MSc Positive Psychology

We often talk of 'a positive frame of mind' or 'looking on the bright side'. This Master's in Positive Psychology is your opportunity to take that to a whole new level. Our modular postgraduate programme takes you deep into the concepts and theories of positive psychology and supports your theoretical and research-based contributions to the subject.

Positive Psychology

Key information



Mode of Study:



30 months


University of Bolton

Start date:


Course Details

The University of Bolton's Master's degree in Positive Psychology takes you on an immersive journey into this relatively new subject area within psychology. The programme's modular nature allows you to take a flexible and fairly autonomous approach to learning, theorising, reflecting and researching.

You'll get the chance to learn, debate and critically evaluate positive psychology's new techniques and research. You'll also have the opportunity to evaluate developing theories and applications in positive psychology, supported all the way by experienced and enthusiastic teaching staff with an excellent knowledge base. We offer expert training in research techniques, helping you to conceptualise, design and implement an independent research project that explores new ideas and approaches at the forefront of this increasingly popular subject.

Successfully completing this MSc in Positive Psychology should put you in a highly favourable position for seeking employment in relevant care professions and educational institutions, and for securing a place on a specialist psychology-related higher degree or doctorate programme.

  • We'll support you as you develop an in-depth and advanced knowledge of this emerging field of psychology and develop your own research projects.
  • Many of our teaching staff for this programme are involved in significant and ongoing research in this subject.
  • You'll have plenty of opportunities to develop highly sought-after skills in critical evaluation and reflection relating to theories and research techniques in positive psychology.
  • Focused research training is designed to support and guide you in conceptualising, designing and implementing your own independent research in positive psychology.
  • This postgraduate course is designed to enhance your employability, particularly in the health and care professions, or help you progress to further studies in psychology.
Key Features
  • An enthusiastic, dedicated and supportive teaching team delivers this pioneering programme.
  • The course curriculum allows you to explore issues from a diverse range of perspectives – all underpinned by a research-informed knowledge base.
  • Learning and teaching are student-centred and involve small group sessions and one-to-one tutorials. Your studies will be supported and enhanced by the University's virtual learning environment.
  • We've designed the programme to encourage and support your unique approach to research and critical enquiry.
  • You can enjoy contributions from expert guest speakers on a range of subjects covered in this exciting postgraduate programme.

  • You should have an upper second class (2.1) honours degree (or above) in Psychology, which is accredited by the British Psychology Society for Graduate Basis for Registration (GBR) of the British Psychological Society (BPS).
  • If you have a lower second class (2:2) honours degree in Psychology, you may be accepted to the programme following a successful interview. We may also ask you to provide a portfolio of your work as part of the application process.
  • We'll also be happy to consider your application if you're a graduate of an alternative but related degree (for instance, nursing or health and social care). We'll require you to attend an interview, and we may ask you to provide a portfolio of your work to help determine your suitability for the course.
  • Relevant work experience can also provide an advantage.
  • We'll consider applications where appropriate work experience can be demonstrated in lieu of, or in addition to, the published academic qualifications in line with the University’s Recognition of Prior Experiential Learning (RPEL) procedures.
  • This course does not confer Graduate Basis for Registration (GBR) with the British Psychological Society (BPS) – if you're seeking to achieve GBR, please consider applying for our MSc Psychology (Conversion) programme.
  • If English isn’t your first language, you’ll also need IELTS 6.0 with no less than 5.5 in any band (or equivalent). We also accept a range of other English language qualifications – please visit our English Language Requirements web page for more details.

Where changes are made to material information contained in this course description or a decision is taken to suspend a course between the offer of admissions and enrolment, we will inform applicants at the earliest possible opportunity and will outline the various options available to the applicant.

The University of Bolton's MSc in Positive Psychology focuses on the scientific study of happiness, wellbeing, purpose and strength. It looks at the impact of positive emotions on a person's wellbeing and what makes people thrive.

The course aims to build your intellectual and thinking skills, problem-solving, interpersonal awareness, communication skills, ability to develop arguments supported by relevant evidence, and teamwork, IT and data-handling skills.

What can I do with this qualification?

Positive psychology can be used in a wide variety of job roles in education and training, business, healthcare, charities and government agencies. As a graduate, you could even use the techniques to transform a company or help develop the potential of a group, community or institution.

The theory and transferable skills you could learn should also benefit your clinical work if you're a qualified clinical psychologist, counsellor, life skills coach, wellbeing practitioner, or psychotherapist. Teachers, youth workers and educators can also use positive psychology expertise in their work.

