(BA) Bachelor of Arts
Psychosocial and Psychoanalytic Studies
University of Essex
University of Essex
Psychosocial and Psychoanalytic Studies
BTEC: DDM, depending on subject studied - advice on acceptability can be provided.
IB: 29 points or three Higher Level certificates with 554.
We are also happy to consider a combination of separate IB Diploma Programme Courses (formerly certificates) at both Higher and Standard Level. Exact offer levels will vary depending on the range of subjects being taken at higher and standard level, and the course applied for.
We can also consider combinations with BTECs or other qualifications in the Career-related programme – the acceptability of BTECs and other qualifications depends on the subject studied, advice on acceptability can be provided. Please contact the Undergraduate Admissions Office for more information.
Access to HE Diploma: 6 level 3 credits at Distinction and 39 level 3 credits Merit
T-levels: Distinction, depending on subject studied - advice on acceptability can be provided.
What if I don’t achieve the grades I hoped?
If your final grades are not as high as you had hoped, the good news is you may still be able to secure a place with us on a course which includes a foundation year. Visit our undergraduate application information page for more details.
What if I have a non-traditional academic background?
Don’t worry. To gain a deeper knowledge of your course suitability, we will look at your educational and employment history, together with your personal statement and reference.
You may be considered for entry into Year 1 of your chosen course. Alternatively, some UK and EU applicants may be considered for Essex Pathways, an additional year of study (known as a foundation year/year 0) helping students gain the necessary skills and knowledge in order to succeed on their chosen course. You can find a list of Essex Pathways courses and entry requirements here
If you are a mature student, further information is here
IELTS (International English Language Testing System) code
English language requirements for applicants whose first language is not English: IELTS 6.0 overall. Different requirements apply for second year entry, and specified component grades are also required for applicants who require a visa to study in the UK.
Other English language qualifications may be acceptable so please contact us for further details. If we accept the English component of an international qualification then it will be included in the information given about the academic levels listed above. Please note that date restrictions may apply to some English language qualifications
If you are an international student requiring a visa to study in the UK please see our immigration webpages for the latest Home Office guidance on English language qualifications.
If you do not meet our IELTS requirements then you may be able to complete a pre-sessional English pathway that enables you to start your course without retaking IELTS.
If you’re an international student, but do not meet the English language or academic requirements for direct admission to this degree, you could prepare and gain entry through a pathway course. Find out more about opportunities available to you at the University of Essex International College here.
Rules of assessment
Rules of assessment are the rules, principles and frameworks which the University uses to calculate your course progression and final results.
Dr Angie Voela
Reader University of East London
External Examiners provide an independent overview of our courses, offering their expertise and help towards our continual improvement of course content, teaching, learning, and assessment.
External Examiners are normally academics from other higher education institutions, but may be from the industry, business or the profession as appropriate for the course.
They comment on how well courses align with national standards, and on how well the teaching, learning and assessment methods allow students to develop and demonstrate the relevant knowledge and skills needed to achieve their awards.
External Examiners who are responsible for awards are key members of Boards of Examiners. These boards make decisions about student progression within their course and about whether students can receive their final award.
This course provides students with a secure knowledge of different psychosocial and psychoanalytic schools of thought, as well as the means to apply them critically and creatively to a wide variety of cultural phenomena.
Students examine the pioneering works of Freud, Jung, Lacan, Klein, and Object Relations theorists bringing them into dialogue with key works and concepts from across the Humanities and Social Sciences. Early emphasis is given to securing a solid basis in psychodynamic thinking, child, adolescent and adult development, and the dynamics of therapeutic interventions in organisations. We go on to consider topics such as war, trauma, race, gender, sexuality, and social institutions (the family, the asylum, the University) from a psychosocial perspective. In addition to developing subject specific skills that focus on awareness and analysis of unconscious dynamics, students are exposed to a range of critical methods and reading skills. Our critical practice engages works from history, politics and sociology as well as literary texts and films.
