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MSc in Psychology (Conversion) - Learning Outcomes

Educational aims

This masters degree aims to provide you with:

  • a comprehensive and critical understanding of key concepts, theories, methods and debates in psychology.
  • an advanced critical awareness of different perspectives within psychology and recognition of the unique contributions offered.
  • an opportunity to critically evaluate a range of approaches to psychological research and gain practical experience of designing, carrying out, analysing and reporting an original independent project.
  • a critical and reflective understanding of the application of psychology to social, educational, practical and professional issues.
  • a range of transferable skills as detailed in the QAA Subject benchmark statement for Psychology and the QAA Characteristics Statement for Masters Degree programmes.
  • an opportunity to engage with an advanced programme of study which fulfils the requirements for the Graduate Basis for Chartered Membership (GBC) of the British Psychological Society.
  • the opportunity to improve and develop as an independent learner through critical self-evaluation and to recognise the role of continuous professional development for future career planning.
  • the development of skills to undertake collaborative projects in a professional or research setting.

Learning outcomes

Knowledge and understanding

On completion of this masters degree, you will have knowledge and understanding of:

  • An advanced understanding of the core domains within psychology as specified by the relevant professional bodies.
  • Demonstrate a critical understanding of the types of evidence and research methods used in psychology.
  • Awareness of the importance of ethical issues in the practice of psychology and apply such knowledge in the critical review of published research and in the design of original projects.
  • Critically examine how psychological theories and research methodologies are applied in practice or professional contexts.

Cognitive skills

On completion of this masters degree, you will be able to:

  • construct advanced arguments synthesising psychological concepts, theories and evidence.
  • interpret and critically evaluate the contributions of different forms of research evidence.
  • articulate and justify research questions and hypotheses at an advanced level, using psychological theories and research evidence.
  • develop, justify, design, and execute research projects, and analyse and interpret the findings appropriately.

Practical and/or professional skills

On completion of this masters degree, you will be able to:

  • employ evidence-based reasoning to critically examine practical, theoretical and ethical issues in relation to psychological research.
  • effectively communicate knowledge and/or findings in an appropriate way to specialist and non- specialist audiences.
  • demonstrate the requisite qualities and professional skills to commence a career in psychology, including the exercise of independence, high level organisational skills, demonstration of initiative and personal responsibility.

Key skills

On completion of this masters degree, you will be able to:

  • select, synthesise, and critically evaluate appropriate information from a range of sources with an emphasis on primary research.
  • present written material in a coherently organised form, with clear articulation of arguments and communicated effectively in a variety of formats.
  • manipulate, interpret, and analyse data from a range of sources to interrogate and support propositions.
  • process, prepare and present information drawing on a range of 21st century information technologies.
  • demonstrate an advanced ability to locate, organise and critically appraise relevant academic literature.
  • develop advanced independent learning skills.

Teaching, learning and assessment methods

The level and depth of your learning gradually increases as you work through the qualification. You’ll be supported throughout by the OU’s unique style of teaching and assessment – which includes a personal tutor to guide and comment on your work; top quality course texts; elearning resources like podcasts, interactive media and online materials; tutorial groups and community forums.

Assessment is via tutor-marked assignments (TMAs) and end-of-module assessments (EMAs), including a substantial dissertation project in which you can choose your own relevant subject specialism. There will be low-weighted group tasks and assessments requiring non-academic styles of presentation (including blog and wikis). Overall, there is an emphasis on the selection (from diverse electronic sources), evaluation and use of material from a range of sources including original academic texts.

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