Breadcrumbs

Psychology

From analysing the reasons for anger to considering the best way to train dogs, the study of Psychology allows insight into countless intriguing facets of cognitive function. Widely regarded as the centre of Applied Psychology in New Zealand, Psychology at Waikato offers numerous study options for those keen to pursue this remarkable discipline.

Camille Buscomb

Bachelor of Arts
2016 is a big year for the St Peters school leaver of 2008. She is in her final year of undergraduate study, which she began at Purdue University in America in 2009. She will complete her BA this year with a major in Psychology and a minor in English.


Hannah Cleland

Master of Social Sciences, Postgraduate Diploma in Psychology (Clinical)
Hannah Cleland’s role at the Department of Corrections has a high level of responsibility attached to it as she is involved in assessing the reoffending risk for offenders in the community as well as those eligible to be released on parole.


Zoe Gerrand

Bachelor of Social Sciences
Analysing crime data to provide solutions for improving communities is the job of a New Zealand Police Intelligence Analyst - a job which University of Waikato graduate Zoe Gerrand has recently landed.


Leny Thomas

Master of Applied Psychology, Postgraduate Diploma in Psychology (Clinical)
Leny was attracted to study at Waikato due to the reputation of the Faculty of Arts & Social Sciences' School of Psychology and in particular the Applied Behaviour Analysis programme.


At Waikato, we offer plenty of flexibility to adapt learning to suit your desired focus. Psychology can be taken as a major for the Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Social Sciences and Bachelor of Science - unlike any other university in New Zealand.

As a social science, Psychology focuses on individuals within the context of families, organisations and other groups, communities, cultures and societies. As a biological science, Psychology studies the senses (hearing, vision, touch) and how the brain and physiological systems relate to behaviour. As a cognitive science, Psychology studies perception, attention, memory, thinking and language understanding. The study of development, personality, learning and motivation are also part of Psychology at Waikato, as is animal behaviour and welfare.

Areas of study at Waikato include Animal Behaviour, Behaviour Analysis, Clinical Animal Behaviour, Clinical Psychology, Community, Kaupapa Māori and Applied Social Psychology, Health and Mental Health Services and Organisational Psychology.

Career Opportunities

  • Behaviour Analyst
  • Clinical or Community Psychologist
  • Community Programme Coordinator
  • Human Resource Adviser
  • Private Practitioner
  • Research Scientist

100 level

200 level

300 level

Work PlacementFASS39620.0 Points
Perspectives on CounsellingHDCO34020.0 Points
Community, Culture and Diversity: Applied Social PsychologyPSYC30120.0 Points
Clinical Animal BehaviourPSYC30320.0 Points
Animal Behaviour: Principles and ApplicationsPSYC30420.0 Points
Research MethodsPSYC30720.0 Points
Psychology and GenderPSYC31010.0 Points
Behaviour AnalysisPSYC31420.0 Points
Organisational PsychologyPSYC31720.0 Points
Psychological Perspectives on Child DevelopmentPSYC31910.0 Points
Psychological MeasurementPSYC33710.0 Points
Abnormal PsychologyPSYC33810.0 Points
Applied Cognitive PsychologyPSYC34010.0 Points
Visual Neuroscience and its ApplicationsPSYC34110.0 Points
Positive PsychologyPSYC34410.0 Points
Directed StudyPSYC38810.0 Points
Directed StudyPSYC39020.0 Points

Prescriptions for the Dip(SocSc) GradDip(GradDipPsych) and GradCert(Psych)

A Diploma in Social Sciences, Graduate Diploma and a Graduate Certificate are available to graduates who have not included Psychology at an advanced level in their first degree.

For further details, contact the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences Office.

Prescriptions for the PGCert(Psych), PGDip(Psych), BA(Hons), BSc(Hons), BSocSc(Hons), MA, MSc, MSc(Research) and MSocSc

To be eligible to be considered for enrolment in graduate Psychology papers, a student should normally have at least a B average either over 120 points of their Psychology major or over 300 level Psychology papers to a value of 60 points and must have passed PSYC307.

The requirements for admission to masters level study in Psychology are set out in the Faculty and School Handbooks.

