Political Psychology

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Key Programme Information

Entry Year


Programme length *

1 year(s)

Places available

20+ (Deadline for applications: August 2017)


Full-Time, Part-Time


Engineering and Physical Sciences



* 1 year full-time or 2 years part-time


Political Psychology is a growing inter-disciplinary sub-field drawing on insights from a number of disciplines including Psychology, Political Science and History.

It is concerned with understanding political issues and phenomena by exploring how socio-political contexts and institutions are affected and how they affect individual and collective cognitions and behaviours.

This programme adopts a predominantly critical social psychological approach and places a strong emphasis on understanding how political psychological concepts may operate in practice.

Its aims are to:

  • Provide a critical understanding of the historical development of political psychology from different epistemological, ideological and disciplinary. perspectives and provide an advanced understanding of current theoretical debates within political psychology.
  • Enable students to engage in multidisciplinary dialogue and research.
  • Train students to use political psychological theories to formulate research questions relevant to current political phenomena and provide skills to apply political psychological theories and empirical findings in a number of different employment settings.
  • Provide skills to use appropriate quantitative and qualitative methods to address research questions as well as with the skills to interpret quantitative and qualitative data.


Why Queen's?

We have a longstanding international reputation for our social psychological research on political issues. Being based in Belfast has helped us to study at first hand conflict and now the peace process which is fostering cohesion between communities. This context provides students with opportunities to apply their learning to real life political phenomena.


One bursary of £2,000 is available for students to apply for once they are accepted onto the programme. Please contact Dr Lesley Storey directly for more information about the bursary application process.

Republic of Ireland students please see For fees and funding information please see the University's Graduate School website:

Did you know?

A PG Diploma in Political Psychology is also available. Contact Course Director Dr Lesley Storey for more information.

Course Details

The programme consists of eight compulsory modules and a dissertation.

  • Theoretical Perspectives and Focal Issues in Political Psychology
  • Principles of Qualitative Research - Methods and Data Analyses I
  • Principles of Qualitative Research - Methods and Data Analyses II
  • Quantitative Data Analyses I
  • Quantitative Data Analyses II
  • Research Design and Professional Skills
  • Research Design and ethical issues in Political Psychology
  • Understanding Political Behaviours: Civic Engagement, Political Participation and Disempowerment
  • Applying Political Psychology to Current Social Issues 

In the first semester students concentrate on research methods skills and take one 30 hour Political Psychology module. In the second semester, students take advanced methods courses and two political psychology modules. 

Our teaching is a mix. Methods courses cover both the principles of different approaches as well as the skills. Content is delivered in 3 hour classes which are supplemented private study and required readings.

Assessment & Feedback

A variety of formats including essays, critical reviews of the literature, proposals, reports of empirical projects, seminar presentations, plus the dissertation.

Learning and Teaching

Classes usually take place on two consecutive full days a week (Tuesdays and Wednesdays) in the mornings and afternoons.

Entry Requirements

Applicants must normally possess or expect to possess by admission to the course, a 2.1 Honours degree or above in Psychology or Political Sciences or in another relevant discipline, or equivalent qualification acceptable to the University. We also take relevant work experience into account as part of the selection process.

If the programme is oversubscribed, applications will be ranked based on quality of academic performance, references and relevant experience. Applicants may be required to undertake an interview.


For information on international qualification equivalents please select Your Country from the list on our International Students website.


International students (for whom English is not their first language), must be able to demonstrate their proficiency in English in order to benefit fully from their studies. Non-EEA nationals must also satisfy UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) immigration requirements for English language for visa purposes. Evidence of an IELTS* score of 6.5, with not less than 5.5 in any component, or an equivalent qualification acceptable to the University is required.
*taken within the last 2 years

For more information on English Language requirements for EEA and non-EEA nationals see:

If you need to improve your English language skills before you enter this programme, our partner INTO Queen's University Belfast offers a range of English language courses. These intensive and flexible courses are designed to improve your English ability to entry to this programme.

Please click the links below for more information:

  • English for University Study - an intensive English language and study skills course for successful university study at degree level.
  • Pre-sessional English - a short intensive academic English course for students starting a degree programme at Queen's University Belfast and who need to improve their English.

How To Apply

Applicants for Postgraduate programmes are strongly advised to carefully read the important information and follow the steps set out here before submitting their application via the Postgraduate Direct Applications Portal.

If you have queries on course content please contact the school representative below.

Deadline for applications: August 2017

Dr Lesley Storey
School of Psychology
Tel: 028 9097 4587

How To Apply

Queen’s University Belfast Terms and Conditions 2017 Entry
The terms and conditions that apply when you accept an offer of a place at the University on a taught programme of study.

Career Prospects

This MSc will help those seeking a career in public policy or in local/national Government, international and European organisations, political parties, the media and lobby groups. It will also provide the research skills and knowledge to carry out a PhD in Political or Social Psychology or other cognate discipline to pursue an academic career.

Queen's postgraduates reap exceptional benefits. Unique initiatives, such as Degree Plus and Researcher Plus bolster our commitment to employability, while innovative leadership and executive programmes alongside sterling integration with business experts helps our students gain key leadership positions both nationally and internationally.

Find out more

Fees & Funding

There is a range of funding and scholarship options available to those considering study at Queen's.

Find out more

For tuition fee information see

Postgraduate loans
From the academic year 2017/18, the Department for the Economy will provide a tuition fee loan of up to £5,500 per NI / EU student for postgraduate study. Tuition fee loan information.

A postgraduate loans system in the UK offers government-backed student loans of up to £10,280 for taught and research Masters courses in all subject areas. Criteria, eligibility, repayment and application information are available on the UK government website.


One bursary of £2,000 is available for students to apply for once they are accepted onto the programme. Please contact Dr Lesley Storey directly for more information about the bursary application process.

Republic of Ireland students please see For fees and funding information please see the University's Graduate School website:


Queen's Direct Applications Portal
Steps to Postgraduate Study Guidance (HEFCE)
Queen's Postgraduate Admissions Policy

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