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Study and Train to Become a Psychotherapist

The master’s program (M.Sc.) in Clinical Psychology and Psychotherapy is the fast track to getting licensed in Psychotherapy

Subject to successful accreditation, the master’s program in Clinical Psychology and Psychotherapy will be introduced at the University of Mannheim in the fall/winter semester 2023/2024. Students of the program will have access to the new psychotherapy curriculum and can become licensed directly after their graduation. The degree program is designed for students who have completed a bachelor’s degree which complies with the licensing regulations for psychotherapists (Approbationsordnung für Psychotherapeutinnen und Psychotherapeuten).

The program

  • Study and train to become a psychotherapist

    The subject-specific focus of the four-semester master’s program is in-depth academic knowledge, profound knowledge of research methods, specific disorders and psychotherapeutic therapies as well as applied psychotherapy work. The degree program implements the requirements for master’s programs set forth in the licensing regulations for psychotherapists (Approbationsordnung) so that you are well prepared for a job in psychotherapy. With the module on health psychology, health prevention and health intervention are added to the psychotherapy-focused curriculum. Students gain valuable knowledge for their future professional activity.

    The degree program is very practice-oriented. During your studies, you are already obliged to participate in psychotherapeutic consultations in the modules reflecting the professionally qualifying activity II (berufsqualifizierende Tätigkeit II) – in-depth psychotherapeutic work and the professionally qualifying activity III (berufsqualifizierende Tätigkeit III) – applied psychotherapeutic work, in accordance with the licensing regulations.

    Cooperations with psychotherapeutic institutions, whether in inpatient or outpatient care or a partial hospitalization program, ensure the quality of and the access to suitable internship positions.

    With a master’s degree in Clinical Psychology and Psychotherapy, you are entitled to submit a request for being admitted to the licensing exam (Zulassung zur Approbationsprüfung) as psychotherapist to the relevant state examination office (Landesprüfungsamt). However, your degree also qualifies you to work in diagnostics and intervention in institutions with a focus on consulting, rehabilitation, or prevention as well as in psychotherapy research and neuropsychology.

  • Program structure and module catalog

    The program structure offers you an overview on your program to help you plan. In the module catalog, you will find everything you need to know about the contents and examination forms of the individual courses and modules.

    Please note: Since the accreditation process of the degree program has not been completed, we can currently only provide you with a draft of the program structure. The current version of the module catalog is also preliminary.

  • Professionally qualifying activity III – applied psychotherapeutic practice in accordance with section 18 PsychThApprO

    In accordance with section 18 of the licensing regulations for psychotherapists, you are obliged to carry out extensive preparatory professional activities in (partially) inpatient and outpatient care within the scope of professionally qualifying activities III – applied psychotherapy (berufsqualifizierende Tätigkeit IIII) during your master’s program. For the specific regulations, please see the regulations on professionally qualifying activity III – applied psychotherapy work (Ordnung über die berufsqualifizierende Tätigkeit III – angewandte Praxis der Psychotherapie) (still to be published).

    In order to offer you as much flexibility as possible during the third and the fourth semester, the class will be divided into two groups (A and B) for the professionally qualifying activity III (berufsqualifizierende Tätigkeit III), so that both groups complete either the (partially) inpatient or the outpatient part at the same time: While group A works in the psychological outpatient clinic of the University of Mannheim (psychologische Hochschulambulanz), group B works in the (partially) inpatient clinic at the relevant partner institutions; in the fourth subject-specific semester, the groups switch their professional activity from outpatient to (partially) inpatient care and vice-versa.


Application

  • Requirements for admission

    • a bachelor’s degree in Psychology. The bachelor's program must fulfill the requirements under professional law and/or be recognized under professional law; the degree certificate, the Transcript of Records or an additional certificate of the higher education institution where you completed your bachelor’s degree serve as proof of compliance with the requirements under professional law. If you have not yet completed your bachelor’s degree, you must submit proof that the bachelor’s program is recognized under professional law. For a template on how to prove that the bachelor’s program is recognized under professional law, please click here.

