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
    Postgraduate
  • Course type
    Full-time
  • 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 September 2020 Start

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 four 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

Fees 2020/21

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

Scholarships:
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. 

January Start

Should you wish to commence your study January:

  • The timetable for January starts will limit study abroad options. 
  • If you are interested in placement as part of your professional development activity, you will be required to source this within the first three months (approx.) of your start date.
  • You will begin work on your project before you complete your second term modules.  However, you will be able to nominate a preferred submission date from a range offered, up to 15 months after your programme starts.
  • Your course will be studied, full time over 12 months.  However, you will be offered an additional 3 months remote support if you wish to submit at month 15.  
  • If you are an international student, your visa will still be valid until the end of May the year following your entry date.

 

Subject guide and modules

Core modules

  • Organisational Behaviour
    Through a mix of theory and case studies, we examine people and relationships within a professional context. We will explore what motivates employees, how people work together and relationships between managers and their staff. This helps you to understand how to manage people in working environments and how to be managed.
  • Learning and Talent Development
    For most organisations, their biggest expense comes from their people. You will learn differing views on how to best develop people and ensure they add value to an organisation. We also look at talent management and succession planning approaches for getting capable people into more senior positions.
  • Workplace Design and Health
  • Research Methods in Human Resource Management and Business and Organisational Behaviour
    This module will help prepare you, for your dissertation. We will introduce various research methods which can be used in the context of HRM Work Psychology and Organisational Behaviour. You will also look at how to effectively use primary and secondary data and develop your quantitative and qualitative research skills as well as your analytical abilities. 
  • Assessment Performance and Reward
    In this module you will be introduced to the approaches and theories for ensuring the right people are recruited into the business and that they then perform effectively. You will cover thought-provoking topics, such as how reward can be used to enhance performance, how to measure staff performance and how to manage employees who are under-performing.
  • Strategy, Change and Leadership
    This module encourages you to consider the role of strategy and leadership in shaping and changing organisations. Through exploring the complexities of strategic change, you will be encouraged to develop critical insights on what appear to be everyday business decisions. Reflecting on the role of the leader, you will appraise different approaches to leadership and examine their impact.
  • Careers and Counselling
    This module will help you develop an understanding of concepts and models for counselling in the workplace and use case studies to critically evaluate their effectiveness. We examine the theories of vocational development and look at the practice of executive coaching at work. You will also learn appropriate people management techniques to manage conflict situations effectively.
  • Ethics in Academic Practice
    This module provides an introduction to the Academic Offence framework. By completing the resources you will understand the key principles underpinning the submission of academic assignments. These principles can then be applied to the rest of the modules studied at the university.
  • The Aston Global Advantage
    The Aston Global Advantage is our professional development programme that runs throughout all MSc programmes at Aston Business School. Focusing on professional development and employability, this integrated module gives you the opportunity to identify, develop and apply the key transferrable skills you will gain throughout the year. 
  • Business Project or Dissertation
    The Business Project/Dissertation is a chance for you to carry out an original piece of work applying material that you have learnt in the taught element of your degree. Specific requirements will be explained relating to different degree programmes but in summary you must demonstrate both theoretical and practical knowledge of your chosen area of specialism.

Optional modules - choose from one of the following:

  • Accounting for Non-Financial Managers
  • Organisational Behaviour: Theory and Practice
  • Organisational Development
    This module takes a strategic view of organisational development, design and the management of organisations, people and change. It achieves this by focusing on organisational diagnosis aimed at achieving strategic transformation of organisations and developing High Performance Work Systems. It also deals with recent strand of scholarly debate on the role of consultancies.
  • Strategic Business Sustainability
    The module looks at how sustainable development as a process can lead to a certain level of sustainability within an organisational context. It places sustainability within the strategic orientation of an organisation and as such as it takes a view of sustainability both in the short-term as well as in the long-term.
  • Strategic and International Human Resource Management
    In this module we look at the theory and practice of (International) Human Resource Management and consider how external and internal factors shape HR strategy and policy in private, public, SME and multinational companies. You’ll discover the benefits of managing people in different settings in different ways and learn to identify the appropriate people strategy for the context.
  • Marketing Management
    In this module you will gain a comprehensive understanding and critical evaluation of marketing management practices, underpinned by relevant theories and conceptual frameworks. These frameworks are applied to contemporary issues and organisational strategies within national and international contexts and culminating with the creation and the proposal of a professional marketing plan.
  • Operations Management
    In this module you will gain a detailed understanding of how operations management contributes to business competitiveness. We examine the theories and approaches to effective planning and the organising of production and manufacturing processes, as well as those associated with the provision of services. With case studies and an innovative simulation challenge, you’ll benefit from a highly-applied learning experience.
  • Strategic Management
    This module starts with the purpose of strategy, including stakeholder and governance issues, and introduces tools and techniques for analysing external environments and internal capabilities. You will learn theories and frameworks/ models for assessing and evaluating organisations’ strategic options, which are then applied in analysing contemporary case studies and through engaging in a rich business strategy simulation that involves strategic decision-making.
  • Management of Innovation
    This module introduces you to key concepts and models of innovation management and guides you through their critical evaluation. Using recent real-world cases, the module develops your ability to analyse innovative management of business organisations in practice and to formulate and communicate innovation-based strategies for both short- and long-term successes.
  • Economic Environment of Business
    This module focuses on key economic concepts and principles that are most useful for businesses and managers. Throughout this module we stress their application in an international context, drawing on their real-world significance, and the importance of communicating economic ideas in a clear and precise manner. In this way you will understand the significance of economics in a globalised world.
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.  

Erasmus+

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

"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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