We have 30 Child Psychology PhD Projects, Programmes & Scholarships

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Child Psychology PhD Projects, Programmes & Scholarships

We have 30 Child Psychology PhD Projects, Programmes & Scholarships

PhD students of Child Psychology explore the biological, social, and cognitive influences that shape young minds. Your research into the early stages of human psychological development will culminate in a dissertation that should make a substantial contribution to the field.

What’s it like to study a PhD in Child Psychology?

During your PhD, you’ll generally conduct original research by working with children and families in a variety of settings that might include schools, hospitals, or laboratories. You might collect data using a variety of methods, such as questionnaires, neuroimaging, and eye-tracking technology.

Possible research areas include:

  • Language acquisition
  • Literacy and communication
  • Mathematical ability
  • Memory development
  • Developmental disability
  • Mental illness in children

Many students will propose their own research project, but there are also numerous advertised PhDs available in Child Psychology.

You’ll complete at least three years of independent research overseen by your supervisor, culminating in an extended thesis which you’ll defend in an oral examination. You may also be expected to attend additional training provided by the department. For some programmes, you may conduct research as part of a larger team.

Entry Requirements

The most common entry requirement for PhD programmes in Psychology is a an upper second-class Bachelors degree in a relevant subject, though a Masters is often desirable. Applicants with a lower classification of undergraduate degree will usually only be considered if they also hold a Masters with a Merit or Distinction.

PhD in Child Psychology funding options

The Research Council responsible for funding Psychology PhDs in the UK is the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC). It provides fully funded studentships that include coverage of your tuition fees, along with a stipend to cover living expenses. Advertised Psychology PhDs will often have studentships attached. Students proposing their own research project may be able to apply for a studentship after being accepted onto a programme.

Many Psychology PhD programmes, however, will only accept self-funded students. Options for independently financing your PhD include the UK government’s doctoral loan, part-time employment alongside your studies and support from charities or trusts.

PhD in Child Psychology careers

A PhD in Child Psychology will equip you with numerous transferable skills such as academic writing and publishing, data analysis, critical thinking and abstract reasoning. Many graduates will go on to careers in teaching, academia or higher education. You might choose to take up a post as a lecturer or postdoctoral researcher at a university, for example. The skillset you’ll earn will also be invaluable in numerous non-academic sectors, such as marketing, human resources, government and media.

It’s worth noting that while you’ll graduate in with an expertise in the field of Child Psychology, your PhD alone will not automatically qualify you to practice as a Child Psychologist in the UK. This requires registration with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC). There are several vocational courses in the field accredited by the HCPC, such as the Doctorate in Educational and Child Psychology (DEdChPsy).

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Factors critical to recovery after major trauma in children and adolescents

Applications are invited for a three-year fully-funded studentship, to commence in September 2024, to work on a project under the supervision of Dr Emma Fisher and Professor Chris Eccleston, focusing on pain and blast injury is available at the Bath Centre for Pain Research at the University of Bath. The project is part funded by Save the Children and the University of Bath. Read more

Risk and protective factors to spoken language acquisition for deaf children in the UK

Good spoken language in the early years predicts later academic outcomes (Law et al., 2017) but deafness disrupts the acquisition of spoken language by limiting access to the speech signal due to reduced access to sound, pitch distortion (Hopkins, 2015) and frequency smearing causing an increased susceptibility to noise (Moore, 1996). Read more

The implementation and evaluation of a cohesive primary and secondary school emotional literacy curriculum to improve children’s emotional wellbeing

This fully funded ESRC CASE PhD studentship is at the centre of a collaboration between the #P-S WELLS programme and Whitefield Primary School, to enhance understanding of how to best support children’s emotional wellbeing over the transition from primary school to secondary school. Read more

Structured PhD in Child and Youth Research

The PhD in Child and Youth Research is a four-year full-time or six-year part-time interdisciplinary structured PhD programme. Read more
Last chance to apply

How do infants adapt to bilingual environments?

  Research Group: Developmental Science
Background. More than half the world’s population is now bilingual (Grosjean, 2024). To meet the growing demand for bilingual speakers, and in many cases to maintain culture and identity, initiatives have been set up to promote bilingualism in the community (e.g., by the Welsh government). Read more

Examining the effects of increasing engagement in physical activity in children with attention deficit disorders

Attention deficit/hyperactive disorder (ADHD or ADD) is a common neurodevelopmental disorder. Between 7.2% and 9.4% of children are diagnosed with ADHD in the peak age range of 7 – 10 years (Danielson et al., 2018; Thomas et al., 2015). Read more

Creating effective and sustainable breast and bra education programmes for target groups

Applications are invited for a fully-funded three year PhD to commence in October 2024. . The PhD will be based in the Faculty of Science and Health, in the School of Sport, Health and Exercise Sciences, and will be supervised by Professor Joanna Wakefield-Scurr and Dr Mike Rayner. . Read more

The role of language use and self-concept in psychosocial interventions for people living with dementia

Dementia is a global public health priority. People living with dementia often face challenges in daily functioning and diminished quality of life, as the disorder affects many important cognitive functions. Read more

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