The School of Psychology can help you expand your knowledge and career options through innovative quantitative and qualitative research in multiple areas of psychological inquiry.

The research activities available to you within the School of Psychology fall within three overarching areas: Health, Disability and Lifespan Development Research, Brain and Cognition Research, and Social and Organisational Research.

Students with abacus

Health, disability and lifespan development research

This research encompasses health psychology, disability, rehabilitation and health service delivery, and healthy development across the human lifespan.

Researchers in this area are linked by a common interest in the assessment and theoretical explanation of the determinants of individual wellbeing, both physical and psychosocial; how these are affected by age, gender, socioeconomic status and psychological variables; the evaluation of interventions to promote health and wellbeing; and associated health policy implications.

Brain and cognition research

Researchers in this area are engaged in the fields of cognition, perception, neuropsychology, and individual differences. As well as conducting basic research into psychological processes, the unit also has a strong interest in applied research conducted in association with several industry partners, including the Defence Science and Technology Group.

Social and organisational research

Staff and students engaged in research and teaching in this area focus on social psychology, critical social psychology, discursive psychology, and organisational psychology.

Key research topics include analysis of real-life interaction in contexts such as racism; the needs of refugees; helpline and counselling effectiveness; organisational culture; work stress; social and psychological issues associated with elite performance in sport; and forgiveness and justice.

Our greatest research strengths

School of Psychology researchers undertake a range of research projects, covering a variety of research areas. These include neuroscience, behaviour and brain health; ageing, frailty and mobility; and child and adolescent health. Learn more about the Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences’ areas of research.

Studying with the school will give you the opportunity to undertake research with a range of differently focused groups, including:

  • Associative Learning Lab
  • Psychology Education Research Group
  • Wellbeing Research Unit.

How to get started in research

If you want to challenge yourself and potentially pursue a career in research, but aren’t sure where to start, consider applying for our Bachelor of Psychological Science (Honours) or Bachelor of Psychology (Advanced) (Honours).

The honours program enables you to research an area of personal interest, and develop the skills required for postgraduate study at a higher level (see below), through coursework and completing a thesis.

Completing an honours degree is also a prerequisite for our Master of Psychology degrees. Find out more about applying for honours within the Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences.

Postgraduate research degrees in Psychology

The School of Psychology offers a range of exciting postgraduate research opportunities aimed at helping you make an impact in your chosen field of study. Staff and students within the school are engaged in research fields of cognition, perception, neuropsychology, and individual differences. There is also a strong emphasis on applied research engaging with social and organisational issues. Further interests focus on health and wellbeing throughout the human lifespan, the evaluation of interventions to promote health and wellbeing, and associated health policy implications.

Doctor of Philosophy

The Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) is the basic qualification for a research career or academic position and is a stepping stone to a range of career opportunities. The PhD involves three to four years of research for a full-time candidate or the equivalent in half-time candidature, together with participation in the compulsory Career and Research Skills Training (CaRST) program, which requires completion of 120 hours of activities prior to thesis submission. The candidate completes the approved program of study and research under supervision and presents a thesis embodying the results of the original investigation.

Master of Philosophy

The Master of Philosophy is offered in every faculty as the primary research master’s degree available to prospective research students. 

Ready to take the next step?

You’ll find full admission requirements for each of these degrees in the Adelaide Graduate Centre Academic Program Rules.

Then, to apply for one of our higher degrees by research, visit the Adelaide Graduate Centre. If you have any queries, contact