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Developmental Psychology & Psychopathology MSc

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You will develop knowledge about the genetic and environmental causes of typical and atypical psychological development, the standard psychological therapies and treatments available, and research methods and statistics relevant to this field. The course will provide you with both a research and clinical focus. Benefit from comprehensive coverage of the field exploring how biological (genetic), behavioural and cognitive processes, along with family and wider social forces, can affect typical and atypical development. The course is ideal if you plan to work/are working in mental health with young people, plan to study for a PhD, or if you are looking to progress to the DClinPsy. Placements and clinical observations are available.

Key benefits

  • Learn how to characterise typical and atypical behaviours across the life span.
  • Learn how to identify, describe and manage behavioural traits in common disorders such as Autism and ADHD.
  • Become familiar with the latest scientific results and debates surrounding the "nature and nurture" of psychological and psychopathological conditions.
  • Become skilled in using state-of-the-art research methods skills, such as those in statistical genetics, and access world renowned longitudinal data sets.
  • Learn from world-leading researchers/clinicians at the IoPPN, with 12 of the world's most highly cited scientists in this field eg Louise Arseneault, Helen Fisher, Francesca Happé, Robert Plomin.
  • King's is ranked 2nd in the world for psychology and psychiatry; US News, Best Global Universities 2021.

The course will train graduates to take up roles within different organisations where knowledge of mental health is required by teaching subjects that are relevant to the characterisation of typical and atypical behaviour, the biological (genetic) and environmental causes and development of mental health problems in children and young people (including neurodevelopmental disorders) and an understanding of the most standard psychological therapies used in clinical practice and available support service systems. In addition, the course will provide you with a solid understanding of the most recent research methods applied in this area. The course comprises three components: • Typical & Atypical Development: Covers typical brain development and development of cognitive functions and social behaviours relevant to neurodevelopmental disorders, followed by a description/ classification of the most common mental health problems in children and adolescents, including Autism, ADHD, conduct disorders, eating disorders, depression/anxiety, and antisocial behaviour. Students will also learn about the genetic, environmental/social factors that determine onset as well as persistence of these mental health problems across developmental stages. • Advanced Methods in DPP: Covers general statistics (mandatory) as well as more specialised optional methods/statistics applied in developmental neurophysiology, neuroimaging, cognitive neuroscience, behavioural and statistical genetics, and qualitative research methods. There is also an optional Therapy & Treatment module which covers the theoretical basis of mainstream psychological therapies used in clinical practice in infants, children, adolescents and their families. You will also learn why some therapies are indicated and preferred over others and the available support service systems. Finally, within this component it is also possible to pick an optional credit-bearing placement or clinical observation. Thus, you will be able to select the modules that best suit your interest and future career, choosing from those with a more statistical/biological, or a more clinical/developmental, focus. • Dissertation Project: This can be a research project, a systematic review, a clinical observership project or a communicating science project, with the possibility to link the project to your placement/observation. Many large-scale longitudinal datasets with developmental, clinical and/or genetic data are available for study if a research project is chosen. You will work alongside one of our experts to complete a piece of high-quality scientific research. We will use a delivery method that will ensure students have a rich, exciting experience from the start. Face to face teaching will be complemented and supported with innovative technology so that students also experience elements of digital learning and assessment.

Base campus

NEV-main-Denmark-Hill-Campus
Denmark Hill Campus

Home to the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology & Neuroscience, clinical and teaching facilities for the Faculty of Dentistry, Oral & Craniofacial Sciences and the Cicely Saunders Institute of Palliative Care, Policy & Rehabilitation.

Regulating bodies

King's is regulated by the Office for Students

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Teaching methods - what to expect

Course format 

You will be taught through a mix of lectures, seminars and tutorials. Compulsory and optional modules are listed below.

