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Psychology and Education


Key Facts

Route Co-ordinator 

Dr. Jillian Lauer [] 

Full-time enrolled 2021-22: 18

Open to: 1 Year Full time MPhil & 2 Year Part time MPhil

Part-time enrolled 2021-22: 8 
Full-time deadline: 08/03/24 Part-time deadline: 16/05/24
Application written task FAQs

Overview of the course

Is this programme for me?

Are you interested in the psychological processes involved in learning and development? Would you like to explore your ideas through an innovative Masters programme that is informed by cutting-edge, cross-disciplinary research? Would you like to develop new knowledge and skills in critical analysis and learn more about the research processes used in psychological sciences as applied to education, learning and human development? Are you planning for further study through a PhD, or hoping to apply your knowledge and skills in an educational, NGO, or public policy context?

We offer a full-time one-year MPhil programme that will allow you to explore topics in psychology and education that are close to your heart.

Academic staff in the Psychology and Education group comprise an international team. We share expertise across a wide range of ages, subject areas and research methods in psychology and education and we invite you to read more about the research we are doing.

We are also very excited about our laboratory offering state-of-the-art research facilities for our staff and students to conduct observations and experiments.

Why choose us?

  • Engage with the latest issues and debates in psychology and education on our unique course covering a wide range of ages and developmental stages from infancy to adulthood
  • Become a valued member of active research teams in the Faculty of Education at the University of Cambridge
  • Complete an in-depth research dissertation under the supervision of experts in the field
  • Join a research & teaching environment committed to promoting open science and scholarship
  • Benefit from teaching by internationally renowned Faculty who are actively involved in cutting edge research and policy advice
  • Closely engage with the work of the Centre for Research on Play in Education, Development and Learning and the Faculty's Psychology, Education, and Learning Sciences Research Group
  • Join a select group of around 30 students per year
  • Experience a teaching approach that promotes active, participatory, inclusive and research-orientated pedagogy
  • Enjoy personalised support and mentoring through one to one supervision
  • Connect with a friendly and vibrant community of students from across the world
  • Benefit from access to research groups and networks across the University of Cambridge
  • Develop skills for employability across a range of organisations

What does this course offer?

You will:

  • Engage with contemporary issues in psychology and education in order to interrogate the latest theoretically-grounded and evidence-based literature
  • Critically investigate dominant paradigms in psychology and education, and engage with topical issues of relevance to educational policy and practice
  • Develop research and career paths within the wider research culture of both the Faculty and the broader university

coloured pensHow is the course organised?

You will have 64 hours of course sessions in Psychology and Education.

These sessions will be:

  • workshop-style discussions (12 hours)
  • journal clubs (8+ hours)
  • seminars & presentations (8+ hours)
  • traditional lecture formats (44 hours) 

The course content draws on the expertise of the team to include topics related to key issues and questions in the psychology of education, namely:

  • Thinking & Reasoning Skills for Learning
  • Psychology of Play
  • The Social Learner
  • Educational, Family and Community Interventions
  • Advanced Topics in Data & Analysis (with a focus on open, reproducible & transparent methods)
  • Ethical Principles and Practices
  • Anti-racism and Decolonisation
  • Open Science & Reproducibility
  • Preparing Data & Materials for Open Access
  • Careers in Psychology & Education
  • Writing for Publication

teachingResearch Method Strand

Alongside these modules, you will benefit from 32 hours of Research Methods teaching.

This is taught across all thematic Masters within the Faculty of Education, allowing you to interact with others on different courses.

It covers a broad range of social science research methods and is essential for Masters level understanding and critical engagement with the research literature in many specialist areas and in education more generally.

Through this strand you will acquire the skills necessary for designing, conducting, analysing, interpreting and reporting a research study for your Dissertation.

Detailed Research Methods information

paper cut peopleWho are the course team?

Dr. Jillian Lauer (coordinator) is happy to be contacted with questions specific to the course, which are not answered in our FAQs page.

Administrative queries should be addressed to the HD office. Other team members are:

Please note that not all team members are always available as supervisors each term, and this list is subject to change.

Supervisor allocations are made by the course co-ordinator after your matriculation into the MPhil programme. Potential students do not need to contact particular supervisors before applying to the programme but are encouraged to list potential supervisors with whom they would like to work in their applications.

road signWhere do our students go?

Our graduates are the future leaders in their field. They have a wide choice of career options, including:

  • further PhD study
  • doctoral training in educational or developmental psychology
  • work in schools
  • charities and government departments
  • think tanks and universities