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COVID-19 update: This course will start online and continue on campus later. Read more

What will I learn?

Health and Medical Psychology is a discipline of psychology that is rapidly developing and you are most welcome to join this exciting and innovative field!

What does this master's programme entail?

Health and Medical Psychology looks at how health, illness, and recovery are affected by biopsychosocial factors. There is a strong focus on empowerment, so ‘what someone can do’, instead of only focusing on what the burden of a specific disease is. This importantly contributes to promoting and maintaining health, preventing disease and treating illness. Majoring in health and medical psychology is ideal for those who want to understand the role of the mind on our overall health, which is relevant in almost all domains of our lives.

The broad focus is on the relationships between biopsychosocial processes (such as cognitions, emotions and behaviour, psychophysiological stress systems, brain functioning) and health outcomes. More specifically, topics of interest are prevention of disease and promotion of health, and the diagnosis and treatment of the psychological aspects of chronic somatic diseases.

Reasons to choose Health and Medical Psychology at Leiden University

  • With a master's degree in Health and Medical Psychology you can work in different interdisciplinary settings and organisations, focusing on different topics and target groups. For example, you can train medical staff, set up large scale health promotion campaigns or have a key role in advisory boards for health concerns.
  • You will have the chance to work clinically with various patient populations or in research projects together with associated organisations, like the Leiden University Medical Centre.
  • You will have the opportunity to participate in excellent research programs, focusing on a broad variety of research methods in both applied and fundamental research on topics, such as eHealth, self-management in chronic conditions, placebo effects, stress, somatic unexplained symptoms or health promotion.

The master’s programme in Health and Medical Psychology gives an insight into both, the in-depth study of theory and into the acquisition of professional and research skills. The distinctive feature of the Leiden programme is the scientist-practitioner model. This means that the insights about psychological processes are always connected to their consequences and impact in daily practice. In this way, you not only develop your knowledge of psychology as a science, you also learn to apply this knowledge.

Career prospects

A master's degree in Psychology at Leiden University combines theoretical knowledge with academic and professional skills, making you an attractive candidate for many employers.

Skills after graduation

Professional skills

The master's specialisation Health and Medical Psychology will provide advanced training including skills relevant to health promotion and disease prevention. Furthermore, you learn to apply the intervention methods to the well-being of the physically ill and the self-management of chronic diseases.

Research skills

In line with the profile of Leiden University as a research-intensive institution, the teaching programme is based on state-of-the art scientific research. It maintains a strong emphasis on the acquisition of academic and research skills. Training is provided in all relevant skills, including:

  • Reviewing the relevant literature
  • Applying theoretical knowledge to analyse practical problems
  • Developing hypotheses and writing research proposals
  • Designing and carrying out empirical studies
  • Designing and evaluating the effectiveness of interventions
  • Conducting advanced statistical analyses
  • Presenting results and recommendations

Which department am I in?

Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences

Study options

Full Time (1 Year)

Tuition fees
€17,716.00 (14,47,386) per year
Application deadline

Expected October 2022

More details

Start date

Expected September 2022


Leiden University

Rapenburg 70,



2311, Netherlands

Entry requirements

For students from United States

Applicants need a BA or BSc degree (or equivalent) to be admitted to any of Leiden University’s master’s programmes. English-language proficiency: IELTS - 6.0; Toefl (internet based): 80 (component score: 20); Cambridge C2 Proficiency (CPE), or C1 Advanced (CAE): Cambridge component score of 169.

For international students

  • A copy of a valid passport or ID card
  • A copy of a Dutch residence permit (if applicable)
  • CV (résumé)
  • Language proficiency (if applicable)
  • Copies of diplomas and transcripts
  • Letter of motivation

*There may be different IELTS requirements depending on your chosen course.


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