Forensic Psychology MSc

Forensic Psychology MSc

Full time: 12 months, part time: 24 months


This course will provide you with an advanced understanding of the theoretical and applied issues in forensic psychology. Our scientist-practitioner approach equips you with the skills and knowledge needed to pursue a career in forensic psychology practice.

The MSc in Forensic Psychology offers comprehensive professional training in forensic psychology. You will gain an in-depth experience of offending and victim pathways, as well as the investigative process. Through the use of a structured framework, you will also study theory and conduct research relating to forensic psychology practice. The course has two different routes:

Northumbria Police are proud to support this course and to be working in collaboration with the School of Psychology at Newcastle University.

Northumbria Police are proud to support the Forensic Psychology MSc and to be working in collaboration with the School of Psychology at Newcastle University.

You will develop your understanding of forensic psychology in a multi-disciplinary and professional context. We promote collaborative teaching and research through our strong links with UK forensic psychology practitioners, including Her Majesty's Prison Service, the National Health Service (NHS) and Police.

You will gain demonstrable, advanced knowledge and critical understanding in:

  • theories and professional issues of forensic psychology
  • the breadth and depth of forensic psychology
  • the role of psychology within the legal system (civil and criminal)
  • the National Offender Management system
  • legislation under which forensic psychologists work
  • investigative psychology and forensic interviewing
  • investigative process from pre-trial/conviction to through/after-care and restorative justice
  • legal, ethical and contextual issues in the evaluation of research and practice
  • debating and using evidence from appropriate literature
  • legal processes

You will also gain professional skills in:

  • writing parole board and analytical reports
  • developing forensic case formulations
  • independent learning
  • project planning
  • problem solving
  • time management
  • teamwork
  • reflection

Your specialist skills and knowledge will be developed through a combination of:

  • written reports
  • reflective journals
  • interview guides
  • oral presentations

Our staff

Our staff are experts in the field of forensic psychology and offer a range of research specialisms, such as:

Professor Gavin Oxburgh, Forensic Psychologist (Degree Programme Director):

• investigative Interviewing and the use of empathy during suspect interviews
• the social and cognitive processes associated with achieving co-operation and the elicitation of memories from eye-witnesses and suspects of crime
• miscarriages of justice
• the interviewing of high-interest groups (HIGs), such as sex offenders and murderers

Faye Horsley, Forensic Psychologist (Deputy Programme Director)

• formulation of offenders
• assessment and Treatment of offenders
• working with personality disordered offenders
• adult fire setting and arson

Professor Gwyneth Doherty-Sneddon, (Head of School)

• the visuospatial processing links between visual social cues and visual non-social information (as in mental imaging) 
• how children adapt to different communication media (eg face-to-face versus live video links) 
• children's patterns of gaze as indicators of internal cognitive states like thinking and concentration 
• gaze aversion as cognitive load management in people with neurodevelopmental disorders, including autism and Williams syndrome

Other notable members of staff include Professor Dame Vicki Bruce, Emeritus Professor Don Grubin, Dr Amy Fielden and Dr Trevor James.

We also welcome guest lecturers from:

• members of The Judiciary
• HM Prison Service
• the NHS
• Northumbria Police
• the Norwegian Police University College
• staff from the Newcastle Law School

Quality and Ranking

We rank in the top 150 for Psychology - QS World University Rankings by Subject 2019


This course is taught and based on the Newcastle campus and delivered by the School of Psychology. Teaching is delivered on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 9am to 5pm.

Student Profile

The lectures are very two-way communication based, involving lots of questions, group discussions and debates and group work.

Beki's student profile
Beki H

Related Degrees

  • Foundations in Clinical Psychology MSc

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All related programmes


You will study modules on this course. A module is a unit of a course with its own approved aims and outcomes and assessment methods.

Modules for 2019 entry

Module changes

Module changes

Modules change annually to take account of:

  • changing staff expertise
  • developments in the discipline
  • the requirements of external bodies and partners
  • student feedback.

Most module information for 2020 entry will be available from the end of May 2020.

Fees & Funding

2019-2020 fees

The fees displayed here are per year. If your studies last longer than a year your fee maybe subjected to an annual inflationary increase.



Full time: £7,410
Part time: £3,705


Full time: £7,410
Part time: £3,705


Full time: £22,110

Find out more about our tuition fees, including how to pay them and available discounts.

EU students starting at Newcastle in 2019 and 2020 will pay the UK (Home) tuition fee for the full duration of their course.

Funding opportunities

Entry Requirements

The course has two different routes and entry requirements for those with, and without the Graduate Basis for Chartership with the British Psychological Council.

Find out the equivalent qualifications for your country.

Use the drop down above to find your country. If your country isn't listed please email: for further information.

 Given the applied nature of the programme (accredited and non-accredited routes), we place extra value on voluntary or paid work/research experience in a forensic environment, such as:

• victim support
• the police
• the prison service
• the NHS
• forensic-relevant charities

We also value relevant academic research, such as a dissertation in forensic psychology.

English Language Requirements

Select an English language test from the list to view our English language entry requirements.

Please email us at for further information.

Pre-sessional English Language courses are not accepted as an alternative entry to this course.

How to Apply

You apply online, track your application and contact the admissions team via our applicant portal. Our step-by-step guide can help you on your way.

When applying please ensure you choose the appropriate course title and code.

Start dates

The course starts in October. The closing date for 2019 entry is 8 March 2019.


If you are short-listed you will need to attend an interview. Interviews will be held on the following dates:

  • Monday, 15 April to Thursday, 18 April 2019
  • Monday, 29 April to Thursday, 2nd May 2019

Members of staff from the forensic psychology course will conduct the interview.

You will need to prepare and present a short presentation of no more than 10 minutes. Your presentation should outline your understanding of the role of a forensic psychologist. You should also highlight any research interests that are relevant to the course.

If you can't attend because you live overseas, alternative methods like Skype can be used.


If you live outside the UK/EU you must:

  • pay a deposit of £1,500
  • or submit an official letter of sponsorship

The deposit is payable after you receive an offer to study at Newcastle University. The deposit is non-refundable, but is deducted from your tuition fees when you register.


Karen Wilson
Senior Programme Administrator
School of Psychology
Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 7925


Professor Gavin Oxburgh
Forensic Psychologist
Degree Programme Director
School of Psychology
Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 6557