Applied Psychology BSc (Hons)

Study level: Undergraduate
HNC/HND courses
Applied Psychology student writing notes during a therapy session

Psychology is the study of the mind and human behaviour. Applied psychology places particular emphasis on its application in real-life and clinical contexts.

Course option

Year of entry


CU Scarborough (Scarborough)

Study mode



4 years sandwich
3 year - Degree
2 year - HND
1 year - HNC

UCAS codes

C810 / C811 / C812

Start date

June 2024

Course overview

The degree course aims to provide you with a solid grounding for building a career in psychology-related disciplines.

Vocational modules allow you to understand how the key theories of psychology are applied in the professional context, and the course explores the use of psychology in areas such as health, education, sport, forensic, clinical and the law. This allows you to learn about psychology in practice from different perspectives. The opportunities to gain real-world exposure will also be developed across the course through engagement with a variety of psychologists from different fields.

Why you should study this course

  • This course aims to provide you with an understanding of the disciplines found within psychology and an awareness of how these are used when working with clients.
  • Core areas of psychology are incorporated at the appropriate levels, as stipulated by the British Psychological Society (BPS), so that you learn about the historical and philosophical contexts as well as the developmental, social, biological, cognitive and research methodologies in this field.
  • Opportunity to undertake an optional placement or study abroad year2.
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What you'll study

The first year of the degree introduces you to the fundamentals of psychology and its professional application, covering important theoretical and historical issues within the subject as well as notions of the self and identity and vital research techniques. Students who successfully complete year one are eligible for a Higher National Certificate (HNC) in Applied Psychology.


  • This module will introduce you to the significant conceptual and historical issues in psychology, taken from a range of theoretical and applied perspectives. We’ll explore the historical emergence of psychology in the 19th century and its development as an independent discipline, giving you an overview of the key concepts. Philosophical and social influences on the nature and practice of psychology are emphasised, in addition to introducing the current issues and debates in contemporary psychology.


  • This module aims to develop your understanding of both theory and research in developmental psychology and social psychology. We introduce key theories on human development as you examine how psychological processes and challenges change over the life span. The latter section introduces social psychology, the study of the psychological processes that operate when we interact with others and how we behave in groups. This aspect of the module will introduce you to the social and cultural influences on self and identity.


  • Quantitative and qualitative methods of research are vital to progress in psychology.  You will be introduced to the fundamental principles of research design and procedures in data collection (e.g. interview, questionnaire, observation). You'll also learn the basic techniques used in data analysis and laboratory report writing as well as the possible ethical dilemmas that psychology researchers could face.


  • This module will provide you with an introductory understanding of the various fields within psychology such as counselling, clinical, educational, forensic, occupational, sport, and health psychology. We introduce you to the role of psychologists in the wider community and organisational context, laying the foundation for further study as the course progresses.


In the second year, we introduce the notion of personalities and how effective it is to assess the individual. You will explore the brain, hormones and addiction, and engage with psychologists to learn how effective it is to apply theoretical psychology to real-world examples. Year two also builds on research methods taught in year one so that you are prepared for your research project in the final year. Students who successfully complete year two are eligible for a Higher National Diploma (HND) in Applied Psychology.


  • In the field of psychology, the concept of individual differences is viewed as a cornerstone in modern psychology. It examines how people are similar, yet different in their thinking, feeling and behaviour. This module will cover the key concepts in individual and group differences, exploring the different theories and debates within personality and intelligence and the psychological measurement used in establishing individual difference, as well as the strengths and limitations of such psychometric measures.


  • This module introduces the impact of biological processes on health and ill-health. You will study brain structure and function and the possible effects of brain chemicals and drugs on human behaviour alongside the biological bases of human and non-human animal behaviour, behavioural genetics, hormones and behaviour, neuroscience, typical and atypical neuropsychology. Addiction and the role the brain, nervous system and epigenetics play in this issue is also considered.


  • You will examine the constraints of applying theory and laboratory principles to the real world and explore the use and application of psychological practice for individuals as well as groups and organisations, from a local, national and international perspective. Considerations will be made to the ethical, conceptual, cultural and historical aspects of psychology and the strengths and limitations of using psychological theory to answer real world questions. As a key part of the module, you will engage with psychologists in order to inform your assignment on your chosen area of applied psychology, and explore career paths while continuing to develop your skills and interests.


  • This module focuses on advancing the methodological and statistical techniques taught in year one so that you are prepared for your research project in the final year, as well as developing aptitude with statistical analysis software packages. Expanding your knowledge and skills in the analysis and utilisation of quantitative and qualitative data is the primary focus, but ethical issues in psychology and integration across multiple perspectives are all thoroughly considered.