    Please note:  If your bachelor’s degree certificate or the transcript of records show that your bachelor’s degree is recognized under professional law, you do not need to submit this certificate.

    or

    • successful completion of a degree at a higher education institution in Germany or abroad or at an officially recognized public university of cooperative education (Berufsakademie) recognized as equivalent by the admissions committee. The content of the learning outcomes of the completed program must correspond to the requirements of the Psychotherapy law (Psychotherapeutengesetz) and Annex 1 as well as sections 12–15 of the licensing regulations for psychotherapists (Approbationsordnung für Psychotherapeutinnen und Psychotherapeuten). The admissions committee at the department of Psychology at the University of Mannheim recognizes a degree as equivalent if catch-up qualifications in which licensing-relevant contents with the ECTS credits prescribed by the licensing regulations were obtained at the relevant higher education institution. Please note that such catch-up qualifications must have been obtained during the regular course of the bachelor’s program and not after graduation and that it is not possible to obtain these catch-up qualifications. In addition, it would be best if the relevant state authority had already successfully checked the catch-up qualifications for compliance with the learning contents of the licensing regulations for psychotherapists (PsychTheApprO) or – if the relevant state authority has not (yet) checked the catch-up qualifications for compliance with the licensing regulations – the higher education institution where you completed your bachelor’s degree should confirm that the catch-up qualifications offered probably fulfill the criteria of the PsychThApprO. However, you can also use the Transcript of Records in combination with the module handbook of the first degree to prove the degree’s equivalence.

    Summary: Proof of the degree’s equivalence by submitting

    1. confirmation of the higher education institution where you obtained your first degree that the catch-up qualifications offered probably fulfill the PsychThApprO criteria (Template for the recognition+Annex 1 Overview of the modules in the bachelor’s program for the recognition process).

      Please make sure that the mandatory internships you completed during your bachelor’s program comply with the requirements of the licensing regulations regarding the orientation internship (Orientierungspraktikum) and the professionally qualifying activity I (berufsqualifizierende Tätigkeit I (BQT I)) set forth in sections 14–15 of the PsychThApprO. If your internships do not comply with the requirements of the licensing regulations, admission is not possible! To make sure that your internships comply with the regulations please hand in these documents (soon available).

    2. Transcript of records + module handbook of the first degree
    3. confirmation of the relevant state office on the compliance of the catch-up qualifications with the learning contents set forth in the PsychThApprO, if available
    • The bachelor's degree must correspond to at least 180 ECTS credits or have a standard period of study of at least 6 semesters or 3 years.

    The admission criteria outlined here correspond to the requirements set forth in the licensing regulations. For more information, you can also refer to the amended selection statutes for the master’s programs in Psychology which will probably be adopted in spring 2023. As soon as the selection statutes have entered into force, you will find the current version on the central website of the university at “Psychology".

  • Does my bachelor’s degree program comply with the licensing regulations?

    To be admitted to the master’s program in Clinical Psychology and Psychotherapy, you must fulfill certain knowledge and internship requirements of the licensing regulations for psychotherapists (Approbationsordnung) in modules or in the form of catch-up qualifications during your bachelor’s degree.

    The relevant modules and internships must have been completed during your bachelor’s program and not after you have earned your bachelor’s degree. It is therefore not possible to be admitted while some (parts of) qualifications are still missing and to obtain these qualifications later on during your master’s degree!

    The following list provides an overview of the qualifications you need to obtain during your bachelor’s degree in order to fulfill the professional law requirements to be admitted to the master’s degree in Psychology Clinical Psychology and Psychotherapy (for the full list of the contents/learning outcomes, please see sections 12–15 of the licensing regulations for psychotherapists (PsychThApprO) as well as Annex 1).

     

    • Fundamentals:

    Fundamentals of Psychology (25 ECTS credits)

    Basics of Education Studies / Educational Psychology (4 ECTS credits)

    Fundamentals of Medicine (4 ECTS credits)

    Fundamentals of Pharmacology (2 ECTS credits)

    • Specialization in Clinical Psychology and Psychotherapy:

    Disorders (8 ECTS credits)                                                                     

    General forms of therapy (8 ECTS credits)                    

    Prevention, rehabilitation (2 ECTS credits)                                              

    Professional ethics and occupational law (2 ECTS credits)                                                                                                                    

    • Methods and diagnostics:

