MSC Developmental Psychology

August 8, 2017

Were all carried out over

This two year MSc has a total value of 300 credits. 165 credits of taught modules are taken in Year One and 135 in Year Two. The programme consists of thirteen core modules (200 credits) and a research dissertation (100 credits).

Teaching and Assessment

The programme is delivered through lectures, small-group seminars, skills-based workshops and practical classes. Assessment is through essays, exams and practical assignments (such as role-plays of clinical work with child actors, or a presentation about the development of a clinical service), as well as a research dissertation which is submitted at the end of the second year.

Clinical Placement

During the second year of the course, all students undertake a one-year placement in a Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service (CAMHS) team, supervised by an experienced member of the CAMHS team. All placements are in London, and are arranged as part of the course. Placements currently include: Great Ormond Street Hospital; Islington CAMHS; Simmons House; Barnet and Enfield CAMHS; Southwark CAMHS; the Royal Free Hospital; and the Anna Freud Centre's Family School. The placement is usually for 2-3 days per week during the second year of the course, and a work discussion group and on-going teaching in clinical skills, continuing throughout the second year, are designed to support the placement.


All students undertake an independent research project, under supervision, which culminates in a dissertation of 15, 000 - 17, 000 words. Students will have the opportunity to undertake research related to child and adolescent mental health services through our collaboration with UCL's Evidence Based Practice Unit (EBPU) and the CAMHS Outcome Research Consortium (CORC), which play a leading role in evaluation and service-improvement within CAMHS in the UK.


Modules are grouped into ‘families’

Module Family Year 1 Year 2
Child Development, Disorders and the Developing Mind

Multiple Perspectives on Development

and Psychopathology I and II

Introduction to Psychoanalytic Theory

The Clinical Theory of Psychoanalysis

Parent-Infant Observation

CAMHS in Context
Clinical Skills

Building and Maintaining Therapeutic Relationships

Assessment and Planning Clinical Interventions

CAMHS Placement

Clinical Skills I and II

Research Skills

Introduction to Research Methods (formative)

Quantitative Data Analysis (SPSS)

Qualitative Workshops (optional)

Evaluating Clinical Interventions

Research Methods II (formative)

Supervised Dissertation

(Year 1 and 2)

For more information on the course structure please see our Course Structure pdf.


Students are advised to apply as early as possible due to competition for places. Those applying for scholarship funding (particularly overseas applicants) should take note of application deadlines.

Who can apply?

This MSc provides a solid foundation for those wishing to pursue further clinical training, or to apply for employment with the children's workforce. The programme is highly selective and takes a maximum of 12-15 per year, so students with relevant experience prior to application will be at an advantage.

Application deadlines
All applicants Apply now
What are we looking for?
When we assess your application we would like to learn:
  • why you want to study Developmental Psychology at graduate level
  • why you want to study Developmental Psychology at UCL
  • what particularly attracts you to this programme
  • how your academic and professional background meets the demands of this rigorous programme
  • where you would like to go professionally with your degree

Together with essential academic requirements, the personal statement is your opportunity to illustrate whether your reasons for applying to this programme match what the programme will deliver. It is highly desirable that students have obtained relevant experience working with children or adolescents prior to application.

Please note: you are required to provide details of 2 referees on your application, at least one of whom should be academic. We require your references to be completed on or very soon after the application deadline so please bear this in mind when you apply. Interviews will be held in March 2016. Interviews are held in person for those in the UK and via telephone for applicants who are overseas.


Please note: this course is not eligible for US Federal Loan Authority funding.

The Anna Freud Centre offers one bursary for this MSc course (£3000 per year) which is open only to Home and EU Students. It is awarded based on academic ability and potential as well as on financial need. Please note, students are only eligible to apply once they have been issued with a firm offer from UCL for this course. The bursary is administered by the Anna Freud Centre and is not part of UCL.

UCL Scholarships

For full information please follow this link:

“This is a ground-breaking course which offers an understanding of childhood problems along with training in the skills needed to help distressed children and families. We are delighted to be a partner in offering placement experience to students on the course.”


Chen, Psychoanalytic Developmental Psychology Alumni
Chen, Psychoanalytic Developmental Psychology Alumni
Alex, Psychoanalytic Developmental Psychology Alumni
Alex, Psychoanalytic Developmental Psychology Alumni
MSc Psychology HRDM (Human Resource Development & Management)
MSc Psychology HRDM (Human Resource Development & Management)
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