Work Psychology and Business MSc

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The Aston Work Psychology and Business MSc

Hear from Alumni Janki Kanabar about her experience of Work Pyschology and Business at Aston

Course overview

  • Course level
  • Course type
  • Duration
    1 year
  • Course options
    Internship / overseas study
  • School

Entry requirements

  • One of the following:
    A good UK honours degree (minimum lower second class) in Psychology, recognised by the British Psychological Society (GBC). Equivalent overseas degree recognised by Aston University.
  • Please Note
    To take the MSc Work Psychology and Business degree you will be required to have an undergraduate psychology degree that is accredited by the British Psychological Society (BPS). If your degree is not accredited by the BPS you may choose to do the MSc Business Psychology.
  • For International Students:
    An official academic transcript, with official English translation, of your university grades to date, students whose native language is not English also need to satisfy our English language requirements.
  • Full entry requirements
    See entry requirements below for full details
More information
Apply January 2020

Key Dates

Course summary

If you’re looking to build on your psychology qualifications and gain a competitive advantage when pursuing graduate roles, then our MSc Work Psychology and Business is the ideal platform to launch your career.

This fascinating course focuses on applying psychological principles to the workplace. You’ll learn how to get the best from people in a commercial environment, develop a range of practical skills and gain the academic basis for professional accreditation from the British Psychological Society (BPS).

The course concludes with a Business Project; a substantial piece of work designed to provide you with an opportunity to analyse a business problem and practically apply the knowledge and skills developed during the course.

You can choose to study this course as part of our double degree programme. 

Entry requirements

In addition to our standard MSc entry requirements, you must have obtained a BSc in Psychology (UK only) or obtained a recognisable equivalent degree (overseas). Students without a BSc Psychology may be eligible to apply to study our MSc Business Psychology.

One of the following:

  • A good UK honours degree (minimum lower second class) in Psychology, recognised by the British Psychological Society (GBC). Contact the British Psychological Society to check your eligibility.

  • Equivalent overseas degree recognised by Aston University.

As well as:

  • Two professional references – at least one must be from an academic referee

  • An official academic transcript of your university grades to date

  • A completed application form.

For International students:

  • An official academic transcript, with an official English translation, of your university grades to date.
  • Students whose native language is not English will also need to satisfy our English language requirements. Pre-sessional English language programmes are available for good applicants whose English qualification falls just short of these requirements.
  • Postgraduate masters students enrolling with Aston Business School with a 5.5 in one of the 4 IELTS sections will be required to engage with English language tuition as part of our professional development programme, The Aston Global Advantage. There will be no extra cost to the student.
  • For students who do not meet our minimum academic and English language requirements for this course, we offer an alternative pathway to an Aston Master’s with Kaplan International College, London.
  • For more information about qualifications, view our Aston in your country webpage.

    Applicants with extensive work experience

    We recognise the value of extensive professional experience. If you do not have the academic qualifications, but have extensive and relevant professional experience and a proven ability to succeed, we would welcome your application.

    The information contained on this website details the typical entry requirements for this course for the most commonly offered qualifications. Applicants with alternative qualifications may wish to enquire with the relevant admissions teams prior to application whether or not their qualifications are deemed acceptable. For less commonly encountered qualifications this will be judged on a case-by-case basis in consultation with the academic admissions tutor.


Why choose us?

Our MSc Work Psychology and Business is a British Psychological Society (BPS) accredited postgraduate course in occupational psychology. After you’ve completed the course, you’ll have the academic basis for the BPS Chartered Occupational Psychology qualification (QOccPsych). There’s also the opportunity for you to complete the BPS Occupational Test User (OTU) certification*. This will enable you to qualify to administer a wide range of psychometric tests, which is a highly desirable qualification for employers.

*Subject to additional testing fees. 

What sets this course apart from other universities is our academic pedigree in applied psychology coupled with our close links to the business community. We’re considered the go-to experts when it comes to applying psychology to overcome business issues. It’s this unique practical insight that our students find so valuable.

Our reputation for student satisfaction, teaching quality and research is well known. We’ve received a Gold Award, the highest possible accolade, from the Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF). TEF stated that our students achieved ‘consistently outstanding outcomes’, with very high proportions of students going into highly skilled employment or further study.

