PY0776 - MSc Thesis

What will I learn on this module?

In this module, you will be able to independently conceptualise, plan and undertake a novel piece of research that contributes to psychological knowledge and understanding. You will critically evaluate current theories and evidence to generate your own research question. You will use the relevant ethical guidelines to design a feasible project plan. You will develop your independent research skills during this module and identify points of collaboration with supervisors, research staff and other potential stakeholders. You will use a variety of relevant skills, techniques, and research methods to implement your study and finally, you will have the opportunity to disseminate your findings in written form.

How will I learn on this module?

You will engage in an independent piece of psychological research with the support and guidance of an individual supervisor. In semester 1, you will identify a research area of interest. You will meet with your supervisor regularly during Semester 2 to discuss the development of the research. Supervisors will provide guidance with respect to specific skills, techniques, and research methodologies, as well as information relating to ethical issues and processes. In semesters 1 and 2, you will receive further guidance in the form of lectures to support your progress. In Semester 3, you will continue to meet with your supervisor in line with the stage of your study. During this time, supervisors will provide guidance on topics relevant to your stage of progression, such as practical data collection issues or interpretation of findings.

How will I be supported academically on this module?

Scheduled sessions will be provided during Semesters 1 and 2 to support the MSc Thesis. These will include sessions during the Induction period to the allocation of supervisors. You will receive sessions on choosing a thesis topic, managing your progression, ethics, and finalising your thesis. You will also receive information about the thesis process via email, and resources, including assessment information, will be available via the e-learning portal.

What will I be expected to read on this module?

All modules at Northumbria include a range of reading materials that students are expected to engage with. The reading list for this module can be found at:
(Reading List service online guide for academic staff this containing contact details for the Reading List team –

What will I be expected to achieve?

Knowledge & Understanding:
1. Critically evaluate knowledge, theory, and evidence relevant to the psychological discipline of the project.
2. Understand how theory and research can be applied to solutions in real-world contexts.

Intellectual / Professional skills & abilities:
1. Individually conceptualise and plan a psychological research study that addresses a current issue with the clear intention of advancing understanding within the domain.
2. Communicate the findings of the research in written form.

Personal Values Attributes:
1. Recognise and apply the relevant ethical guidelines to the design of a psychology-based research project.

How will I be assessed?

Ethics process: You are required to gain full ethical approval before beginning data collection. Failure to submit the final application for ethical approval to your supervisor by the published deadline will result in 5 marks being deducted from your final mark for the thesis report.

Formative Assessment on Ethics: Regarding ethics, you will receive both written (email) and oral feedback throughout the year from your supervisor.
MLOs: K&U 1, 2; IPSA 1;

Once you have developed and submitted your final ethics application it will be entered into the university ethics process. The ethics review process may require you to adjust your submission further in order to gain ethical approval.

Summative Assessment on Thesis: You will write a thesis in journal submission format of up to approximately 8000 words. Your mark will constitute 100% of the module mark. You are required to gain full ethical approval before beginning data collection.

You will receive individual written feedback on the thesis highlighting strengths and weaknesses of your work, along with areas for improvement.
MLOs: K&U 1, 2; IPSA 1; IPSA 2





Module abstract

The aim of this module is to provide students with an opportunity to undertake an independent piece of psychological research with the support and guidance of an individual supervisor. Students will have the chance to work with state of art facilities in a research-rich environment conceptualising, planning, and implementing a research study of their own. Students will be able to identify and develop their research skills to become more experienced, competent researchers able to communicate their findings in written form. The project represents the degree’s capstone and will enhance employability through gaining diverse skills, including project and time management, planning, problem-solving, working with others, and communication skills.

Course info

Credits 60

Level of Study Postgraduate

Mode of Study 2 years Part Time
1 other options available

Department Psychology

Location City Campus, Northumbria University

City Newcastle

Start September 2024

Fee Information

Module Information

All information is accurate at the time of sharing. 

Full time Courses are primarily delivered via on-campus face to face learning but could include elements of online learning. Most courses run as planned and as promoted on our website and via our marketing materials, but if there are any substantial changes (as determined by the Competition and Markets Authority) to a course or there is the potential that course may be withdrawn, we will notify all affected applicants as soon as possible with advice and guidance regarding their options. It is also important to be aware that optional modules listed on course pages may be subject to change depending on uptake numbers each year.  

Contact time is subject to increase or decrease in line with possible restrictions imposed by the government or the University in the interest of maintaining the health and safety and wellbeing of students, staff, and visitors if this is deemed necessary in future.


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