Introduction to Statistics

Lectures (24 hours) | Seminars / Tutorials (24 hours) | Self-study time (102 hours)

Psychology and Psychopathology

Lectures (35 hours) | Seminars / Tutorials (5 hours) | Self-study time (260 hours)

Perinatal and Infant Mental Health

Lectures (30 hours) | Seminars / Tutorials (16 hours) | Self-study time (254 hours)

Placements

Lectures (5 hours) | Seminars / Tutorials (10 hours) | Field/lab/studio/ supervised learning (120hours) | Self-study time (15 hours)

Dissertation

Field/lab/studio/ supervised learning ( 400 hours) | Self-study time (200 hours)

Psychological Approaches to Treatment

Lectures (20 hours) | Seminars / Tutorials (5 hours) | Field/lab/studio/ supervised learning (0 hours) | Self-study time (125 hours)

Twin Model-Fitting

Lectures (10 hours) | Seminars / Tutorials (20 hours) | Self-study time (120 hours)

Genetic Association Analysis

Lectures (10 hours) | Seminars / Tutorials (20 hours) | Self-study time (120 hours)

Qualitative Research: Methods & Practice

Lectures (20 hours) | Seminars / Tutorials (0 hours) | Field/lab/studio/ supervised learning (5 hours) | Self-study time (125 hours)

 

Assessment

    The primary methods of assessment for this course are written examinations, coursework and individual or group projects. The study time and assessment methods typically give an indication of what to expect. However, these may vary depending upon the modules selected.

    Structure

    Required modules

    You are required to take:

    Introduction to Statistics (15 credits)
    Psychology and Psychopathology (30 credits)
    Perinatal and Infant Mental Health (30 credits)
    Dissertation (60 Credits)

    Optional modules

    The optional modules you can take:

    Psychological Approaches to Treatment (30 credits)
    Twin Model-Fitting (15 credits)
    Genetic Association Analysis (15 credit)
    Qualitative Research: Methods & Practice (15 credits)
    Placements (15 credits)

    King’s College London reviews the modules offered on a regular basis to provide up-to-date, innovative and relevant programmes of study. Therefore, modules offered may change. We suggest you keep an eye on the course finder on our website for updates.

    Please note that modules with a practical component will be capped due to educational requirements, which may mean that we cannot guarantee a place to all students who elect to study this module.

    Employability

    In addition to the core teaching, the optional module selection, the optional placement experience and dissertation project, the course provides opportunities to develop your knowledge into different interests and career pathways. This may help you to prepare to study a PhD in a subject such as Psychology, Statistical or Behavioural Genetics, or a Doctorate in Clinical Psychology. It will also help you to pursue employment in professional settings where subject knowledge is central to your work, e.g. in a science or academic career or in clinical settings. You will also develop skills to take up employment in other settings, particularly in working with children and young people where knowledge of mental health problems and therapies are required. These could be employment in social care settings eg welfare officers in youth organisations, schools and community centers; as family support workers; or employment in the public sector, e.g. police consultant, parliamentary officer of science and technology. You may also enter employment where subject knowledge is important to succeed in the job, but not the primary activity, e.g. employment in science communication/media within organisations involved with communicating health problems in young people to increase understanding of public awareness. Or, where learning from the degree is applied more broadly, e.g. role in government office of statistics; fundraiser for charity, genetic counsellor, science editor, industry professional.

    Tuition Fees

    UK:

    Full time: £14,070 per year (2022/23)

    Part time: N/A

    International:

    Full time: £32,940 per year (2022/23)

    Part time: N/A

    These tuition fees may be subject to additional increases in subsequent years of study, in line with King’s terms and conditions.

    Deposit

    When you receive an offer for this course you will be required to pay a non-refundable deposit to secure your place. The deposit will be credited towards your total fee payment.

    The UK deposit is £500.

    The INTERNATIONAL deposit is £2,000.

    • If you receive an offer on or before 31 March, payment is due by 25 April 2022.
    • If you receive an offer between 1 April and 30 June, payment is due within one month of receiving the offer.
    • If you receive an offer between 1 July and 31 July, payment is due within two weeks of receiving the offer.
    • If you receive an offer between 1 August and 21 August, payment is due within one week of receiving the offer.
    • If you receive an offer from 22 August onwards, payment is due within three days of receiving the offer.

