This course is also available as a Distance Learning Option.
The Psychological Therapies MSc is suitable for those working with people with mental health problems, or with organisations that provide care, commissioning or policies on mental health care. Most students are working with those affected by poor mental health and are graduates from psychology, medicine, social work, criminal justice or nursing. However, students come from various other fields such as administration, voluntary sector work, media, human resources and industry. Although not a clinically accredited course, most students pursue a clinical training following this MSc programme, though some will enter research careers, policy work, management, or senior clinical practice.
This course equips students with knowledge assessing mental health problems and understanding their origins and how to help recovery. Students learn about psychological therapies including individual cognitive behaviour therapies, cognitive analytic therapies, psychodynamic therapies, as well as group and family therapies. Students undertake some supervised practice during placements for which they apply during the course. Students become skilled in communicating and presenting their ideas in written and oral form. Students become knowledgeable and experienced in assessing poor mental health and deciding which interventions may be helpful, and knowing more about which therapies might work for whom. In addition, during the experiential groups and clinical placements they become more mindful and experienced in working with emotional, behavioural and psychological distress. Students learn about research and undertake an original research project.
There are three overall learning objectives for students:
- Learn about assessing mental health problems and understanding their origins and how to help recovery
- Learn about which psychological therapies are effective and for whom, and actively participate in some supervised clinical work
- Learn about research methods and deliver an original research project.
The Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2014 results have shown that Queen Mary University of London has risen to 9th place among multi-faculty institutions in the UK.
The Centre for Psychiatry was ranked 5th in the Research Excellence Framework 2014 for research on public health, health services and primary care.
Module Lead & Lecturer
Further Information on general course queries and applications
0207 882 2013
Rehana Patel, Business Administrator
0207 882 2038
Detailed programme information can also be found on:
For detailed information please see attached Postgraduate Academy, Mental Health programme brochure
Mental Health: Psychological Therapies is available to study to MSc, PGDip or PGCert level.
The MSc programme consists of three modules. Completion of the first module is accredited for exit with a PGCert in : Advanced Skills in Mental Health. Completion of the first two modules permits exit with a PGDip in mental health: psychological therapies. Completion of all three modules, leads to the MSc award.
In term 1, students take the 1st module: Advanced Skills in Mental Health. In term 2, students take the 2nd module: Psychological Therapies and in term 3 students take the 3rd module: Applied Research Methods.
Each module consists of 12 weeks of teaching and assessment, with one core taught day each week, for which onsite students are required to be on campus. Distance learning students meet for half a day each week in online group tutorials, facilitated by their tutor.
On teaching days, the structure typically consists of two hours of lectures, five hours of facilitated group work, and one hour of problem-based-learning tutorial.
Period of Study
FULL TIME: PGCert, PGDip and MSc options are available full-time and students complete all study components within one academic year.
PART TIME: Part-time MSc students participate in the first two modules in the same way as the full-time students but for part-time students, module three (the thesis) can be completed over the second year instead of finishing in the first year, allowing additional time and flexibility for conducting research that needs a longer time-frame and for flexibility to pursue other work or commitments
PGCert and PGDip options are not available for applications to study part-time.
We offer a variety of modes of study including full-time and part-time options, giving students many choices to suit their existing workloads and lifestyles. Part-time study is ideal for those with work or other commitments.
Advanced Skills in Mental Health
Advanced Skills in Mental Health prepares students for working with people with complex mental health needs. The ability to safely and accurately assess and identify mental health problems in vulnerable people is a valuable skill for work in psychiatric or psychological services, homelessness agencies, learning disabilities services or forensic services, and legal services. The knowledge and skills acquired in this module will enable you to feel well equipped in understanding the signs, symptoms and labelling strategies used in deciphering complex mental health issues to make you a more effective member of the service team. You will also learn study skills and presentation skills and engage in group learning processes using problem based learning, role plays, and group discussion.
The Psychological Therapies pathway equips students with knowledge about psychological therapies including individual cognitive behaviour therapies, cognitive analytic therapies, psychodynamic therapies, as well as group and family therapies.
Students undertake some supervised practice during placements for which they apply during the course. Students become skilled in communicating and presenting their ideas in written and oral form.
Students become knowledgeable and experienced in deciding which interventions may be helpful, and knowing more about which therapies might work for whom. In addition, during the experiential groups and clinical placements they become more mindful and experienced in working with emotional, behavioural and psychological distress.
These learning processes are strengthened, unique and effective because:
- Placements – learning is enhanced by placements in clinical care. Students secure their own placements to develop skills in brief or long term therapy, under supervision. We have a number of placement partners but you will be required to ensure governance arrangements are in place and that you are working for an established and well supervised service. Please note this course does not equip you to be registered as a psychotherapist in the UK for which you must pursue additional advanced training, but this course does prepare you to enter such a career. This exercise encourages students to independently identify and secure work roles in the field of mental health, prepare CVs, proceed through interviews, and develop some clinical skills before considering more advanced and accredited courses.
- Experiential groups – the first step towards training in psychotherapy of any kind is the ability to observe, reflect, mentalise, and to deal with uncertainty and emotions. The psychological therapies pathway provides students with an experiential group to learn about their own mental life and emotional world and how to deal with uncertainty and worry, in a confidential and safe environment with expert group therapists.
