Course details

Study options

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

UK fee

£9,450 for the full course* (2024/25)

International fee

£14,900 for the full course (2024/25)

Course level




Start date



Kedleston Road, Derby Campus

Our new Master of Research (MRes) programme aims to offer you the finest possible preparation for undertaking original research in psychology.

If you want to become a researcher in psychology, skilled in delivering evidence-based research, this course is for you. 

A distinctive and challenging masters degree

The MRes is designed for intellectual graduates with strong honours degrees and behavioural science professionals who are keen to enhance their career prospects by taking their research skills to the next level. It differs from more traditional taught masters programmes – such as an MSc –because of its focus on enhancing research methods and skills. Covering both quantitative and qualitative approaches, you will gain a thorough grounding in the methods and processes which underpin original research in psychology and then conduct your own major independent research project under expert supervision.

The research skills you build culminate in you undertaking a research project supervised by a member of staff, the assessment of which includes a viva voce examination, excellent preparation for a PhD. These are some of the research areas currently supervised within the department, and some studies that you can choose from, alternatively, feel free to discuss your own ideas with us.

  • Religious Belief/Experience
  • Paranormal Belief/Experience
  • Music Psychology
  • Nature Connectedness
  • Maths Anxiety
  • Emotion
  • Eating Behaviours
  • Compassion
  • Rural Living
  • Dual Process Theories of Thinking
  • Experiences of Nursing and Carers
  • Cyberpsychology
  • Pain
  • Autism, Asperger’s and ADHD
  • Belief and Development
  • Dark Tetrad of Personality
  • Belief in Conspiracy Theories

Please email Dr Malcolm Schofield at for further details.

  • Assessing the effectiveness of expressive writing on reducing mathematics anxiety and increasing performance
  • Understanding drug calculation anxiety among non-medical prescribers
  • Investigating the reasons why students choose, or do not choose, to study psychology at degree level
  • Reasoning fast and slow: dual process theories of thinking
  • Female nurses’ constructions of male nurses: a Foucauldian discourse analysis
  • Male nurses’ experiences of working in a female-dominated environment: an interpretative phenomenological analysis
  • Public perceptions of male nurses
  • The psychology of problematic social networking use
  • Associations between personality and problematic technology use
  • The dark tetrad of personality and paranormal experience
  • The dark tetrad of personality, schizotypy and synaesthesia
  • Avoiding confounds? An exploration of priming when using emotional measures
  • Visual Imagery – can it bolster performance?
  • The influence of personality and compassion on emotional functioning in disordered eating
  • Emotion skills training to prevent the development of eating disorders

Please email Dr Malcolm Schofield at for further details.

Build a toolkit of research skills

There is a choice of modules in research methods to offer a degree of flexibility in your studies. We do, however, strongly recommend that you take modules in both quantitative and qualitative research: a distinctive feature of this programme. This will help set you apart as a fully trained researcher and will maximise your career opportunities. Research skills options, which are primarily delivered online, cover themes such as managing and funding research, research ethics, information literacy, research leadership, thesis writing and getting your research published or exhibited.

Focus on a theme of your choice

We provide every opportunity for you to tailor your studies to match your current job role, your personal and professional interests, and your career ambitions. For the Negotiated Module in Science, you will complete a written report and make a presentation on a topic agreed with the teaching team. The most substantial part of the programme is taken up with your independent research project. This will span the initial development of a research question, planning the research project, selecting appropriate research methods, sourcing information, analysing the results and communicating your findings. You are free to choose many different approaches, from qualitative studies to experimental research. 

You will be allocated a research project supervisor who will oversee your progress and mentor you through your development as an active, engaged researcher. We encourage you to design research projects which relate directly to real-world issues. There may be opportunities to work with some of our partners across the voluntary and charitable sectors to deliver research findings which help them shape their future services.

Learning which fits around you

The structure of the MRes enables you to balance your learning with your work and personal commitments. This includes flexible full-time and part-time routes to the qualification. You will benefit from a blended learning approach which integrates online learning with on-campus study blocks. Your generic research skills modules are all delivered online while other modules include an intensive three-day study block at the University. 

In addition, the individual supervision you receive will be arranged in ways that offer maximum flexibility and convenience as you shape and progress your research project.

Become part of a thriving research community

As an MRes Psychology student, you will join a flourishing research community at the University and your own project will contribute to the body of scholarly knowledge we produce. You will be supported and guided by our team of nationally and internationally recognised psychological researchers. They cover a vast range of specialist areas and regularly share their findings in leading journals and at international conferences. Well versed in using research to inform their teaching, they have particular expertise in helping students develop initial ideas into practical research projects.