Recent graduates have been successful in securing sought-after roles with prestigious, international companies, such as Jaguar Land Rover, Reed Recruitment and BAE systems. Whatever role you want to pursue, we can help you get your foot on the career ladder.

Our courses offer a range of opportunities to gain practical experience through things such as, consultancy projects and entrepreneurial opportunities. Find out more here. 

Fees and scholarships

January Start 2020

UK/EU: £10,400
International: £16,300 

Fees 2020/21

UK/EU: £10,550
International: £16,650  

Find out more about our scholarships here

Professional accreditation

MSc Work Psychology & Business is a British Psychological Society (BPS) accredited postgraduate course in occupational psychology. Successful completion of the course leads to the academic basis for the BPS Chartered Occupational Psychology qualification (QOccPsych).

More information can be found on the BPS Division of Occupational Psychology website.

Course outline

This programme will take your psychological skills and understanding to the next level. You’ll learn advanced psychology concepts and develop your understanding of how these can be applied to various business issues, such as the assessment of individuals in the workplace, organisational behaviour as well as strategy and leadership. This will prepare you for a variety of roles, in areas including assessment, selection, recruitment, learning and development, occupational health and wellbeing and other areas of workplace psychology.

You’ll develop an understanding of what makes a healthy, happy and effective organisation. We use a very practical approach to enhance your learning experience. For example, you’ll look at research studies about human behaviour in the workplace, as well as case studies linking employee well-being and the efficiency of organisations. This will give you the ability and confidence to practically apply psychological concepts to a business environment.

We also focus on developing a range of specific practical skills throughout the course. You’ll appreciate how to apply these to different organisational settings, such as the public or private sectors. We’ll teach you effective training and development tools, various approaches to change management as well as negotiating techniques, which are key to dealing with difficult workplace situations. These practical skills will significantly enhance your employability and better equip you for a variety of graduate roles.  

You’ll benefit from learning from one of the best known and most successful academic groups in applied psychology in Europe. The School is recognised as being at the forefront of research into this field. It also boasts experienced practitioners who’ve worked for businesses across the world.

They use a mix of innovative and inspiring teaching methods to enable you to get the most from the course and all sessions are delivered in a friendly, supportive atmosphere.

This course is designed for students with an undergraduate degree in psychology recognised by the BPS with graduate basis for registrations (GBR). If you didn’t specialise in psychology at undergraduate level or your psychology degree doesn’t give you GBR status, then please consider our MSc in Business Psychology. 

Subject guide and modules

Core modules

  • Organisational Behaviour
  • Learning and Talent Development
  • Workplace Design and Health
  • Research Methods in Human Resource Management and Business and Organisational Behaviour
  • Assessment Performance and Reward
  • Strategy, Change and Leadership
  • Careers and Counselling
  • Ethics in Academic Practice
  • The Aston Global Advantage
  • Business Project or Dissertation 

Optional modules - choose from one of the following:

  • Accounting for Non-Financial Managers
  • Organisational Behaviour: Theory and Practice
  • Organisational Development
  • Strategic Business Sustainability
  • Strategic and International Human Resource Management
  • Marketing Management
  • Operations Management
  • Strategic Management
  • Management of Innovation
  • Economic Environment of Business
Learning, teaching and assessment

We’re committed to delivering this course in an innovative and inspiring way. Our teaching is interactive and encourages participation. This ensures you get the most of out of your studies and you enjoy the time you spend in the classroom.

We use a range of teaching methods, such as lectures, tutorials, case studies, workshop activities, group work and critical thinking exercises. You’ll learn from experts working in the industry, who will deliver guest lectures and share their experiences of the practical application of psychology in real-life business scenarios. Skills workshops will help you to develop various professional competences, such as interviewing, report writing, presenting as well as questionnaire and survey design. This emphasis on practical skills is key to enhancing your employability and will provide you with a competitive edge when applying for graduate positions.

Our assessment methods vary across modules but include assessed case studies, coursework essays, group or individual presentations and closed book examinations.

Our online learning platform will support you with your studies. It has all the digital resources you need when revising, including lecture slides, access e-books and online journals, as well as video recordings of teaching sessions.

