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University of Portsmouth: Health Psychology

Institution University of Portsmouth View institution profile
Department Faculty of Science and Health
Telephone 023 9284 5566
Study type Taught


Overview With this MSc Health Psychology degree you’ll build on your health psychology knowledge to understand health and health behaviours more fully, help patients better manage their long-term illness or recovery and help healthcare professionals improve their provision. You'll gain a thorough grounding in the main areas of health psychology: practice, theory and research. You'll learn how biological, emotional and social factors and the environment can affect physical wellbeing, and how to prevent this. You’ll also learn how a person living with a chronic conditions is affected by it, how they manage of it and you'll develop the skills and knowledge to support them.

Recognising the value of work experience, a placement is a central part of the course. We expect students to complete 100 hours of work placement activity and will support students to identify suitable opportunities.

Our MSc Health Psychology is recognised as a Stage 1 course, which is a prerequisite step towards gaining chartered status as a health psychologist. On successful completion of this course, you’ll be able to apply to progress to Stage 2, where trainees work towards achieving status as a Chartered Member of the British Psychological Society (BPS) and a registered health psychologist with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC). If you’re interested in other career paths you can go straight from your MSc Health Psychology to work in areas such as commercial research, smoking cessation, health promotion and chronic illness management.

On MSc Health Psychology you'll develop a systematic knowledge and understanding of health psychology, in accordance with the academic requirements of the Division of Health Psychology (DHP) and the BPS to support, your eventual progression to a career in health psychology or to study for a PhD.

Psychology at the University of Portsmouth is ranked 5th of all post-1992 universities for research quality in the Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2021.

Eligibility This course accepts UK, EU, and international students.

Accreditation Accredited by the British Psychological Society (BPS), our Master’s degree is recognised as a Stage 1 course, which is a prerequisite step towards gaining chartered status as a health psychologist.

Course highlights + Achieve unique and valuable workplace experience in applied health psychology settings as a research assistant or in a clinical setting as an assistant psychologist (e.g. research projects, health promotion roles, etc.)

  • Learn in our wide range of research suites and laboratories (including pain lab and sensory lab) and attend regular health psychology research seminars

  • Be taught in accordance with the academic requirements of the Division of Health Psychology (DHP) and the British Psychological Society (BPS)

  • Receive expert guidance on the application of over 300 psychometric tests including those designed for adults, children, education and post-traumatic stress as well as over 50 specific to the health psychology field

Careers and opportunities This MSc in Health Psychology provides the Stage 1 training for you to practise as a health psychologist. Upon successful completion of the course, you'll be able to apply for Stage 2.

Graduates of this course have gone onto roles such as: - Health Psychologist

  • Research Assistant

Graduates of this course have gone on to work for companies such as: - Office for National Statistics

  • King's College London

  • University of Portsmouth

Course structure Full-time - On campus 2 days per week. Tuesdays and Thursdays 10am-3pm (and Tuesday 3pm-5pm for 9 weeks)

  • Approximately 38 hours independent study per week

Part-time - On campus on Tuesday 10am-12pm and Thursday 10am-3pm

  • Approximately 19 hours independent study per week


University of Portsmouth


‘I already feel so much more confident applying for jobs.’

Anna, Master’s student at the University of Portsmouth

 Why Portsmouth?
A stronger sense of direction. Opportunities to specialise and further your prospects. A big step towards achieving your ambitions. Portsmouth is a university where you can connect with great people and businesses, and unlock career possibilities.

Taught qualification or independent research? On-campus teaching or online part-time study? At Portsmouth, you can choose from a wide range of subjects and modes of study.

  •    5***** rated for excellence in the QS World University rankings 2022
  • 86% satisfaction with course …
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