The experience of studying an MSc at Christ Church has been excellent. The course was well organised, structured to accommodate everyone's needs and prepared us to go into either practice or further academic research.


How do you want to study?


1 year


TEF Silver


Develop core psychological knowledge and skills in forensic and investigative research and psychological enquiry, and develop your awareness of ‘best practice’ approaches in accordance with professional practice frameworks.

We adopt an applied approach to teaching and learning with an emphasis on evidence-based practice and a focus on the scientist-practitioner model. The course aims to develop the practical and academic skills you will need to become a confident, professional and reflective practitioner including, critical evaluation, communication (written, oral and non-verbal), reflection and the ability to synthesise knowledge.

Our strong external links with forensic and investigative psychologists, practitioners and researchers in the field will enhance your learning experience.

Forensic and Investigative Psychology is a discipline that involves the application of scientific theory and principles to help in the understanding, investigation, assessment and treatment of offenders and criminality, and legal responses to criminality.

Entry requirements

A minimum of a 2:1 in a BPS accredited Undergraduate Psychology degree OR BPS accredited MSc Psychology conversion course.


A minimum of a 2:2 in a BPS accredited Undergraduate Psychology degree OR BPS accredited MSc Psychology Conversion course and relevant experience in forensic or investigative settings.

Any of the above applicants may be invited to interview at the discretion of the programme director.

International students will be considered on a ‘case by case’ basis and be required to attend an interview. However, it is expected they will have completed at least an undergraduate degree with a major in psychology or a postgraduate degree with a focus in psychology.

IELTS: If English is not your first language we will require you to obtain IELTS (or equivalent) 7.0 overall, with no less than 7.0 in writing and no less than 6.5 in all other bands.

Honours degree or professional qualification

All about the course

The programme provides a student centred and applied teaching and learning approach to develop your knowledge and skills in forensic and investigative psychology, both in relation to professional practice and research. The taught component of this programme is normally delivered over two full days, with students expected to engage self-directed and independent learning throughout the week. 

The programme is comprised of seven core modules including: four ‘content modules’ (20 credits each), two Research Methods and Statistic modules (20 credits each) and one Research Project module (60 credits). 

Module information

Core/optional modules

*Modules subject to validation

How you’ll learn

You will normally attend teaching on two days a week (or one day per week if you are part time). 

The programme adopts various teaching approaches to provide you with a flexible and responsive learning environment, which is also reflective of teaching, learning, self-reflection and professional practice within forensic settings. These teaching methods have been designed to develop your Graduate Attributes which will distinguish you as a CCCU graduate and support your work-readiness upon graduation. As such, a combination of: directed learning; shared learning; independent learning; interactive learning; reflective learning; supervision led learning and the use of a Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) are drawn upon to enhance your forensic and investigative skills and knowledge throughout the duration of the programme.

For every hour of directed study, you are expected to put in around 5 to 6 hours of independent study. In total, you are expected to dedicate about 35 to 40 hours per week (including on-campus sessions) to your studies. 

In addition, to the programme content, you may have the opportunity to attend optional seminars and/or optional field trips throughout the year.

All staff involved in the delivery of the course are research-active academics, including qualified clinical and forensic psychologists. 

All students will be assigned a Personal Academic Tutor (PAT) who will also double as your mentor. This person will be your first port of call and will be available throughout your time with us.

For entry to this course, we will require you to obtain IELTS (or equivalent) 7.0 overall, with no less than 7.0 in Writing and no less than 6.5 in all other bands. Other tests may be acceptable – please contact the Admissions Team to discuss the comparability of other qualifications. Canterbury Christ Church University is able to accept equivalent qualifications on a case-by-case basis, and as such please enquire with in order to have your qualification checked before you apply.

If you require assistance with your English language, CCCU also offers a range of courses that can help prepare you for postgraduate-level study.

Operations Officer 

The Operations Officer works across the School of Psychology, Politics and Sociology with a view to work collaboratively with academic staff and students to help foster students sense of belonging, good communication (e.g. encourage student voice) and ensure the student voice is heard. 

