Option 7 - Work and health psychology (WHP)
Number of places available for the current academic year: 5
Application deadline: Friday of the 1st week of the fall semester (academical calendar)
The option "Work and Health Psychology" combines studies in "Clinical and Health Psychology" with studies in "Work and Organisational Psychology". It aims to provide students with up-to-date knowledge, skills and competences in "Clinical and Health Psychology" as well as expertise in the field of "Work and Organisational Psychology". The teaching modules of the in-depth study programme provide a thorough theoretical introduction to psychological disorders and other forms of psychological dysfunction, including their aetiologies, diagnoses, classifications and treatments. The specialisation programme provides a broad overview of models and methods for understanding individuals in their work and family environments. Students gain practical experience in developing the skills needed in organisations (e.g. making presentations to different target audiences, selecting models and methods to answer a practical question, using diagnostic tools) as well as knowledge of laboratory and field methods (e.g. diary studies) to examine research questions in the field of work and health.
The combination of these fields has many advantages, as organisational psychologists may be confronted with mental health and rehabilitation issues, which require specific knowledge. Conversely, clinical psychologists need insight into the working conditions that influence the health and well-being of their clients. The option prepares students for professional careers (e.g. therapy, HR/occupational health) as well as for careers in research. Students with a Master's degree in Occupational and Health Psychology can continue their training by obtaining federal degrees in psychotherapy, clinical psychology or health psychology.
The main teaching language of the in-depth study program for this option is French or German. The teaching language for the module “Basics” is English. The main teaching language for the specialisation program is German.
Before applying for this option, you must first be admitted to the master’s programme (see this page for the admission procedure)!
The application is made via the online form.
It contains the following documents (in PDF, DOC, DOCX or ODT format):
- A motivational letter with presentation of the professional project
- A transcript of the marks and certificates obtained during the Bachelor's courses
- A complete curriculum vitae with all available appendices
- Experience in the field of the option is desired (internship, mastery of a specific method of data analysis, …)
The selection criteria are presented below (from the most important to the least important):
- Experience in the field of the option
- Summary of marks obtained in Bachelor courses
- Motivational letter with presentation of the professional project
Those who have not been admitted may choose one of the options 1 to 3. They may also, if they wish, reapply the following academic year.
In-depth study program (major)
Basics module15 ECTS
The goal of the module is to provide students with a fundamental and current understanding of the main areas of psychology and the central themes of the department's research teams. The module includes the research colloquium linked to the Master thesis (3 ECTS credits) as well as teaching on the most recent advances in the fundamental fields of psychological sciences. The teaching includes topics ranging from basic psychological processes or functions to broad areas of applied psychology and related fields.
The module is composed of a research colloquium related to the Master thesis (3 ECTS credits), a teaching unit in statistics (3 ECTS credits), a teaching unit in psychotherapy research (3 ECTS credits) and 2 elective teaching units (at 3 ECTS credits). Among the elective teaching units is the "Mentoring" teaching unit. The latter includes the acquisition of various experiences in the field of reinforcement and transmission of knowledge in the university context under supervision. The specific offers for this course are published before the beginning of the semester on the department's website. The teaching units are offered in English. The assessment procedures are announced in the description of the course and are specified until the end of the registration period for the course.
The purpose of this module is to provide students with an understanding of psychopathology, which prepares them for the scientific study of the symptoms, causes and treatment of psychological disorders and to allows them to integrate new treatments in future clinical practice. The module consists of teaching units that present the clinical manifestations of mental disorders, their classification according to current classification systems and their frequency, and discuss the aetiological models of these disorders based on current research. This module offers teaching dedicated to specific aspects of psychological disorders, such as:
- psychophysiological and neurophysiological bases in psychopathology
- age group specificities, including children, adolescents, adults and the elderly, or presenting the results of research in experimental psychopathology
The module is composed of 5 elective teaching units of 3 ECTS credits, of which 3 ECTS credits are validated in a teaching unit labelled "Research and clinical Methods" (this label is mentioned in the teaching unit title). The teaching units are offered in French, German or English. The assessment procedures are announced in the description of the teaching unit and are specified until the end of the registration period for the teaching unit.
Interventions and diagnostics15 ECTS
The goal of this module is to provide students with a sound basic understanding of interventions and diagnoses and their application in practice, and to prepare them for practical work or activity in scientific research. This module offers teaching units that deepen their knowledge of investigative methods in clinical and health psychology. The module also includes teaching units that provide basic knowledge of methods of psychological intervention and diagnosis in the field of clinical and health psychology. The course offering reflects various approaches in the field of psychological intervention and diagnosis, such as person-centred and cognitive-behavioural interventions. The topics covered are concerned with issues related to childhood, adulthood, family, etc.
The module consists of 5 elective teaching units. The teaching units are offered in French, German or English. The assessment procedures are announced in the description of the teaching unit and specified until the end of the registration period for the teaching unit.
Practical experience15 ECTS
The aim of the practical experience is to mobilise the students' basic skills, to extend their expertise specific to their option and more broadly to build their professional network. The practical experience is carried out in a clinical, industrial or research environment related to psychology. It can also be carried out on a part-time basis or split between several institutions and research laboratories (called "Lab rotations"). All information and procedures relating to the practical experience are recorded here (FR).
Validation conditions for the module
- The practical experience must be equivalent to eight weeks of 100% work.
- It must be carried out under the supervision of a psychologist and must be related to the Master option chosen by the student.
- The activities carried out by the students as well as the knowledge and skills developed during each practical experience or "Lab rotations" are described and evaluated on the basis of a written report. This report is evaluated (without a grade) by the departmental internship coordinator. If the written report is judged insufficient, it is returned to the student for correction and resubmission. A second unsatisfactory evaluation of the internship report leads to a definitive failure.
Master exam30 ECTS
The Master exam consists of
- a written project and
- its defence.
The research project is developed and implemented by the students within the framework of the chosen option. Although guided by expert supervision throughout the process, students are responsible for preparing the project, recruiting participants, conducting the study, preparing and analysing statistical data. Students then write a thesis, normally in the form of a long research paper. This paper may be written in English, German or French.
Validation conditions for this module
- Acceptance of the written Master thesis
- Successful defence of the Master thesis
Conditions for starting the master thesis
- Students who have been admitted to the Master program with a complementary study program must have fully completed this program. In exceptional cases, a waiver may be requested by writing to the head of the studies program.
Specialisation program (minor)
Occupational Health Psychology15 ECTS
In this module, students acquire the theoretical knowledge and methodological skills necessary to solve practical problems in organisations with a focus on employee health and well-being and to carry out research projects. The module covers a number of topics such as work-family balance, organisational justice, workplace health promotion, conflict and well-being at work, staff/organisational development, social interaction and leadership, work design and staff selection. The competences developed may include the implementation of workplace health promotion measures.
The module consists of 5 elective teaching units of 3 ECTS credits. The teaching units can be taught in German or English. The assessment procedures are announced in the description of the teaching unit and are specified until the end of the registration period for the teaching unit.
Work psychology and human factors15 ECTS
This module provides students with theoretical, methodological and practical skills in the field of work psychology and human factors and covers a range of core topics related to this field. This may include, for example, teaching in the areas of human-machine interaction, automation, usability and user experience, work stress, group work, work design, and work schedules and health. Skills developed may include conducting a work analysis in an organisation or conducting a usability test to evaluate a technical device.
The module consists of 5 elective teaching units of 3 ECTS credits. The teaching units are offered in English or German. The assessment procedures are announced in the description of the teaching unit and are specified until the end of the registration period for the teaching unit.