MSc in Occupational Psychology

Training as an Occupational Psychologist in the Institute of Management Studies will equip you with the scientific knowledge and practical skills to challenge the status quo and offer innovative solutions to workplace problems. 

About the department
Institute of Management Studies

1 year full-time.
If you're applying for funding, you may be subject to an application deadline. Find out more about funding opportunities for home/EU applicants, or funding for international applicants.

See our tuition fees.
Contact the department
Contact Jo Lloyd
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Occupational Psychology, both as a professional and academic field, seeks to address questions of critical importance in business and enterprise. How can we select the best employees? How can we enhance health and performance? What does effective leadership look like? What impact does coaching really have? 

The MSc in Occupational Psychology, run by the Institute of Management Studies, wil equip you with the knowledge and skills to begin considering these questions. The programme has been designed in line with British Psychological Society (BPS) Division of Occupational Psychology (DOP) requirements and has been accredited since 1995. We have recently updated our programme content in line with the 2014 changes to the DOP Occupational Psychology curriculum and, as of September 2014, we are teaching in line with the new curriculum.

The programme’s success is increasingly reflected in the excellent employment rates of our former MSc students in both public and private sectors. Some students also go on to carry out PhD level study with us to become academic Occupational Psychologists.

In the IMS we work to the academic-practitioner model. That is, our Occupational Psychology programme is specifically designed to equip you with a theoretical and empirical knowledge base that you can bring to your consultancy and practice. To that end, you’ll have the opportunity to engage in both cutting edge research, as well as practical skills sessions. For your research dissertation you’ll have access to academics with expertise in areas such as occupational health and wellbeing, talent management and entrepreneurship.

Through the Professional Skills Workshops you will be able to interact closely with experts from the world's leading organisations and enhance your professional development.

In addition, in the IMS we have an invited speakers’ programme called the Distinguished Speakers Series. This series provides specialised talks by either academic or practising experts in various fields of business, enterprise and occupational psychology. 

The MSc in Occupational Psychology aims to equip you with a thorough grounding in the application of psychological theory to work settings, to provide you with the skills necessary to conduct cutting-edge research in applied research projects to a high level of competence, and to impart core practitioner techniques and awareness. 

Register your interest

If you register your interest in this programme we will keep you informed about open days and send you relevant further information. If you subsequently decide to apply for this programme you will be able to use the same login details to apply.

Assessment: Your performance will be assessed by formal examinations, essays, presentations, business reports and a research dissertation of not more than 10,000 words.

What you study

The MSc programme runs for one year, starting in September. Most lectures and seminars are in the first two terms of the academic year, however the programme is structured in such a way that you are expected to pursue your studies beyond formal term times. Apart from the individual module-units listed in the syllabus, you will be required to attend other seminars and workshop series. As far as is practicable, the majority of lectures and seminars will be timetabled for Mondays and Tuesdays.

Occupational Test User Training*

*Formerly known as Level A and B training.

During your MSc you will be provided with the opportunity to partake in training that will allow you to qualify for the BPS certificates in “Test User: Occupational, Ability” and “Test User: Occupational, Personality.” This qualification recognizes you as an expert in the administration, scoring and interpretation of ability tests and personality questionnaires. Your training will be delivered by Criterion Partnership, a world-recognised authority on objective assessment.

Applying and entrance requirements

You can apply directly to Goldsmiths via the website by clicking the ‘apply now’ button on the main programme page.

Before submitting your application you’ll need to have: 

  • Details of your education history, including the dates of all exams/assessments.
  • The email address details of your referee who we can request a reference from, or alternatively an electronic copy of your academic reference.
  • A personal statement. This can either be uploaded as a Word Document or PDF, or completed online.
  • If available, an electronic copy of your educational transcript (this is particularly important if you have studied outside of the UK, but isn’t mandatory).

You'll be able to save your progress at any point and return to your application by logging in using your username/email and password.

When to apply

We accept applications from October for students wanting to start the following September. 

We encourage you to complete your application as early as possible, even if you haven't finished your current programme of study. It's very common to be offered a place that is conditional on you achieving a particular qualification. 

If you're applying for funding you may be subject to an application deadline. Find out more about funding opportunities for UK/EU students and international students. 

Late applications will only be considered if there are spaces available.

Selection process

Selection is by personal application, references and interview.

Entrance requirements

You should have an undergraduate degree in Psychology, or in a relevant subject (not necessarily Psychology), of at least upper second class standard. Relevant work experience will be an advantage.