Psychology administration team 

There is a dedicated Psychology administration team who respond to and assist students with all administrative support and enquiries. 

Psychology technicians

The Technician Team supports all psychology students with any IT related difficulties or issues, in addition to overseeing and maintaining all aspects of laboratory provision, as well as supporting students’ research activity and use of software. 

Virtual Learning Environment

All students will have access to a programme specific blackboard discussion board whereby they can raise issues, ask questions and provide feedback regarding their ongoing experience of the programme. Audio and/or visual recording of lectures is encouraged throughout the duration of the programme in addition to the use of flipped learning video recordings, readings or preparatory work prior to teaching. 

Additional facilities

Whilst the programme is delivered at the Canterbury Campus, all students have access to access to the: four libraries; computing facilities; software supporting data collection and analysis in psychological research; learning resources (e.g. text, journals), and other online resources to support them on the programme at all CCCU Campuses (Canterbury, Medway, Salomons).

Extra-curricular activities

Throughout the year Psychology and/or Student Union groups (e.g. PsySoc) will run social events (e.g. quiz evenings, talent nights etc.) for all psychology students. There is also a Psychology Facebook page and twitter feed to encourage, and build an integrated psychology community.

On this BPS accredited course, we adopt an applied approach to teaching and learning to develop your academic and professional skills for a career in forensic and investigative psychology.

Belinda SiesmaaProgramme Director

How you’ll be assessed

To obtain the MSc qualification, you must pass a total of 180 credits which includes: four ‘content modules’ (20 credits each), two ‘research methods modules’ (20 credits each) and a research project (60 credits). 

The assessment methods used within the programme aim to provide a wide range of methods for students to demonstrate and enhance their forensic and investigative psychological skills from both a theoretical and applied approach. 

The MSc Forensic and Investigative Psychology Assessment Strategy conforms to the Universities Regulations and Credit Framework for the Conferment of Awards (September, 2016). For each 20 credit module, the summative assessments are weighted at 4000 words or equivalent. In addition, each assignment enables students to develop transferable skills they can then draw upon when working within forensic settings and/or pursuing the Stage 2 – QFP. 

Modules may also include formative assessments (e.g. ungraded work). Whilst formative assessments do not contribute to a students’ grades, completion of these enhance their forensic and investigate psychological skills from both a personal and professional development perspective.

Each of the 20 credit modules generally have two summative assessments drawn from the following range: written assignments (e.g. critical review of the literature); presentations (e.g. oral, visual); practical assignments and reports (e.g. case study, consultation essay, American Psychology Association (APA) style data analysis report, APA style research report). The 60 credit Research Project is comprised of both formative and summative assessment(s), including a 15000 word dissertation.

Your future career

Upon completion of this programme, students may explore opportunities to work within forensic environments, seek employment with forensic mental health services (e.g. NHS, private sector), pursue employment as a probation officer, prison officer, assistant psychologist or police officer roles or further education (e.g. PhD, Doctorate clinical and Forensic Psychology).


Government loans of up to £11,222 are available for some postgraduate Master’s courses for students starting their course from 1 August 2020. Loans are subject to both personal and course eligibility criteria.

The rules around course eligibility mean that in some cases it may depend on how you are studying (full-time or part-time) as to whether you can apply for a postgraduate loan. To check whether your course is eligible, you can email the Student Fees Team or call 01227 923 948.

2021/22 tuition fees for this course

  UK Overseas
Full-time £8,160 £13,000
Part-time £4,535 N/A

20% Alumni Discount

We offer alumni discounts on CCCU Postgraduate Taught, PGCE Primary and Secondary, and Masters by Research courses for eligible students.

Find out if you're eligible for the discount.


Important Information on Tuition Fees

Tuition fees for all courses which last more than one academic year are payable on an annual basis, except where stated.

There will be an annual inflationary increase in tuition fees for this course where the course lasts more than one academic year. For further information read the 2021/22 Tuition fee statements and continuing fee information.

Apply now


1 year