Health Psychology MSc | Coventry University
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Health Psychology MSc 2019/20 entry

Course code:

HLST047

Study options:

1 year full-time
2 years part-time

How to Apply
Location:

Coventry University

Starting:

September 2019

 

Fees:

2019/20 fees - TBC
2018/19 fees - £7,750

Find out more

Faculty:

Get in touch

For questions regarding study and admissions please contact us:

Overview

Accredited by British Psychological Society (BPS), this course is designed to help you become a practising health psychologist, supporting others in dealing with the psychological and emotional aspects of health and illness, as well promoting healthier lifestyles.

If you already possess Graduate Basis for Chartered Membership (GBC), either from a BPS accredited Psychology degree or conversion course, successful completion of this Master’s fulfils the first of two stages towards becoming qualified as a practitioner Health Psychologist.

You’ll be taught by our highly experienced course team, which includes staff who have worked in a variety of settings as practitioners and/or researchers in areas such as pain management and the management of long term conditions, smoking cessation, public health, clinical health psychology and community health.

See the facilities available in our brand new Alison Gingell Building.

Why Coventry University?

An award-winning university, we are committed to providing our students with the best possible experience. We continue to invest in both our facilities and our innovative approach to education. Our students benefit from industry-relevant teaching, and resources and support designed to help them succeed. These range from our modern library and computing facilities to dedicated careers advice and our impressive Students’ Union activities.

Global ready

An international outlook, with global opportunities

Employability

Career-ready graduates, with the skills to succeed

Student experience

All the support you need, in a top student city

Accreditation and Professional Recognition

This course is accredited and recognised by the following bodies:

British Psychological Society (BPS) - Accredited Health Psychology

This course is accredited by the British Psychological Society (BPS) and is recognised as meeting Stage 1 training requirements for qualifying as a Health Psychologist.

Graduates must achieve at least 50% for all modules contributing to the accredited MSc degree (BPS Standards for the Accreditation of the Masters Programme in Health Psychology, October 2017). Graduates who do not meet this requirement will exit with a non-accredited award, MSc in Psychological Studies of Health. To achieve the necessary number of credits for all non-accredited awards, graduates must achieve the necessary 40% pass mark for all modules contributing to the award.

Our Facilities

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Hospital Wards

We have two fully-equipped mock hospital wards, each containing 4 beds. The wards are built to NHS standards and contain moveable beds, first aid equipment and patient monitoring tools.

 

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Life Sciences Research

Our facilities include a real ambulance, which students can use as part of their studies, and a purpose-built Clinical Skills and Simulation Centre. This allows for much improved training quality in patient care and patient safety.

 

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Strength and Conditioning Suite

Our multi-purpose strength and conditioning suite is equipped with multiple Olympic lifting platforms, a 20m gait analysis track, an anti-gravity treadmill and even a 3D motion capture system!

What our students say...

The academic skills I have gained during my MSc in Health Psychology have given me excellent grounding to gain a place on a PhD programme immediately after graduating. The course offered me a good insight in to the work of Health Psychologist and I was extremely well supported throughout the course from the tutors and other teaching staff. I felt they cared not only about my academic performance, but also me personally and my general wellbeing.

Karen Maher, MSc Health Psychology, graduated 2013, now PhD student at Loughborough University and part-time lecturer for Coventry University and Loughborough University

Course information

Health psychology is based on the premise that illness is caused by a combination of biological, psychological and social factors – things like genetic conditions, anxiety levels or lifestyle choices, family relationships and support systems – some of which can be remedied with counselling, education, social support and behaviour change interventions.

You will be taught how to develop, evaluate and deliver relevant interventions in a whole range of situations which are designed to improve health or enable individuals to better cope with illness. This may include helping people maintain a healthy weight, avoid risky or unhealthy behaviours and maintain a positive outlook in order to combat stress, depression and anxiety.

