Undergraduate course

BSc Psychology

UCAS Code: C800
Typical offer:
Three years

Study fields from child development to neuroscience

Accredited by the British Psychological Association

How to apply for this course


About the course

Studying the science behind the human brain

In Sheffield, we're working out why humans behave the way they do. From how we learn new skills to how we fall in love, here you'll study the science behind the human brain. You'll see how we develop and socialise, and learn about the causes of psychological disorders. Our lecturers are world-class researchers who'll teach you to design experiments in state-of-the-art facilities.

Our course is designed to expand your knowledge across a range of specialisms in psychology. In first year, you'll look at the basics alongside more focussed modules on how we use memory and skill, how we interact with others and our environment, and the biological basis of human behaviour. View our module list here. You can also take a few modules from other areas of the University.

Throughout your degree you'll also be taught the fundamental concepts and research methods that every psychologist needs to know. They'll help in your second year when you look in more depth at development, cognition, social psychology and neuroscience, and in your third year when you can choose even more specialist modules and do your own research project. In the third year, you can also opt to expand your knowledge by taking modules in Biomedical Science, Human Communication Sciences and Philosophy.

Our undergraduate degree is accredited by the British Psychological Society, so that when you graduate you'll have taken the first step towards a professional career as a Chartered Psychologist. The Graduate Basis for Registration as a Chartered Psychologist (GBC) you get from our degrees is what you'll need for many jobs and postgraduate courses in Clinical, Educational and Occupational Psychology.



World class teaching in state-of-the-art surroundings

We're one of the top Psychology departments in the UK. Our teaching gets very high marks in independent reviews and we've got a strong ranking for our research too. That's because our academics – the people who teach on our degrees – are making important discoveries in psychology at an international level.

There are around 40 academic staff who specialise in a range of different areas of psychology, including robotics, development, neuroscience, social psychology and clinical psychology. We have postgraduate students and research staff who help with teaching too, and you'll have a variety of lectures, seminars and practical classes throughout your degree.

Rooms specially designed for scientific studies have been set up in the department alongside lecture theatres, classrooms and computer rooms. We've got a laboratory set up for visual perception and motor skills experiments, a CCTV room with a one-way vision screen for social and developmental psychology experiments, and neuroscience equipment for brain imaging research and taking neurophysical recordings from single cells.



First year

Core modules:

Options include:

Second year

Core modules:

Options include:

Our degree programme is accredited by the British Psychological Society. The structure and content of core second modules are designed to make it as easy as possible for our students to get Graduate Basis for Recognition as a Chartered Psychologist from the BPS, which is the first step towards becoming a Chartered Psychologist.

The British Psychological Society and Chartered Psychologist status

The core second year modules provide a firm basis for your choices in third year, where a wide range of optional modules are available.

Third year

Core modules:

Options include:

  • Approved modules from elsewhere in the university

Virtual tour

This video was produced by our students. We hope it will give you a useful introduction to the department, the staff and the course.


Reading list

Below is a list of books that would make useful background reading ahead of you starting the course.

Psychology Buskist 5th Edition

Martin, G. et al (2013). Psychology (5th Edition). Pearson.
Our level 1 textbook. Not a cover-to-cover read but gives a good overview of the topics covered by the degree.
Buy from amazon.co.uk
Buy from blackwell.co.uk


Stanovich, K. (2013). How to Think Straight About Psychology. Allyn & Bacon.
Level 2 students should read this book, which contains key ideas about what Psychology is and isn't, and how, as a science, it is carried out.
Buy from amazon.co.uk
Buy from blackwell.co.uk


Pinker, S. (1999). How the Mind Works. London: Penguin.
Engaging popular science book from a famous psychologist.
Buy from amazon.co.uk
Buy from blackwell.co.uk


Sacks, O. (2012). An Anthropologist on Mars. Picador.
Tales of individuals with unusual brain conditions. Sacks writes with both scientific curiosity and compassion.
Buy from amazon.co.uk
Buy from blackwell.co.uk


Stafford, T. & Webb, M. (2005). Mind Hacks. O'Reilly.
100 do-it-yourself experiments that you can try at home to illustrate how your mind works. Co-authored by a lecturer in the Department.
Buy from amazon.co.uk
Buy from blackwell.co.uk


Transferring to Psychology

Psychology at the University of Sheffield is very popular. In previous years we have had more than 1,250 applicants for our courses and have had to turn down many excellent students.

Below you can find out whether we are currently accepting students from other universities in the UK or overseas, or from elsewhere within the University of Sheffield.

From within the University of Sheffield

Students wishing to transfer from other degree courses within the University of Sheffield will need to meet our general entry requirements, and may only transfer into our first year. This may be possible within the first three weeks of the first semester, subject to availability, or for first year entry in the following academic year. Please contact us for further details!

From other UK universities

We only occasionally have spare places on our course at Level 2, given that we have a high intake at Level 1. Candidates who meet our entry requirements may submit applications for Level 2 entry, provided they meet our criteria as detailed in our Level 2 entry requirements.

Level 2 entry requirements

Any queries on this process should be directed to the undergraduate admissions secretary, Liz Fotherby (l.fotherby@sheffield.ac.uk). Due to university regulations and the structure of our degree course, we are unable to accept transfers into Level 3.

From overseas universities

Psychology at the University of Sheffield is very popular, meaning that we have to limit the courses that students applying through the study abroad programme can take. The courses that are open to students applying through the study abroad programme are:

  • PSY101 Discovering Psychology
  • PSY106 Memory, Skill and Everyday Life
  • PSY108 Neuroscience and Evolutionary Psychology
  • PSY110 Essential Social Psychology

Overseas students wishing to apply for these courses must submit an application via the Study Abroad Co-ordinator.

Study Abroad

All more advanced courses require specific prerequisites that can normally only be satisfied by pass grades on our own modules.

The only exception is where a student wants to undertake collaborative research with a member of staff at Sheffield and can clearly demonstrate they have achieved the prerequisites to study their chosen courses. In this exceptional case, a supporting letter and a brief research proposal from the member of staff with whom they would work should be submitted to the Study Abroad Tutor.

The Department of Psychology at Sheffield currently does not have any partnerships under the Socrates/Erasmus programme.