BSc Cognitive Psychology with Placement Year

Full Time
Degree of Bachelor of Science

UCAS Course Code
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Accredited by the British Psychological Society, this degree combines a strong core of psychology with social and applied perspectives on human behaviour.

The BSc Cognitive Psychology particularly allows you to focus upon the cognitive neuroscience subfield of psychology, with an emphasis on laboratory methods, and advanced options which explore attention and perception, language, thinking and decision making.

An accredited psychology degree is the first step to becoming a chartered psychologist and accreditation is necessary to work in the psychology professions, such as educational, occupational or clinical psychology.


The BSc Cognitive Psychology degree is ideal for students interested in a career in business, entrepreneurship or working with children, or if you plan to go on to postgraduate study in cognitive psychology, neuroscience, clinical psychology, business or computer science.

Accredited by the British Psychological Society, this degree will provide you with a rigorous approach to psychology, with focus on topics related to cognitive psychology, including neuroscience, biological psychology, linguistics, and FRMI and EEG research techniques. In addition to gaining a strong grounding in key theories and research methods, you will also have the chance to study Psychology and Risk, Psychology of Language, Social Cognition and Social Identity, Mind, Brain, and Personality, Brain and Behaviour and Social and Affective Neuroscience.

The core areas of psychology, giving you exposure to a range of theoretical ideas and research evidence from a variety of fields, include:

  • developmental psychology
  • social psychology       
  • cognitive psychology
  • biological psychology
  • the study of personality and individual differences.

Our approach reflects the growing consensus within the field that human behaviour is best understood as the interaction of nature and nurture, biology and culture, and genes and environment.

We encourage the bridging of conventional disciplinary boundaries, enabling you to explore and analyse the complex psychological processes found in contemporary life. Throughout this course you will be able to develop your own psychological understanding, integrating ideas from the diverse range of behavioural and social theories you will encounter. You will learn to relate psychological theories to real world experience and activities, and explore how psychological scholarship and research can be used in practical situations.

Course Structure

The academic year consists of two 12-week semesters. A typical module is taught through two lectures and about one seminar per week. While lectures are attended by all students taking a specific module, seminars are held in smaller groups where you can interact more directly with the tutor and your peers to and address and discuss different topics.

Year 1

In your first year you will study three compulsory modules which will make up your core learning, providing you with a platform upon which you can develop your psychological knowledge.

You will encounter a wide variety of topics, from child development to linking the study of the individual to society. The research module will introduce you to subject specific methods in the study of psychology, as you begin to develop research skills and a critical perspective.

Year 2

The second year follows a similar structure to the first year, with compulsory modules designed to develop your understanding of different branches of psychology. An advanced module in research methods aims to consolidate your knowledge of research design, qualitative analysis and statistics. Alongside this you will have a compulsory module to complete which will prepare you for the workplace environment and enable you to identify and enhance your skills for using psychology in applied settings, this module will run alongside the process for securing a placement.

Year 3 (Placement Year)

In your third year you will work full time in a placement which relates to and can draw upon your psychological literacy. Psychology as a discipline is relevant to a wide range of career paths and placements will provide the opportunity to gain experience in one of a variety of professional areas which utilise psychological insight (marketing, education, third sector organisations, therapeutic and rehabilitation services, retail, financial services, research laboratories etc.). Although we will endeavour to match students’ career intentions and interests with placements, because openings will depend on personnel demands in our placement partners we cannot guarantee a specific placement for any individual student. The year is assessed through a Pass/Fail arrangement which is centred on a project exploring how you apply psychology within the workplace and reflect upon your skills, aptitudes and professional development.

Year 4

In the final year you will complete a substantial research project, reflecting your intellectual interests and career aspirations broadly related to a cognitive psychological topic of your choosing.

You will be supported by a supervisor with expertise in your chosen area of research, helping you to use your research skills to plan and produce a research project drawing on a specific form of data gathering and analysis. This could be focused on interviewing, survey work and/or experimental design, both within the laboratory and in applied contexts.

You will also select a number of optional modules from a wide range of psychology subjects, designed to give you specialist knowledge in cognitive psychology.


A range of assessment methods are used to monitor your progress, including coursework, reports, essays, projects, presentations, timed tests and examinations. There are both compulsory and optional elements to promote a combination of breadth and depth, core knowledge and creativity.

Where Next?

