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Medical Psychology

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    About the Medical Psychology

    Medical Psychology is a sub-discipline that applies psychological principles to the field of medicine. The Bachelor or Master of Science in Medical Psychology at the International European University in Poland will provide specialized training for persons interested in becoming professional Medical Psychologists with a sound medical psychology basis capable of carrying out many facets of psychology work, such as psychological assessments, advanced psychological diagnosis, treatment, research, and consultations about the use of any psychotropic medication. The field is concerned with developing and integrating psychosocial, behavioral, and biomedical knowledge relevant to health and illness, and applying this knowledge to the prevention, etiology, diagnosis, treatment, and rehabilitation of patients and clients within a lifespan perspective.

    The International European University graduates will deal with patients and clients with diverse health-related needs and generally contribute towards humanity’s well-being. It will pursue this through innovative medical education. This includes, among others, the use of a competency-based, integrated, community-oriented, student-centered, problem-based learning curriculum and instructional strategies that promote the development of all needed professional competencies. This unique program arose from a perceived need for skilled mental health professionals in Poland. The Programme offered at the International European University focuses on medical psychology, which is based on the biopsychosocial model that draws upon knowledge from health psychology, clinical psychology, and neuropsychology. However, despite its misleading title, a Medical Psychologist does not automatically have the authority to prescribe medication. Any psychologist who desires to prescribe medication must first meet specific qualifications in psychopharmacology.

    Name of the specialty – Medical Psychology.

    Level of Higher EducationFirst (Bachelor of Science in Medical Psychology) and Second (Master of Medical Psychology) levels.

    Duration of studying 4 years of full-time studying for a Bachelor of Science in Medical Psychology and 2 years of full-time looking (Master of Medical Psychology).

    Medium of Instruction – English.

    The Educational Process

    The objective of the Medical Psychology Course at the International European University is to introduce students to the principal domains of psychology that are most relevant to medicine. It aims to teach students the critical areas of psychology that would provide the basis for viewing people not only as biological but also as psychological beings. Furthermore, the course also aims to introduce students to the application of psychology in the wider practice of medicine. In this course, students are introduced to the interaction between psychological and medical principles in the development, assessment, diagnosis, and treatment of medical illnesses.

    During the studying process students are also informed about the main trends of Medical Psychology in the modern stage of society development, general study definitions and main patterns of mental activity in patients, getting conflict-free communication skills in a medical environment, forming medical-psychological skills in this base with elements of Psychotherapy, what is important for professional training and further professional activity.
    The ultimate goals of the Course are:

    • to demonstrate possession of the principles of medical deontology, prevent iatrogeny, and overcome the consequences of iatrogenic effects;
    • to use principles of psychohygiene, psycho-prophylaxis, and basic methods of psychotherapy in medical practice;
    • to identify psychosomatic and somatopsychic interactions in patients; to determine the psychological state and level of social and psychological adaptation of patients used of methods of psychological research;
    • to demonstrate the ability to communicate with colleagues, patients, and their relatives, considering their psychological peculiarities, contribute to the creation of a healthy psychological climate in the medical environment.

    Students received an understanding of:

    • the value of acquiring new knowledge, academic standards that must be followed, why they are important, what is academic integrity, what are its values and functions, and how students can contribute to its development through their actions;
    • the essence, features, and reasons for the inadmissibility of academic plagiarism are explained, students are encouraged to independently carry out educational tasks, and to refer correctly to the sources of information in case of borrowing ideas, statements, and information.

    High-qualified medical psychologists teach the International European University students to apply psychological theories, scientific psychological findings, and techniques of psychotherapy, behavior modification, and cognitive, interpersonal, family, and lifestyle therapy to improve the psychological and physical health of the patient. Psychologists with postdoctoral specialty training as medical psychologists are practitioners with refined skills in clinical psychology, health psychology, behavioral medicine, psychopharmacology, and medical science. Highly qualified and postgraduate specialized doctors are trained for service in primary care centers, hospitals, residential care centers, and long-term care facilities and multidisciplinary collaboration and team treatment.

    Students will:

