What does psychology have to do with health? Very much, it turns out. How we think, feel, interact with others and behave otherwise have major consequences for how we stay healthy, get ill, and deal with illness. In addition, illness has a significant impact on our psychological processes at work, at home and in leisure time. The program takes a holistic perspective on human health by addressing biological, psychological and social factors.
A master’s degree in health psychology gives you the qualitications to work in various professional fields, but especially in healthcare. The programme includes one year of full-time studies, and aims at in-depth knowledge and skills that relate to psychological processes in health, illness and healthcare. It addresses areas such as (i) the role of psychological and social factors in the onset and treatment of physical health problems, (ii) strengthening health-promoting behavior for prevention of health problems and promotion of good health, (iii) patients’ perception of illness, management of chronic illness, and adherence to treatment, (iv) determinants of health-related behavior, (v) psychosocial health aspects of working life, (vi) interplay between psychological and biological factors and physical/chemical environmental factors for the onset of health problems, and (vii) methods and designs for development of knowledge in health psychology. The programme is permeated by a biopsychosocial perspective.
In the programme, students and teachers will meet who have different backgrounds, but with the common interest in improving health. Some students have a basic education in healthcare, and are, for example, physiotherapists, nurses, occupational therapists and dietitians. Others have a social science education, such as psychologists, sociologists, human resource specialists and sports educators.
The education involves searching for knowledge, problem solving, analysis and evaluation of information based on a scientific approach, which is done both individually and in study groups. The teaching methods include lectures, seminars, reverse classrooms and practical exercises. Since the programme is given in English, a large proportion of the students will have an international background.
Health psychology I: introduction, 7.5 credits
Scientific perspectives and research design, 7.5 credits
Health psychology II: lifestyle perspective, 7.5 credits
Data collection and analysis, 7.5 credits
Health psychology III: working life perspective, 7.5 credits
Health psychology IV: environmental perspective, 7.5 credits
Master’s thesis, 15 credits
The first six courses (7.5 credits) are given with 50% pace, but with two courses given in parallel, and the master’s thesis course (15 credits) is given with 100% pace.
The programme functions as both an extension and in-depth study of previous academic degrees in several health sciences for work tasks related to physical and mental health. Many employers seek integrated biological and psychological expertise, which the program provides. The programme is also a good preparation for postgraduate studies in the field of health.
Master Programme in Psychology with Specialisation in Health Psychology, 60 credits.