Criminological Psychology

MSc Applied Forensic Psychology

  • Study Mode: Flexible and Distributed Learning
  • Location: Distance Learning
  • Duration: One Year
  • Start Date: February and September 2022
Are you passionate about pursuing a career focused on rehabilitating criminals and delivering interventions to reform criminal behaviour?
Our MSc Forensic Psychology programme will not only give you the knowledge and skills you need but will also turn you into an innovative and creative leader and practitioner. Throughout your time on this course you’ll experience hands-on learning, working with offenders on treatment and rehabilitation programmes, and have the opportunity to be involved in psychological interventions.
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Application guide

For information on how you can boost your career-prospects and apply for our postgraduate courses, follow our application guide.

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Postgraduate Open Days

Join us for a Postgraduate Open Day where you can discuss your options and chosen course with our course leaders.

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Fees and Funding

There’s a range of ways you can secure funding for your course, including sponsorship, scholarships and loans. And if you recently graduated from BNU, you may be eligible for a fee discount.

Why study this subject?

With a strong applied forensic focus, you’ll be highly sought after for psychology work in prisons and other related settings once you’ve graduated.

This course covers all the main areas of knowledge and practical skills you’ll need to move into the world of forensic psychology by securing a trainee position. If you already work in the field, you’ll develop both your theoretical and practical understanding in order to become qualified to take the next step confidently in your career.

Why study at Buckinghamshire New University?

Our specially developed blended learning master’s offers the convenience of being able to complete your studies alongside your current employment. You’ll access all your study materials online whilst also attending three, one-week teaching workshops at our High Wycombe campus.

You can choose to complete the course full-time over one year, or part-time over two. We’ve designed this course specifically to fit in easily with your current work commitments.

Our teaching department is home to an incredible community of Psychology students who can collaborate with you on projects, providing a rich supply of volunteers when you run your own experiments.

Your learning won’t just take place in a lecture theatre either – you’ll have the chance to learn in labs and seminar rooms, gaining the skills that you’ll need in the next step you take in your career.

We pride ourselves on teaching practical skills wherever and whenever we can, meaning you will always leave us feeling confident and prepared for the future. This hands-on approach will give you a sense of what it’s really like to work in the world of forensic psychology.

What's more, we'll always provide you with excellent industry links and you’ll have plenty of opportunity to volunteer in a relevant professional environment too. Our team has built strong links with local organisations who frequently provide opportunities for our students to work with ex-offenders and victims of crime meaning you can get hands-on, practical experience whilst studying with us.

What facilities can I use?

You’ll have the opportunity to use our state-of-the-art observation laboratory to engage in the measurement of psycho-physiological responses using Biopac©. You’ll be able to measure the activity of the cardiovascular system, brain, autonomic nervous system and more.

You’ll also have access to Tobii eye tracking equipment and HTC Vive, a virtual reality software, meaning you can push the boundaries and get creative with your research ideas!

You’ll use these facilities regularly while role-playing forensic scenarios and assessing different interventions.

Our library is packed with all the information you need for your assessments – you’ll have access to hundreds of specialist books, articles and online journals. Not to mention there’s plenty of room to knuckle down for some quiet study time.

Because this course has a blended-learning format, we’ll also sign you up to our Virtual Learning Environment which means you’ll have access to lots of online resources wherever you are in the world!

What will I study?

In the weeks you attend in-person workshops, you’ll be based in a forensic setting for two days each week. We have strong links with a number of different institutions such as HMP Bullingdon, HMP Wormwood Scrubs, HMP Woodhill, HMP Grendon and HMYOI Aylesbury meaning

You’ll hear from qualified forensic psychologists, prison officers, senior managers and you’ll even get a chance to interact directly with prisoner’s, so you’ll get a real taste of what it’s like to work on the ‘front-line’.

The level of industry insight and contact will be invaluable in securing work and developing your confidence as a practitioner.

How will I be taught and assessed?

Across the course of the programme, you’ll learn about police psychology, the legal and criminal justice system, vulnerable groups in forensic settings and the journey of change through a forensic lens.

You’ll learn to measure intervention effectiveness and facilitate interventions using mock scenarios and role plays, as well as working directly with prisoners.

You’ll also work closely with your personal tutor to dive into a subject of particular interest to you through your final dissertation project.

We use a mixture of assessment methods to mirror modes of communication expected of graduates in this field. For example, you’ll complete risk assessments, professional case reports and deliver presentations to an expert audience.


Useful Documents

MSc Applied Forensic Psychology Programme Specification

What are the course entry requirements?

Students on this course typically have achieved a 2:1 degree in any undergraduate psychology degree programme or have the equivalent professional qualifications and/or relevant work experience.


This provides a guide of the modules that make up your course. You can find more information about how your course is structured on our Academic Advice section.

Year 1 Modules

Police Psychology & the Investigative Process

The Legal & Criminal Justice Context

Professional Practice Skills & Ethics

Assessment & Management

Vulnerable Groups in Forensic Settings

Professional Practice Issues in Forensic Psychology

The Journey of Change - Forensic Focus

Applied Forensic Research Skills

Postgraduate Forensic Dissertation

What are the tuition fees


Home, Academic Year 2022 - 2023

£8,000 per year


Overseas/International, Academic Year 2022 - 2023

£8,000 per year

The University is unable to accept any new applications from students who require sponsorship for a student visa to start in September 2022. This is due to the overwhelming popularity of our courses and visa processing timeframes.  Applications are still being taken from students who are already in the UK and hold the right to study.

From September 2022, those students living in the UK or Republic of Ireland, and EU nationals with settled status in the UK, will be considered Home students.

Most courses will involve some additional costs that are not covered by your fees.

You could benefit from financial support through a bursary or scholarship during your time as a student. For more details visit our financial support, bursaries and scholarships section.

Questions about fees?

Contact our Enquiries Team:

0330 123 2023

What are my career prospects?

By the end of this course, you’ll be well equipped to work in a variety of forensic psychology environments whether that’s in prisons, the probation service or victim work.

You could also specialise in delivering interventions in prisons and other rehabilitation settings.


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Dr Urszula Wolski
  • Associate Lecturer
  • Senior Research Assistant
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