    If you are a current King’s student in receipt of the King's Living Bursary you are not required to pay a deposit to secure your place on the programme. Please note, this will not change the total fees payable for your chosen programme.

    Additional Costs

    In addition to your tuition costs, you can also expect to pay for:

    • Books if you choose to buy your own copies
    • DBS checks although you can apply to the course to have the cost reimbursed once enrolled
    • Clothing for optional course related events and competitions
    • Library fees and fines
    • Personal photocopies
    • Printing course handouts
    • Society membership fees
    • Stationery 
    • Graduation costs
    • Travel costs for travel around London and between campuses

    Funding

    The course will train graduates to take up roles within different organisations where knowledge of mental health is required by teaching subjects that are relevant to the characterisation of typical and atypical behaviour, the biological (genetic) and environmental causes and development of mental health problems in children and young people (including neurodevelopmental disorders) and an understanding of the most standard psychological therapies used in clinical practice and available support service systems. In addition, the course will provide you with a solid understanding of the most recent research methods applied in this area. The course comprises three components: • Typical & Atypical Development: Covers typical brain development and development of cognitive functions and social behaviours relevant to neurodevelopmental disorders, followed by a description/ classification of the most common mental health problems in children and adolescents, including Autism, ADHD, conduct disorders, eating disorders, depression/anxiety, and antisocial behaviour. Students will also learn about the genetic, environmental/social factors that determine onset as well as persistence of these mental health problems across developmental stages. • Advanced Methods in DPP: Covers general statistics (mandatory) as well as more specialised optional methods/statistics applied in developmental neurophysiology, neuroimaging, cognitive neuroscience, behavioural and statistical genetics, and qualitative research methods. There is also an optional Therapy & Treatment module which covers the theoretical basis of mainstream psychological therapies used in clinical practice in infants, children, adolescents and their families. You will also learn why some therapies are indicated and preferred over others and the available support service systems. Finally, within this component it is also possible to pick an optional credit-bearing placement or clinical observation. Thus, you will be able to select the modules that best suit your interest and future career, choosing from those with a more statistical/biological, or a more clinical/developmental, focus. • Dissertation Project: This can be a research project, a systematic review, a clinical observership project or a communicating science project, with the possibility to link the project to your placement/observation. Many large-scale longitudinal datasets with developmental, clinical and/or genetic data are available for study if a research project is chosen. You will work alongside one of our experts to complete a piece of high-quality scientific research. We will use a delivery method that will ensure students have a rich, exciting experience from the start. Face to face teaching will be complemented and supported with innovative technology so that students also experience elements of digital learning and assessment.

    Base campus

    NEV-main-Denmark-Hill-Campus
    Denmark Hill Campus

    Home to the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology & Neuroscience, clinical and teaching facilities for the Faculty of Dentistry, Oral & Craniofacial Sciences and the Cicely Saunders Institute of Palliative Care, Policy & Rehabilitation.

    Regulating bodies

    King's is regulated by the Office for Students

    Loading...

    Teaching methods - what to expect

    Course format 

    You will be taught through a mix of lectures, seminars and tutorials. Compulsory and optional modules are listed below.

    Introduction to Statistics

    Lectures (24 hours) | Seminars / Tutorials (24 hours) | Self-study time (102 hours)

    Psychology and Psychopathology

    Lectures (35 hours) | Seminars / Tutorials (5 hours) | Self-study time (260 hours)

    Perinatal and Infant Mental Health

    Lectures (30 hours) | Seminars / Tutorials (16 hours) | Self-study time (254 hours)

    Placements

    Lectures (5 hours) | Seminars / Tutorials (10 hours) | Field/lab/studio/ supervised learning (120hours) | Self-study time (15 hours)

    Dissertation

    Field/lab/studio/ supervised learning ( 400 hours) | Self-study time (200 hours)

    Psychological Approaches to Treatment

    Lectures (20 hours) | Seminars / Tutorials (5 hours) | Field/lab/studio/ supervised learning (0 hours) | Self-study time (125 hours)

    Twin Model-Fitting

    Lectures (10 hours) | Seminars / Tutorials (20 hours) | Self-study time (120 hours)

    Genetic Association Analysis

    Lectures (10 hours) | Seminars / Tutorials (20 hours) | Self-study time (120 hours)

    Qualitative Research: Methods & Practice

    Lectures (20 hours) | Seminars / Tutorials (0 hours) | Field/lab/studio/ supervised learning (5 hours) | Self-study time (125 hours)

     

    Assessment

      The primary methods of assessment for this course are written examinations, coursework and individual or group projects. The study time and assessment methods typically give an indication of what to expect. However, these may vary depending upon the modules selected.