The Aston Global Advantage

More than a Masters

The Aston Global Advantage is an integrated module which runs throughout your course. Focusing on professional development and employability, this module gives you the opportunity to identify, develop and apply the key skills you will gain throughout the year. You'll have the opportunity to:

  • Develop your academic skills
  • Build a portfolio of professional business skills
  • Study abroad with one of our international partners, undertake an internship placement in the UK or overseas or get involved in a global business challenge simulation
Student experience and employability

Overseas opportunities

We benefit from an extensive network of partner institutions, including some of the highest ranked business schools in Europe, such as Kedge Business School in France. We also have partnerships with univesities worldwide, from Australia, to China, and USA to Singapore.

Trips and visits

There will be a series of networking opportunities and guest speakers throughout your studies with us. Industry professionals visit campus to deliver guest lectures and provide you with an insight into specific roles, practises and challenges related to applied psychology.

Recruitment fairs take place regularly with graduate employers visiting campus and providing information on their graduate vacancies and training programmes. These are a great opportunity to meet with companies, get an insight into their requirements and see if they match what you’re looking for in an employer.

The School, societies and sports clubs organise various field-trips and leisure activities throughout the year. You’ll have chance to find out more about these on campus.  


Study or work in another country

The University has secured Erasmus+ mobility funding for students going on placement during the academic year 2019/20.  For students planning their placement in the academic year 2020/21, Erasmus+ mobility funding will be dependent on the Exit date and whether a Withdrawal deal is agreed. The University’s Brexit information page is regularly being updated and will have the latest information.

What our graduates say

Jacob Minihan
MSc Work Psychology and Business

Watch the whole interview to find out more about his experiences on this course

January Start 2020/21

Students starting their studies in January 2020 will study a 12 month programme, but with a different structure to the September 2019 starters.

January to April 2020

You will study the first set of core taught modules from January to April 2020.  In total, over your full degree, there are 8 taught modules plus a business project or dissertation.  In January to April you will study 4 or 5 of these taught modules, depending on the options that you choose.

You will also participate in workshops that form part of our professional development programme, The Aston Global Advantage.  

You will benefit from engaging with students who are studying the same degree programme who started their study in September as this will give you the opportunity to share experiences and knowledge with a wider group of students.  You will also be matched to a current student from your chosen degree subject prior to starting your studies to ensure you are fully prepared for your studies.

April to September 2020

You will continue to study the professional development module. In addition, you will be able to start work on your dissertation.

You do not have to complete your dissertation during this time, but you are encouraged to start initial planning and data collection.

The Aston Global Advantage programme offers you three streams to choose from. (You will select one stream):

  • Work experience: If you select to gain work experience you will need to have your proposed work experience approved before proceeding. We will support you in finding work experience, and we do source a number of projects for students to undertake, however we do not find work placements for students.
  • Business simulation: This will involve attending a series of on-campus seminars and activities over a five-week period during May/June 2020.
  • PIPE Club - Support in setting up your own business: This will involve attending a series of on-campus seminars and activities over a five-week period during May/June 2020.

Please note

Due to the timing of the second set of taught modules it is not possible for January Start students to study abroad as part of the professional development module. However, it might be possible to join a summer school at one of our partner institutions, further details will be given to you when you join us.

If you want to study abroad this will be possible at the end of your degree, therefore starting in January 2021.

There are a limited number of partner institutions with whom you could study a double degree, with the degree with our partner running from January 2021 to December 2021. Further details will be available when you join us.

Business Project/Dissertation

The business project/dissertation is a major piece of work, with the exact requirements varying according to your degree programme. Your programme director will explain the requirements for your degree to you.

You will be assigned a supervisor to support you in your studies. You will be able to start work on your dissertation between the two groups of taught modules, and you will have the option to submit your dissertation at three points in the programme (specific dates to be confirmed):

Early September 2020 (which would allow you to graduate in April 2021 if you pass all modules).

December 2020 (which would allow you to graduate in April 2021 if you pass all modules).

March 2021 (which would allow you to graduate in July 2021 if you pass all modules).


September 2020 to January 2021

The remaining taught modules will be undertaken from September through to the end of December, with examinations taking place in early January 2021.




"I chose Aston because of all the amazing employment opportunities I knew I'd get after I graduated from the course."

"Unlike other universities, Aston offered my course in a business school setting. It is specifically orientated towards business, making it much more practical to apply to corporate roles."

Hamish Ransley
"Aston has provided me with an excellent perspective on the application of occupational psychology. I really enjoyed the interaction between students and teaching staff. This course is supplying me with the essential knowledge and professional skills to become a HR specialist."

Kei Ming Lau

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