Specialization course in Psychology and mental health: From processes to interventions

General Objectives of the Course

The course aims to provide participants with knowledge on various areas of psychology, especially those that have more relevance in the medical field. Several basic topics of psychology, such as personality, emotion, memory, motivation, will be covered. These areas will be addressed in its various facets, including neurobiological, in order to understand the normal function as well as the mechanisms involved in their dysfunction and consequent clinical conditions. Other areas of psychology related to health and disease processes, such as health psychology will be described. The theoretical foundations of cognitive and behavioral models will be adressed. Students will have the opportunity to acquire knowledge in research methodologies covering psychology, psychopathology and psychiatry as well as in the diagnosis and development of a treatment plan according to the cognitive-behavioral models, focused on clinical areas in the course.

Admission Requirements

Degree in any health area

Candidates should check the admission requirements available on this site, in addition to the information provided here.

Mode of Study

Part-time, face-to-face and daytime

Teaching / Evaluation language(s)


Examination Regulations, Assessment and Grading

Final grading (0 to 20) corresponding to the mean classification obtained in the curricular units

Learning Objectives and Intended Skills

- To understand the contributions of neuroscience and genetics to normal and pathological behavior.
- To know the models of research, assessment and intervention in developmental psychopathology.
- To understand and apply aspects of the development and validation of psychological assessment instruments.
- To understand the contributions of motivation and learning for health and to apply their theories and principles on behavior modification.
- To understand the psycho-neuro-biological pathways of the relationship between stress, eating behavior and sleep and between stress and addictive behaviors.
- To know the main tools for the assessment of intelligence in health contexts and understand its applications to disease.
- To know aspects of the neurobiology of personality and temperament; the main structural models of personality, and their implications for the assessment of personality in health contexts. To understand the importance of personality in health and disease pathways and the mechanisms of the relationship between personality and health.
- To know the fundamental aspects of emotion and emotional (dys)regulation; to know some experimental paradigms in the study of emotion; to understand the emotional dysregulation as a transdiagnostic process.
- To know aspects of healthy aging and models of psychological intervention to promote it. To understand and apply the neuro-psychological assessment strategy for the elderly and their implications for rehabilitation programs.
- To understand the recent advances in the psychological assessment and intervention in severe mental illness: neuro-cognition, social cognition and psychological treatments.
- To value the health psychology applications, through the examples of chronic diseases and oncology.
- To know the most effective models in the psychological assessement and intervention in sleep disorders, addictive behaviors and suicidal behavior.
- To know the principles and paradigms of the cognitive-behavioral model in various psychopathological conditions (panic disorder, social phobia, obsessive-compulsive disorder, eating disorders, personality disorders).
- To Know the central models and processes of contextual therapies: Mindfulness, Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, Compassion Focused Therapy.

Qualification Requirements and Regulations

Regulation No 339/2012 - Regulation of creation and functioning of non-degree courses at the University of Coimbra

Study Programme

Psychology and mental health: From processes to interventions

Academic year

Course Type
Non Degree Course

Qualification Awarded: Diploma/Certificate

Duration: 1 Year(s)

ECTS Credits: 18.0


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