      Structure

      Required modules

      You are required to take:

      Introduction to Statistics (15 credits)
      Psychology and Psychopathology (30 credits)
      Perinatal and Infant Mental Health (30 credits)
      Dissertation (60 Credits)

      Optional modules

      The optional modules you can take:

      Psychological Approaches to Treatment (30 credits)
      Twin Model-Fitting (15 credits)
      Genetic Association Analysis (15 credit)
      Qualitative Research: Methods & Practice (15 credits)
      Placements (15 credits)

      King’s College London reviews the modules offered on a regular basis to provide up-to-date, innovative and relevant programmes of study. Therefore, modules offered may change. We suggest you keep an eye on the course finder on our website for updates.

      Please note that modules with a practical component will be capped due to educational requirements, which may mean that we cannot guarantee a place to all students who elect to study this module.

      Employability

      In addition to the core teaching, the optional module selection, the optional placement experience and dissertation project, the course provides opportunities to develop your knowledge into different interests and career pathways. This may help you to prepare to study a PhD in a subject such as Psychology, Statistical or Behavioural Genetics, or a Doctorate in Clinical Psychology. It will also help you to pursue employment in professional settings where subject knowledge is central to your work, e.g. in a science or academic career or in clinical settings. You will also develop skills to take up employment in other settings, particularly in working with children and young people where knowledge of mental health problems and therapies are required. These could be employment in social care settings eg welfare officers in youth organisations, schools and community centers; as family support workers; or employment in the public sector, e.g. police consultant, parliamentary officer of science and technology. You may also enter employment where subject knowledge is important to succeed in the job, but not the primary activity, e.g. employment in science communication/media within organisations involved with communicating health problems in young people to increase understanding of public awareness. Or, where learning from the degree is applied more broadly, e.g. role in government office of statistics; fundraiser for charity, genetic counsellor, science editor, industry professional.

      Tuition Fees

      UK:

      Full time: £14,070 per year (2022/23)

      Part time: N/A

      International:

      Full time: £32,940 per year (2022/23)

      Part time: N/A

      These tuition fees may be subject to additional increases in subsequent years of study, in line with King’s terms and conditions.

      Deposit

      When you receive an offer for this course you will be required to pay a non-refundable deposit to secure your place. The deposit will be credited towards your total fee payment.

      The UK deposit is £500.

      The INTERNATIONAL deposit is £2,000.

      • If you receive an offer on or before 31 March, payment is due by 25 April 2022.
      • If you receive an offer between 1 April and 30 June, payment is due within one month of receiving the offer.
      • If you receive an offer between 1 July and 31 July, payment is due within two weeks of receiving the offer.
      • If you receive an offer between 1 August and 21 August, payment is due within one week of receiving the offer.
      • If you receive an offer from 22 August onwards, payment is due within three days of receiving the offer.

      If you are a current King’s student in receipt of the King's Living Bursary you are not required to pay a deposit to secure your place on the programme. Please note, this will not change the total fees payable for your chosen programme.

      Additional Costs

      In addition to your tuition costs, you can also expect to pay for:

      • Books if you choose to buy your own copies
      • DBS checks although you can apply to the course to have the cost reimbursed once enrolled
      • Clothing for optional course related events and competitions
      • Library fees and fines
      • Personal photocopies
      • Printing course handouts
      • Society membership fees
      • Stationery 
      • Graduation costs
      • Travel costs for travel around London and between campuses

      Funding

      Application closing date guidance

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