Specialization: Psychological Counselling
Awarded qualification: Psychologist
Level of qualification: Master
Specific admission requirements: A higher education degree and an admission examination.
Specific arrangements for recognition of prior learning :
The ECTS coordinator of the Psychology major, Assoc. prof. Daniela Miteva, e-mail email@example.com, informs the students about the possibilities for recognizing and awarding credits. This happens in two ways:
1. The student presents documents for prior education.
- an academic transcript or higher education diploma;
- international diplomas and foreign language certificates (English: Cambridge FCE, TOEFEL; German - Zertifikat Deutsch, Sprahdiplom, Zweite Stufe; Russian – ТРКИ; French - DELF; Spanish - DELE);
- international computer skills diplomas and certificates corresponding to the ECDL (The European Computer Driving Licence).
2. The student states willingness to sit for exams for the certification of skills and knowledge acquired in prior education. Knowledge and skills in a foreign language are certified by the Department of Foreign Languages; computer skills and knowledge are certified by the Technological Institute; specific professional knowledge and skills are certified by the Social Sciences Department.
Based on the documents presented and the results from the certification examinations, the Social Sciences Department awards the number of credits in accordance with the program of the Psychology major. The ECTS coordinator prepares an individual study program for the student, which reflects the number of credits awarded.
Qualification requirements and regulations: In order to obtain the professional qualification of Psychologist, the students need 120 credits, of which 94,5 credits are from the compulsory courses, 4,5 are obtained from elective courses, 6 are obtained from optional courses and 15 are obtained from the state exam. Students who have obtained the professional qualification of Psychologist in prior education need 60 credits, of which 34,5 credits are obtained from the compulsory courses, 4,5 are obtained from elective courses, 6 are obtained from optional courses and 15 are obtained from the state exam.
Profile of the programme: The main objectives of the programme are: training of highly specialized experts in the field of psychological counselling for individuals, families and groups with crises in personal development and disorders in social functioning; family problems, crises in partner communication and parenting skills; problems and behavioral disorders associated with physical or mental illnesses, posttraumatic disorders, psychoactive substance abuse and dealing with the consequences of personal and professional stress. The programme provides specialized modules and practice in professional bases for the formation of professional attitudes to psychological counselling as a modern profession of partnership with the client, a good level of self-awareness and creativity in applying specialized knowledge and skills.
Key learning outcomes
The students who have obtained the professional qualification of Psychologist and the educational-and-qualification degree of Master:
Students can make an interpretation, commentary and critical theoretical analysis of the leading ideas in specific topic areas of classical and contemporary psychology disorders in personality development and social functioning. They have acquired specialized knowledge of the disadvantages of impact on personality development and registry of mental disorders. They theoretically know the test methods of assessing cognitive processes, intelligence and personality. They theoretically know the nature and possibilities of the main approaches and techniques of psychological counselling and psychotherapy.
The students are able to determine a research problem independently, to formulate hypotheses, to conduct empirical studies, to analyze and interpret test results in their own research projects. They are able to select an adequate set of research tools to conduct a case study of a diagnostic problem in different mental areas and personality. Тhey possess the necessary skills for diagnostic assessment, formulation of a case with analysis of the potential and violations in different mental areas. Тhey possess basic professional competences and skills to conduct psychological counselling for individuals with developmental and social functioning problems, age crises or after experienced psychotraumas and somatic diseases. They know the limits of their professional competence and can work in multidisciplinary teams or to refer to specialists from other areas of helping professions. The holders of educational-and-qualification degree of "Master" can continue their professional specialization in the postgraduate courses of psychotherapy, counselling and psychological expertise. The students develop basic skills for scientific research and can continue their studies in higher educational and scientific degree "doctor".