We place a significant emphasis on research methods, developing your knowledge and skills in planning, carrying out, analysing and writing about research in applied health psychology. For your dissertation, you will have the opportunity to produce an extensive piece of independent research under the supervision of research active academics.

Course Specification
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Modules

Overview

Designed to meet the Stage 1 training requirements for qualifying as a Health Psychologist, this course aims to equip you with the essential skills and knowledge needed to become a Health Psychologist.

It is divided into four theory modules covering the core BPS curriculum for Health Psychology, together with advanced modules on research methods, professional practice, as well as an independent empirical project.

You’ll have the opportunity to gain a sophisticated awareness of the psychosocial aspects of health and illness. For example, you will learn how people react, cope and recover from illness, about the relationship between stress, illness and health, and about health promotion.

Modules

  • Semester 1

    • Health promotion and behaviour change
    • Stress, health and illness
    • Advanced Quantitative Research Methods
    • Introducing Research Informed Practice in Health Psychology
    • Dissertation Preparation in Health Psychology 
  • Semester 2

    • Interactions and outcomes in healthcare practice
    • Management of long term conditions and disability
    • Advanced Qualitative Research Methods
    • Advancing Professional Practice in Health Psychology
  • Semester 3

    • Dissertation in Health Psychology
    • Global Professional Development: Entrepreneurship

We regularly review our course content, to make it relevant and current for the benefit of our students. For these reasons, course modules may be updated.

In more detail...

  • Opportunities to learn about Stage 2 training as well as other career paths open to our graduates.
  • Accredited by the BPS and provides Stage 1 training towards becoming a Practitioner Health Psychologist.
  • Expert guest lecturers from practising Health Psychologists and staff from the University Research Centres.
  • Staff with expertise in pain management, exercise and healthy lifestyle, LGBT health, mindfulness, sleep and long-term conditions.
  • 91% of Psychology students felt staff are enthusiastic about what they teach in the Postgraduate Taught Experience Survey (PTES) 2016.
  • Learn to act in accordance with the legal, ethical and professional standards and regulations of the BPS and the Health and Care Professions Care Council (HCPC).
  • Outstanding track record for graduate employability – 100% of our Psychology students were in work or continuing their studies within six months of graduation (DLHE 2014/15).
  • Well-equipped library with key Health Psychology texts and journals, access to specialist equipment and software, like Biopac and SuperLab, as well as a range of specialist laboratories.

Expert guest lecturers from practising Health Psychologists and staff from the University Research Centres, including the Applied Research Centre in Technology Enabled Health. Recent topics have covered online interventions and sexual health.

Your main study themes are:

  • Research and research methods: Develops your ability to conduct qualitative and quantitative research of relevance to health psychology. You will have the opportunity to gain appropriate skills and capabilities to collect and analyse data, using a range of techniques and research methods.

  • Contexts and perspectives in health psychology: You will have the opportunity to learn about historical and current theories and approaches in health psychology, as well as an awareness of related disciplines, such as medical sociology, medical ethics, behavioural medicine, public health, health policy and health economics.

  • Physiological and psychosomatic disease processes: Builds a fundamental understanding of the physiology of health and illness, to appraise and evaluate evidence relating to the epidemiology of health and illness, including acute and long-term conditions, stress, and psychoneuroimmunology. 

  • Client groups and other stakeholders: Provides the knowledge and skills to progress to working with a range of client groups, encompassing: cross-cultural perspectives (e.g. those relating to ethnicity or religion); sex and gender differences; children and the role of the family in health and illness; and death, dying and bereavement. We also cover how you may work with other professionals, exploring leadership and the role of collaborative working.

  • Health-related behaviour and cognitions:  Enables you to critically evaluate theoretical models of health-related behaviour and cognitions. This will include: health enhancing and compromising behaviours; efficacy and control beliefs; attributions; health beliefs and attitudes; social representations of health and illness; symptom and risk perception; and decision making by health psychologists, patients/clients. We will also examine the ways that factors such as personality, health literacy and emotional intelligence impact on these.

