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Psychiatric Research MSc

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Join us for Mental Health in the 21st Century, a series of online lectures hosted by the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology & Neuroscience.

We are proud to have been awarded IoPPN Excellence Awards for student satisfaction in the Postgraduate Taught Education Survey (PTES) for the last 3 years

The MSc in Psychiatric Research provides in-depth training in how to perform and evaluate research across the psychiatric disorders. Emphasis is placed on building excellent academic skills, independent thinking and an evidence-based scientific approach to mental health research. During the MSc, students develop a deep understanding of what is currently known about psychiatric disorders and their treatment and how well performed research can enhance knowledge and ultimately improve clinical outcomes.


Key benefits 

  • In-depth, practical and theoretical knowledge on performing, interpreting and applying psychiatric research in mental health.
  • Development of statistical, critical, creative and academic writing skills.
  • Taught by academics who perform world- leading psychiatric research.
  • Optional voluntary clinical placement scheme


To help you get the most out of this course, we make your learning interactive. Not only will you join us at lectures, you’ll explore ideas and discuss research at seminars, tutorials and computer lab sessions too.  

Our small class sizes might seem intimidating at first. But with a friendly community around you, you’ll quickly realise that everyone is open to hearing different opinions and learning from others' experiences.  

We’re confident this style of teaching works because our students consistently rate the course highly.  

Key information

Application status Open

Duration One year FT & Two years PT

Study mode Full-time, Part-time

Credit value UK 180/ECTS 90

Course intake 30 FT expected.

Course leaders

Dr Alice Egerton

Email: alice.egerton@kcl.ac.uk or AP-PGTsupport@kcl.ac.uk

Further details

Course contact for further information

Programme Administrator - +44 (0)20 7848 0497 E - AP-PGTsupport@kcl.ac.uk 

Course contact form Postgraduate admissions

Awarding institution King's College London

Faculty Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology & Neuroscience

Department Department of Psychosis Studies Division of Academic Psychiatry



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Course detail


Research into mental health disorders combines expertise from a vast number of areas, so students join us from psychology, neuroscience, pharmacology, medicine and more.  

At King’s College London, our experts will give you a unique insight into the complex world of mental health. Many of the teaching team are active researchers uncovering the causes of disorders and finding treatments, others work in clinical settings with patients.  

At the same time, you’ll have the chance to apply your skills in the real world. Partnering with South London and the Maudsley (SLaM) NHS Foundation Trust, we’re able to organise a range of placements. The Trust is the largest in the UK and provides a full range of mental health services for people of all ages.  

You’ll also join an IoPPN team to carry out your own original research project. This gives you the chance to put your statistical skills into action and delve into an area that interests you. You can find a list of publications from previous students’ work on our department webpage.  

“The programme is hosted by the Department of Psychosis Studies so many module leaders are working within the area of schizophrenia. But members of the team also focus on biological causes of illness, treatment for disorders and prevention in young people” 

Dr Alice Egerton, Course Leader


Course format and assessment

You will be taught through a mix of lectures, seminars and tutorials. 


Research Methods, Ethics & Statistics in Mental Health 

Lectures (66 hours) | Seminars/Tutorials (66 hours) | Self-Study time (468 hours) 

Biological Psychiatry 

Lectures (40 hours) | Seminars/Tutorials (20 hours) | Self-Study time (240 hours)

Therapeutic Research in Psychiatry  

Lectures (40 hours) | Seminars/Tutorials (20 hours) | Self-Study time (240 hours)

Research Dissertation

Lectures (0 hours) | Seminars/Tutorials (10 hours) | Self-Study time (590 hours)

Clinical Placement 

Variable hours 

Contact time is based on 28 academic weeks. Full-time students (completing the course in one year) receive lectures two days per week for 23 weeks. The remainder of the time is spent on self-study, course-work, the dissertation project, and optional clinical placement.


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.

Typically, one credit equates to 10 hours of work.



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


Extra information

King’s College London is regulated by the Office for Students.

Other related courses:

Mental Health Studies 

Early Intervention in Psychosis 

Organsational Psychiatry & Psychology 


Year 1

Required Modules

Courses are divided into modules. Each year you will normally take modules totalling 180 credits.

You are required to take:

  • Research Methods, Ethics & Statistics in Mental Health (60 credits)*
  • Biological Psychiatry (30 credits)
  • Research Dissertation (60 credits)*
  • *For part-time students these modules are spread over a two year period. 


Required modules: PGCert Psychiatric Research
Students on the PGCert Psychiatric Research are required to take: (60 credits) 

  • Research Methods, Ethics & Statistics in Mental Health (60 credits)
Optional Modules

In addition, you have a range of optional modules with no credit rating that may typically include:

  • Clinical Placements in Psychiatric Research (O Credits)
  • Big Data in Mental Health Research (0 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.

