Skip to main content

Dissertation MSc Psychodynamics of Human Development


  • Credit value: 60 credits at Level 7
  • Assessment: a 10,000-15,000-word dissertation (100%)

Module description

This module introduces you to methodological and epistemological issues relevant to studying the psychodynamics of human development, drawing on recent work in psychology and other social sciences. It explores the standing of psychodynamic research and observational methodology in the light of developments in contemporary social research.

You will then undertake a substantial piece of supervised work leading to a dissertation, which may be either empirical or theoretical, and chosen from a broad field including:

  • particular concept(s) or issue(s) within psychoanalytic or Jungian analytic theory
  • particular concept(s) or issue(s) within infant observation
  • particular concept(s) or issue(s) related to work study
  • particular concept(s) or issue(s) within academic studies of child and/or life span development
  • the application of psychoanalytic or Jungian analytic theory to other disciplines.

Learning objectives

By the end of this module, you will:

  • understand the main principles of contemporary social science methodologies
  • have critically appraised research and observational studies of the psychodynamics of human development
  • have a critical awareness of epistemological issues as they apply to psychoanalytic and Jungian analytic approaches to human development
  • understand epistemological and methodological issues as revealed in the selection of relevant and practical research/dissertation projects
  • have identified, in conjunction with course staff, a feasible and manageable topic for your dissertation
  • have identified and applied a conceptual and/or methodological framework appropriate to the topic and formulate and implemented a programme of independent research
  • have undertaken a comprehensive search and study of literature and other data consistent with the aims of the research
  • have acquired and deployed skills in the planning, management and execution of a sustained research and writing project
  • have presented a well-argued written dissertation supported by reasoned analysis, interpretation, explanation and evaluation of relevant material and demonstrating a thorough and critical understanding of the subject.