For those students who have an undergraduate degree in Psychology from a university that is accredited by the British Psychological Society (BPS) (otherwise known as Graduate Basis for Chartership; GBC), the Goldsmiths’ MSc in Occupational Psychology will allow you to progress to Stage 2 training with the BPS in order to attain professional chartership in occupational psychology. If your undergraduate degree is not accredited by the BPS, then you will not be eligible for the BPS chartership route, but will nevertheless welcome to apply for the MSc Occupational Psychology programme. 

We accept a wide range of international equivalent qualifications, which can be found on our country-specific pages. If you'd like more information, please contact the Admissions Office.

English language

If your first language isn't English, you need to demonstrate the required level of English language competence to enroll and study on our programmes. 

Please check our English language requirements for more information.


Due to the popularity of this programme we ask you for a deposit of £450 to secure any offer made to you after applying for the programme. The deposit will be credited against your tuition fees when you enrol.

Find out more about applying 

Contact us 

Get in touch via our online form


+44 (0)20 7919 7766

International (non-EU)

+44 (0)20 7919 7702

MSc in Occupational Psychology staff

Academic staff in the Department who will be contributing to this programme include: 

You can find out more about the programme on our Facebook page

Modules and Structure

Programme structure

The MSc programme runs for one year, starting in September. Most lectures and seminars are in the first two terms of the academic year, however the programme is structured in such a way that you are expected to pursue your studies beyond formal term times.

Apart from the individual module-units listed in the syllabus, you will be required to attend other seminars and workshop series. As far as is practicable, the majority of lectures and seminars will be timetabled for Mondays and Tuesdays.

What you study


Code Module title Credits
IM71030A Organisational Behaviour and Health 15 credits

This module aims to provide an introduction to individual and organisational health and the ways in which organisational environments can be designed to facilitate this. Lecture topics include the following:

  • Stressors: antecedents of occupational health and wellbeing
  • Strain: symptoms of poor occupational health and wellbeing
  • Individual differences in the stressor-strain relationship
  • Job design for wellbeing and performance
  • Organisational structure, design, culture and climate
  • Organisational effectiveness and planned change

IM71032A Training, Coaching and Counselling 15 credits

This module aims to provide an introduction to the ways in which individuals learn and develop within organisations. Lecture topics include the following:

  • Training: the learner and learning processes
  • Training: training design and delivery
  • Stress management training
  • Coaching: introduction and theoretical underpinnings
  • Coaching II: evidence and professional issues
  • Careers I: career development models and career counselling

IM71001B Leadership and Talent Management 15 credits

This module is designed to provide students with a thorough understanding of leadership and talent in organisations. Lecture topics include the following:

  • Typical themes in Talent Managment
  • The Practice of Leadership Development
  • Power, Influence and Negotiation in Organisations
  • Psychology of Teams and Teamwork
  • Technology and Leadership/Talent Management
  • Employee opinion surveys: engagement, citizenship and counter-productivity

IM71028A Assessment and Selection 15 credits

This module is designed to provide an introductory overview to the theory and practice of personnel assessment and selection. Lecture topics include the following:

  • Overview, job analysis, and theories of job performance
  • Early unscientific methods and the interview
  • References, biodata, GPA, and assessment centres
  • The science of psychometric tests
  • Creativity and emotional intelligence
  • Employee relations, fairness and decisions

IM71011A Research Design and Applied Statistics 15 credits

This module covers skills required for effective research design and analysis of data in work environments to enable inferences about cause and effect relationships. You will also learn to critically evaluate the research appearing in academic and business literatures. Lecture topics include the following:

  • Basic principles of research design, scientific method, role of theory
  • Sample selection, data cleaning, data screening, descriptive statistics
  • Association: correlation and covariance
  • Design of experiments: one way and two way ANOVA, contrasts, repeated measures
  • Regression: simple, multiple, logistic, time series, awareness of multi-level modelling
  • Measurement: classical test theory, reliability, validity, factor analysis and item response theory, structural equation modelling

IM71012A Professional and Applied Research Skills 30 credits

This module aims to provide students with opportunities to reflect on evidence-based practice, as well as specific tools and techniques for gathering, analysing and feeding back data in a way that is meaningful within an organisational context. The module is comprised of two speaker series:

  • The first series consists of professional skills workshops. These workshops provide an opportunity for you to see how occupational psychology is put into practice. During the series, you have the opportunity to develop skills to aid your academic and professional development, meet a number of practitioners, and gain an insight into on-going consultancy projects run within organisations.
  • The second series consists of a distinguished speaker presentations series. This presentation series provides you with an opportunity to learn about leading edge research conducted by eminent academics and practitioners in the field of occupational psychology.



