Educational psychology

Photograph from the future mind psychology eventof multiple students discussing

Gain insights into human learning & advance your teaching skills 

Educational psychology at UNSW School of Education is one of only four educational psychology courses delivered in Australia. Our postgraduate study offers innovative professional development programs to catapult your teaching career to the next level.

You’ll gain deeper insights into human development and the way in which people learn, think and store knowledge. You’ll also learn about motivational and individual differences within the framework of cognitive load theory.

The field of educational psychology is one of the most progressive and exciting postgraduate study options on offer at UNSW School of Education.

Research every teacher needs to understand

Led by renowned researchers and academics, we peer through the lens of cognitive load theory to advance your understanding of human development and learning. Grounded in a robust evidence base, cognitive load theory is derived from our knowledge of the evolutionary bases of human cognitive architecture.

Cognitive load theory has generated a broad range of instructional effects that can be practically applied by teachers, instructors and researchers. Experts have described cognitive load theory as ‘the single most important thing for teachers to know’. 

Learn from internationally renowned academics

Two of our academics have been ranked in the top 20 most productive educational psychologists in the world, and are joined by a team of renowned thought leaders within the educational psychology field. Their deep involvement in educational research has led to global recognition and publication in multiple journals around the world.

You’ll get the chance to collaborate with some of the brightest minds within the field of educational psychology. Our researchers will open up new perspectives on the learning process, so you can make a real impact within the education sector. 

Flexible & affordable

Our educational psychology program is designed for teachers who want to advance their development. We offer alternative delivery options including online, school holiday intensive and evening classes. This level of flexibility ensures that your study fits into your busy lifestyle.

We also provide affordable study options with Commonwealth Supported Places and the opportunity (for eligible students) to pay or defer fees through FEE-HELP.

Specialist learning to excel your career

Studying educational psychology at UNSW provides you with sought-after skills in instructional design and research methods. We also offer specialised subject areas including:

  • early childhood teaching
  • primary and secondary teaching
  • vocational and workplace teaching
  • tertiary teaching
  • applied behaviour analysis
  • special education
  • school psychology, research or evaluation.

UNSW School of Education is the leading study choice for anyone who wishes to make an impact in the education space.

Study with us

  • We offer two specialist professional development programs. They focus on cognitive processes and their implications for teaching methods and instructional design.  

    Graduate Certificate in Education (Educational Psychology) 

    Students studying a Graduate Certificate in Education (Educational Psychology) must complete 24 units of credit including the following: 

    • two compulsory courses:
      • Learning, Problem Solving, and the Development of Expertise – intensive course 
      • Human Development and Education – weekly face-to-face class 
    • two elective courses from options within the educational psychology specialisation. 

    Master of Education 

    Students studying a Master of Education must complete 48 units of credit including the following: 

    • three compulsory courses: 
      • Learning, Problem Solving, and the Development of Expertise – intensive course 
      • Human Development and Education – weekly face-to-face class 
      • Research Project – self-directed course 
    • one research methodology course: 
      • Experimental Research Design – intensive course 
      • Survey Research – intensive course 
      • Classroom-Based Research – summer intensive course 
      • Researching Education – intensive course 
    • two elective courses from options within the educational psychology specialisation
    • two elective courses from the full range of Master of Education options.

    Entry requirements 

    • Students must meet the following selection requirements for entry to the Graduate Certificate of Education (Educational Psychology) and the Master of Education.
    • A recognised bachelor degree and a postgraduate teaching qualification, eg. Graduate Diploma of Education or Master of Teaching. 


    • A four-year pre-service teacher education qualification, including professional experience, equivalent to the qualifications required for graduate teacher status in NSW. 

    An applicant who submits evidence of other equivalent academic and professional qualifications may be permitted to enrol in the degree. 

Our people

Scientia Professor and Professor of Educational Psychology