Psychology BSc (Hons)

4 years including placement year, starting in September 2018

Gain a solid grounding across the discipline with a focus on biological, clinical, cognitive, health and social psychology.

This course offers the rigour of a science degree, with insights into every aspect of psychology recognised by the British Psychological Society.

In Year 1, you will gain an understanding of basic concepts, methods and theories in psychology. In Year 2, you will cover the core areas of psychology and be introduced to research methods and project work. You will be trained in experimental methods, questionnaire research and qualitative analysis.

Optional units enable you to study topics that are not always found in psychology degrees. These include health psychology and clinical psychopathology, as well as units from other subjects.

In your final year, you’ll complete a research project and select optional units relating to the current research interests of academic staff.

Course structure

This course lasts 4 years. It starts in September 2018 and ends in 2022. Induction week starts on 24 September 2018.

Occasionally we make changes to our programmes in response to, for example, feedback from students, developments in research and the field of studies, and the requirements of accrediting bodies. You will be advised of any significant changes to the advertised programme, in accordance with our Terms and Conditions.

  • Year 1
  • Year 2
  • Placement
  • Year 4


As part of your course, you will take compulsory units covering key concepts. You may also be able to take optional units which assist you in developing your own interests.

You need to take 60 credits in each year of your course (usually split equally into 30 credits for each semester), so the number of optional units you can take depends on the number of compulsory units in each year of the course.

Six credits are the equivalent of at least 120 hours of study, including contact time with staff and independent study.

Compulsory course units

These compulsory units are currently being studied by our students, or are proposed new units.


We are one of very few UK degree courses in psychology to offer a placement opportunity that is for an academic year. In the placement year, you’ll apply the theory you have learnt in a practical context.

You will learn about an organisation and its area of work. This is an excellent opportunity to test potential career paths. You’ll develop skills such as teamwork, planning, problem-solving, decision making and project management. Employers value a year of professional work and you’ll gain an advantage in the job market.

Our students have taken placements at: the Centre for Research in Autism and Education, the National Crime Agency, Inspectorate of Prisons, Great Ormond Street Hospital, Institute of Child Health and also universities in the United States, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa.

Placement opportunities may not be guaranteed. Read more about placements or view an overview video.

Learning and assessment


  • Lectures
  • Practical sessions
  • Seminars
  • Tutorials
  • Workshops


  • Coursework
  • Dissertation
  • Essay
  • Multiple choice examination
  • Oral assessment
  • Written examination
  • Other

Contact time with staff

In your first year, you should expect to spend 19% of your time in a lecture or seminar setting and 81% of your time in independent study. Your unit option choices will determine your future contact hours.

Find out more about contact time with staff

Professional accreditations

By studying a course with a professional accreditation, you could have the chance to get workplace experience, learn about new developments in the industry and apply for membership with the accrediting body. You may also be able to apply for jobs in the industry without having to do any more exams.

“The placement has really helped me develop as a person, I feel a lot more confident now going out into the real world and applying for jobs.”
Gabrielle Monnington

BSc Psychology with placement year (2015)

Entry requirements

Your application, especially your personal statement, should explain your motivation for choosing this degree and any relevant non-academic interests and achievements. Your application is more likely to be successful if you demonstrate a strong interest in psychology through relevant reading, extracurricular or co-curricular activities, or work or voluntary experience. We favour applicants who show the ability to critically reflect on their experiences.

Your previous academic study is also important. For example, if you have taken GCSEs then we prefer applicants with a strong set of GCSEs (such as grade A*, 8 or 9 in at least five relevant GCSEs or grade A or 7 in the majority of your GCSEs). We strongly prefer applicants who can demonstrate a solid grounding in mathematics (or statistics), such as those with GCSE grade A or 7 in Mathematics.

