Course details

Study options

Full-time: 1 year, Part-time: 2 years

Course level




Start date



Kedleston Road, Derby Campus

Course description

Study a course that provides Stage One training in Health Psychology for those that already hold Graduate Basis for Chartership (GBC).  This course is a pre-requisite for entry onto the second stage of training in Health Psychology, which together will provide eligibility for Chartered Psychologist status with the British Psychological Society and equip you to practice as a HCPC registered Health Psychologist.

This programme is accredited with the British Psychological Society. We have a long-standing relationship with the BPS with us providing accredited courses at the University of Derby for over 18 years.

You'll be taught by our team of research active psychologists, who have expert knowledge of health psychology theory, practice and research. As well as delving into the theoretical underpinnings of health psychology you'll also be exploring the issues faced by today's health psychology professionals. Their comprehensive knowledge and professional experience will really help you learn, and their strong research profile means that you'll be part of a vibrant department at the forefront of developments in health psychology. 

The team have recently been involved in the following areas of work, including published work:

You will also have the opportunity to conduct your own research, which the teaching team will support you to have published where appropriate.

The teaching team are engaged in a range of research work, which you are welcome to get involved with. We actively encourage you to take part in a range of research activities if you are interested. 

Become part of the wider Health Psychology Community

Our lecturers have brilliant professional links throughout the Health Psychology community, including the Health Psychology Training Committee, Division of Health Psychology and other organisations. They will encourage you to network and get involved with others organisations outside of the University of Derby. These valuable networking sessions could really help you progress in your career and help you stay current with what is happening in the Health Psychology landscape.

Two students are committee members of the Health Psychology Trainee Network Conversation Cafes. These are UK-wide networking opportunities for students on BPS accredited stage one health psychology programmes. Find out more by following on Twitter.

Discover the HPTN on Twitter

Widen your knowledge with guest speakers and lecturers

Guest speakers, subject to availability, and sessions are held to help you develop your career and practice covering a range of topics, including research, practice in industry and career talks. These are organised exclusively with the University of Derby through our brilliant industry links.

The British Psychological Society logo
Multi-Faith Centre, Kedleston Road

Postgraduate Open Event

Join us at an upcoming Postgraduate Open Event, where you will get the opportunity to meet our expert academics and find out more about your course.

Book your Postgraduate Open EventBook your Postgraduate Open Event

What you will study

You’ll study modules such as:

  • Psychology of Health and Wellbeing - This module aims to provide you with a broad knowledge-base of the role of psychology in the experience of health, and wellbeing in relation to the historical, social and political context of health psychology and health services policy
  • Health Promotion and Behaviour Change - This module aims to provide you with an understanding of a range of factors that influence health behaviour and the role of psychology in health promotion and behaviour change
  • Psychology of Illness - Within health psychology it is essential to understand the links between psychological factors, physiological mechanisms, and behaviour in the onset and progression of illness.  It is also essential to understand the experience of symptoms and symptom response in the context of healthcare utilisation, and how the experience of healthcare and treatment impacts a broad range of patient outcomes. This module aims to provide students with a broad knowledge base in these areas
  • Living with Long Term Conditions - The aim of this module is to provide students with a critical awareness of the role of psychology in the experience and management of long term conditions for individuals living with long term conditions and their wider social networks (e.g. family and friends)
  • Advanced Psychological Research Methods in Context - The aim of this module is to provide you with advanced knowledge and skills related to quantitative and qualitative research methods within the context of applied psychology
  • Clinical and Professional Skills for Practitioner Psychologists - The aim of this module is to support your personal and professional development, and enable you to reflect on, and plan for, your own development as a trainee health psychologist and to support you accessing relevant opportunities during and on completion of the programme
  • Empirical Research Project - It is intrinsic to the award of MSc that you present evidence of your capacity to conduct a substantial piece of independent empirical research that builds clearly upon your prior learning and which draws upon appropriate methodologies. The aim of this module is to allow you to identify a research issue, formulate pertinent research questions and explore these questions through the application of contemporary psychological methodologies and appropriate data analysis and dissemination methods


Please note that our modules are subject to change - we review the content of our courses regularly, making changes where necessary to improve your experience and graduate prospects.

