Experimental Psychology MPhil/PhD

Experimental Psychology offers a world class research environment with a focus on behaviour and its neural underpinnings. Our program helps develop students into future academic or complimentary careers including clinical or educational psychology, and consultancy or applied research. A strong benefit of studying here is exposure to these diverse careers.

Key Information

Modes and duration

  • Full-time: 3 years
  • Part-time: 5 years

Tuition Fees (2015/16)

£4,635 (FT) £2,315 (PT)
£21,530 (FT) £10,765 (PT)

Application deadlines

All applicants:
30 June 2015
Scholarship applicants:
31 January 2015

Entry Requirements

Normally a minimum of an upper second-class UK Bachelor’s degree or a taught UK Master’s degree, or the overseas equivalent, in a relevant subject. Overseas applicants also need to satisfy the English language requirements.

English Language Requirements

If your education has not been conducted in the English language, you will be expected to demonstrate evidence of an adequate level of English proficiency.

The English language level for this programme is: Good

Further information can be found on our English language requirements page.

International students

Country-specific information, including details of when UCL representatives are visiting your part of the world, can be obtained from the International Students website.

International applicants can find out the equivalent qualification for their country by selecting from the list below.

Select your country:


Research in the department covers behavioural neuroscience, perceptual and cognitive sciences, and cognitive neuroscience. These themes are explored using state-of-the-art facilities within the department, including brain imaging (fMRI) and stimulation (TMS), behavioural testing and systems neuroscience.

Research areas

  • Behavioural neuroscience
  • Cognitive neuroscience
  • Sensory SystemsLearning and memory
  • Language
  • Cognitive and decision making
  • Social cognition


Students entering the MPhil/PhD program at Experimental Psychology are supported by a number of sources. A number of departmental demonstratorships/teaching assistantships are available. UCL has been selected as a Doctoral Training Centre by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) and some students are supported by ESRC funded PhD studentships (UK/EU students only).

UCL is also part of similar DTC’s such as those run by the BBSRC and MRC and the department hosts a number of students from each of these programs. Finally, many researchers in the department have established collaborations with outside industry, which help support several PhD studentships. Other sources of funding include the UCL Grand Challenges studentship programme, UCL Graduate Research Scholarships, UCL Overseas Research Scholarships, and the four-year Wellcome Scholarship.

Scholarships relevant to this department are displayed below. For a comprehensive list of the funding opportunities available at UCL, including funding relevant to your nationality, please visit the Scholarships and Funding website.


Many students who complete a PhD in the department stay in academia, either going on to become postdoctoral researchers or research assistants, and ultimately professors. Some go on to further training in fields such as clinical psychology, educational psychology, consultancy or applied research. Others enter industry in consultant and professional roles. A PhD degree taken at UCL is recognised both nationally and internationally as a qualification of the highest status.

Top career destinations for this degree

  • Postdoctoral Researcher, Magdeburg, Germany (2012)
  • Lecturer, Birkbeck College, London (2013)
  • Postdoctoral Researcher, University of British Columbia, Canada (2013)
  • Postdoctoral Fellowship, UC Santa Barbara (2014)


Post-graduate students find that Experimental Psychology provides a number of career pathways. Many of our former students progress into academic research as postdoctoral researchers, and ultimately professors. Many instead expand their training into complimentary fields such as clinical psychology, educational psychology, consultancy or applied research. One of the major benefits of studying in Experimental Psychology is the opportunuity to form long lasting connections with other students who go on to these diverse careers.

Why study this degree at UCL?

Students in Experimental Psychology receive unparalleled training in the design, implementation and analysis of psychological experiments. Our research is recognised internationally for sophisticated experimental design and statistical approaches to the analysis of human behaviour, and brain work. Students also benefit from embedded UCL research centres focusing on human brain imaging, brain stimulation, behavioural neuroscience, deafness and multi-modal communication. Our training and research environment allows students to work alongside elite academics and forge unique research agendas.

Student / staff ratios › 34 staff › 0 taught students › 50 research students

Department: Experimental Psychology

Degree reviews

Student review

"There are many differences between how Psychology is taught in my country (Italy) compared to UCL and more in general in the UK. First, UCL tends to stress the importance of an evidence-based, scientific approach in researching and studying psychology significantly more than Italian universities, which give more importance to its philosophical and theoretical aspects. In my opinion an evidence-based, empirical approach as pursued by UCL is crucial for generating high quality research.Second, there are many funding opportunities at UCL that are often not available in my country; for example many Italian PhD students do not usually attend international conferences, this is in contrast with my experience at UCL. In addition, UCL offers a vast range of seminars, lectures and opportunities to meet and connect with other researchers and discipline. This is a great way to develop new ideas and receive different types of feedback."

Giulia Bellesi

Cognitive, Perceptual and Brain Sciences PhD
Alumni review

"UCL is one of the best universities in the world, carrying out ground-breaking research. I wanted to be part of a thriving academic environment, with connections to some of the best researchers and academics in my field. London is also one of the most exciting and interesting cities in which to live and work. Why would I want to study anywhere else?! "

Elizabeth Marozzi

Behavioural Neuroscience PhD (2014)
Executive Officer, UCL

Application and next steps


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.

Application deadlines

All applicants
30 June 2015
Scholarship applicants
31 January 2015
Applications for competitive funding awarded by UCL must arrive in January in the year you wish to start. Please contact potential supervisors and the department before January to discuss application procedures and deadlines. If other sources of funding are being considered, it is still in your interest to apply by the January deadline, but later applications can sometimes be considered. Applications should be made as soon as possible, and not later than 30 June for entry in September/October.

For more information see our Applications page.

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