Theoretical Psychoanalytic Studies (Non-Clinical) MSc
This MSc gives students a grounding in the nature, history, content and context of psychoanalytic theory, as used by practising psychoanalysts. It provides a comprehensive introduction to current psychoanalytic thinking, rooted in the history and development of ideas and with attention to the application of psychoanalytic ideas to other fields.
Mode of study
- Full-time 1 year
- Flexible up to 5 years
- UK/EU Full-time: £9,000
- Overseas Full-time: £22,100
- All applicants: 1 August 2014
More details in Application section.
What will I learn?
Students learn about the medical and cultural context in which psychoanalysis began, through to contemporary clinical and theoretical perspectives. The teaching programme has a firm basis in the works of Sigmund Freud, but represents the breadth of the British psychoanalytic traditions, as well as major international contributions, the interface with the arts, and how psychoanalysis fits in with modern science.
Why should I study this degree at UCL?
The Psychoanalysis Unit is a thriving academic centre for psychoanalytic research, with its own MPhil/PhD programme alongside the MSc. It has affiliations with the International Psychoanalytic Association, the Institute of Psychoanalysis, the Anna Freud Centre, the Menninger Clinic, and leading scholars at Yale and Harvard Universities. The Unit is based within UCL's Division of Psychology & Language Sciences which undertakes world-leading research and teaching in mind, behaviour and language.
Our work attracts staff and students from around the world, creating an outstanding and vibrant environment. PhD students work with world-renowned researchers exist in all areas of investigation, from basic processes to applied research. The division offers a supportive environment including numerous specialist seminars, workshops, and guest lectures.
Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits. The programme consists of four core modules (120 credits) and a conceptual research dissertation (60 credits).
All students undertake an independent research project which culminates in a dissertation of 8,000–10,000 words.
Teaching and Learning
The programme is delivered through a combination of lectures, seminars and tutorials. The various seminar series are organised by experienced psychoanalysts or academics who are experts in the field concerned. Student performance is assessed through unseen written examination, coursework in the form of essays, and the dissertation.
Further details available on subject website:
Scholarships available for this department
For current students in their final year of a research programme in the Division of Psychology and Language Sciences. This award is based on academic merit. Students must contact the Division of Psychology & Language Sciences for application information.
Awarded for academic merit
To reward academic merit.
Selection based solely on financial need.
For a prospective UK Master's student from under-represented background enrolling on a participating programme. Selection based solely on financial need.
Further information about funding and scholarships can be found on the Scholarships and funding website.
Normally a minimum of a second-class Bachelor's degree in any subject from a UK university or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard.
Select your country for equivalent alternative requirements
English language proficiency level: Good
How to apply
Students are advised to apply as early as possible due to competition for places. Those applying for scholarship funding (particularly overseas applicants) should take note of application deadlines.
The deadline for applications is 1 August 2014.
Who can apply?
This MSc welcomes students from very diverse backgrounds. We accept good degrees in any subject, and many students come from overseas. Some come after psychotherapy clinical training, to deepen their psychoanalytic knowledge. Many have little background in psychoanalysis, but are perhaps considering clinical training in the future, or a related PhD.
What are we looking for?
When we assess your application we would like to learn:
- why you want to study Theoretical Psychoanalytic Studies at graduate level
- why you want to study Theoretical Psychoanalytic Studies at UCL
- what particularly attracts you to this programme
- how your academic and professional background meets the demands of this rigorous programme
- where you would like to go professionally with your degree
This MSc provides a very good background to formal clinical training in psychoanalysis, adult or child psychotherapy or counselling and nearly half of our graduates pursue these options. A similar number continue with their academic studies either at UCL or elsewhere, often registering for a PhD in either psychoanalysis theory or empirical research. Some students progress to the Doctorate in Clinical Psychology, often at UCL which has the largest programme in the UK.
Top career destinations for this programme
- Richmond Fellowship, Mental Health Support Worker, 2011
- South London and Maudsley NHS Trust, Support Time Recovery/Mental Health Worker, 2009
- London Transport Museum, Education Co-ordinator, 2011
- Camden & Islington Mental Health & Social Care NHS Trust, Trainee Clinical Psychologist, 2009
- Associated Newspapers, Freelance Editor, 2010
This programme acts as a springboard especially for further clinical or theoretical training in the field (although it does not offer a clinical qualification). The teaching is organised and provided by eminent psychoanalysts with international reputations. The option to do the Institute of Psychoanalysis Foundation Course, part of which counts towards the degree, helps with that career path. Many other able students go on to research posts in the Unit or with our large network of clinical research collaborators in London and around the world.
Ms Vilma Rupeikaite
T: +44 (0)20 7679 1899
Register your interest
Keep up to date with news from UCL and receive personalised email alerts. Register your interest
Make an application
"In London, and at UCL in particular, I am surrounded by excellent colleagues who have helped me to shape my research in numerous ways. At least half of the techniques we use today in the laboratory were unknown to me until I joined UCL and started collaborating with colleagues."
Professor Matteo Carandini
Professor of Visual Neuroscience
Subject: Ophthalmology, Faculty: Brain Sciences
"Participating in some observership clinics with my supervisor was extremely helpful for me, and writing the dissertation with all the new things I learned from this experience. Ophthalmology is one of the fastest evolving medical specialties, and dealing with vision was always my dream."
Degree: Clinical Ophthalmology MSc
Subject: Ophthalmology, Faculty: Brain Sciences