Occupational profiles of graduates
The holders of the professional qualification of "Psychologist", educational-and-qualification degree of "Master" can be realized in:
• Government institutions dealing with human resources, recruitment and support in dealing with psychological problems in professional teams;
• private psychological counselling rooms, medical centres and group practices for psychological counseling for individuals, families and groups with difficulties in social functioning, problem solving and psychological problems in communication, desaptive behaviour and mental crises;
• NGO sector for participation in programmes for specialized psychological assessments and working with problem groups or disturbances in the social adaptation of individuals with mental problems.
Access to further studies: The graduates who have obtained the professional qualification of Psychologist and the educational-and-qualification degree of Master can continue their education for the educational-and-qualification degree of Doctor (Ph.D.) in two accredited scientific programmes – General Psychology, and Pedagogic and Age Psychology, as well as in post-graduation qualification courses.
|№||ECTS code||Course||Lectures & seminars||Out-of-class workload||Credits|
|1||PSY3049||Communicative skills in Psychological Counselling||45||90||4,5|
|2||PSY3056||Computer Systems for Psychodiagnostic||30||60||3|
|3||PSY3076||Neuropsychology and Psychogenetics||30||60||3|
|4||PSY3087||Psychopathology and Mental Disorders||30||60||3|
|5||PSY3092||Approaches and Schools in Psychological Counselling||30||60||3|
|7||PSY3072||Multidisciplinary Teams and Counselling Standards||30||60||3|
|8||Elective course 1||15||30||1,5|
|9||Elective course 2||15||30||1,5|
|10||Elective course 3||15||30||1,5|
|11||Optional course 1||30||60||3|
|Total for semester I||300||600||30|
|2||PSY3206||Projective Methods and Expertise||30||60||3|
|3||PSY3043||Psychological Counselling in Life Cycles||30||60||3|
|5||Optional course 2||30||60||3|
|6||State Exam or writing and defence of a Master's Thesis||15|
|Total for semester II||150||300||30|
|Total for the course of study:||60|
|Elective courses (3 from 5)|
|1||PSY3084||Stress and Posttraumatic Disorders||15||30||1,5|
|3||PSY3059||Crisis and Crisis Intervention||15||30||1,5|
|5||PSY3033||Deontological and Ethical Issues in Counselling||15||30||1,5|
|Optional courses (2 from 3)|
|1||PSY3029||Global Stress and Counselling||30||60||3|
|3||QMS3007||Statistical Programmes for Processing Empirical Data in Psychology SPSS||30||60||3|
|Module of equivalency courses for holders of Bachelors`s degrees in other majors|
|1||PSY3068||Introduction to Psychology||45||90||4.5|
|4||PSY3005||History of Psychology||30||60||3|
|7||QMS3003||Methods of Collecting, Processing and Analyzing Data in Psychological Research||30||60||3|
|Total for semester I||300||600||30|
|2||PSY3026||Psychology of Development||60||120||4,5|
|Total for semester II||300||600||30|
Examination regulations, assessment and grading: During the classes, the students receive individual and group tasks such as summarizing bibliography or writing course assignments, essays, research papers, reports. A grade reflecting their participation and activity during the classes is added to the above. The training in the various courses ends with a final examination or test.
Graduation requirements: Training in educational-and-qualification degree of "Master" ends with a state examination or defence of a thesis according to the admission terms set by the Rules of organization, management and operation of the VFU.
The State Examination is taken on a synopsis, approved by the Department of Psychology, to which students have direct access (published on the website of VFU). The State Examination has a duration of 4 hours. The students are required to develop two questions randomly chosen from the synopsis. The test is passed successfully when the student has presented the main content and displays mastery of the theoretical concepts, theories and objective laws of psychic phenomena and their application to psychologist’s practice.
The thesis is developed on topics approved by the Department of Psychology with a habilitated person as a tutor. The contents of the thesis is required to demonstrate the student’s mastery of the theoretical concepts, theories and objective laws of the psychic phenomena, which are the subject of the thesis, as well to plan, carry out empirical research and analyze profoundly its results.
Mode of study: full-time
Head of Master’s Degree Programme: Assoc. Prof. Pavlina Petkova Damyanova, PhD
tel: +359 52 359 540