Students should choose an appropriate and balanced programme of study from among the options listed in the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences Graduate Handbook. All programmes of study should be devised in consultation with the Chair of School and/or the Graduate Studies Committee.

To complete a BA(Hons), BSc(Hons) or BSocSc(Hons) in Psychology, students must complete 120 points at 500 level, including at least 30 points in research (normally PSYC591) and at least 30 points from papers listed for Psychology. PSYC511, PSYC513, PSYC517, PSYC518, PSYC575, PSYC581, PSYC582 and PSYC583 are not able to be counted towards the BSc(Hons).

Applications for entry to the PGDip(Psych), BA(Hons), BSc(Hons) and BSocSc(Hons) close on the first Monday in December in the year preceding entry. Mid-year enrolments are accepted for the PGDip(Psych) only. Please contact the School of Psychology for further details.

To complete an MA or MSocSc in Psychology, students must take a 120 point thesis, a 90 point thesis and the equivalent of 30 points from approved 500 level papers, or a 60 point dissertation and the equivalent of 60 points from approved 500 level papers.

To complete an MSc in Psychology, students must take either a 120 point thesis and the equivalent of 120 points from approved 500 level papers or a 90 point thesis and the equivalent of 150 points from approved 500 level papers.

Clinical Animal Behaviour: Introduction to Theoretical FoundationsPSYC50115.0 Points
Clinical Animal Behaviour: Welfare and EthicsPSYC50215.0 Points
Applied Learning TheoryPSYC50415.0 Points
Clinical Practice in Human-Animal CounsellingPSYC50515.0 Points
Professional Practice in Clinical Animal BehaviourPSYC50760.0 Points
Evaluation Research DesignPSYC51115.0 Points
Evaluation Research AnalysisPSYC51330.0 Points
The Social Psychology of Anti-Social BehaviourPSYC51715.0 Points
Family Violence: Research and InterventionsPSYC51815.0 Points
Professional Issues in Clinical PracticePSYC52120.0 Points
Bicultural Approaches to Clinical PracticePSYC52220.0 Points
Clinical Practicum 1: Fundamental Clinical SkillsPSYC52320.0 Points
Clinical Practicum 2: Advanced and Specialist SkillsPSYC52420.0 Points
Clinical Internship: Assessment-Focused (Part-Time)PSYC52615.0 Points
Clinical Internship: Treatment-Focused (Part-Time)PSYC52715.0 Points
Applications of Behaviour AnalysisPSYC53815.0 Points
Graduate Research Methods in PsychologyPSYC53915.0 Points
Advanced Topics in Abnormal Adult PsychologyPSYC55615.0 Points
Human Performance Research: Theories and PracticePSYC55715.0 Points
Animal Behaviour and Welfare ResearchPSYC55915.0 Points
Applied Behaviour Analysis: Theory and IssuesPSYC56015.0 Points
Behaviour Analysis Research and TheoryPSYC56115.0 Points
Theories of PsychotherapyPSYC56215.0 Points
Developmental PsychopathologyPSYC56415.0 Points
Techniques in Applied PsychologyPSYC56815.0 Points
Psychology of CareersPSYC57115.0 Points
Personnel SelectionPSYC57215.0 Points
Training and DevelopmentPSYC57315.0 Points
Indigenous PsychologiesPSYC57515.0 Points
Recent Research in Behaviour AnalysisPSYC57715.0 Points
Vision and the BrainPSYC57815.0 Points
Advances in Organisational PsychologyPSYC57915.0 Points
The Psychology of Criminal ConductPSYC58015.0 Points
Psychological AssessmentPSYC58115.0 Points
Community Health PsychologyPSYC58215.0 Points
Foundations of Community PsychologyPSYC58315.0 Points
Leading Organisation DevelopmentPSYC58515.0 Points
Behaviour Analysis PracticumPSYC58715.0 Points
Directed StudyPSYC58815.0 Points
Directed StudyPSYC58915.0 Points
Directed StudyPSYC59030.0 Points
Honours DissertationPSYC59130.0 Points
DissertationPSYC59260.0 Points
Psychology ThesisPSYC59390.0 Points
Psychology ThesisPSYC594120.0 Points

Prescriptions for the PGCert(ClinAniBehav), PGDip(ClinAniBehav) and MCAB

Note: The Postgraduate Diploma, Postgraduate Certificate and Master of Clinical Animal Behaviour are not available in 2017.

