BRUNEL UNIVERSITY LONDON

Culture and Evolution

MPhil  |  Placement Year:   No

Research students are welcomed to Brunel as valued members of our thriving, research-intensive community. A research degree provides the opportunity to investigate a topic in depth, and contribute new knowledge to your discipline. An MPhil involves the exploration of a research topic and is typically studied over a shorter period of 1 year for a full-time student and 2 years for a part-time student. MPhil students are required to demonstrate a systematic understanding of knowledge and a critical awareness of current problems and/or new insights informed by the forefront of their discipline, field of study or professional practice.

Research profile
Research in the area of Culture and Evolution focuses on cultural variation in, and evolutionary origins of, psychology and behaviour – integration of proximate and ultimate perspectives, across levels of analysis from individual biology and personality, through group and social processes to the broader culture. Our research brings together outstanding evolutionary, cross-cultural and other psychologists and will include evolutionary approaches to human psychology such as human behavioural ecology categorised in these three strands: 

  • Relationships – E.g. interpersonal attraction and mate choice, relationship maintenance and satisfaction, jealousy etc. Also intergroup relations (between cultures and ethnic groups).
  • Morality – E.g. what is considered right and wrong, political beliefs, views on resource distribution etc.
  • Conflict & Cooperation – E.g. interpersonal and intergroup, sexual conflict and intrasexual competition, sources of conflict such as inequality etc. 

Some more specific examples of topics emphasised by CCE researchers—all relevant to at least one of the above themes—are listed below, followed by the names of CCE members conducting research in each topic.  

  • Attitudes towards, and behavioral consequences of, inequality (Clark, Pound, Price, Scott)
  • Close personal relationships (Gaines, Marshall)
  • Community and wellbeing (Launay, Price)
  • Competitiveness and risk-taking among males (Pound)
  • Cooperation within groups, including between leaders and followers (Price, Scott)
  • Cultural variation in prosocial behaviours (Imada)
  • Emotions in social relationships, such as jealousy (Imada, Marshall, Schuetzwohl)
  • Impact of social media on relationships (Marshall)
  • Music, singing, and social bonding (Launay)
  • Physical and physiological (e.g. gait, muscularity, hormonal) predictors of social and moral attitudes (Clark, Pound, Price)
  • Physical attractiveness, mate preferences and mating strategies (Clark, Pound, Price, Scott)
  • Relationship of facial morphology to political and moral attitudes (Pound, Scott)
  • Relevance of ethnicity in personal relationships (Gaines)
Programme description

Research students are welcomed to Brunel as valued members of our thriving, research-intensive community. A research degree provides the opportunity to investigate a topic in depth, and contribute new knowledge to your discipline. An MPhil involves the exploration of a research topic and is typically studied over a shorter period of 1 year for a full-time student and 2 years for a part-time student. MPhil students are required to demonstrate a systematic understanding of knowledge and a critical awareness of current problems and/or new insights informed by the forefront of their discipline, field of study or professional practice.

Research profile
Research in the area of Culture and Evolution focuses on cultural variation in, and evolutionary origins of, psychology and behaviour – integration of proximate and ultimate perspectives, across levels of analysis from individual biology and personality, through group and social processes to the broader culture. Our research brings together outstanding evolutionary, cross-cultural and other psychologists and will include evolutionary approaches to human psychology such as human behavioural ecology categorised in these three strands: 

  • Relationships – E.g. interpersonal attraction and mate choice, relationship maintenance and satisfaction, jealousy etc. Also intergroup relations (between cultures and ethnic groups).
  • Morality – E.g. what is considered right and wrong, political beliefs, views on resource distribution etc.
  • Conflict & Cooperation – E.g. interpersonal and intergroup, sexual conflict and intrasexual competition, sources of conflict such as inequality etc. 

Some more specific examples of topics emphasised by CCE researchers—all relevant to at least one of the above themes—are listed below, followed by the names of CCE members conducting research in each topic.  

  • Attitudes towards, and behavioral consequences of, inequality (Clark, Pound, Price, Scott)
  • Close personal relationships (Gaines, Marshall)
  • Community and wellbeing (Launay, Price)
  • Competitiveness and risk-taking among males (Pound)
  • Cooperation within groups, including between leaders and followers (Price, Scott)
  • Cultural variation in prosocial behaviours (Imada)
  • Emotions in social relationships, such as jealousy (Imada, Marshall, Schuetzwohl)
  • Impact of social media on relationships (Marshall)
  • Music, singing, and social bonding (Launay)
  • Physical and physiological (e.g. gait, muscularity, hormonal) predictors of social and moral attitudes (Clark, Pound, Price)
  • Physical attractiveness, mate preferences and mating strategies (Clark, Pound, Price, Scott)
  • Relationship of facial morphology to political and moral attitudes (Pound, Scott)
  • Relevance of ethnicity in personal relationships (Gaines)
Key Modules

Following the completion of the course students may follow several career paths:

  • Career path within academia starting as a University Lecturer/Assistant Professor
  • Career progression within research institutes commencing as a post-doc researcher and progressing to senior researcher
  • The career progression within the bio-pharmaceutical sector including project management and above
  • The career path within the government agencies (e.g. Department of Health, Public Health England) or international agencies (UN, WHO, IAEA etc.)
  • Career path within NHS including specialist research laboratories.
Module & Subject
Entry Requirements
  • A minimum score of 60%- 70% or GPA 2.8/4 - 3.4/4. Offers within the grade range are determined by the higher education institution attended.
  • IELTS: 7 (min 6 in all areas)
  • Pearson: 64 (51 in all subscores)
  • BrunELT: 70% (min 60% in all areas)
Foundation Campus
No Foundation
Course Option
Course Duration: 1 years
Course Fee:  18000.00
Course Level:  POSTGRADUATE
Application Deadline 
International Student:   (15,July)
Location
Country:  UNITED KINGDOM
Campus Location:  Brunel University London, Kingston Lane Uxbridge Middlesex UB8 3PH
Intake Deadline
SEPTEMBER