Psychology National 5

What is special about this course?

The course is suitable for anyone with an interest in developing knowledge and understanding of human behaviour, either to pursue study and career options related to psychology or to broaden your learning experience.

You may have little or no prior experience of studying psychology, but an interest in human behaviour and life experience provides a good foundation to progress to this qualification.

The National 5 Psychology course will help yu gain an insight into individual and social behaviour. Studying psychology enables you to find out some of the ways that thoughts and the environment can affect how we feel and behave.

The National 5 Psychology course is a recommended first step into the subject of Psychology prior to studying Higher Psychology.  This route will allow for a bettter understanding of each area of study as well as a good foundation in the subject and an increased level of confidence.


Entry requirements

You will have achieved a National 4 Pass in English or equivalent qualification prior to starting this course.

Psychology covers many different areas, three of which are covered within this course; individual behaviour, social behaviour and research.

Individual Behaviour – This area looks at the behaviour of one person in isolation. If you have ever wondered about the reasons for the need to sleep and why dreams happen; then you will find this out in the Sleep and Dreams topic. You will be asked to keep a sleep journal and dream diary.  The second topic is Personality where we look at how genes and the environment can impact on your own personality. You will look at different personality types and take part in a personality questionnaire.

Social Behaviour – This area looks at the behaviour of people in groups and their interactions. If you have ever changed your behaviour just to fit in and be liked then you will be interest in the first topic of Conformity. Within this topic we look at how things such as Culture or levels of self-esteem can impact on whether we conform or not. The second topic is non-verbal communication (NVC), here we look at how genetics and the environment can shape our NVC. We look at universal NVC such as smiling as well as different meanings culturally in such things as gestures.

Research – This area introduces you to the research process which is of great importance within psychology. You will learn about the different research methods, ethics and how participants are selected to take part in research. You will then plan and write up your own research plan.


Internet connection and a suitable device with headphones, microphone and camera (minimum spec) is required. Please email us if you have any concerns about connectivity or equipment.

How will I study my course?

  • Part Time
  • Evening
  • Online

Timetabled learning will take place in an online classroom where you connect and interact with your lecturer and classmates using with video, voice and text chat.  You will also complete regular and flexible personal study which most students choose to do from home. 

How long will my course last?

34 Weeks

Where can I study my course?

    Please note, UHI West Highland will be changing its name to UHI North, West and Hebrides in August 2023, subject to Scottish Government approval. This will not impact on your choice of course or how and where you will study.

Start date



Scottish FeeRUK* FeeInternational Fee
£360.00 £1200.00 £1200.00




A Fee Waiver or funding of up to £200 could be available to help with payment of course fees, depending on your personal circumstances.

This support will be available for people who are 16 or over, living in Scotland and either in low paid work or actively seeking work. To be eligible, you must have income of £22,000 a year or less, or be on certain benefits.

You will also not be undertaking any secondary, further or higher education, SDS funded training or participating on the Community Jobs Scotland programme.

Please contact your local college centre for more information about eligibility, or call us on 01397 874000.

What can I do on completion of my course?

You may like to go on to study our Higher Psychology course or to consider gaining other qualifications in social studies, social sciences or related areas or to employment or further training. 

Is there more information available online?

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Apply for Psychology National 5

I want to start in 2023/24

We are delighted that you are thinking about studying at UHI West Highland. Please note, UHI West Highland will be changing its name to UHI North, West and Hebrides in August 2023, subject to Scottish Government approval. This will not impact on your choice of course or how and where you will study. UHI West Highland operates a fair and open admissions system committed to equality of opportunity and non-discrimination. We consider all applications on merit and on the basis of ability to achieve, without discrimination on grounds of age, disability, gender identity, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity status, race, religion and/or belief, sex, sexual orientation or socio-economic background. We welcome applications from all prospective students and aim to provide appropriate and efficient services to students with disabilities.