Year 2

Required Modules

You are required to take the following modules:

  • Research Methods, Ethics & Statistics in Mental Health (60 credits)*
  • Therapeutic Research in Psychiatry (30 credits)
  • Research Dissertation (60 credits)*
*For part-time students these modules are spread over a two year period.
Optional Modules

Entry requirements & how to apply

Psychiatric Research
Minimum UK requirements 2:1 Bachelor’s degree with 2:1 honours in a relevant subject (e.g. psychology, neuroscience, pharmacology, social science or health science); or a registrable qualification appropriate to the programme in medicine; or a professional mental health qualification. A 2:2 degree will be considered only where applicants also offer a Masters with Merit in a related subject.
International requirements   Visit our admissions webpages to view our International entry requirements.
English Language requirements Band D Visit our admissions webpages to view our English language entry requirements.


Application procedure

Applications must be made online using King’s online application portal apply.kcl.ac.uk and a non-refundable application fee of £70 applies.

Selection is made on the basis of application and references. Potential students are welcome to visit the department: please arrange a suitable time in advance.

Personal statement and supporting information

You will be asked to submit the following documents in order for your application to be considered:

Psychiatric Research checklist
Personal Statement Yes A personal statement of up to 4,000 characters (maximum 2 pages) is required. Please detail your reasons for applying for the programme and your future goals. 
Research Proposal No A Research Proposal is not required as part of the application.
Previous Academic Study Yes A copy (or copies) of your official academic transcript(s), showing the subjects studied and marks obtained. If you have already completed your degree, copies of your official degree certificate will also be required. Applicants with academic documents issued in a language other than English, will need to submit both the original and official translation of their documents.
References Yes One academic reference is required. A professional reference will be accepted if you have completed your qualifications over five years ago.
Other Yes Please also include a CV with details of your clinical experience.



A Disclosure & Barring Service (DBS) check (formerly known as a criminal records bureau check) may be required during your programme, depending on project work. 

Application closing date

We recommend that you submit your application as soon as possible. Our first application deadline is the 26th March 2021. After this date, the programme will remain open only if places are still available and will be closed as soon as it is full.
For programmes that remain open beyond this date, the final application deadlines for the following fee statuses are listed below:

  • EU or overseas (international) fee status: 30th July 2021

  • Home fee status: 27th August 2021

Please note, you will not be eligible for an application fee refund if you apply after the first application deadline in March, and we are unable to process more offers as places are filled before the final application deadlines above.

Help and support

If you don't have a suitable qualification for direct entry to a UK university, or if English isn't your first language, our academic preparation courses can help you get ready for study in the UK.

Preparation courses

Fees and funding

  • Full time Home fees: MSc £13,380 per year (2021/22); PGCert £2,230 per year (2021/22)
  • Full time overseas fees: MSc £31,350 per year (2021/22); PGCert £5,225 (2021/22)
  • Part time Home fees: MSc £6,690 per year (2021/22); PGCert £2,230 per year (2021/22)
  • Part time overseas fees: MSc £15,675 per year (2021/22); PGCert £5,225 (2021/22)

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


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 31st March, payment is due by 30th April 2021.

  • If you receive an offer between 1st April and 30th June, payment is due within one month of receiving the offer.

  • If you receive an offer between 1st July and 31st July, payment is due within two weeks of receiving the offer.

  • If you receive an offer on or after 1st August, payment is due within one week of receiving the offer.

  • If you receive an offer from late August onwards, payment is due within 2 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/expenses

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

  • books if you choose to buy your own copies
  • clothing for optional course related events and competitions
  • library fees and fines 
  • personal photocopies
  • printing course handouts 
  • society membership fees
  • stationery
  • travel costs for travel around London and between campuses
  • graduation costs

Financial help and support

Visit the fees and funding webpages to find out more about bursaries, scholarships, grants, tuition fees, living expenses, student loans and other financial help available at King's.

Career prospects

Some graduates work in clinical care or secure psychologist posts, while others work in academic research. In fact, a number of current IoPPN staff and PhD students are graduates from this MSc.  

Throughout the course, you’ll have the opportunity to hear from King’s graduates and PhD students to find out what career path they decided to take and what their day-to-day responsibilities involve.  

Whatever you decide to do next, we’re here to give you the support you need – whether that’s help writing your CV or guidance completing a PhD/DClinPsy applications.

Career destinations

  • MRC-funded PhD studentship at King’s College London

  • ESRC-funded PhD studentship at King’s College London

  • Doctorate in Clinical Psychology student

  • Research worker position at King’s College London

  • Research worker position at University College London

  • Assistant psychologist within South London and Maudsley NHS Trust


Blue box with King's College London rankings. Starting with, 7th in the UK for research quality. Followed by, 6th in the UK for research power. Concluding with, 4th among multi-faculty universities for research Impact. The source is research excellence framework 2014

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