Postgraduate study

Mental Health in Children and Young People: Psychological Approaches MSc

Awards: MSc

Study modes: Full-time

This programme offers the unique perspective that children and young people’s mental health and wellbeing is influenced by developmental processes at multiple levels, from individual to sociocultural, and that our approaches to working should be informed by this dynamic, interactional system. We draw on the knowledge and clinical experience of a community of developmental, clinical and health psychologists, to help you understand children and young people’s mental health and wellbeing from this perspective.

The programme includes both conceptual and applied elements. At the conceptual level, the programme will review different theories of children and young people’s mental health involved in the complex structure of typical and atypical development. At the applied level it will include the application of psychological knowledge to understanding the difficulties experienced by children and young people and the critical appraisal of psychological knowledge and its implications.

Teaching is delivered in a variety of engaging and interactive formats, including lectures, seminars, clinical workshops and tutor-led online learning environments.

Students take three courses each semester.

Semester 1 courses 1) Applied Developmental Psychopathology 2) Research Methods in Applied Psychology 3) Typical and Atypical Development

Semester 2 courses (In Semester 2, students take 3 from the following option courses) 1) Attachment, Wellbeing and Mental Health 2) Evidence-Based Psychological Interventions 3) Inferential Statistics in Applied Psychology 4) Parenting: Theory & Practice

You can also opt to take online courses from the MSc Mental Health in Children and Young People:Psychological Approaches (online) programme: 1) Social Inequality and Child and Adolescent Mental Health (semester one) 2) Child Migration and Mental Health (semester two)


  • Trauma & Resilience in a Developmental Context will not be available in 2022/23
  • Critical Psychology and Child Mental Health (semester two) will no longer be available to students

The programme also offers high-quality Continuing Professional Development (CPD) opportunities.

*(Revised 16 March 2022 to update courses included.)

Find out more about compulsory and optional courses

We link to the latest information available. Please note that this may be for a previous academic year and should be considered indicative.

AwardTitleDurationStudy mode
MSc1 YearFull-timeProgramme structure 2022/23

The programme will enable you to:

  • develop your practice through engagement with research and scholarship in psychological theory and practice
  • develop advanced skills in the critical appraisal of psychological practice in the field of child and adolescent mental health
  • develop and consolidate an extended knowledge base of theoretical and clinical approaches to psychological therapy for children, young people and families

The programme fosters transferable skills such as critical evaluation, research competence, teamworking and communication and is suitable for further PhD-level study, research or practitioner study. It will enhance the employability of those wishing to work with children and adolescents in mental health-relevant settings.

Previous students work in a range of professions including clinical practice and voluntary sector organisations, and, with appropriate additional training, in nursing, social work and social care, and teaching.

These entry requirements are for the 2022/23 academic year and requirements for future academic years may differ. Entry requirements for the 2023/24 academic year will be published on 3 October 2022.

A UK 2:1 honours degree or its international equivalent in psychology or a related subject.

Experience of working or volunteering with children and/or young people is highly desirable.

We may also consider your application if you have other professional qualifications or experience; please contact us to check before you apply

Students from China

This degree is Band C.

International qualifications

Check whether your international qualifications meet our general entry requirements:

English language requirements

You must demonstrate a level of English language competency at a level that will enable you to succeed in your studies, regardless of your nationality or country of residence.

English language tests

We accept the following English language qualifications at the grades specified*:

  • IELTS Academic: total 7.0 with at least 6.5 in each component.
  • TOEFL-iBT (including Home Edition): total 100 with at least 23 in each component. We do not accept TOEFL MyBest Score to meet our English language requirements.
  • C1 Advanced (CAE) / C2 Proficiency (CPE): total 185 with at least 176 in each component.
  • Trinity ISE: ISE III with passes in all four components.
  • PTE Academic: total 70 with at least 62 in each component.

Your English language qualification must be no more than three and a half years old from the start date of the programme you are applying to study, unless you are using IELTS, TOEFL, Trinity ISE or PTE, in which case it must be no more than two years old.

(*Revised 17 November 2021 to add accepted PTE Academic qualifications.)

Degrees taught and assessed in English

We also accept an undergraduate or postgraduate degree that has been taught and assessed in English in a majority English speaking country, as defined by UK Visas and Immigration:

We also accept a degree that has been taught and assessed in English from a university on our list of approved universities in non-majority English speaking countries.

If you are not a national of a majority English speaking country, then your degree must be no more than three and a half years old at the beginning of your programme of study.

Find out more about our language requirements:

AwardTitleDurationStudy mode
MSc1 YearFull-timeTuition fees

Search for scholarships and funding opportunities:

  • Postgraduate Administrator
  • Phone: +44 (0)131 651 3970
  • Contact:
  • The University of Edinburgh
  • School of Health in Social Science
  • Medical School, Teviot Place
  • Central Campus
  • Edinburgh
  • EH8 9AG
Programme start date Application deadline
12 September 2022 30 June 2022

If you are also applying for funding or will require a visa then we strongly recommend you apply as early as possible.

You must submit one reference with your application.


Your suitability will be established through your application and reference. An academic reference for recent graduates or a work-related reference for those in paid employment is required.

Find out more about the general application process for postgraduate programmes:

Further information

  • Postgraduate Administrator
  • Phone: +44 (0)131 651 3970
  • Contact:
  • The University of Edinburgh
  • School of Health in Social Science
  • Medical School, Teviot Place
  • Central Campus
  • Edinburgh
  • EH8 9AG