Psychological Approaches to Health MSc

Year of entry

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Start date
September 2024
Delivery type
On campus
12 months full time
Entry requirements
A bachelor degree with a 2:1 (hons) in psychology or related subject.
Full entry requirements
English language requirements
IELTS 6.5 overall, with no less than 6.0 in any component
UK fees
£13,500 (Total)
International fees
£31,000 (Total)

Course overview

Students in classroom

This course combines the application of psychological theory with current research to improve health and healthcare delivery. Psychological Approaches to Health (MSc) is ideal for those students inspired by psychology and wanting to pursue a career in psychology, health promotion, research or healthcare.

Areas you’ll explore more in-depth include:

  • Obesity.
  • Medical error.
  • Behaviour change and psychological wellbeing.
  • Impact of new health interventions.
  • The effects of multidisciplinary teamwork in healthcare.
  • Concerns of healthcare delivery such as patient safety, government policy and economics.

The course draws on theories derived primarily from health and social psychology but also cognitive, biological and clinical psychology. The topics delivered will develop your understanding and knowledge of how to promote healthy behaviours and reduce unhealthy behaviours, issues around patient safety such as the causes and consequences of medical error, as well as obesity, weight loss, malnutrition and anorexia of ageing.

You will also develop a range of statistical, methodological and practical skills around systematic reviewing of evidence from primary studies and conducting health-related studies/experiments, as well as transferable skills including critical thinking, team working and communication.

The course will be delivered through interactive seminars, practicals, tutorials, lectures and group/problem-based learning approaches.

You'll be taught and supervised by subject experts at the forefront of current research, actively publishing in their areas of expertise. This gives you the opportunity to learn from those currently working with the NHS, industry, and charities to improve health outcomes.

We offer high quality research-led teaching and you’ll be actively encouraged to engage in ongoing research. Much of this research is collaborative with government departments, research councils, the NHS and industry.

We offer a lively learning environment with modern facilities for teaching and research, which aims to produce graduates equipped with current knowledge and the ability to apply this to key health issues.


We have over 70 members of academic, research and support staff, including 12 professors. The School is renowned for high quality research, much of it in collaboration with government departments, research councils, the NHS and industry.

The School of Psychology has excellent facilities to support your learning and allow you to participate and conduct novel research. We have dedicated computer laboratories, EEG equipment for measuring the brain's electrical activity, the human appetite research unit with its state-of-the-art facilities and exceptionally well-resourced libraries, giving you access to contemporary research outputs within the discipline.

In addition to this there is a wide range of other specialised equipment to support research and teaching. We offer a lively learning environment with modern facilities for teaching and research and a comfortable student lounge. The size of the School and range of its activities combine to provide a varied and exciting environment in which to study and work.

Course details

Course structure

The list shown below represents typical modules/components studied and may change from time to time. Read more in our terms and conditions.

For more information and a full list of typical modules available on this course, please read Psychological Approaches to Health MSc in the course catalogue

Year 1 compulsory modules

Module Name Credits
Advanced Research Issues in Psychology 15
MSc Research Project 60
Health Behaviour Change: Theories, Methods and Interventions 15
Psychology of Patient Safety 15
Systematic Review 30
Theory and Intervention in Food and Nutrition 15
Advanced Research Methods 30

Learning and teaching

The course incorporates a range of teaching methods including workshops, presentations, problem solving approaches and small group discussions, alongside traditional lecture and seminar formats.

We expect our students to spend the remainder of their study time in independent learning, guided by reading lists and assessments.

As part of ongoing developments within the course we are increasing the level of co-creation within our modules, allowing you to focus on aspects of particular interest supported by our academics. The School offers many opportunities for you to engage with contemporary psychology, including attending seminars by guest speakers and by volunteering for short-term research posts.

There are a number of volunteering opportunities to get involved in with such as our Peer Mentoring Scheme, PsychU (widening access for schools). Other examples include our school magazine 'Psynapse', course representation and the Leeds University Union Psychology Society. All these volunteering activities are HEAR (Higher Education Achievement Record) recognised, meaning that a certificate is issued at graduation. Find out more about our societies.