There’s no better way to find out what you love doing than trying it out for yourself, which is why a work placement2 can often be beneficial. Work placements usually occur before your final year of study. They’re a great way to help you explore your potential career path and gain valuable work experience, whilst developing transferable skills for the future.

If you choose to do a work placement year, you will pay a reduced tuition fee3 of £1,250. For more information, please go to the fees and funding section. During this time, you will receive guidance from your employer or partner institution, along with your assigned academic mentor who will ensure you have the support you need to complete your placement.


  • This module2 provides you with an opportunity to reflect upon and gain experience for an approved placement undertaken during your programme. A placement should usually be at least 26 weeks or equivalent; however, each placement will be considered on its own merits, having regard to the ability to achieve the learning outcomes.


  • This module2 provides you with an opportunity to reflect upon and gain experience for an approved international study/work placement undertaken during your programme. A work/study placement should usually be at least 26 weeks or equivalent; however, each placement will be considered on its own merits, having regard to the ability to achieve the learning outcomes.


In the final year of the degree, you will broaden your knowledge of group behaviour to include the workplace and sporting world. Using the lens of the Forensic Psychologist, you will design and carry out a small-scale experimental research study, and through the lens of the Educational Psychologist you will explore the processes involved in perception, learning and thinking. Therapy such as CBT and general mental health is also explored before entering the final section of the degree which comprises an extensive research project. Students who successfully complete year three are awarded a BSc (Hons) in Applied Psychology.


  • This module develops an understanding of both theory and research in social and developmental psychology as used by Occupational Psychologists and Sport Psychologists, considering both social influences and developmental factors in these two areas. It will extend and improve knowledge of social and developmental theories by applying them to new situations such as the workplace and the sporting world, from understanding why bullying behaviour and aggression take place to analysing what creates a winning mentality and lifespan perspectives on such concepts.

    You will evaluate the role of group dynamics, social cohesion and lifespan theories of development in providing explanations for behaviour, while also prompting further questions to be asked.You will also be expected to critically reflect on your own behaviour in group situations and apply this understanding to the relevant vocational contexts in order to synthesise your theoretical and experiential learning.


  • This module will explore cognitive psychology including attention, perception, learning, memory, thinking, problem solving, decision making, metacognition, language, consciousness and cognitive neuropsychology. It will examine information processing in both human and computing contexts, and also provide skills to evaluate task performance in a psychological context.

    You will design and carry out a small-scale experimental research study on memory retention using eyewitness evidence as a starting point. There will be a vocational focus on both Forensic Psychology and Educational Psychology in order to apply knowledge and understanding. Visual and memory processes will be considered from the perspective of Forensic Psychology, evaluating the reliability of eyewitness testimony. Thinking, reasoning and language use will be explored through the lens of an Educational Psychologist, as these processes are particularly relevant to the classroom.


  • Mental health practitioner training programmes provide the knowledge and professional skills for people to work with people with common mental health problems. This module introduces the mental health practitioner role, including the principles of CBT and the behaviour change models that provide the framework which support an integrated approach to the choice and delivery of the interventions they provide. Common mental health problems that are treated by such practitioners will be explored and the main areas of concern relevant to the assessments undertaken.


  • Research in Applied Psychology seeks to solve practical problems. This type of research plays an important role in solving everyday issues that often have an impact on life, health, work and overall well-being. This module will give you the opportunity to undertake a sustained, in-depth research exploration and demonstrate the ability to use research and enquiry skills to collect, analyse and interpret relevant literature and data. You will aim to formulate novel research questions, and test these questions through the application of contemporary psychological methodologies and appropriate data-analytic procedures in order to find solutions to everyday problems.


We regularly review our course content, to make it relevant and current for the benefit of our students. For these reasons, course modules may be updated.

How you'll learn

This course is available as a full-time three-year or optional four-year sandwich course, where you undertake a work placement or study year in a related field2.

Our teaching methods are varied, offering a number of teaching styles to suit the needs of all our students, so in addition to lectures, we also utilise a blended learning approach, including online aspects, workshops and group work. Additional support is available via email and our online learning platform, which is currently Aula.

Progression through the modules develops knowledge and skills, including communication (written and oral), study skills, research methods, project management, presentation and career development. We will also encourage you to consider your employability and/or entrepreneurial development.

Unlike traditional institutions, there are no end of year exams. Instead, learning is assessed through coursework and phase tests, which is more reflective of our learning model.

Teaching contact hours

You can expect up to 20 hours of learning activities per week, made up of face-to-face teaching, individual and group tutorials, online classes and independent learning.