Students are empowered to extend their critical and analytic skills and deepen their self-awareness in ways that strengthen an understanding of the relationship between theoretical ideas and lived experience. The course provides a robust foundation for a diversity of career paths in sectors pertaining to the humanities and social sciences (e.g. positions within charity sectors & NGOs, health and social care, marketing, media work, public relations). Many of our students go onto further academic study, or further training in a career in psychotherapy or counselling.
More particularly, this programme aims:
- To provide a solid psychoanalytic vocabulary and understanding of unconscious dimensions of human experience, relationships, communication and culture
- To provide students with a good understanding of the history of the disciplines, and the different schools of psychoanalysis and psychosocial thinking
- To enhance students’ capacity to observe and interpret the social and political world through psychosocial and psychoanalytic perspectives
- To provide psychosocial perspectives on child, adolescent and adult development and difficulties
- To understand the role of emotions in learning, behaviour, and social development
- To understand the concept and significance of trauma and its effects
- To understand the psychodynamics of groups and institutions
- To provide a space and process by which students can explore and reflect upon the intersection between their academic, personal and professional selves
Learning outcomes and learning, teaching and assessment methods
On successful completion of the programme a graduate should demonstrate knowledge and skills as follows:
A: Knowledge and understanding
A1: Solid knowledge of the basic psychoanalytic concepts and of its different applications in fields from psychotherapy to the humanities
A2: Knowledge and understanding of the history of psychoanalysis and of its different schools
A3: Psychodynamic understanding of the emotional factors that affect learning, relationships and behaviour.
A4: Understanding of the psychodynamic frame of therapeutic relationships
A5: Knowledge of the psychodynamics of human development and disturbance
A6: Knowledge of the psychodynamic understanding of trauma and its influence on individuals and organisations
The programme makes use of theoretical seminars (A1, A2, A3, A4, A5), lectures, discussion seminars, group presentations, and reflective practice (A2, A3, A6) and field trips.
Essays, presentation, reflective report, observation summary.
B: Intellectual and cognitive skills
B1: To define and use specific psychoanalytic concepts describing relationships and communication, including transference, counter-transference, projection, introjection, etc
B2: To describe and differentiate the different psychoanalytic authors, schools and their ideas.
B3: To describe the emotional factors that affect psychological development, relationships and behaviour
B4: To describe psychoanalytically therapeutic processes and practice
B5: To discern unconscious dynamics in wider society, politics and culture (e.g. in relation to gender, race, disability, etc.).
The programme makes use of theoretical seminars (B1, B4), lectures, (B2, B5, B6) and the experience of reflective groups.
Formal assessment is by essay, presentation, reflective commentary and observation commentary.
C: Practical skills
C1: Capacity for applying psychodynamic understanding to a range of experiences
C2: Capacity for academic writing in the humanities
C3: Capacity for developing a research project/research skills
C4: Capacity to recognize and describe situations and interactions in institutions in psychodynamic terms.
C5: Capacity to recognize and describe human interactions in relation to unconscious dynamics
C6: Capacity to reflect on one's own experience and take ownership of one's own learning
C7: Capacity for public presentation
The programme makes use of theoretical seminars (C1, C2, C3), clinically orientated seminars (C4, C5, C6), and reflective practice (C4, C5, C6, C7).
Formal assessment is by essay, presentation, reflective commentary and observation commentary
D: Key skills
D1: To communicate effectively with colleagues and begin to practice communication skills that could be applied clinically
D2: To use e-mail, Moodle and electronic submission of assessed work.
D3: To develop a capacity to make a formulation based on psychodynamic understanding and to take a view on appropriate therapeutic interventions; to decide on specific topics for essays.
D4: To work in collaborative groups including reflective experiential groups with an emphasis on learning about one's own contribution to a good working group
D5: To work independently, including through e-based learning and to learn through practice and self-reflection, to engage in independent research towards a dissertation.
The programme makes use of theoretical seminars (D1, D3), lectures, the experience of reflective groups (D1. D4).
Students also make presentations linked to an individual research project (D1, D5).
Finally, students utilise information technology by using email, electronic submission of assessed work, and use of Moodle as a learning repository (D2).
Assessment of the placement year is through a number of elements including assessment of the students' performance in securing the placement, undertaking the placement and reflecting on the placement.
Formal assessment is by essay, reflective observations and presentations.