UCL Graduate degrees


Behaviour Change MSc

A new postgraduate degree in behaviour change drawing on multidisciplinary scholarship and its application. This innovative programme is centred around the systematic application of behaviour change theory and methods to design, implement and evaluate interventions. This approach equips students to work in this emerging and exciting field to address global problems.

Key information

Programme starts

September 2019

Modes and duration

Full time: 1 year
Part time: 2 years

Application dates

All applicants
Open: 15 October 2018
Close: 26 July 2019

Tuition fees (2019/20)

UK/EU: £10,440 (FT) £5,210 (PT)
Overseas: £25,150 (FT) £12,510 (PT)

Note on fees: The tuition fees shown are for the year indicated above. Fees for subsequent years may increase or otherwise vary. Further information on fee status, fee increases and the fee schedule can be viewed on the UCL Students website.

Optional qualifications: This degree is also available as a PG Diploma and a PG Certificate with fees set accordingly.
Location: London, Bloomsbury

Entry requirements

For the MSc, a minimum of an upper second-class UK Bachelor's degree in a behavioural or social science (for example, psychology, sociology, anthropology, social geography) or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard and relevant quantitative or qualitative research experience. Practical experience with a behaviour change focus (through paid or voluntary work) is also beneficial. Normally the first degree also includes quantitative expertise - statistics or mathematics - because of the statistical components of the programme. For the PG Diploma or Certificate, a minimum of an upper second-class UK Bachelor's degree or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard in any academic discipline and relevant research and/or practical experience (e.g. paid or voluntary) with a behaviour change focus are required.

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:

About this degree

This cross-disciplinary MSc programme will:

  • equip students with the ability to critically appraise theories, methods and evidence for understanding behaviour and behaviour change in a range of contexts.
  • train students in the design, implementation and evaluation of behaviour change interventions.
  • enable students to support the translation of evidence into practice across disciplines and sectors.

MSc students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits.

The MSc programme consists of four core modules (75 credits), three elective modules (45 credits) and a research-based dissertation (60 credits).

A Postgraduate Diploma, which consists of four core modules (75 credits) and three electives (45 credits), is also offered.

A Postgraduate Certificate, which consists of three core modules (60 credits), is also available.

Compulsory modules

  • Changing Behaviour: Intervention Development and Evaluation (30 credits)
  • Theories and Models of Behaviour Change (15 credits)
  • Behaviour Change: An Interdisciplinary Approach (15 credits)
  • Research Methods and Evidence for Global Health (15 credits) *
  • Research Project (60 credits) **

* MSc and PG Diploma Only

** MSc Only

Elective modules

MSc and PG Diploma students choose three of the following:

  • Health and Wellbeing (15 credits)
  • Transport Behaviour Change: Theory and Practice (15 credits)
  • Energy, People and Behaviour (15 credits) †
  • Making Policy Work (15 credits) †
  • Wellbeing in Buildings: Theory and Practice (15 credits) †
  • Social Cognition: Affect and Motivation (15 credits) †
  • Social Psychology of Risk (15 credits) †
  • Public Ethics (15 credits) †
  • Consumer Behaviour (15 credits) †
  • Judgement and Decision Making (15 credits) †
  • Human Factors and Digital Health (15 credits) †
  • Persuasive Games (15 credits) †
  • Introduction to System Dynamics Modelling in the Built Environment (15 credits)†

† these electives are subject to availabilitiy

Dissertation/research project

MSc students undertake an independent research project, culminating in a dissertation of 8,000 words. Projects will also be presented at a mini-conference. 

Teaching and learning

The programme is delivered through lectures, seminars, small-group and project work and independent study. All tutors are highly experienced, internationally recognised researchers and/or practitioners in behaviour change from a range of disciplines, including: health, transport, built environment, digital technology, policy and ethics. Assessment is through coursework, unseen examinations and research projects. Although not formally offered, we can support students to find and complete a work experience placement as part of their programme.

Please note that the list of modules given here is indicative. This information is published a long time in advance of enrolment and module content and availability is subject to change.


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


Students graduating from this programme will be equipped with a broad set of skills that can be applied to many different careers. Market research has shown there is a large demand for behaviour change expertise across the private, public and voluntary sectors and in roles relating to policy, practice and research.

Graduate careers benefiting from this degree include policy officers, researchers and research managers, IT developers and user experience designers, human resource managers, health consultants, urban and transport planners. The range of modules available creates a unique opportunity for students to tailor their degree to their specific interests and career aspirations.


On completion of this degree, students will have acquired significant knowledge about behaviour change theories and techniques, skills in intervention design, implementation and evaluation and will have an advanced understanding and appreciation for effective interdisciplinary working.

Students will also have knowledge of a broad range of research methodologies and MSc students will have had the opportunity to apply these and their acquired knowledge to an original piece of research.

Why study this degree at UCL?

The programme draws on the world-renowned expertise of the UCL Centre for Behaviour Change (CBC), led by Professor Susan Michie, that fosters interdisciplinary thinking and practice to address the challenges of changing behaviour globally.

CBC’s activities provide unparalleled opportunities (e.g. seminars, conferences and public events) for students to meet and work with leaders in research, policy and practice engaged in translating evidence to solve real-world problems.

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.

There is an application processing fee for this programme of £75 for online applications and £100 for paper applications. Further information can be found at: www.ucl.ac.uk/prospective-students/graduate/taught/application.

Who can apply?

We welcome international as well as UK/EU applicants from all backgrounds (e.g. researchers, practitioners, policymakers and recent graduates) who are interested in learning to apply behaviour change principles to a variety of issues (e.g. environment, digital technologies, successful ageing) and sectors (e.g. government, charities, public sector and commercial organisations).

Application deadlines

All applicants
26 July 2019

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 Behaviour Change at graduate level
  • why you want to study Behaviour Change at UCL
  • what particularly attracts you to this programme
  • how your academic and professional background meets the demands of this programme
  • where you would like to go professionally with your degree

Together with essential academic requirements, the personal statement is your opportunity to illustrate whether your reasons for applying to this programme match what the programme will deliver.

Contact information

Page last modified on 24 July 2019 by UCL Student Recruitment Marketing