Psychology in Denmark and at UCPH – University of Copenhagen

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Psychology in Denmark

The Danish academic study of psychology is a five year full-time study programme divided into a three-year bachelor’s degree (180 ECTS) and a two-year post graduate master’s degree (120 ECTS). Upon completion one obtains the title “cand.psych.” (psychologist) which is protected by state law. Following the university degree, candidates can either apply for a three year academic research PhD-programme (180 ECTS) or start working as a psychologist while typically continuing education outside of the university.

Obtaining an authorisation as well as specializing in a field is done typically through a two plus three year part time educational programme, including theoretical courses, practice and professional supervision. These programmes are regulated by the Danish Psychologist Association (Dansk Psykologforening) and the Danish Supervisory Board of Psychological Practice (Psykolognævnet). Information on this can be found at www.dp.dk and www.pn.sm.dk

Educational profile of the Department of Psychology

Our courses revolve around a list of theoretical basic disciplines: Personality-, Social- Developmental- and Cognitive psychology. These are supplemented by mandatory courses in Work & Organizational-, Educational & Community-, and Clinical Psychology.

Furthermore we have courses in qualitative and quantitative methods (statistics), research and methodology, and psychiatry. The master’s degree is concluded by an internship within the field of applied psychology, as well as a thesis. Information on all course modules can be found at the Danish web site www.psy.ku.dk

The courses involve a high degree of individual work on the basis of a mandatory as well as individually chosen curriculum and literature. Papers are usually based on individual reflection, a broad general knowledge of psychology and guidance from an assistant professor. Multiplechoice exams and short-form exams can also be found.

Work and Occupation

Among psychologists, roughly 70% work in the health and social sectors, including hospitals, clinics, welfare and Social Services. The remaining part work in private companies or enterprises, typically with testing, evaluation and planning, or as independent psychologists practicing in a private clinic. Across the field, primary working areas are assessment, testing and therapy.

Psychologists usually manage their own area of authority and therefore rarely work as assistants. They do, however, work under medical supervision and authority in certain areas and generally cooperate closely with other occupational fields and groups. Psychologists in Denmark are not allowed to prescribe medicine; this is under the authority of medical doctors and psychiatrists.