    Scientific methods (without experimental psychology internship (Expra)/empirical internship (Empra)) (15 ECTS)                                                               

    Psychological diagnostics (12 ECTS)                                                                                                                     

    • Practical work / internships:

    Research-oriented internship I – Research fundamentals according to section 13 of the licensing regulations (experimental psychology internship/empirical internship, work in small groups with a maximum of 15 students and under qualified supervision) (6 ECTS credits)                                            

    Orientation internship in accordance with section 14 of the licensing regulationsin institutions witha focus on health and patient care in which licensed (child and adolescent psychologists) psychotherapists work (four weeks/at least 150 hours) (5 ECTS credits). At least one of the psychotherapists working in the institution must have obtained his or her license (“Approbation”) in Germany!                                                                                          

    Professionally qualifying activity I (berufsqualifizierende Tätigkeit I) – Start into psychotherapy work in accordance with section 15 of the licensing regulations under qualified supervision in psychotherapeutic institutions providing health care, in which licensed (child and adolescent psychologists) psychotherapists work(6 weeks/at least 240 hours), (8 ECTS credits). At least one of the psychotherapists working in the institution must have obtained his or her license (“Approbation”) in Germany!                                                                                                                                                                                

  • Selection criteria

    • The final grade of your bachelor’s degree or the final grade of all modules and examination grades of the bachelor’s program taken until the application deadline.
    • If applicable: The result of an admission test.
    • Study-related additional qualifications (such as vocational training, practical experiences of at least three months, study-relevant stays abroad, prizes).
  • Degrees obtained abroad

    Starting a master’s program in Psychology with a focus on Clinical Psychology and Psychotherapy in Germany after having completed a bachelor’s degree abroad is still possible but has become more difficult. The requirement for admission is that the degree program completed at the higher education institution abroad complies with the requirements and the contents of the licensing regulations and that the coursework of the bachelor’s degree obtained abroad is recognized as equivalent. In the end, these are questions to be answered by the relevant health authorities, in most cases the state examination offices (Landesprüfungsämter). Currently, the recognition of internships completed abroad as orientation internship and as professionally qualifying activity I may be particularly difficult, since the licensing regulations state that psychotherapists, psychological psychotherapists or psychotherapists for children and adolescents who are licensed in Germany must work in the institutions where the internships were completed (see PsychThApprO, sections 14 and 15). We are in the process of clarifying this matter with the state examination office and the recognition office for health professionals (Anerkennungsstelle für Gesundheitsberufe) in Stuttgart and will publish the results of this process as soon as possible on this website.

    In the worst-case scenario, your internships and coursework from the bachelor's program completed abroad are not recognized so that you need to complete a second bachelor’s program that complies with the new psychotherapy regulations in Germany. For more information, please refer to the frequently asked questions of the German Psychological Society (in German).

  • Admissions test

    The admission test is an optional selection criterion for the additional verification of the subject-specific capability. Knowledge acquired in a bachelor’s program in Psychology or an equivalent program are a requirement for processing.

  • How to apply

    Currently, the application deadline for the master’s program in Clinical Psychology and Psychotherapy for the application year 2023 has not been set – if the degree program is accredited, we will probably accept applications in spring 2023. It will only be possible to apply for the winter semester.

    Please apply online at the University of Mannheim. If you have questions on the application process, the Admissions Office is happy to help..

Academic advising

Still have questions? We are happy to help!

The program managers of the master’s program in Clinical Psychology and Psychotherapy are happy to answer any questions you may have on the program (for example, on the contents or the structure).

For questions on the professional activities within the professionally-qualifying activity III (berufsqualifizierende Tätigkeit III), a specific contact person will be available soon. If you already have specific questions on the professionally qualifying activities III, please contact the program managers and refrain from asking the internship manager of the School of Social Sciences.

If you have questions about the admissions process, please contact the admissions office.

Dr. Anika Skotak

Dr. Anika Skotak

Program Manager M.Sc. Clinical Psychology and Psychotherapy
University of Mannheim
School of Social Sciences
A 5, 6
Building A – Room A 416
68159 Mannheim
Consultation hour(s):
Currently only online consultations available. Please make an appointment via https://www.sowi.uni-mannheim.de/online-beratung/anika-skotak/