  • Interventions: applications of health psychology: You will have the opportunity to learn to compare and contrast a range of interventions applicable to health psychology settings and health and well-being outcomes, for example, cognitive-behavioural approaches and motivational interviewing. We will cover: health needs assessment; the process of formulation, based on assessment, which informs choice of intervention; management of acute and long-term conditions; behavioural change techniques; and health education and promotion.

  • Healthcare and professional settings: You will have the opportunity to learn about the skills needed to work in a range of health settings, including appropriate use of communication and interviewing skills, such as development of rapport and trust, questioning, reinforcement, reflection of content and feeling, and non-verbal communication. We also examine the impact of a range of situations, such as hospitalisation on adults and children and preparation for stressful medical procedures. 

  • Measurement issues: You will be encouraged to develop a critical understanding of psychometric issues and how to administer psychometric tests relating to the development of outcome measures for acute and long-term conditions, stress and coping, health-related quality of life and other psychological outcome measures.

  • Professional issues: You will be encouraged to take responsibility for your own professional development, be aware of the legal, statutory and ethical obligations and restrictions on health psychology practice in the UK context.

The course can be studied full-time over one year or part-time in two years, normally attending University two days a week (full time) or one day a week (part-time) starting in October.

This course is taught using a mixture of lectures, small group seminars and practical, ‘hands-on’ skills workshops. Core course content will be delivered during the interactive lectures, while the associated seminars and workshops offer opportunities for you to explore topics more independently, receive guidance on coursework assignments, begin to apply your knowledge and develop your academic and transferrable skills.

We consciously embrace a variety of learning styles, using traditional lectures, videos and media clips, discussion based group work and student-led presentations. You will be provided with recommended reading materials to engage with prior to, and outside of teaching sessions, such as book chapters, journal articles or other web resources.

All modes of study feature guest lecturers from industry. Past speakers from industry have included leading academics in their fields, practitioner Health Psychologists, a Leadership trainer, a Counsellor and Performance Coach. We regularly invite graduates to deliver guest lectures to share their success stories and inspire you with knowledge of the many career opportunities open to them. We will also encourage you to attend the Midlands Health Psychology Network Conference.

This course will be assessed using a variety of methods which will could vary depending upon the module. Assessment methods include essays, practical reports, presentations, reflective diaries, multiple choice tests, ethics proposals, examinations and an empirical report.

The Coventry University Group assessment strategy ensures that our courses are fairly assessed and allows us to monitor student progression towards the achieving the intended learning outcomes. Assessments may include exams, individual assignments or group work elements.

On successful completion, you should be able to:

  • Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of: Theoretical principles of psychological knowledge as applied to health psychology and as specified in the BPS core curriculum for a stage 1 programme; a variety of research methods and analytic techniques to an advanced level; the relevance of theory and developments to professional practice; contemporary developments in health psychology. 
  • Demonstrate a systematic understanding of psychological theory and method.
  • Critically evaluate research findings in the field of health psychology.
  • Synthesise information from a range of sources in health psychology.
  • Select appropriate methodologies and plan research which would meet stated aims and operate within ethical guidelines.
  • Structure and present information in a manner appropriate to communicate with other psychology professionals.
  • Implement research plans and conduct research in a professional manner and in accordance with the BPS Code of Conduct.
  • Monitor, evaluate and set goals for future professional development.

For the first two Semesters, full time students will typically have 8-10 ‘contact’ hours a week, while part-time students will typically have 4-5 ‘contact’ hours a week. In the third semester students will typically have two ‘contact’ hours a week, plus one-to-one project supervision.

In addition, you will be expected to undertake approximately a further 30 hours of self-directed study each week, for example, completing the recommended reading that accompanies your lectures, working on coursework assignments, taking part in group work and exam revision.

