Modes and duration
- Full-time: 1 year
- Flexible: up to 5 years
Programme start date
Tuition Fees (2016/17)
- £9,550 (FT)
- £23,440 (FT)
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.
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.
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:
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.
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).
- Fundamentals of Psychoanalytic Theory
- Major Schools of Psychoanalysis
- Core Psychoanalytic Theory
- Applications of Psychoanalysis
- Students accepted on to the Foundation Course at the Institute of Psychoanalysis in London can request to be assessed by UCL on the Foundation Course theoretical (lecture) material to count for one module of the Theoretical Psychoanalytical Studies MSc.
- Those given approval can choose the 99PSGFC1 Foundation Course MSc module, in place of module PSYCGT13; Applications of Psychoanalysis.
All students undertake an independent research project which culminates in a dissertation of 10,000–12,000 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.
Scholarships relevant to this department are displayed (where available) 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.
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 psychoanalytic theory or empirical research. Some graduates progress to the Doctorate in Clinical Psychology, often at UCL which has the largest number of students.
Top career destinations for this degree
- Support Worker, Turning Point
- Lecturer, Kingston University
- Resident Therapist, Arbours Association
- Editor, Macmillan Publishers Ltd
- Psychotherapist, Freelance
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 academics and psychoanalysts with international reputations. The option to take 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.
Why 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. Opportunities for graduate students to work with world-renowned researchers can 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.
Student / staff ratios › 304 staff including 129 postdocs › 741 taught students › 439 research students
Department: Division of Psychology & Language Sciences
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.
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.
- All applicants
- 29 July 2016
For more information see our Applications page.Apply now
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
- how your academic and professional background meets the demands of this rigorous programme
- where you would like to go professionally with your degree