    • Gain knowledge of the principles of health promotion and apply these to various health behaviors;
    • Gain insight into the role of symptom perception and stress in the development of chronic diseases, and the psychosocial consequences of, and interventions in, chronic diseases;
    • Practice psychological intervention techniques focusing on self-management and quality of life in patients suffering from chronic diseases;
    • Develop practical skills that will allow them to conduct health promotion programs and work with patients with psychosocial problems as a preparation for the professional setting;
    • Gain facility with the core principles of Medical Psychology;
    • Describe the manifestations of various psychological disorders, understanding psychopathology;
    • Describe the diagnostic features of various psychological disorders;
    • Describe methodologies that are used to investigate clinical psychology phenomena;
    • Analyze and evaluate theories and treatments for various psychological disorders;
    • Articulate some current issues in clinical psychology;
    • Identify resources available for further research of clinical psychology issues;
    • Communicate effectively about clinical psychology in written and oral formats;
    • Make cognitive connections between learning in this course and other learning experiences in almost all Postgraduate Courses in Europe;
    • Set goals and define the structure of personal activity;
    • Follow a healthy lifestyle, use self-regulation and self-control techniques;
    • Gain the ability to be aware of civil rights, freedoms, and obligations and be guided by them, to increase general educational level;
    • Gain the ability to follow ethics, bioethics, and deontology requirements in professional activity;
    • Gain the ability to organize the necessary level of individual security (of one’s own and of the people that are being cared for) in case of typical dangerous situations in the individual field of activity;
    • Gain a capacity for keeping medical records;
    • Gain a capacity for processing state, social, economic, and medical information;
    • Gain a capacity for holding events about organization and integration of providing medical care.

    Compulsory Subjects

    Medical psychology is the application of psychological principles to the practice of medicine, and is comprehensive rather than primarily drug-oriented, for both physical and mental disorders. You will cover a comprehensive range of subjects during your studying process which aims to provide a high-level preparation for the future specialist in the Medical Psychology sphere and to give them the needed for performing professional duties skills and knowledge. The major subjects (or modules) are:

    • Biology;
    • Education;
    • Learning Fundamentals;
    • Pharmacology;
    • Psychology;
    • Research Methods;
    • Statistics;
    • Applied Behavior Analysis;
    • Applied Psychology;
    • Chemical Process Technology;
    • Clinical Child Psychology;
    • Clinical Psychology;
    • Clinical, Counseling, and Applied Psychology;
    • Cognitive Psychology and Psycholinguistics;
    • Community Psychology;
    • Comparative Psychology;
    • Counseling Psychology;
    • Developmental and Child Psychology;
    • Educational Psychology;
    • Environmental Psychology;
    • Experimental Psychology;
    • Family Psychology;
    • Forensic Psychology;
    • Geropsychology;
    • Industrial and Organizational Psychology;
    • Personality Psychology;
    • Physiological Psychology/Psychobiology;
    • Sociology;
    • Social Anthropology;
    • Social Care;
    • Philosophy;
    • Zoology;
    • Animal Behavior;
    • Environmental Science.

    Career Perspectives

    Medical Psychologists are needed to help people overcome addictions, adjust to life-changing accidents, or to manage the grief of losing a loved one. There are many things psychologists can do in such a specialty. After obtaining a Medical Psychology Degree at the International European University you can be a:

    • Rehabilitation Specialist. A rehabilitation specialist helps someone who has experienced a traumatic life event. If you work as a rehab specialist, you might help someone manage the mental and emotional process of learning to walk or speak again or even dealing with the loss of a limb.
    • Laboratory Assistant. Lab assistants collect samples of body tissues, fluids, and other substances to test and analyze them. Their findings are usually recorded and then reported to the doctors in charge of a patient’s care. This helps doctors diagnose and treat patients. Lab assistants often need a bachelor’s degree for employment.
    • Psychiatric Technician. Psychiatric technicians are entry-level mental health workers. They are often employed in residential treatment centers, nursing homes, psychiatric hospitals, or other facilities where there are developmentally disabled or mentally ill patients.
    • Case Manager. A case manager oversees a patient’s care. It is their job to make sure the patient has an effective treatment plan that covers all aspects of that patient’s care, including mental and emotional health. They also advocate for their patients, ensuring they receive all the necessary services. Generally, a bachelor’s degree is needed to be a case manager.
    • Human Resources Specialist. Human resource specialists don’t work with patients. Their job is to recruit, screen, and interview potential employees. They also manage onboarding, training, and employee benefits.
    • Clinical Psychologist. Clinical psychology is the study of emotional disorders, and psychologists in this discipline can diagnose them. They employ many different treatments to help these patients, including psychotherapy and medication. They are trained to understand how medicines physically interact with the body to prescribe treatment best. Still, their focus is mainly on the therapies they offer rather than medication.
    • Addictions Psychologist. They devise treatment plans to help those suffering from addiction overcome their dependence on drugs, alcohol, gambling, etc. They work alongside patients to quit the vice and then maintain a long-term plan to keep them on track.
    • Psychologist Supervisor. Working under a Director of Psychology, a psychology supervisor organizes programs to treat mental health disorders. Sometimes, they have the opportunity to train new employees and oversee their work.

    Opportunities are available in a range of Health and Social Care Settings, including:

    • Hospitals;
    • Psychiatric Units;
    • Local Clinics and Health Centres;
    • Community Mental Health Teams;
    • Children and Young People’s Mental Health Services (CYPMHS);
    • Social Services;
    • Schools and Universities
    • Prisons;
    • Improving Access to Psychological Therapies (IAPT) services.

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