There are three qualifications available for the field of Clinical Animal Behaviour: a postgraduate certificate, postgraduate diploma and Master of Clinical Animal Behaviour (MCAB).

To complete the PGCert(ClinAniBehav) students must gain 60 points at 500 level or above, comprising PSYC501, PSYC502, PSYC504 and PSYC505.

To complete the PGDip(ClinAniBehav) students must gain 120 points at 500 level or above, comprising PSYC501, PSYC502, PSYC504, PSYC505 and PSYC507.

To complete the MCAB, students must complete 180 points at 500 level, including a 60 point dissertation (PSYC592) and PSYC501, PSYC502, PSYC504, PSYC505 and PSYC507.

All Clinical Animal Behaviour papers are taught online.

Prescriptions for the MAppPsy

There are three specified programmes available within this degree: Behaviour Analysis, Community Psychology, and Organisational Psychology.

The requirements for admission to masters level study in Psychology are set out in the Faculty and School Handbooks.

Behaviour Analysis

To complete an MAppPsy in Behaviour Analysis, students must pass the equivalent of 240 points comprising the compulsory papers (PSYC538, PSYC560, PSYC561, PSYC577), a 15 or 30 point directed study (PSYC587, PSYC589 or PSYC590) in a relevant area, a 60 point dissertation (PSYC592), 90 point thesis (PSYC593) or a 120 point thesis (PSYC594) and a further 30 to 105 points selected from the optional papers: PSYC559, PSYC564, PSYC575 and PSYC581. In addition students with appropriate academic backgrounds may select an Education paper (eg HDCO510 or HDCO523) or the Biological Sciences paper (BIOL533). Note that PSYC538, PSYC559, PSYC560, PSYC561, PSYC577, PSYC587 and PSYC589 are available both on campus and online. Optional papers should be selected in consultation with the Behaviour Analysis Programme Convenor.

Community Psychology

To complete an MAppPsy in Community Psychology, students must pass the equivalent of 240 points comprising 90 points from the compulsory papers (PSYC511, PSYC513, PSYC575, PSYC582, PSYC583), a 60 point dissertation (PSYC592) or a 90 point thesis (PSYC593) or a 120 point thesis (PSYC594), and 30 to 90 points from optional papers in Anthropology, Demography, Development Studies, Geography, History, Human Development, Political Science, Psychology, Public Policy, Screen and Media Studies, Sociology, and Women's and Gender Studies. Optional papers should be selected in consultation with the Community Psychology Programme Convenor.

Organisational Psychology

To complete an MAppPsy in Organisational Psychology, students must pass the equivalent of 240 points comprising 105 points from the compulsory papers (LBST531 or LBST532, PSYC539, PSYC571, PSYC572, PSYC573, PSYC579, PSYC585), a 90 point thesis (PSYC593), and 45 points from optional papers in Human Resource Management, Labour Studies and Psychology eg HRMG543, HRMG544, HRMG545, PSYC581. Optional papers should be selected in consultation with the Organisational Psychology Programme Convenor.

Students considering enrolment in the MAppPsy must, in addition to fulfilling the requirements set out in the appropriate regulations, meet the School of Psychology requirements for entry into the programme. Applications should be made to the Convenor (indicating one of Behaviour Analysis, Community Psychology, or Organisational Psychology), MAppPsy, School of Psychology.

Prescriptions for the PGDipPracPsych

A Postgraduate Diploma in the Practice of Psychology is available to suitably qualified graduates and is designed to meet the requirements for registration as a psychologist under the Health Practitioners Competence Assurance Act 2003. The Postgraduate Diploma is awarded endorsed in Applied Behaviour Analysis, Community Psychology, or Organisational Psychology. To complete the Postgraduate Diploma, students must gain 120 points in the following papers.