How you will learn

You’ll be taught by a dedicated team of registered and /or chartered, research-active psychologists who have expert knowledge of health psychology theory, practice, and research. As part of the course, you’ll undertake your own research project, specialising in an area of health psychology that particularly interests you and that is relevant to your career aspirations, where possible. 

Our MSc Health Psychology combines research-led teaching with an innovative portfolio of applied assessments to ensure you develop both the knowledge and transferable skills necessary for progression towards Stage Two training or directly into employment. Our focus on professional skills and employability through post-programme planning is a key feature of the course.

If you study this course on-campus full-time, you’ll attend the University two days a week. If you choose to study part-time, you’ll attend one day a week.


The programme embeds a focus on professional skills and employability, and assessments across the programme support this.  Assessments are applied in nature, are diverse in format and may include:  

Who you'll meet

You will be taught by an established academic team who are active in research and specialists in their field including:

Who will teach you

Dr Amy Baraniak

Dr Amy Baraniak
Programme leader

Amy is Programme Director for our MSc Health Psychology programmes (campus and online). She is also involved in supervising undergraduate and postgraduate student projects.

View full staff profileView full staff profile

Entry requirements

Entry requirements for UK students: BSc (Hons) Psychology qualification that confers Graduate Basis for Chartership (GBC) with the BPS.  Applicants should usually have a 2:1 or above, although we will consider applicants with a 2:2 where there is relevant experience and subject to a satisfactory interview. We will also consider applicants with closely aligned degree qualifications where there is relevant experience.

Entry requirements for EU/international students: As above (or the equivalent international qualifications). If English is not your first language, you will need to hold IELTS 6.5 in all areas.

Students chatting to each other

International student scholarships

We have a range of scholarships and discounts available to international students which can be used together to offer a reduction in your tuition fees.

Find out if you're eligible for an international scholarship Find out if you're eligible for an international scholarship

How to apply

Please look at our application deadlines before you apply.


Health psychology specialists work in a range of settings across the NHS, industry and local authorities as well as in the voluntary sector and academia. A number of our graduates have gone on to deliver services in health promotion, public health, mental health and chronic illness management. There are also opportunities to enter other graduate professions, such as education and management.

Some of our students have gone on to stage two postgraduate training to practise as registered health psychologists whilst others have secured funded PhDs in health psychology-related areas. Others have used the MSc to gain places on clinical psychology training programmes or to access training in areas including Cognitive Behavioural Therapy and Increasing Access to Psychological Treatment services. 

Find out more about the range of careers available

Contact us

If you need any more information from us, eg on courses, accommodation, applying, car parking, fees or funding, please contact us and we will do everything we can to help you.

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Additional information about your studies

Teaching hours

Like most universities, we operate extended teaching hours at the University of Derby, so contact time with your lecturers and tutors could be anytime between 9am and 9pm. Your timetable will usually be available on the website 24 hours after enrolment on to your course.

Additional costs and optional extras

We’re committed to providing you with an outstanding learning experience. Our expert teaching, excellent facilities and great employability prepare you for your future career. As part of our commitment to you we aim to keep any additional study costs to a minimum. However, there are occasions where students may incur some additional costs.

The information provided on this page is correct at the time of publication but course content, costs and other individual course details do change from time to time and are updated as often as possible, so please do check these pages again when making your final decision to apply for a course. Any updated course details will also be confirmed to you at application, enrolment and in your offer letter.

Included in your fees
Mandatory costs not included in your fees
Optional costs not included in your fees

Please note: Our courses are refreshed and updated on a regular basis. If you are thinking about transferring onto this course (into the second year for example), you should contact the programme leader for the relevant course information as modules may vary from those shown on this page.

Minimum numbers

Please note that this course is subject to minimum numbers in order to run.

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