You can also draw inspiration from the work of our renowned  as well as our strong links with professional bodies such as the British Psychological Society. We arrange regular research seminars featuring influential guest speakers.

James Elander talks about his research audience, publishing Open Access, using UDORA, Open Data and advice for early career researchers in Psychology.

Video embed-

State-of-the-art facilities

You will benefit from our excellent facilities, which are used for both teaching and research. They include high specification computing labs with specialist software for experiment design and a full range of psychological recording equipment such as EEG and the latest eye tracking equipment for analysing eye movement.

Our video observation suite features rooms equipped with two-way mirrors and DVD recording equipment for interviews and focus groups. We also have research project rooms and a psychology test bank to aid your studies.  

students smiling during class
Student using eye tracking equipment
psychology students smiling during class
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:

You'll study modules such as:

  • Digital Scholarship and Research Skills Development (40 credits)
  • Advanced Qualitative Research Methods (20 credits)
  • Advanced Quantitative Research Methods (20 credits)
  • Independent Research (80 credits) or Independent Study (20 credits - PGDip only)
  • Negotiated Module in Science (20 credits) or another Spring semester from optional modules below

Optional modules:

  • Psychology of Illness
  • Theories and Models of Behaviour
  • Contemporary Developmental Assessment Methods
  • Negotiated Module (Health, Education or Clinical focus)

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

The course uses a blended learning approach integrating periods of online learning combined with short campus study blocks and flexible individual supervision. 


The assessment methods are a range of different forms of coursework.

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 be communicated after enrolment on your course.

Who will teach you

Melanie Haughton
Programme leader

Lecturer in Psychology, Melanie Haughton, has worked in education since 2000. Melanie has worked as a Higher Education Learning Mentor, she has also worked as a Graduate Teaching Assistant at Lancaster University and as an Associate Academic at the University of Derby.

View full staff profileView full staff profile

Entry requirements

Entry requirements for UK students: Applicants should normally have or expect to obtain at 2:1 honours degree in psychology or a closely related subject with good coverage of undergraduate research methods.

Entry requirements for EU/international students: Applicants with overseas qualifications are strongly advised to establish the UK equivalence of their qualifications. Within this requirement, it will be important to ascertain the ability to speak and write using the English language.

If English is not your first language you must have achieved an IELTS score of at least level 6.5 (with at least 6.0 in each skill area). Before applying students may seek confirmation of equivalency by contacting the National Academic Recognition Information Centre (NARIC) on 0870 9904088, and writing to Oriel House, Oriel Road, Cheltenham, Glos. GL50 1XP. Evidence of equivalence (written verification) will be required on application for entry on this programme. A fee is payable for the NARIC service.

Fees and funding

2024/25 (August 2024 - July 2025)


£9,450 for the full course*

£1,050 per 20 credits


£14,900 for the full course


Please note fees normally increase in line with inflation and the University's strategic approach to fees, which is reviewed on an annual basis. The total fee you pay may therefore increase after one year of study.

* UK full-time fees paid within one academic year are rounded down to the nearest £50 if applicable

Additional costs and optional extras

About postgraduate awards

Please note at postgraduate level, you’ll need to gain the following number of credits in total to obtain the respective awards. If you have any questions please contact us.

Postgraduate Certificate60 Credits
Postgraduate Diploma120 Credits
MA or MSc180 Credits

This means you will gain 180 credits in total to complete the full MA or MSc. If you are studying part time you will normally complete your studies over two or three years, depending on the course structure.

Funding your studies

Find out more about fees, postgraduate loans and support you may be entitled to.

Find out about funding your studiesFind out about funding your studies

Alumni discount for Derby graduates

We offer a discount on postgraduate course fees for all Derby alumni.

Find out about the Alumni discountFind out about the Alumni discount

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.


Skills in research, analysis and evaluation are increasingly valued by employers across many different sectors. The thorough understanding of psychological theory, research and methodology you gain from your MRes studies will therefore give you a distinct advantage as you pursue your career.

Your qualification will act as a vital stepping stone, enabling you to apply for:

If you are already working, the MRes can also provide excellent continuing professional development and lifelong learning opportunities, helping you become a more psychologically aware practitioner.

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.

Contact us Contact us

Additional information about your studies

Download programme specification

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

Minimum numbers

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

Other courses you might like