We offer a multicultural, international experience attracting students from a wide range of diverse backgrounds and different countries, particularly Malaysia, China, India, Nigeria, Germany, Bulgaria, who provide global insight and experience. 

There may be opportunities to take part in international field trips (subject to an additional cost and availability) which is supported by the University’s Centre for Global Engagement. For example, previous students have taken part in a trip to Sri Lanka where they had the opportunity to teach at a partner institution, visit hospitals and attended an international psychology conference.

Global ready

Did you know we help more students travel internationally than any other UK university according to data from the experts in higher education data and analysis, HESA?

In 2016/17, we were able to provide a total of 3,482 student experiences abroad that lasted at least five days.

Much of this travel is made possible through our Global Leaders Programme, which enables students to prepare for the challenges of the global employment market, as well as strengthening and developing their broader personal and professional skills.

Explore our international experiences

1st for

international experiences

Sending more students overseas than any other UK uni (HESA 2016/17)


3,482

Student experiences

The number of student trips abroad for at least 5 days in 2016/17



21,000

and counting

The number of students we’ve helped travel internationally so far

12

global programmes

As well as trips, we offer other opportunities like language courses


What our students say...

The academic skills I have gained during my MSc in Health Psychology have given me excellent grounding to gain a place on a PhD programme immediately after graduating. The course offered me a good insight in to the work of Health Psychologist and I was extremely well supported throughout the course from the tutors and other teaching staff. I felt they cared not only about my academic performance, but also me personally and my general wellbeing.

Karen Maher, MSc Health Psychology, graduated 2013, now PhD student at Loughborough University and part-time lecturer for Coventry University and Loughborough University

Entry Requirements

A 2:2 undergraduate degree (or equivalent) in Psychology. Applicants with degrees in Science or Social Sciences with 50% study in psychology, will be considered on a case by case basis.

A 2:2 undergraduate degree (or equivalent) in Psychology. Applicants with degrees in Science or Social Sciences with 50% study in psychology, will be considered on a case by case basis.

English as a Foreign Language an IELTS of 6.5 overall, with no component lower than 5.5. Pre-sessional English is available if required.

Our International Student Hub offers information on entry requirements for your country, as well as contact details for agents and representatives should you need more advice.

More detail

A 2:2 undergraduate degree (or equivalent) in Psychology. Applicants with degrees in Science or Social Sciences with 50% study in psychology, will be considered on a case by case basis.

English as a Foreign Language an IELTS of 6.5 overall, with no component lower than 5.5. Pre-sessional English is available if required.

Our International Student Hub offers information on entry requirements for your country, as well as contact details for agents and representatives should you need more advice.

More detail

What our students say...

The academic skills I have gained during my MSc in Health Psychology have given me excellent grounding to gain a place on a PhD programme immediately after graduating. The course offered me a good insight in to the work of Health Psychologist and I was extremely well supported throughout the course from the tutors and other teaching staff. I felt they cared not only about my academic performance, but also me personally and my general wellbeing.

Karen Maher, MSc Health Psychology, graduated 2013, now PhD student at Loughborough University and part-time lecturer for Coventry University and Loughborough University

Tuition Fees

We pride ourselves on offering competitive tuition fees which we review on an annual basis and offer a wide range of scholarships to support students with their studies. Course fees are calculated on the basis of what it costs to teach each course and we aim for total financial transparency.

Starts

Fee


September 2019

2019/20 fees - TBC
2018/19 fees - £7,750 (per year)


Scholarships

If you're a truly outstanding undergraduate candidate we may be able to offer you a Coventry University Scholarship. Coventry University Scholarships are awarded to recognise truly exceptional sports achievement and academic excellence.

Starts

Fee


September 2019

2019/20 fees - TBC
2018/19 fees - £7,750 (per year)


Scholarships

For the September 2017 and January 2018 intakes, we're investing £1 million into scholarships for high achieving and enterprising students.

