M.Sc. Social Psychology

  • On Campus
  • 12 months
  • GBP16900 Year (Non-EEA)
  • English (IELTS accepted)
Faculty of Arts and Human Sciences | University of Surrey | Guildford, United Kingdom
The MSc Social Psychology looks at a range of topical social issues through the lens of social psychological theories in order to develop understanding and ideas for intervention. It is concerned with the scientific study of how we think about, influence and relate to one another.

Description of Social Psychology


Be part of a diverse group of students at the cutting edge of innovative attempts to apply social psychological theory to a range of current social issues.

Why Surrey?

The MSc Social Psychology looks at a range of topical social issues through the lens of social psychological theories in order to develop understanding and ideas for intervention. It is concerned with the scientific study of how we think about, influence and relate to one another.

The programme deals with, amongst other topics, issues of power and influence, the study of how individuals and groups interact to construct and maintain identities and how these are related to social change. Through this, the programme aims to provide you with an awareness of the historical and philosophical background of social psychology and an in-depth knowledge of contemporary theoretical and methodological approaches to the discipline.

You will be part of a diverse group of students at the cutting edge of innovative attempts to apply social psychological theory to everyday thought, emotion and behaviour in social contexts.

Programme overview

Programme aims

The Social Psychology programme aims to:

  • Provide you with advanced knowledge of the history and philosophy of social psychology, and a competent understanding of classic and contemporary theories, findings and methodologies in the field
  • Train you to engage in the practices that make up both ‘pure’ and ‘applied’ research
  • Engage and expand your ability to think critically and to discuss theories and findings about the social nature of human beings
  • Train you to formulate research problems, to select and apply appropriate methodologies, to interpret resultant quantitative and qualitative data, and to communicate your research effectively to a diverse range of audiences
  • Develop your interpersonal, technical and communication skills
  • Raise your awareness of related disciplines including sociology, anthropology, cognitive science and history to assist your engagement in cross-disciplinary dialogue
  • Enable you to link social psychological theories and empirical findings to social issues, with a view to understanding the practical policy implications of research, and research-led interventions in public life
  • Inform you about the procedures and practices of ethical research conduct

Detailed Course Facts

Tuition fee
  • GBP 16900 Year (Non-EEA)
  • GBP 6900 Year (EEA)
Start date September  2016
Duration full-time 12 months
  • English
Take an IELTS test
Delivery mode On Campus
Educational variant Part-time, Full-time

Course Content

You are required to complete two compulsory core-content modules and three compulsory research-oriented modules. In addition, you will need to complete two additional modules of your choice, selected from the MSc module catalogue and from final-year undergraduate modules that feature content relevant to social psychology. (In 2013-14, students can take a final year undergraduate module on the psychology of religion as an MSc option.)

You will also be required to present a dissertation comprising an original piece of empirical research within any area of social psychology. Your dissertation will be approved and supervised by one of the School’s academic staff.

Compulsory modules

Social Change and Influence

This module provides an advanced understanding of current theories of social change and influence in social psychology and opportunities to apply these to diverse social change contexts.

Self and Identity in Context

This module introduces you to current advances in theories of identity and self-concept from a social psychological perspective.

Research-oriented modules

Preparation for Academic Research in Psychology

This module is designed to equip students with the necessary generic insights and skills to undertake academic research in psychology, principally in preparation for dissertation work.

Quantitative Research Methods / Qualitative Research Methods

These two modules provide you with a background in the philosophy underlying research methods and the skills to assess and conduct qualitative and quantitative research effectively.

Crafting Research: Linking Theories and Methods

This module aims to enable you to link theoretical and empirical questions to social issues and provide you with an in-depth understanding of the practical applications and action implications of social psychological theories and empirical findings.


The MSc Social Psychology stimulates interest in a wide variety of research areas. Below is a list of recent dissertation titles, to give you an idea of the range of subjects and environments studied on the programme:

  • A qualitative exploration of accounts of ‘deradicalisation’ and ‘disengagement’ among former prisoners jailed for terrorism-related offences in Indonesia
  • Reactions of Irish people to outcomes of puberty suppression in children with gender identity disorder: the effects of general identity, psychological wellbeing and sexual orientation
  • Exploring language and identity through the reflective accounts of second-generation Asians: a qualitative study
  • Social memories of the Second World War: exploring the relationship between British identity and the European Union
  • Construction of national identities and the other in political discourses in the context of the intergroup conflict resolution in Cyprus
  • Explicit and implicit methods for measuring gender differences in sexual prejudice
  • Sexism and feminism: a not-so-ambivalent relationship
  • Constructing America: a qualitative analysis of presidential inauguration speeches
  • ‘If we all got together and understood and tolerated each others’ faiths, we could all work together for this country’: A qualitative exploration of the social psychology of interfaith relations from the perspective of Church of Scotland members in Glasgow
  • The dynamics of group membership and ascription of racial identity by the State through the lens of mixed ethnicity Singaporeans

English Language Requirements

IELTS take IELTS test

IMPORTANT NOTE: Per 6 April 2015 only the English language tests from IELTS and Trinity College London are accepted for Tier 4 Visa applications to the United Kingdom. Other tests (including TOEFL, TOEIC, Pearson, City & Guilds) are no longer accepted for Tier 4 visa applications to the United Kingdom. The university might still accept these tests to admit you to the university, but if you require a Tier 4 visa to enter the UK and begin your degree programme, these tests will not be sufficient to obtain your Visa. Since the Trinity College London language tests must be taken in one of their exam centres in the UK, IELTS is now the only language test accepted for Tier 4 visas to the UK that can be taken worldwide.

The IELTS test is most widely accepted by universities and is also accepted for Tier 4 visas to the UK- learn more.

Requirements for Social Psychology

Normally a first or 2.1 honours degree in psychology from a UK university (or recognised equivalent overseas qualification). Degrees in related subjects (such as sociology) will also be considered. Applicants who meet these basic criteria will be invited to be interviewed in person or by Skype to discuss their interest in social psychology.

English language requirements

IELTS minimum overall: 6.5

IELTS minimum by component: 6.0

We offer intensive English language pre-sessional courses, designed to take you to the level of English ability and skill required for your studies here.

Work Experience for Social Psychology

No work experience is required.

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University of Surrey, United Kingdom

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