Some graduates choose to continue their education by completing a PhD. Continuing your education would allow you to develop your skills further and research your area of interest.

Alternative career options

Graduates can use the qualification to enter a range of other careers. Some of these roles may require relevant experience and/or postgraduate study. Possible careers include:

  • Teaching and education
  • Careers guidance
  • Human resources
  • Probation services
  • Prison services
  • Social work
  • Counselling
  • Family mediation and support
  • Nursing
  • Police
  • Media and advertising
  • Communications
  • Sport and recreation
  • Brand consultancy
  • Advertising
  • Child protection
  • Sales
  • Youth work

Course fees

Important note regarding tuition fees for the 2023-2024 academic year: EU nationals who meet residency requirements (have settled or pre-settled status) may be eligible for 'Home' fee status. If you do not meet these residency requirements, overseas fees will apply. Irish citizens living in the UK or Ireland will be eligible for 'Home' fee status under the Common Travel Area arrangement. Please read the student finance for EU students web page on for information.

The fees for a student's course of study will be set for the normal duration of that course subject only to inflationary increases – measured by the Consumer Price Index (CPI) recorded in March each year to take effect for subsequent start dates.


Click here for more information on our Master's Bursaries.

For details of how to apply for this course, please choose your status from the options below:

You may apply directly to the University using the University's online application form. Please select your chosen start date from the list below:

You should have to hand:

  • Details of the educational establishments you attended and dates

  • Your certificates for the qualifications you are using to gain entry to the course – you will need to enter the completion date and upload copies

  • Details of any employment history including name, address, dates and role

  • Personal statement – this can be either input into the relevant field or uploaded separately

  • Details including e-mail addresses of two referees, at least one of which should be someone who can provide an academic reference

Please make sure any documents you wish to upload in support of your application are in pdf or jpeg format. Personal statements may be word documents.

Please ensure your data is correct at each stage of the application before you proceed to the next page. If you use the back button at any time during the application, you should check the validity of the data you have already input.

If you experience difficulties during the application process, contact the Admissions Team on 01204 903394 or

International applications are not possible for this course

As an international student you are not allowed to study this course because of the restrictions on your visa.

We offer a wide range of full-time courses in lots of different subjects, many of our courses start in September and January. If you would like to see what courses are available please visit our Course Search.

We adopt a blended learning and teaching style, including online delivery and engagement where appropriate. By using a diverse range of teaching methods designed to complement each other, we aim to help you achieve the course's intended learning outcomes. We offer lectures, seminars, workshops and one-to-one sessions. You'll need to undertake significant independent reading and investigation, complete seminar-related work, and prepare for workshops, presentations and group discussions. Some modules will require you to follow up on taught sessions by using online resources and completing complementary tasks.

Assessment methods are also varied, allowing you to demonstrate your learning in a number of ways. For example, module assessments may require you to complete reports, essays, presentations, literature reviews, or review journal articles, write up case interventions and treatment evaluations, complete short question-and-answer sessions relating to statistical analysis, and present reflective journals.


The modules listed below may be a mixture of compulsory and optional. You may not have the opportunity to study all the modules shown as part of the course.

  • Psychological and Social Research: Review, Evaluation and Design
  • Quantitative Inquiry 1
  • Quantitative Inquiry 2
  • Qualitative Inquiry
  • Foundations of Positive Psychology
  • Positive Psychology in Practice
  • Critical Positive Psychology
  • Psychology Dissertation
Assessment methods
LevelAssesment method
Level oneCoursework 100%
Learning activities
LevelLearning activity
Level oneGuided independent study 85%, Scheduled learning and teaching activities 15%


The university will use all reasonable endeavours to deliver your course as described in its published material and the programme specification for the academic year in which you begin your course. The university considers changes to courses very carefully and the university will minimise any changes. Please be aware that our courses are subject to review on an ongoing basis and changes may be necessary due to legitimate staffing, financial, regulatory and academic reasons. The content of course modules and mode of associated assessments may be updated on an annual basis. This is to ensure that all modules are up-to-date and responsive to employment and sector needs. The published course material and the programme specification contain indicative ‘optional modules’ that may be subject to change due to circumstances outside of our control. For this reason, we cannot guarantee to run any specific optional module.

The academic staff detailed above teach across a range of courses in this subject area and may not teach on this course specifically.

Programme Contacts

Pedro Vital
Programme Leader

+44 (0)1204 903685

Enquiry Team
University of Bolton

+44 (0)1204 903903

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Help Centre

We have the answers to your questions, find all the advice and support in one place.

Part of the University of Bolton Group

Bolton college
Alliance learning
Anderton centre2
QQA Scheme Participant