On this course you’ll be taught by our expert academics, from lecturers through to professors. You may also be taught by industry professionals with years of experience, as well as trained postgraduate researchers, connecting you to some of the brightest minds on campus.


You’ll be assessed through innovative forms of assessment such as group work, short reports, individual and group presentations, research and clinical protocols, case studies, systematic reviews and research projects alongside exams and essays to develop your skills, with increasing emphasis on authentic, flexible and co-created assessments as we develop our course in line with the University of Leeds’s new student education strategy.

This range of assessments is designed to assess your understanding and application of psychology. You'll also develop your essential workplace skills, engage with central aspects of the discipline to analyse and synthesise contemporary research-based knowledge and present it in a coherent manner in a variety of formats.

Using this range of assessment methods allows us to use tasks that are suitable for the learning outcomes of specific modules, and to keep you enthused and excited by the approaches employed.


Entry requirements

A bachelor degree with a 2:1 (hons) in psychology or a discipline containing a substantial amount of psychology and research methods training. In addition, successful applicants will normally have at least a UK upper second class grade or equivalent in research methods-related modules taken as part of their undergraduate degree.

We accept a range of international equivalent qualifications. For information contact the School of Psychology Taught Postgraduate Admissions Team.

English language requirements

IELTS 6.5 overall, with no less than 6.0 in any component. For other English qualifications, read English language equivalent qualifications.

Improve your English

International students who do not meet the English language requirements for this programme may be able to study our postgraduate pre-sessional English course, to help improve your English language level.

This pre-sessional course is designed with a progression route to your degree programme and you’ll learn academic English in the context of your subject area. To find out more, read Language for Science (6 weeks) and Language for Science: General Science (10 weeks)

We also offer online pre-sessionals alongside our on-campus pre-sessionals. Find out more about our six week online pre-sessional.

You can also study pre-sessionals for longer periods – read about our postgraduate pre-sessional English courses.

How to apply

The ‘Apply’ link at the top of this page takes you to information on applying for taught programmes and to the University's online application system.

If you're unsure about the application process, contact the admissions team for help.

Application deadline

International applications - 31 March 2024

The Psychological Approaches to Health is a very popular programme. We strongly encourage you to apply as soon as possible to have the best chance of securing an offer as applications are processed on a first come first served basis.

Please see our Taught Admissions Policy here.

Read about visas, immigration and other information in International students. We recommend that international students apply as early as possible to ensure that they have time to apply for their visa.

Admissions policy

University of Leeds Admissions Policy 2025

This course is taught by

School of Psychology

Contact us

School of Psychology Taught Postgraduate Admissions Team



UK: £13,500 (Total)

International: £31,000 (Total)

Read more about paying fees and charges.

For fees information for international taught postgraduate students, read Masters fees.

Additional cost information

There may be additional costs related to your course or programme of study, or related to being a student at the University of Leeds. Read more on our living costs and budgeting page.

Scholarships and financial support

If you have the talent and drive, we want you to be able to study with us, whatever your financial circumstances. There may be help for students in the form of loans and non-repayable grants from the University and from the government.  Find out more at Masters funding overview.

International support

International students may be eligible to apply for our Psychology International Excellence Scholarship, which supports international students to fulfil their academic potential, and contribute to the social and cultural diversity of our student community.

Career opportunities

This course was designed to be versatile and opens up a range of career paths for our graduates.

It is highly suitable for students wishing to pursue a research-oriented path, as the MSc course forms a sound basis for further PhD study.

The wide coverage of cognition and its development in healthy and clinical groups supports paths into careers including clinical and educational psychology.

Careers support

The School of Psychology organises several careers events throughout your time at Leeds. You’ll also have a personal tutor, who can offer support and guidance about careers, as well as having access to a wide range of psychology specific careers events held in the School.

We encourage you to prepare for your career from day one. That’s one of the reasons Leeds graduates are so sought after by employers.

The Careers Centre and staff in your faculty provide a range of help and advice to help you plan your career and make well-informed decisions along the way, even after you graduate. Find out more about Careers support.