Graduate with the skills, knowledge and confidence you will need for a career in a variety of sectors and organisations, including:

  • Psychology
  • Norse Care
  • Alliance Boots
  • Legal and Accounting
  • Banking, Finance and Insurance
  • Human Resources
  • Consultancy
  • Education
  • Office Admin
  • Marketing and Management
  • Health Care
  • Criminal Justice
  • Social Work

The theoretical and research components of the degree also lay strong foundations for going on to postgraduate study. 

Course Modules 2017/8

The modules for this courses are exactly the same as the standard BSc Cognitive Psychology degree, however the optional year 2 ‘Applied Psychology’ module is compulsory for Placement Year students.


Whilst the University will make every effort to offer the modules listed, changes may sometimes be made arising from the annual monitoring, review and update of modules and regular (five-yearly) review of course programmes. Where this activity leads to significant (but not minor) changes to programmes and their constituent modules, there will normally be prior consultation of students and others. It is also possible that the University may not be able to offer a module for reasons outside of its control, such as the illness of a member of staff or sabbatical leave. Where this is the case, the University will endeavour to inform students.

Entry Requirements

  • A Level AAB
  • International Baccalaureate 33 If no GCSE equivalent is held, offer will include Mathematics and English requirements.
  • Scottish Advanced Highers BBC
  • Irish Leaving Certificate 4 subjects at H2, and 2 subjects at H3
  • Access Course Pass the Access to HE Diploma with Distinction in 36 credits at Level 3 and Merit in 9 credits at Level 3
  • BTEC DDD BTEC Public Services is not accepted
  • European Baccalaureate 80%

Entry Requirement

GCSE Requirements:  GCSE English Language grade 4 and GCSE Mathematics grade 4 or GCSE English Language grade C and GCSE Mathematics grade C.

UEA recognises that some students take a mixture of International Baccalaureate IB or International Baccalaureate Career-related Programme IBCP study rather than the full diploma, taking Higher levels in addition to A levels and/or BTEC qualifications. At UEA we do consider a combination of qualifications for entry, provided a minimum of three qualifications are taken at a higher Level. In addition some degree programmes require specific subjects at a higher level.

Students for whom English is a Foreign language

We welcome applications from students from all academic backgrounds. We require evidence of proficiency in English (including speaking, listening, reading and writing) at the following level:

IELTS: 6.5 overall (minimum 6.0 in any component)

We will also accept a number of other English language qualifications. Review our English Language Equivalences.


The majority of candidates will not be called for an interview and a decision will be made via UCAS Track. However, for some students an interview will be requested. You may be called for an interview to help the School of Study, and you, understand if the course is the right choice for you.  The interview will cover topics such as your current studies, reasons for choosing the course and your personal interests and extra-curricular activities.  Where an interview is required the Admissions Service will contact you directly to arrange a convenient time.

Gap Year

We welcome applications from students who have already taken or intend to take a gap year.  We believe that a year between school and university can be of substantial benefit. You are advised to indicate your reason for wishing to defer entry and to contact directly to discuss this further.


The School’s annual intake is in September each year

Alternative Qualifications

Candidates with equivalent level 3 qualifications are encouraged to apply, or contact the Admissions Office for further information.  

Course Open To

UK/EU only

Fees and Funding

Undergraduate University Fees and Financial Support

Tuition Fees

Information on tuition fees can be found here:

UK students

EU Students

Overseas Students

Scholarships and Bursaries

We are committed to ensuring that costs do not act as a barrier to those aspiring to come to a world leading university and have developed a funding package to reward those with excellent qualifications and assist those from lower income backgrounds. 

The University of East Anglia offers a range of Scholarships; please click the link for eligibility, details of how to apply and closing dates.

How to Apply

Applications need to be made via the Universities Colleges and Admissions Services (UCAS), using the UCAS Apply option.

UCAS Apply is a secure online application system that allows you to apply for full-time Undergraduate courses at universities and colleges in the United Kingdom. It is made up of different sections that you need to complete. Your application does not have to be completed all at once. The system allows you to leave a section partially completed so you can return to it later and add to or edit any information you have entered. Once your application is complete, it must be sent to UCAS so that they can process it and send it to your chosen universities and colleges.

The UCAS code name and number for the University of East Anglia is EANGL E14.

Further Information

If you would like to discuss your individual circumstances with the Admissions Office prior to applying please contact us:

Undergraduate Admissions Office (Social Work and Psychology)
Tel: +44 (0)1603 591515

Please click here to register your details via our Online Enquiry Form.

International candidates are also actively encouraged to access the University's International section of our website.

    Next Steps

    We can’t wait to hear from you. Just pop any questions about this course into the form below and our enquiries team will answer as soon as they can.

    Admissions enquiries: or
    telephone +44 (0)1603 591515