Our scholarships are worth up to £10,000 and every student that applies will be considered. Fulfil your potential this academic year with Coventry University!

Starts

Fee


September 2019

2019/20 fees - TBC
2018/19 fees - £13,350 (per year)


Scholarships

For the September 2017 and January 2018 intakes, we're investing £1 million into scholarships for high achieving and enterprising students.

Our scholarships are worth up to £10,000 and every student that applies will be considered. Fulfil your potential this academic year with Coventry University!

What our students say...

The academic skills I have gained during my MSc in Health Psychology have given me excellent grounding to gain a place on a PhD programme immediately after graduating. The course offered me a good insight in to the work of Health Psychologist and I was extremely well supported throughout the course from the tutors and other teaching staff. I felt they cared not only about my academic performance, but also me personally and my general wellbeing.

Karen Maher, MSc Health Psychology, graduated 2013, now PhD student at Loughborough University and part-time lecturer for Coventry University and Loughborough University

Career prospects

Career prospects for qualified health psychologists continue to grow and completing the course will enable you to progress to further training towards a career as a Health Psychologist.

There are two stages to becoming a qualified practising Health Psychologist requiring a combination of professional education and supervised practice. In the first instance, you need Graduate Basis for Chartered Membership (GBC) of the BPS, followed by a BPS accredited Masters in Health Psychology, such as this course.

The second stage requires a recognised doctoral-level qualification such as a BPS accredited Doctorate in Health Psychology or a PhD alongside the BPS’ Qualification in Health Psychology (QHP Stage 2). Only after completing both Stage 1 and Stage 2 are you eligible to register with the HCPC and use the legally protected title of ‘Health Psychologist’.

Health psychologists work in a wide variety of organisations such as the NHS within hospitals and community health settings, health research units, and public health departments within local authorities. They often work in partnership with other health professionals such as GPs, nurses, dieticians and public health practitioners. Some health psychologists set up, or work for, private consultancy firms offering services such as health service evaluations, therapeutic services within private healthcare settings and/or training services for health professionals. It’s also possible to follow a career as a health psychologist within academia, teaching and conducting health psychology research within universities or other research institutions.

For those who do not wish to go on to study further, the Masters will provide the opportunity to develop knowledge and skills that are in demand by employers. There are a wide range and growing number of job opportunities within the health sector for which are graduates are well suited. Examples of jobs which our graduates may be suitable candidates for include: health improvement/well-being practitioner, health promotion specialist, behaviour change advisor, health trainer/instructor and research assistant within health services research teams.

Such employment is typically within the NHS, public health teams within local authorities, health-related charities and other third sector organisations.

The MSc will also enhance your career prospects by further developing skills required for graduate level jobs, giving you a competitive advantage over those educated to a graduate level. 

Where our graduates work

Our graduates have gone on to further study, including Stage 2 Health Psychology training, or a PhD and successfully qualified as Health Psychologists. We have also had students go on to successfully secure a place on a Doctorate in Clinical Psychology.

What our alumni say

The academic skills I have gained during my MSc in Health Psychology have given me excellent grounding to gain a place on a PhD programme immediately after graduating.

The course offered me a good insight in to the work of Health Psychologist and I was extremely well supported throughout the course from the tutors and other teaching staff.  I felt they cared not only about my academic performance, but also me personally and my general wellbeing."

Karen Maher, MSc Health Psychology, graduated 2013
Disclaimer

By accepting your offer of a place and enrolling with us, a Student Contract will be formed between you and the University. A copy of the 19/20 Contract can be found here. The Contract details your rights and the obligations you will be bound by during your time as a student and contains the obligations that the University will owe to you. You should read the Contract before you accept an offer of a place and before you enrol at the University.

The tuition fee for the course that is stated on the webpage and in the prospectus will apply. If the duration of the course is longer than one academic year, the University may increase the fee for each subsequent year of study but any such increases will be no more than inflation.