Master of Science in Applied Psychology

Red ladder ascending out of head shaped hole psychology

The Master of Science in Applied Psychology (also known as APSY, Industrial and Organisational or I/O) is one of the oldest and most recognised applied psychology degrees in New Zealand.

We admit up to 15 students a year. Most of our students are recent psychology and business graduates from New Zealand, Asia, and Europe. Some are HR professionals who want to enhance their education. Acceptance into the programme is competitive.

Diverse career opportunities

Many of our students have decided to make occupational psychology their career by becoming HR professionals, organisational consultants, research analysts, or academics.

Programme details

Application is open to graduates who have completed Bachelor's degrees in psychology and who have a grade average of B or better for their stage three courses. Specifically, the prerequisites are:

(1) PSYC 105 and PSYC 106; and 
(2) PSYC 206, and three courses from PSYC 207-213; and 
(3) At least 75 points of 300-level PSYC.
PSYC 344 is required for postgraduate study in Applied Psychology. PSYC 336 would be an advantage.

Entry is limited to 15 students a year. Selection is based on student's academic records (grade-point-average of 300-level psychology courses) and, occasionally, on other supporting documents.

How to apply

Applications should include:

  • Completed Applied Psychology Application form (PDF, 164KB)
  • Cover letter explaining why you think the MSc APSY is for you, and what your post-degree aspirations are
  • Curriculum vitae
  • Certified copy of your university transcript if you are not a UC student or graduate
  • If you are studying elsewhere during the year in which the application is made, please attach a letter consenting to your course marks being released to UC.

Applications should be sent to:

Application Deadline

The closing date for applications is 30 November in the year preceding entry.

Successful applicants will be notified in December. One or two applicants may also be placed on a reserve list, and will be notified of this and also notified if a place on the programme becomes available.

More information

Two-year Masters degree

Students seeking qualifications in Industrial and Organisational Psychology complete a two year Master of Science in Applied Psychology. Part I consists of courses totalling 120 points (1.00 EFTS), and Part II consists of courses totalling 120 points (1.0 EFTS), including APSY 660 Dissertation (90 points).

Course options

The Applied Psychology courses are intended to prepare students with a range of competencies. Follow the links for course descriptions and requirements, learning outcomes, prerequisites and timetabling information.

  • APSY 601 - Advanced Industrial and Organisational Psychology - Strongly recommended for Part I
  • APSY 612 - Performance Management and Appraisal
  • APSY 614 - Leadership and Motivation in Organisations
  • APSY 615 - Attitudes and Organisational Development
  • APSY 617 - Industrial and Organisational Psychology Measurement Issues
  • APSY 618 - Organisational Change: Directions for I/O Psychology Practice
  • APSY 619 - Psychology of Stress, Health, and Wellbeing at Work
  • APSY 660 - Dissertation

The extent to which a student who completes an MSc in Applied Psychology is prepared for these work areas is dependent upon the particular choice of papers he/she makes while working towards the degree.


The MSc in Applied Psychology is awarded with First or Second Class (Division I and II) honours, or a pass. The class of honours is determined by grades achieved across the component APSY courses and APSY660 Dissertation, which is weighted as three courses.

All forms are available on LEARN. If you do not have access to the Psychology PG Research page, please contact Yifang Parker.

Recent APSY graduates have found employment in a variety of organisations. These have included personnel or human resource management positions in a range of industries - banking, chemicals, computers, insurance, and in state-owned enterprises (eg: New Zealand Post), health organisations, and government departments (eg: Ministry of Justice and the State Services Commission). Some have been appointed to positions as professional psychologists in the Ministry of Defence and in management consulting firms. Others have obtained PhD qualifications and assumed academic careers.

Broad-based opportunities

Some graduates have chosen to leave the specialised Industrial and Organisational psychology field and have begun general graduate-level entry programmes in large organisations such as banks. Others have travelled overseas and have found employment in a variety of fields either as psychologists (eg: in the Royal Australian Air Force) or in human resource management or related areas.

A small number operate as sole consultants or in small partnerships. This is a growing career trend for ex-students after a few years of experience and is a developing feature of industrial and organisational psychology.


There is an APSY Alumni group on LinkedIn for people who have completed the Masters of Applied Psychology and/or the Postgraduate Diploma in Industrial and Organisational Psychology at UC. The purpose is to help keep members in contact, and for APSY programme staff to demonstrate professional outcomes.

Need more information?

For Applied Psychology related enquiries, please email