EU students: £ 9250 pa
    Full-time overseas students: £ 13000 pa
  • Teaching and assessment Our innovative, engaging teaching is designed to support students who are juggling evening study with work and other daytime commitments.


    At Birkbeck, almost all of our courses are taught in the evening and our teaching is designed to support students who are juggling evening study with work and other daytime commitments. We actively encourage innovative and engaging ways of teaching, to ensure our students have the best learning experience. In the 2017 Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF), the government’s system for rating university teaching, Birkbeck was allocated a Silver award.

    Teaching may include formal lectures, seminars, and practical classes and tutorials. Formal lectures are used in most degree programmes to give an overview of a particular field of study. They aim to provide the stimulus and the starting point for deeper exploration of the subject during your own personal reading.

    Seminars give you the chance to explore a specific aspect of your subject in depth and to discuss and exchange ideas with fellow students. They typically require preparatory study.

    In addition, you will have timetabled meetings with your Personal Tutor.

    Methods of teaching on this course

    Most modules are primarily taught via lectures. Practical laboratory sessions and small-group teaching are important components of some modules.

    Outside of the classroom, we advise that, as a minimum, you allocate at least one to two hours of home study for every hour of lectures.


    Timetables are usually available from September onwards and you can access your personalised timetable via your My Birkbeck Profile online (if you have been invited to enrol).

    Indicative class size

    Class sizes vary, depending on your course, the module you are undertaking, and the method of teaching. For example, lectures are presented to large groups, with 30 to 100+ students in attendance, whereas seminars usually consist of small, interactive groups of 10 to 30 students, led by an academic.

    Academic support

    Birkbeck offers study and learning support to undergraduate and postgraduate students to help them succeed. Our Learning Development Service can help you in the following areas:

    • academic skills (including planning your workload, research, writing, exam preparation and writing a dissertation)
    • written English (including structure, punctuation and grammar)
    • numerical skills (basic mathematics and statistics).

    Our Disability and Dyslexia Service can support you if you have additional learning needs resulting from a disability or from dyslexia.

    Our Counselling Service can support you if you are struggling with emotional or psychological difficulties during your studies.

    Our Mental Health Advisory Service can support you if you are experiencing short– or long-term mental health difficulties during your studies.


    Assessment is an integral part of your university studies and usually consists of a combination of coursework and examinations. You will be given time to complete coursework and prepare for exams.

    Unseen written examinations are usually taken in the Summer term, during May to June, and, in most cases, are held during the day on a weekday – if you have daytime commitments, you will need to make arrangements for daytime attendance. Exam timetables are published online in March each year.

    Find out more about assessment at Birkbeck, including guidance on assessment, feedback and our assessment offences policy.

    Methods of assessment on this course

    Currently some modules are assessed by written examinations taken during the day in mid-May to mid-June with some assessed at the end of the module in December and January. Some modules include coursework.


    As well as a mark for your coursework and exams, you will also receive feedback from your marker(s) to help you learn, improve and succeed. We encourage you to discuss feedback with your module tutor.

    Feedback can come in different forms: notes via Moodle (our online learning environment); a paper copy of a completed feedback form; or in-class or face-to-face feedback. The College Policy on Feedback on Assessment sets out what you can expect from your feedback.

    Your department will usually provide you with your marked coursework within four weeks of submission. Your initial mark is provisional until the relevant Board of Examiners has confirmed it.

    Your official coursework and exam results will be made available to you via your My Birkbeck Profile online.

  • Careers and employability To help you get ahead in your career, we offer free advice and training and our recruitment consultancy, Birkbeck Talent, can connect you with employers.

    Careers and employability

    Graduates can pursue careers in psychology, human relations, education or marketing. This degree may also be useful in becoming a clinical psychologist, further education lecturer, human resources officer or market researcher.

    We offer a comprehensive Careers and Employability Service to help you advance your career, while our in-house, professional recruitment consultancy, Birkbeck Talent, works with London’s top employers to help you gain work experience that fits in with your evening studies.

    Graduate Destinations

    Average salary six months after the course: £25000

    Go on to work and/or study:

    Go on to work and/or study
    Now working: 55%
    Doing further study: 20%
    Studying and working: 5%
    Unemployed: 5%
    Other: 15%

    Read more of the statistics for this course on the Unistats website.

  • How to apply Once you've found the course that's right for you, here's what to do next to get your place at Birkbeck.

    How to apply

    If you are applying for a three-year, full-time undergraduate degree at Birkbeck, you have to apply through UCAS (the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service). To apply, go to the UCAS homepage and click on 'Apply and Track'. You will have to register, giving UCAS a few personal details, including your name, address and date of birth, and then you complete an application form.

    You may be called for interview if you do not meet the standard entry requirements. Please complete your application form carefully and include detailed information about your educational qualifications (particularly mathematics and, if English is not your first language, IELTS qualification) and/or courses you are studying in order to meet the entry requirements. If your current work involves a high level of numeracy and literacy, please include this information. A clear, well-written statement in support of your application, demonstrating a thoughtful and considered approach to studying psychology at degree level, is essential. Please ensure you provide an academic reference and supporting statement with your application.

    In your application you need to demonstrate:

    • An understanding of what academic psychology is and what it is not, and why you would like to study academic psychology.
    • An understanding of the amount of time you will need to dedicate to your studies both in and out of the 'classroom', and your capacity to manage your time effectively to make this possible.
    • Your motivation to complete a challenging science programme even when stressors at home, work and college make studying difficult, and your ability to make use of the support available appropriately.

    Birkbeck offers a range of free face-to-face advice and support to help you make a successful application.

    Birkbeck can give you all of the information and help you need to complete your application form, including our online personal statement tool, which will guide you through every step of writing your personal statement.

    UCAS Code


    Application deadlines and interviews

    15 January is the first UCAS deadline and the majority of university applications through UCAS are made by then. We welcome applications outside of the UCAS deadlines, so you can still apply through UCAS after 15 January, depending on the availability of places. We also take late applications via the UCAS Clearing system in August.

    Read more about key dates for UCAS applicants.