The programme covers a wide range of specialist topics that provides learners with the knowledge of theories and concepts relating to the contribution of psychological processes to health and illness and helps them understand how this knowledge can be applied in a variety of contemporary settings at individual, community and global levels.
Learners will explore human behaviour from individual, social and biological perspectives and through a detailed understanding of the discipline, both theoretically and methodologically, and will be enabled to assess appropriate interventions and design appropriate solutions for health needs. Modules focus on the applied nature of professional and ethical issues and advanced research methods while others have a specific focus upon the application of theory to the 'real world' allowing learners to further develop and apply competencies and knowledge in Health Psychology. Finally, the programme offers a choice of elective capstone (30 ECTS) pathways that provide an opportunity for research placement and minor dissertation, or the production of a major dissertation. Learners who complete the full programme will therefore also develop and enhance their research capability through critical enquiry and detailed analytical problem-solving.
The programme's specific objectives are to:
Enable learners to explore the various theories, concepts and processes of Health Psychology.
Facilitate critical evaluation of competing Psychological theories through critical analysis and appraisal of Psychological studies and projects in health and illness.
Enable learners to understand how these theories can be applied to understanding human behaviour from individual, social and biological perspectives.
Relate Psychological concepts, theories and processes to a variety of professional individual and group settings and situations.
Develop in learners an understanding of contemporary local and global issues using a Health Psychological perspective.
Enable learners to assess appropriate interventions and design appropriate solutions for clients' needs using a Health Psychological perspective.
Develop in learners an understanding of the systematic, replicable and discoverable nature of Health Psychology.
Enable learners to explore advanced research methods and demonstrate a detailed understanding of the theoretical and methodological considerations, evidencing these skills in a research placement or major research project.
Provide graduates with the underpinning academic knowledge to enhance their employment and educational opportunities and achieve the award of a Master of Science in Health Psychology.
The programme contains an embedded exit award, the Postgraduate Diploma in Science in Health Psychology (60 ECTS, NFQ Level 9) which is available for those who cannot complete the research component of this programme for personal or professional reasons.
For the full-time delivery, in Semester 1 learners will begin three, 10 ECTS linear modules, Personal Development and Stress Management, Survivorship and Professional Issues and Ethics in Applied Psychology in addition to three, 5 ECTS modules in Advanced Quantitative Research Methods and Analysis, Advanced Qualitative Research Methods and Analysis and Addiction and Rehabilitation. All of these modules are assessed by a range of continuous assessments across the 24- or 12-week period.
In Semester 2 learners will continue with the linear modules while taking an additional three, 5 ECTS modules in Public and Community Health, Global Health and Occupational Health Psychology. The continuous assessment for the linear modules is completed in Semester 2. The 5 ECTS modules are assessed by continuous assessment across the 12-week semester with Public and Community Health and Global Health also assessed by a terminal exam during the scheduled examination period.
In Semester 1, the programme offers a choice of elective capstone pathways (Capstone 1 or Capstone 2, each 30 ECTS) that provide an opportunity for the learner to integrate accumulated learning and make the necessary connections in the context of the discipline. This is achieved through the process of research placement and the production of a research placement project/minor dissertation, or through independent research and the production of a major research dissertation. The assessment for each of these modules continues over 3 semesters with learners submitting their proposal at the end of Semester 1, completing the First Meeting assessment and commencing research placement or independent research engagement in Semester 2, with submission of the final artefact in July of Semester 3.
For the part-time delivery, in Semester 1 learners begin Personal Development and Stress Management, Survivorship and Professional Issues and Ethics in Applied Psychology in addition to Addiction and Rehabilitation. All of these modules are assessed by the same range of continuous assessment across the 24- or 12-week period as in the full-time delivery.
In Semester 2 part-time learners continue with the linear modules while also taking Occupational Health Psychology. The continuous assessment for the linear modules is completed in Semester 2 as on the full-time delivery. In addition, part-time learners commence the Capstone 1 or 2 pathway in Semester 2, completing their proposal by the end of the semester.
The part-time programme continues into the second year of delivery in which learners in Semester 3 take four, 5 ECTS modules: Advanced Quantitative Research Methods and Analysis, Advanced Qualitative Research Methods and Analysis, Public and Community Health and Global Health. As on the full-time programme, these modules are all assessed by continuous assessment across the 12-week semester, with Public and Community Health and Global Health also assessed by a terminal exam during the scheduled examination period. The Capstone 1 or 2 pathway continues in Semester 3 with part-time learners completing the First Meeting assessment and commencing research placement or independent research engagement.
Semester 4 of the part-time programme has no taught modular component and allows the learner to fully engage solely in the Capstone 1 or 2 pathway, culminating in the submission of assessment requirements by the end of the semester.
Module No. Module Name ECTS
1 Advanced Quantitative Research Methods and Analysis 5
2 Advanced Qualitative Research Methods and Analysis 5
3 Addiction and Rehabilitation 5
4 Public and Community Health 5
5 Global Health 5
6 Occupational Health Psychology 5
7 Personal Development and Stress Management 10
8 Survivorship 10
9 Professional Issues and Ethics in Applied Psychology 10
10 Research Placement Capstone 30
11 Major Dissertation Capstone 30
To be considered for admission, applicants must hold a minimum of an upper Second Class Honours degree (or above) in Psychology at NFQ Level 8 award from a recognised University course, which confers eligibility for PSI membership or equivalent professional body in the case of overseas applicants. In exceptional cases, the college may accept a lower Second Class Honours degree in Psychology at NFQ Level 8 award from a recognised University course, on the basis of an interview. For applicants whose first language is not English, the minimum English language requirement is B2+ + or above on the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFRL).
Full-time: 1 year
Part-time: 2 Years
This is a hybrid programme, which is delivered through face-to-face, synchronous and asynchronous delivery methods.
Post Course Info
Potential career options for learners pursuing the proposed Master of Science in Health Psychology include both cognate and non-cognate opportunities e.g. as Health Psychologists, wellness experts, trainers, public health advocates, social policy advocates, in research and evaluation posts, teaching/lecturing, administrative positions, health care settings and in general health promotion. It will also appeal to those keen to pursue further postgraduate studies in the field of Psychology.