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Course: MSc Community Psychology * Subject to Validation*

Organised by: Bucks New University

: One Year full-time, two years part-time

Start Dates: January and September

Attendance: Two days per week full-time, one day per week part-time

Venue: High Wycombe Campus
Cost: available on request

Key Contact: Dr Nadia Wager. Tel: Email:
Key Contact: Dr Anne Chappell Tel:

Is this course suitable for me?
This course is of interest to anyone currently practising (or aspiring to practise) psychology in local government, social services, voluntary and NGOorganisations, clinical psychologists, counselling psychologists and other mental health professionals wishing to broaden their areas of expertise, and those interested in developing a career in community health and advocacy.

Particular job roles might include policy developer, researcher, group facilitator, community developer, social advocate, team leader, programme manager or developer, unit manager. These roles will be undoubtedly focus on working with specific groups of people whose lives are affected by issues related to their age (e.g. children, youth or the elderly), disability, mental health, problems associated with substance misuse, homelessness, asylum or refugee status, their experience of interpersonal violence etc.

Community psychology is an internationally recognised sub-discipline of psychology which draws on the discipline of sociology in order to promote the well-being of the community generally. In addition, community psychology focuses on well-being of disadvantaged, marginalised and stigmatised individuals and groups through both ameliorative and transformative actions.

Community participation and positive social change are seen as the means to accomplishing this endeavour. Particular emphasis of the course will be given to the development of skills for designing interventions, raising awareness and evaluating initiatives.

Community psychology draws upon critical, liberal, feminist and human rights perspectives, along with the emerging discipline of positive psychology and is concerned with political processes and value-based enquiry.

Throughout the programme there will be an emphasis on participative and liberatory action research with local people. The students will be encouraged to develop an ecological understanding of social behaviour and experience, which focuses less on individual factors than traditional psychological perspectives and, instead, draws attention to the social context of behaviour.

The programme is informed by the areas of expertise of the lecturing staff in the psychology and sociology teams and covers a range of optional areas of study including disability, victimisation, health etc. The dissertation element of the programme may take the form of a community project which will permit the students to actively combine a critical theoretical analysis with reflexive experiential work.

There will thee exit points from the programme:

  • Postgraduate certificate in community psychology (60 credits)
  • Postgraduate diploma in community psychology (120 credits)
  • MSc in Community Psychology
Postgraduate certificate in community psychology (60 credits)
  • Community Psychology
  • Individual and Community or Qualitative and Quantitative Research Methods
Postgraduate diploma in community psychology (120 credits)
  • Community Psychology
  • Individual and Community
  • Qualitative and Quantitative Research Methods
  • One 30 credit option module or two 15 credit option modules
MSc in Community Psychology will be awarded on successful completion of the requirements for the postgraduate diploma above and a 60 credit dissertation.ContentThe course aims to develop reflexive practitioners in community settings with the knowledge and skills to facilitate positive change for their client group. The focus of the course for the students will be on forging a new identity as a ?community psychologist? and understanding of the principals, values and norms of being a socially responsible social scientist. All students will undertake core modules in research methods, community psychology and individuals and community, as well undertaking a dissertation. There will also be a choice of optional modules in areas that may include;
  • Psychological processes of aging well
  • Behavioural Community Psychology
  • Health and Well-Being within Communities
  • Positive Psychology for Individuals and Communities
  • Exploring Sexual Violence: Causes, consequences and interventions
  • Domestic Violence: Causes, Consequences and interventions.

This programme is designed to be flexible, with blended-learning methods being used on some of the modules.Entry requirementsApplicants would normally have achieved 2.1 in a social science degree.

Alternatively, candidates with professional qualifications and directly relevant work experience may be considered.For non-native speakers of English: IELTS 6.0 overall, 6.0 in writing.

A first degree in psychology is not a pre-requisite.

How to make an application: Follow the details on this page.


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