Organisational Psychology

Community Psychology

Applied Behaviour Analysis (ABA)

Prescriptions for the PGDipPsych(Clin)

Students considering enrolment in the Postgraduate Diploma in Psychology (Clinical) must, in addition to fulfilling the requirements set out in the appropriate regulations, also meet the requirements for entry to the School's graduate programme. Applications must be received by 1 October in the year prior to their enrolment, and should be made to the Secretary, School of Psychology. The number of students accepted into the programme is limited and shortlisted applicants are interviewed in November.

Note: The following papers are only available to students enrolled in the PGDipPsych(Clin).

Prescriptions for the MPhil

The Master of Philosophy is a one year research-based degree in which students undertake a programme of approved and supervised research that leads to a thesis which critically investigates an approved topic of substance and significance, demonstrates expertise in the methods of research and scholarship, displays intellectual independence and makes a substantial original contribution to the subject area concerned, and is of publishable quality. The requirements for admission to masters level study in Philosophy are set out in the Faculty Handbook.

Psychology MPhil ThesisPSYC800120.0 Points

Prescriptions for the PhD

The Doctor of Philosophy is a three year research-based degree in which students undertake a programme of approved and supervised research that leads to a thesis which critically investigates an approved topic of substance and significance, demonstrates expertise in the methods of research and scholarship, displays intellectual independence and makes a substantial original contribution to the subject area concerned, and is of publishable quality.

Psychology PhD ThesisPSYC900120.0 Points

Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences:
Phone: 0800 800 145 or +64 7 838 4080
General and Undergraduate Email Enquiries: psyc-fass@waikato.ac.nz
Graduate and Postgraduate Email Enquiries: psyc-grad@waikato.ac.nz

Psychology is available as a major for the BA, BSc and BSocSc. Psychology may also be taken as a second major or as a supporting subject within other undergraduate degrees, subject to academic approval of the Faculty or School of Studies in which the student is enrolled.

To complete a major in Psychology for the BA and BSocSc, students must gain 120 points above 100 level in Psychology, including PSYC208, 40 points from PSYC225, PSYC226, PSYC227, PSYC228, PSYC229 or PSYC230, and at least 60 points above 200 level (excluding directed studies). It is recommended that students intending to major in Psychology for the BA or BSocSc include PSYC102 and PSYC103 in the first year of their programme of study in order to meet prerequisites for study at 200 level. It is also recommended that students majoring in Psychology take all 200 level PSYC-coded, 10 point papers.

All students intending to proceed to graduate study in Psychology should include PSYC307 in their programme of study, as this is a prerequisite for all graduate study. In addition, some 500 level Psychology papers have specific undergraduate papers as prerequisites.

If you want to go on to graduate study – and we hope that you do – please consult the Graduate Handbook or talk to academic staff about your plans, particularly before you finalise your 300 level programme of study.

Please note: For all graduate subject requirements check the information provided in the papers section above.

Listed below are some combinations of third year papers for various areas in Psychology. Please talk to academic staff for further recommendations.

Applied Cognitive Psychology
PSYC340, PSYC341, PSYC344, PSYC307 Directed Study

Behaviour Analysis (including Applied Behaviour Analysis)
PSYC307, PSYC314, PSYC337 Directed Study

Clinical Psychology
PSYC307, PSYC337 & PSYC338
These papers are required for entry to the Postgraduate Diploma in Clinical Psychology.

Community, Kaupapa Māori and Applied Social Psychology
PSYC301, PSYC310, PSYC317
In addition, you are encouraged to include in your degree papers from allied disciplines such as Social Science Research, Sociology, Education Studies, Anthropology, Māori and Pacific Development, Geography and Women’s and Gender Studies.

Health and Mental Health Services
PSYC301, PSYC307, PSYC314, PSYC319, PSYC337 & PSYC338
Papers such as HDCO100, HDCO340 and HDCO301 are also relevant.

Organisational Psychology
PSYC307, PSYC317, PSYC337 & PSYC340
We also recommend STMG191, HRMG241, PHIL218, LBST201, HRMG342 and STMG391.

Recommended preparatory papers
In addition to the above suggestions, you might consider including an introductory writing paper such as ALED100 Writing for University Purposes as part of your degree, especially if you are not too confident in your ability to write accurate, clear and concise essays and reports. Similarly, MATH168 Preparatory Mathematics is recommended for students without a background in mathematics.