We prefer applicants with entry qualifications that demonstrate a high level of study in both essay-based and numeric or analytical subjects. For example, if you are studying qualifications with a narrow range of subjects (such as A levels) we prefer both a mathematical or natural science subject (like Biology) and a humanities or social science subject (like Psychology). If you are taking a qualification which includes a wider range of subjects (such as the International Baccalaureate Diploma) it is likely you have studied the desired breadth of subjects.

Preferred subjects include:

  • Anthropology
  • Biology
  • Chemistry
  • Economics
  • English
  • Geography
  • Geology
  • History
  • Mathematics
  • Philosophy
  • Physics
  • Politics
  • Psychology
  • Sociology
  • Statistics

If you are taking A levels, we may be unable to consider an A level in your own language (unless it is English or Welsh). We do not accept A levels in General Studies. Your offer can include A level Mathematics or Further Mathematics, but not both. If you are taking a GCE A level in a science subject, you will need to pass any separate science practical endorsement.


Select the country where your qualification comes from.

United Kingdom qualifications

Typical offer A level


A*AA in 3 A level subjects.

A level subjects that will not be considered in your application

A level General Studies will not be considered. We may be unable to consider an A level in your own language (unless it is English or Welsh). Offers can include Mathematics or Further Mathematics but not both.

Alternative offer A level


AAA plus one of the following:

  • grade A in an EPQ
  • grade B in the Welsh Baccalaureate Skills Challenge Certificate
  • grade M1 in Cambridge Pre-U Global Perspectives

Students presenting with one of the above project qualifications should receive both the typical offer and the alternative.

Desirable skills or experience

Your personal statement is a chance to tell us why you want to study Psychology and give us any other information that you feel might be useful to us when we are considering your application. There is no one 'correct' way to write a personal statement but we will be looking for you to critically reflect on any experiences you have had that demonstrate your interest in and commitment to Psychology. Examples can include work experience or volunteering, additional qualifications or research, and extra-curricular activities and achievements.

Typical offers for other qualifications

International Baccalaureate

36 points overall and 7, 6, 6 in 3 Higher Level subjects.

Access to HE Diploma

Typical offer:
Pass the Access to HE Diploma, with at least 39 credits achieved at Distinction.

You must achieve at least 6 credits from Level 3 Mathematics units at Pass or higher, or an A grade in GCSE Mathematics.

We are able to consider the Access to HE Diploma for entry. We are looking for you to demonstrate a high academic standard, and provide evidence of a strong interest in Psychology demonstrated by extra-curricular activity, research or work experience. We are also looking for your Access to HE Diploma qualification to include units in relevant subject areas, such as Social Sciences and Natural Sciences.

You must achieve an A grade at GCSE Maths OR have completed at least 6 units of Level 3 Maths awarded at Pass or higher. We will also typically be looking for you to have achieved a minimum grade B in GCSE English, and preference will be shown to students who have achieved a grade A or higher. If you do not have this grade, please get in contact with us to discuss this before applying.

If your Access to HE Diploma qualification is in Humanities or Social Science, we would typically only be able to consider your application if you have strong existing GCSE performance in core science subjects (Biology, Chemistry, Physics), or equivalent qualifications.

Please note that you may be asked to submit a relevant piece of marked coursework for consideration.


Typical offer:
D*D*D* in a BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma (QCF)/ BTEC Level 3 National Extended Diploma (RQF) in a relevant subject area.

We are able to consider the above BTEC qualifications in a relevant subject area. Where possible, we are looking for your BTEC qualification to include units in both Natural Sciences and Social Sciences.

If your BTEC qualification is humanities-focused, we would typically only be able to consider your application if you have strong existing GCSE performance in core science subjects (Biology, Chemistry, Physics), or equivalent qualifications. If your BTEC qualification is science-focused, we would typically only be able to consider your application if you have strong existing GCSE performance in core essay-based and humanities subjects, or equivalent qualifications.

See the ‘Combinations of qualifications’ section for information about combinations of A level and BTEC qualifications that we can consider.