As an innovative and enterprising institution, the university may seek to utilise emerging technologies within the student experience. For all courses (whether on-campus, blended, or distance learning), the university may deliver certain contact hours and assessments via online technologies and methods.

Since COVID-19, we have delivered our courses in a variety of forms, in line with public authority guidance, decisions, or orders and we will continue to adapt our delivery as appropriate. Whether on campus or online, our key priority is staff and student safety.


The learning outcomes of modules, assignments and projects will be clearly stated. Your work will be marked according to how well you achieve these learning outcomes and your final feedback will refer to each outcome, as well as providing an overall percentage grade.

Assessment methods vary and include: practical class and project performance, written practical reports, project thesis, oral presentations, tutorial tasks and assessments which take place at the end of each six-week block.

Course Breakdown:

  • Coursework

The Coventry University Group assessment strategy ensures that our courses are fairly assessed and allows us to monitor student progression towards achieving the intended learning outcomes.

Entry requirements

Typical offer for 2023/24 entry.

Entry level What we're looking for
HNC 64 UCAS tariff points. Minimum 5 GCSEs graded 9-4 / A* - C including Maths and English. Minimum two A2 levels or BTEC equivalent qualification.
HND 80 UCAS tariff points. Minimum 5 GCSEs graded 9-4 / A* - C including Maths and English. Minimum two A2 levels or BTEC equivalent qualification.
Degree 104 UCAS tariff points. Minimum 5 GCSEs graded 9-4 / A* - C including Maths and English. Minimum two A2 levels or BTEC equivalent qualification.

If you do not have the typical entry requirements, we offer a number of programmes to help you secure a place. Successful completion of one of the below programmes guarantees you a place on a degree course with us, subject to meeting specified criteria.

We recognise a breadth of qualifications, speak to one of our advisers today to find out how we can help you.

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Are you eligible for the CU Support Scheme?

We believe every student should have the opportunity to dream big, reach their potential and succeed, regardless of their background.

CU Support Scheme

Entry level What we're looking for
HNC 64 UCAS tariff points. Minimum 5 GCSEs graded 9-4 / A* - C including Maths and English. Minimum two A2 levels or BTEC equivalent qualification.
HND 80 UCAS tariff points. Minimum 5 GCSEs graded 9-4 / A* - C including Maths and English. Minimum two A2 levels or BTEC equivalent qualification.
Degree 104 UCAS tariff points. Minimum 5 GCSEs graded 9-4 / A* - C including Maths and English. Minimum two A2 levels or BTEC equivalent qualification.

Visit our International hub for further advice and guidance on how to apply and travelling to and living in the UK.

We welcome international students from all around the globe. If you are an international student and are interested in applying for a Foundation Year, HNC, HND or Degree course you can do so by completing our online application form.

Once your application form has been processed you will receive the outcome of your application via your given email address.
Please be aware you will need the following information in order to make your application:

  • All academic transcripts
  • Copies of degree/diploma certificates or work reference if employed
  • One academic reference
  • Be trained to English language proficiency level IELTS 6.0
  • Your personal statement
  • Copy of your current passport

English language requirements

  • IELTS: 6.0

If you don't meet the English language requirements, you can achieve the level you need by successfully completing a pre-sessional English programme before you start your course.

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Fees and funding

2023/24 tuition fees.

Student Full-time Part-time
UK, Ireland*, Channel Islands or Isle of Man £7,950 per year Not available
EU £7,950 per year with EU support bursary**
£16,800 per year without EU support bursary**
Not available
International £16,800 per year Not available

For advice and guidance on tuition fees and student loans visit our Undergraduate Finance page and see the university’s Tuition Fee and Refund Terms and Conditions.

We offer a range of international scholarships to students all over the world. For more information, visit our International Scholarships page.

Tuition fees3 cover the cost of your teaching, assessments, facilities and support services. There may be additional costs not covered by this fee such as accommodation and living costs, recommended reading books, stationery, printing and re-assessments should you need them.

If you choose to do a work placement2, you should consider travel and living costs to cover this. There is also a tuition fee3 of £1,250 that will cover your academic support throughout your placement year.

The following are additional costs not included in the tuition fees3:

  • Any optional overseas field trips or visits.
  • Any costs associated with securing, attending or completing a placement (whether in the UK or abroad).

*Irish student fees

The rights of Irish residents to study in the UK are preserved under the Common Travel Area arrangement. If you are an Irish student and meet the residency criteria, you can study in England, pay the same level of tuition fees as English students and utilise the Tuition Fee Loan.

**EU Support Bursary

Following the UK's exit from the European Union, we are offering financial support to all eligible EU students who wish to study an undergraduate or a postgraduate degree with us full-time. This bursary will be used to offset the cost of your tuition fees to bring them in line with that of UK students. Students studying a degree with a foundation year with us are not eligible for the bursary.


