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Welcome to the Department of Psychology

Durham is one of the world’s leading universities as shown by our World Top 100 position in the QS World University Rankings, where we are ranked 78. 

We pride ourselves on being a collegiate and welcoming department, committed to success for all who work here.

Find out more about us
Top 10 in Graduate Prospects in The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2023
13th
13th in the Complete University Guide 2024
13th
13th in the Guardian University Guide 2024
Athena SWAN Silver Award winner in 2013 and retained in 2017 & 2022, for promoting gender equality

Why study Psychology at Durham?

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Study with us

Undergraduate Study

You will receive a genuinely research-led education. As well as learning the core principles of psychology, you will participate in research through seminars, conferences and research assistantship schemes. You will also have access to our world-leading clinical and experimental facilities, including motion capture, eye tracking and biophysical recording laboratories.

Postgraduate Study

We offer both taught postgraduate and postgraduate research degree programmes. Our MSc programmes provide students with core skills, ideal for continuing on to complete a PhD, taking a research position, or entering the workplace. Our postgraduate students are supervised by academics with expertise in their fields and have the opportunity to engage with the local vibrant research community.

Undergraduate

Find out more about our undergraduate courses

Postgraduate

Find out more about our postgraduate taught courses and research

What's new?

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Fellowship honour for two leading academics

We’re celebrating the news that Professor Deborah Riby from our Department of Psychology, and Associate Professor Nadia Siddiqui from our School of Education, have both been elected to Fellowship of the Academy of Social Sciences, in recognition of excellence in their respective fields, and their wider contributions to the social sciences for public benefit.
Image of Professor Deborah Riby and Associate Professor Nadia Siddiqui

Strengthened connections with the Indian Institute of Technology, Madras

We are delighted to announce the signing of a memorandum of understanding with the Indian Institute of Technology Madras (IIT Madras).
A group of people standing in front of a sign that says Indian Institute of Technology Madras

Fetuses react to taste and smell in the womb

Our psychologists have shown the first direct evidence that babies react differently to various smells and tastes while in the womb by looking at their facial expressions.
4-D ultrasound scan of a baby showing a laugh face reaction

Novel collaboration project aims to explore Ice Age through art

A new interdepartmental research collaboration between our Archaeology and Psychology Departments are experimenting with the online visual perceptions of Ice Age arts through their newly launched project website, Palaeo Vision: Do you see through Ice Age Eyes?
Ice age arts 2

Bonobos make “baby-like” signals to seek consolation from others

Pioneering academics from our top-rated Psychology Department have found in their study that bonobos produce a variety of signals including “baby-like” signals to strategically display distress when they are attacked by other bonobos.
Bonobos

Need help tackling your procrastination? This could be the book for you!

Professor Fuschia Sirois, a globally renowned expert in the psychology of procrastination in our Department of Psychology, has distilled her game-changing insights into a new book to help procrastinators understand the issue, and how to tackle it.
Image of alarm clock with notes about delaying tasks
  • Why a social media detox may not be as good for you as you think

    Associate Professor Niklas Ihssen and PhD student Michael Wadsley from our Department of Psychology explain how cutting your social media use dramatically or even avoiding it completely can reduce the positive effects of social media just as much as the negative ones.
    Person looking at a smartphone
  • Chimpanzees are not pets, no matter what social media tells you

    Research Associate Jake Brooker from our Department of Psychology studies the social and emotional behaviour of great apes. He explains that social media needs to recognise that putting exotic animals in a human context isn't cute and reflects animal abuse.
    A chimpanzee looking directly into the camera
  • Fellowship honour for two leading academics

    We’re celebrating the news that Professor Deborah Riby from our Department of Psychology, and Associate Professor Nadia Siddiqui from our School of Education, have both been elected to Fellowship of the Academy of Social Sciences, in recognition of excellence in their respective fields, and their wider contributions to the social sciences for public benefit.
    Image of Professor Deborah Riby and Associate Professor Nadia Siddiqui

Chimpanzees are not pets, no matter what social media tells you

Research Associate Jake Brooker from our Department of Psychology studies the social and emotional behaviour of great apes. He explains that social media needs to recognise that putting exotic animals in a human context isn't cute and reflects animal abuse.
A chimpanzee looking directly into the camera

Fellowship honour for two leading academics

We’re celebrating the news that Professor Deborah Riby from our Department of Psychology, and Associate Professor Nadia Siddiqui from our School of Education, have both been elected to Fellowship of the Academy of Social Sciences, in recognition of excellence in their respective fields, and their wider contributions to the social sciences for public benefit.
Image of Professor Deborah Riby and Associate Professor Nadia Siddiqui

Graphic warning labels could reduce people’s meat consumption

A new study from our Department of Psychology has found that cigarette style graphic warning labels could reduce people’s meat consumption.
Someone handing a plate of food including a burger and salad to a customer

Professor Graham Towl appointed to key crime reduction role

Professor Graham Towl has been appointed as the new chair of the Scottish Advisory Panel on Offender Rehabilitation (SAPOR) which is a key role to help reduce crime in Scotland.
Graham Towl leaning against a fence

Upcoming events

Understanding and addressing interpersonal violence experienced by autistic people

Wednesday 6 March 2024 - Wednesday 6 March 2024
6:00 PM to 6:00 PM
L50, Psychology Department, Durham University
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Our facilities

One of our department highlights is the dedicated laboratory space with equipment linked to teaching on our programmes.

We have outstanding facilities for training in eye-movement recording, motion capture and psychophysics. 
Find out more about our facilities

Equality and Diversity

Our department has an "Equality, Diversity & Inclusion Committee (EDI)" which oversees EDI issues across the department. This committee addresses 5 core issues, namely Raising awareness and supporting members of staff in relation to all protected characteristics; Equality issues; Supporting Diversity and Inclusion; Supporting Wellbeing & the Athena Swan charter.
Find out more about our diversity initiatives
Group of colourful wooden people

Staff

At Durham we focus on you. We are energised teachers, who love our subject and want to share that passion with you.

'What I think makes Durham's Psychology course truly excellent is the contagious passion and excitement each of the staff have for Psychology.'

Liam
Level 1 
Find out more about our staff

Blogs and social media

See what our staff and students get up to during their time at Durham University.

Highlights

Being an international student studying at Durham University

Psychology student, Alan from Hong Kong tells us what it's like being an international student in Durham.
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Day in the life of a second-year Psychology student

Psychology student, Amelia takes us through her day-to-day life at Durham University.
Group of postgraduate students discussing their work in a seminar room

Get in touch

Contact us to find out more about our courses and research. For current student enquiries please use "All other enquiries" button below

Department of Psychology

Durham University
South Road
Durham
DH1 3LE 


Phone: +44 (0) 191 334 3240  

Fax:  +44 (0) 191 334 3241

Questions about studying here?

Check out our list of FAQs or submit an enquiry form.

Your Durham prospectus

Order your personalised prospectus and College guide here.