Cambridge Pre-U

Typical offer:
D2, D3, D3

Preference for a combination of scientific or numerical subjects and essay-based humanities or social sciences.

Alternative offer:
D3, D3, D3 plus one of the following:

  • grade A in an EPQ
  • grade B in the Welsh Baccalaureate Skills Challenge Certificate
  • grade M1 in Cambridge Pre-U Global Perspectives

Students presenting with one of the above project qualifications should receive both the typical offer and the alternative.

Open University Credits

Typically, we would be looking for you to have studied units worth at least 120 credits, including at least 30 credits at Level 2. We would also typically be looking for applicants to have achieved a grade A in GCSE English and a grade A in GCSE Mathematics.

This information is a guide and all students applying with Open University Credits will be considered on a case-by- case basis. We will consider your application carefully and take note of any previous qualifications or relevant work experience. Please contact us to discuss your profile prior to making an application.

Typical offer:
Pass units worth 120 credits, including a minimum of a Pass 2 with 80% in a relevant Level 2 unit.

Please note that taking OU credits may be counted as degree-level study by the Student Loans Company and therefore may be counted as previous study and have an impact on your ability to access student loans/grants for the entirety of your chosen degree. We recommend that you discuss this in detail with the SLC before following this progression route to the University of Bath.

Scottish Highers

Typical offer:
AA in Advanced Highers plus AAAAA in Scottish Highers.

Preference for a combination of scientific or numerical subjects and essay-based humanities or social sciences.

Combinations of qualifications

Your application will be considered individually based on the particular combination of qualifications and subjects that you are taking.

We can consider combinations of accepted qualifications, such as A levels and a BTEC.

  • A*A at A level plus grade D in the BTEC Subsidiary Diploma (QCF)/National Extended Certificate (RQF) OR the Cambridge Technical Introductory Diploma (QCF)/Cambridge Technical Extended Certificate (RQF).
  • A*A at A level plus D3 in a Pre-U Principal Subject.
  • A*A at A level plus 6 in an IB HL Certificate. While we do not consider the IB Careers Programme for entry, we are able to consider the combinations of components that are typically offered by this route, such as BTEC and IB HL Certificate combinations.
  • A*A at A level excluding Accounting plus A in the IFS Diploma in Financial Studies. While we can consider this qualification as an equivalent to a third A level, please see the information above for guidance about preferred subjects.

We can also consider combinations that are not listed and that do not include A levels. You should read the information about essential and preferred subjects and subject combinations. We cannot consider different qualifications if they are in the same subject area.

Fees and funding

Payment options

You can pay your tuition fees by Direct Debit, debit card, credit card, cheque, bank transfer or cash. You may also be eligible for a student loan to help you pay your fees.

Read more about your payment options.


Your tuition fees and how you pay them will depend on whether you are a Home, EU, Island or Overseas student.

Learn how we decide fee status

Tuition fees

See the most recent fees for undergraduate courses.

Placement fees

Placement fees vary

You will normally pay a reduced tuition fee while on a placement period or studying abroad. Find out more about placement fees and study abroad fees.

Extra costs

The following course-related costs are not included in your fees:

Optional field course to the Gower

Approximately £300 payable in your second year.

Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check, dependent on the nature of your placement

Approximately £50 payable in your third year.


You will need to budget at least £100 for the cost of photocopying, printing and binding. You will also need to budget for the cost of text books.

Some courses involve visits away from campus and you may be required to pay some or all of the costs of travel, accommodation and food and drink.

If you’re on a placement, you’re responsible for your own travel, accommodation and living costs. You should also consider the financial implications if you go on an unpaid or overseas placement.

Application information

  • Course title
  • Final award
    BSc (Hons)
  • Mode of study
  • Course code
  • Institution code
  • UK/EU application deadline
    15 January 2018
  • Overseas deadline
    15 January 2018
  • Application eligibility
    UK and Overseas students are eligible to apply

Course enquiries

Undergraduate Selection

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