IM71000A Research Project 60 credits

The research dissertation requires you to execute and document an original research investigation. The focus can be on any area related to occupational psychology, and can take place in either a laboratory or field setting, using a specific population (eg salespersons) or the general public. It is also possible to conduct a piece of archival research (eg meta-analysis), if your supervisor agrees that this is appropriate.

You normally begin the research dissertation in the second term (January), together with necessary literature reviews and research design, and the submission deadline is late August.

tbc Option 15 credits

You can choose one approved module that is worth 15 credits. The list of approved modules will include those relevant to the MSc Occupational Psychology programme and you will be notified of these prior to the beginning of term.

Programme specification

To find out more about this degree, including details about the ways you'll be assessed and information about our marking criteria, you can download the programme specification.

Graduate profile


"The IMS is a supportive study environment, whilst at the same time encouraging you to stretch yourself and think about occupational psychology in new ways."

I chose to study at Goldsmiths as I felt the Institute of Management Studies would be an exciting and dynamic place to study Occupational Psychology. I like how the department combines innovation and entrepreneurial aspects of business with the core skills and knowledge required for occupational psychology. 

Prior to starting the course I worked for 10 years in management consulting and so I was looking for a course that would give me a competitive edge in the job market. The college has an excellent reputation, and as the programme is BPS accredited, I will be able to gain chartered status in the future.

I have found the course to be both challenging and hugely enjoyable. I have met some great people on the programme with very diverse backgrounds. I think this gave good depth to the discussions we had in the lectures and tutorials. 

The IMS is a supportive study environment, whilst at the same time encouraging you to stretch yourself and think about occupational psychology in new ways.


"I chose Goldsmiths because I was already aware of its good reputation."

I knew I was interested in the MSc but this was further confirmed on meeting and being taught by very senior experts and professionals in the field. I am now working for a talent management company called Kenexa in the surveys business unit which I feel is directly linked to the Masters. I have also experienced working in two other companies – one an assessment and development centre specialist, and a smaller, niche consultancy that gave me different experiences in the field. Goldsmiths was a great place to study as it was laid back, autonomous, friendly and modern and being taught by people who have made a name for themselves in my chosen field was also inspiring."


"I was part of the great Occupational Psychology Masters class of 2009. We had a terrific group of around 20, which was made up of a mixture of different ages, backgrounds and nationalities. I thoroughly enjoyed the year at Goldsmiths. I was and remain very interested in both employee engagement and entrepreneurship, both of which formed topics for pieces of research whilst on the course.

I now work at Towers Watson, a global professional services firm in their Employee Engagement Surveys practice, along with two of my classmates from Goldsmiths! We are working with global clients, helping to assess the engagement and overall culture within their workforce, and advising them on how to improve this. In fact TW were one of the companies that came in to talk to us during a professional skills workshop as part of the course, so this is where I first heard of them. My colleague and I recently came back to Goldsmiths to take part in this year’s professional skills workshop to the current MSc class. It was very interesting being on the other side of the projector! I am very thankful to the team of lecturers and professors who helped to make my time there so enjoyable, and I keep contact with a few of them still."


"The course is expertly run by academics at the forefront of their field who are infectious in their passion for occupational psychology."

From the moment I stepped on campus, I knew there was something special about Goldsmiths and that I would enjoy my time here. After a break from education it has been wonderful to feel enriched by learning alongside people who share similar passions and career interests as myself.

The course, which resides in the Institute of Management Studies (IMS), is expertly run by academics at the forefront of their field who are infectious in their passion for occupational psychology and actively encourage expression of opinions and debate. The course content is varied but remains in depth to the degree it provides me with the confidence that I will have considerable relevant knowledge as a result. Furthermore, the guest talks in the Distinguished Speakers and Professional Skills Workshops have been very useful in providing insight into potential careers and proof that the course facilitators are keen to produce employable as well as informed students.

I was delighted and surprised to receive the IMS bursary to study this year. It has enabled me to focus my time on reading and most recently I've been able to take a week of unpaid work experience. The bursary has also given me a boost to do my utmost in giving the course my all. I am very grateful for the opportunity provided by the Institute.

Careers and Skills


You may go on to work as an independent consultant, as an ‘in-house’ consultant for a private or public sector organisation, in a consultancy, or in academia.


Occupational psychology technical skills including: stress and safety risk assessment procedures; work re-design procedures; designing assessment strategies; and training needs analysis. You’ll also develop the analytical skills that you will need as a professional psychologist.

Professional Accreditation

Occupational Test User Training

During your MSc you will be provided with the opportunity to work towards The British Psychological Society (BPS) accredited Test User qualifiaction. Your training will be delivered by a world-recognised authority on objective assessment.

Content last modified: 15 Apr 2015

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