Applied Research Methods
Applied Research Methods is dedicated to learning about research methods, completing an original research project and writing your thesis. You will learn about qualitative and quantitative research methods, systematic reviews, ethics, collecting new data, analysis of the data, and how to write a dissertation.
Example dissertation titles from previous years:
- The Efficacy of Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioural Therapy Versus Eye Movement Desensitization Reprocessing for Children Exposed to Trauma: A Systematic Review of Randomized Controlled Trials
- The Association Between Physical, Sexual, and Psychological Childhood Abuse and the Development of Subsequent Anxiety Disorders: A Systematic Review
- The Severity of Anxiety and Depression in Women Diagnosed with Early Stages of Breast Cancer
- Factors that determine adherence to treatment for individuals with personality disorders – a systematic review.
The MSc is also available via distance learning. The distance learning option operates to the same structure as the on-site programmes, and offers both full-time and part-time study. Distance learners access materials and lectures in an online learning environment, and meet in regular online group tutorials for problem-based learning (PBL), role plays, and other interactive exercises and discussions.
All students will have access to our established E-learning facilities for each module, including: Online Programme Syllabus (student handbook); Tools for e-lecture materials; tools for online PBL materials; tools for submitting online assignments/homework; email; virtual discussion board; virtual classrooms (synchronous); e-calendar Tools for online student feedback. Students will need a standard PC/Mac with access to broadband internet connection, headphones, a microphone and a webcam.
Applicants should have a first degree in a related subject and/or a professional qualification and have worked in the relevant subject area for at least one year. We wish to include people from diverse backgrounds and career pathways especially people working in the independent and voluntary sector and NHS.
Students from outside of the UK help form a global community here at Queen Mary. For detailed country specific entry requirements please visit the International section of our website here. If your first language is not English, you must provide evidence of your English language proficiency.
Find out more about our English language entry requirements.
If you do not meet language or scholarly requirements it might be possible for you to undertake foundation or pre-sessional programmes that will prepare you for the masters programme. For more information, please contact the Admissions Office.
Learning and teaching
As a student at Queen Mary, you will play an active part in your acquisition of skills and knowledge. Teaching is by a mixture of formal lectures and small group seminars. The seminars are designed to generate informed discussion around set topics, and may involve student presentations, group exercise and role-play as well as open discussion. We take pride in the close and friendly working relationship we have with our students. You are assigned an Academic Adviser who will guide you in both academic and pastoral matters throughout your time at Queen Mary.
You will have access to Queen Mary’s comprehensive libraries, including the Postgraduate Reading Room, and The British Library can also be accessed as a research resource. You will have access to a large collection of basic medical and dental texts in the main library at Mile End. The Library is open seven days a week. This resource is complemented by the two large medical and dental archives based at the Royal London and at Barts in older, architecturally distinguished buildings that are well worth a visit just to experience their atmosphere.
The diversity of our student body and our research profile reflects our location in one of the most culturally diverse areas of London.
For further information, you can also visit Barts and The London School of Medicine and Dentistry website.
For every hour spent in classes you will be expected to complete further hours of independent study. Your individual study time could be spent preparing for, or following up on formal study sessions; reading; producing written work; completing projects; and revising for examinations.
The direction of your individual study will be guided by the formal study sessions you attend, along with your reading lists and assignments. However, we expect you to demonstrate an active role in your own learning by reading widely and expanding your own knowledge, understanding and critical ability.
Independent study will foster in you the ability to identify your own learning needs and determine which areas you need to focus on to become proficient in your subject area. This is an important transferable skill and will help to prepare you for the transition to working life.
You will be assessed by a range of methods.
- Module 1: Clinical placement (1), research protocol, oral and written examination.
- Module 2: Clinical placement (2), pilot study, oral and written examination.
- Module 3: Dissertation (10-15,000 words).
Tuition fees for Home and EU students
Full time £6,750
Tuition fees for International students
Full time £14,650
There are a number of sources of funding available for Masters students.
These include a significant package of competitive Queen Mary University of London (QMUL) bursaries and scholarships in a range of subject areas, as well as external sources of funding.
Queen Mary bursaries and scholarships
We offer a range of bursaries and scholarships for Masters students including competitive scholarships, bursaries and awards, some of which are for applicants studying specific subjects.
Find out more about QMUL bursaries and scholarships.
Alternative sources of funding
Home/EU students can apply for a range of other funding, such as Professional and Career Development Loans, and Employer Sponsorship, depending on their circumstances and the specific programme of study.
Overseas students may be eligible to apply for a range of external scholarships and we also provide information about relevant funding providers in your home country on our country web pages.
Download our Postgraduate Funding Guide [PDF] for detailed information about postgraduate funding options for Home/EU students.
Tel: +44 (0)20 7882 5079
Other financial help on offer at Queen Mary
We offer one to one specialist support on all financial and welfare issues through our Advice and Counselling Service, which you can access as soon as you have applied for a place at Queen Mary.
Our Advice and Counselling Service also has lots of Student Advice Guides on all aspects of finance including:
Tel: +44 (0)20 7882 8717