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Brighton & Sussex Medical School


BSMS > Postgraduate > Psychiatry


Key facts

MSc, PGDip, PGCert

Part-time: 5 years maximum

Eligible applicants: Places on the course are only open to Health Education England Kent, Surrey and Sussex (HEE KSS) Psychiatry trainees.

Location: Sussex Education Centre, Mill View Hospital, Hove; University of Brighton, Falmer campus; online via university portal

Course Leader: Dr Moustafa Saoud

Read Dr Moustafa Saoud's profile here >

Course Co-Ordinator: Claire Martin

Read Claire Martin's profile here >

General enquiries:

This course is jointly validated by the University of Brighton and the University of Sussex.

Apply for the psychiatry course here >

psychiatry students in a seminar

Key areas of study

  • Core principles of psychiatry
  • Psychopathology
  • Behavioural science
  • Psychotherapy
  • Biological sciences in psychiatry
  • Research methods and critical appraisal
  • Leadership and change management in clinical services
  • Communication, learning and teaching in health and social care

Course overview

The MSc Psychiatry course is run in collaboration with Health Education England South East (HEESE). 

The first year of this course follows the Royal College of Psychiatrists core knowledge curriculum, with an opportunity to exit with a PGCert. The second year incorporates development of wider clinical professional skills in leadership and teaching. The third year provides a structured research opportunity within the mental health field, working towards completion of a dissertation. 

Course structure


  • Principles of Psychiatry (20 credits)
  • Behavioural Science and Psychotherapy (20 credits)
  • Biological Sciences in Psychiatry (20 credits)


  • Communication, Learning & Teaching in Health & Social Care (20 credits)
  • Leadership and Change management in Clinical Services (20 credits)
  • Research Methods and Critical Appraisal (20 credits)


  • Research Dissertation (60 credits)

Career opportunities

The first year prepares students for Paper A of the Royal College of Psychiatrists membership examination.

A higher academic qualification enhances evidence of experience for competitive interviews and offers entry to an academic career. 

Entry requirements

Applicants must have a relevant undergraduate qualification and will be expected to demonstrate an ability to study at Masters level (assessed by interview and/or production of a short piece of written work as necessary).

Trainees entering the Health Education England South East (HEESE) psychiatry core training programme will be automatically eligible. GPs with a special interest in psychiatry are particularly encouraged to apply.

Applications from non-medical staff who have been working for a minimum of two years in mental health-related posts will also be considered. Please note that the MSc Psychiatry will not qualify non-medical staff to practise as a psychiatrist. The course does not provide a qualification for practice as a psychiatrist in the UK or overseas.

This course is open to UK applicants only (and EU applicants who are appointed to a post within HEESE).

Fees and funding

The fees listed are the overall costs for full-time courses taken in the academic year 2024/25. Where courses are taken part-time over more than one academic year, fees are usually charged pro-rata for the modules taken during each academic year. If you do not have settled status in the UK and require a work visa, then you will be fee assessed as Overseas and will therefore be subject to the International fee rate.

Find out more about fees and funding >


All BSMS students on Masters courses accredited jointly by the University of Sussex and the University of Brighton are eligible to apply for University of Sussex postgraduate scholarships in 2024/25.

Read more about fees and funding here > 


A number of bursaries are available for Psychiatry trainees employed by the NHS in the HEESE region. Please contact the Course Leader for further information.

Apply here

Applications are made through the University of Brighton online portal. This course is jointly validated by the University of Brighton and the University of Sussex. From September 2022 places on the course will be open only to Health Education England (Kent, Surrey, Sussex) Psychiatry trainees.

APPLY for the psychiatry course here >