Our campus building includes a library, IT suites, mock law court, engineering and science labs, cafe and lots of individual and group study spaces. Next to us is Scarborough’s new leisure village. The complex includes an Olympic legacy swimming pool, sports hall, fitness suite, all weather pitches and the new Scarborough Athletic football ground.

Careers and opportunities

Studying psychology opens up a wealth of opportunity in a diverse and exciting range of fields that can lead to vast employment potential. The British Psychological Society state that there are currently over 750,000 people that work in a psychology-related role in the UK.

Through the analysis of psychology in real-life situations, you will develop key employability skills valued by employers. These include teamwork, independent working, presentation skills, role play, reflection and an ability to articulate complex ideas effectively. In this way, graduates are prepared for a future career in psychology as well as in other areas that require the many and varied skills that this course promotes.

On successful completion of your degree, you should be able to:

  • Critically evaluate the discipline of psychology, with the ability to systematically review and synthesize psychological knowledge, recognise the diversity of psychological functioning and the global, historical and cultural context of human experience.
  • Structure and confidently articulate ideas and information to a range of different audiences, using professional standards and enterprise skills appropriate to the socio-cultural and global contexts and purpose of the communication.
  • Critically evaluate psychological research paradigms, a range of qualitative and quantitative research methodologies, and analyse data, culminating in the successful execution of a research project complying with established ethical standards.
  • Demonstrate a critical understanding of the applications of psychology and approach problem-solving in innovative and creative ways to explain and develop solutions to a range of real-world problems and global contexts.
  • Show a deep understanding and high level of competency in a range of transferable skills, including analysis and interpretation of statistical and other forms of data, digital literacy skills, communicating effectively through scientific argument and the effective sourcing and utilization of ideas and evidence from a wide range of psychological and other scientific sources.
  • Critically reflect on and be self-aware of the achievement of personal and group objectives whilst developing introspection and autonomy in the application of learning.

Where our graduates work

Upon graduation, there are a range of career possibilities. You could continue on to postgraduate study in order to become a chartered psychologist. Other options include becoming a researcher in psychology or careers in an alternate field e.g. occupations within social and welfare settings, law and business, HR and marketing, or childcare, education and health professions. Depending which type of psychology you choose to research in your final year project, you can gain real insights into fields including law, health, business, education, counselling, sport and leisure and more.

How to apply

  • Coventry University together with Coventry University London Campus, CU Coventry, CU London, CU Scarborough and Coventry University Online come together to form part of the Coventry University Group (the “University”) with all degrees awarded by Coventry University. 


    The majority of our courses have been formally recognised by professional bodies, which means the courses have been reviewed and tested to ensure they reach a set standard. In some instances, studying on an accredited course can give you additional benefits such as exemptions from professional exams (subject to availability, fees may apply). Accreditations, partnerships, exemptions and memberships shall be renewed in accordance with the relevant bodies’ standard review process and subject to the university maintaining the same high standards of course delivery.

    2UK and international opportunities

    Please note that we are unable to guarantee any UK or International opportunities (whether required or optional) such as internships, work experience, field trips, conferences, placements or study abroad opportunities and that all such opportunities may be subject to additional costs (which could include, but is not limited to, equipment, materials, bench fees, studio or facilities hire, travel, accommodation and visas), competitive application, availability and/or meeting any applicable travel COVID and visa requirements. To ensure that you fully understand the visa requirements, please contact the International Office.

    3Tuition fees

    The University will charge the tuition fees that are stated in the above table for the first Academic Year of study. The University will review tuition fees each year. For Home Students, if Parliament permit an increase in tuition fees, the University may increase fees for each subsequent year of study in line with any such changes. Note that any increase is expected to be in line with inflation.

    For International Students, we may increase fees each year but such increases will be no more than 5% above inflation. If you defer your course start date or have to extend your studies beyond the normal duration of the course (e.g. to repeat a year or resit examinations) the University reserves the right to charge you fees at a higher rate and/or in accordance with any legislative changes during the additional period of study.


    Facilities are subject to availability. Access to some facilities (including some teaching and learning spaces) may vary from those advertised and/or may have reduced availability or restrictions where the university is following public authority guidance, decisions or orders.

    Student Contract

    By accepting your offer of a place and enrolling with us, a Student Contract will be formed between you and the university. A copy of the 2023/24 contract can be found here. The Contract details your rights and the obligations you will be bound by during your time as a student and contains the obligations that the university will owe to you. You should read the Contract before you accept an offer of a place and before you enrol at the university.

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