Doctorate in Health Psychology

Professional Doctorate in Health Psychology DHealthPsych

Course fees (2018/19 entry)

Option / fee Value
Home/EU full-time annual tuition fee: £6,500
Home/EU part-time tuition fee: £3,250 per annum
International full time annual tuition fee: Full-time £13,360, Part-time £6,680

More about course fees »

Course type



Natural Sciences and Psychology

Study mode

Full Time & Part Time

About your course

This Professional Doctorate in Health Psychology at Liverpool John Moores University is designed to meet the requirements for BPS Stage Two training in health psychology and designed to lead to eligibility for registration with the HCPC. The course provides you with quality supervision and is underpinned by high-grade research activity amongst the staff.

  • The Professional Doctorate in Health Psychology at Liverpool John Moores University meets the requirements for BPS Stage Two training in health psychology and leads to eligibility to apply for registration with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC)
  • The course provides you with quality training and supervision and is underpinned by high-grade research and practice activity amongst the academic staff
  • Staff enthusiasm, expertise and skills, blended with constructive, supportive learning opportunities, enable you to make the most of your development path to becoming a qualified practitioner
  • British Psychological Society (BPS) accredited and HCPC approved
  • This professional doctorate is available to study full time (2 years) and part time (4 years)
  • Wide career opportunities in the health industry, healthcare provision, teaching and research

96% of LJMU research in the area of Psychology, Psychiatry and Neuroscience is considered world-leading or internationally important.

This course represents a great opportunity for trainees to develop their skills in a high-quality training and research environment with some of the best supervisors out there. The small-group teaching and expertise of the staff combine to make for an engaging and fulfilling experience.

Dr Mark Forshaw, Programme Leader

Introduction to the School

The School of Natural Sciences and Psychology has a broad and varied range of taught programmes across the biological sciences, geography and environmental sciences, and psychology.

The School is based in LJMU’s City Campus at the Byrom Street site, which is located in the heart of Liverpool city Centre, and offers postgraduates excellent laboratory and research facilities, including: 

  • appetite laboratories
  • psychology testing labs 
  • neuroscience labs
  • Research excellence

Research excellence

96% of research from LJMU submitted to the REF 2014 for the Psychology, Psychiatry and Neuroscience category is considered world-leading or internationally important.

Staff in the School of Natural Sciences and Psychology produce high quality research in a range of areas in psychology and applied psychology, including health psychology, appetite, human factors, cognition, neuroscience, mindfulness and wellbeing, and substance abuse. 

Why study this course at LJMU?

This professional doctorate at LJMU is designed to meet the requirements for BPS Stage 2 training in health psychology. It is also designed to meet the standards of education and training of the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC).

You will work closely with academic staff who are leaders in their research field and experts in training. This course group at LMJU offers a supportive and friendly environment to progress your training and career. 

Programme outline and structure

Health psychology is an exciting new discipline with growing opportunities for qualified professionals.

In order to become a Health Psychologist, you must have the Graduate Basis for Chartered Membership from the British Psychological Society and fulfil a number of requirements. 

  • Stage 1 training involves the satisfactory completion of an accredited Masters programme (we also offer this Masters at LJMU)
  • Stage 2 training includes two or more years spent acquiring a range of supervised skills connected with professional skills, interventions, consultancy, research, and teaching and training (as facilitated through this course)

The DHealthPsych programme is underpinned by a strong focus on equipping the future health psychologist for a range of professional scenarios.

Download programme FAQs

The programme runs fortnightly on Thursdays in year one and can be studied full time or part time. Full time students must be enrolled for a minimum of two years in order to meet statutory training requirements, and for part-time students this is adjusted pro rata.

In keeping with the nationally agreed curriculum competences for health psychologists, you will be developing your skills in teaching and training, behaviour change interventions, research, consultancy and demonstrating that you have the generic professional skills needed to qualify as a health psychologist.  This is achieved through your own job role, taught sessions on the programme, and extensive supervision.  

The programme is British Psychological Society (BPS) accredited and Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) approved and has been designed to meet the requirements for BPS Stage 2 training in Health Psychology and eligibility for registration as a Health Psychologist with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC).

What you will study on this degree

Please see guidance below on core and option modules for further information on what you will study.

  • Planning Training in Health Psychology
    Introduces training and demonstrates planning skills
  • Health Psychology Professional Practice
    Stage 2 competences are developed and expressed
  • Reflection in Health Psychology
    Show your ability to reflect and meta-reflect on your training, and close the loop on your original plans from the very first month of training

Further guidance on modules

The information listed in the section entitled ‘What you will study’ is an overview of the academic content of the programme that will take the form of either core or option modules. Modules are designated as core or option in accordance with professional body requirements and internal Academic Framework review, so may be subject to change. Students will be required to undertake modules that the University designates as core and will have a choice of designated option modules. Additionally, option modules may be offered subject to meeting minimum student numbers.

Please email if you require further guidance or clarification.

How will I be assessed?

Assessments for this course are aligned to the focus and nature of the modules.

Assessments include a log and diary of professional practice, case studies and reflections on each competence, and a viva voce examination at the end.  For research you will be expected to produce a number of publishable papers and will be required to submit them to peer-reviewed journals.  

Staff research interests

Staff in the School of Natural Sciences and Psychology produce high quality research in a range of areas in health psychology.

Areas of expertise include pain, disability, patient-reported outcome measurement, positive psychology, obesity, appetite, human factors, cognition, neuroscience and substance abuse. Staff have long-standing expertise in training and developing future health psychologists.

Entry requirements (Home)

Good honours degree in Psychology and GBC. BPS Accredited MSc in Health Psychology (or BPS Stage I Qualification), normally at merit level or higher. Applicants must have suitable pre-determined placement (paid or voluntary). International applicants: Equivalent qualifications plus IELTS minimum score of 7.0 (no element below 6.5).

Please note that due to PSRB national standards these entry requirements are non-negotiable for all applicants.

Further information
To help you to maximise your application success, and due to the nature of the programme, discussions with us prior to application are strongly advised. To discuss this professional doctorate programme in more detail, please contact Dr Mark Forshaw:

T: 0151 904 6299 

Entry requirements (International)

LJMU welcomes applications from international students. In addition to normal entry requirements, you will be expected to demonstrate a very good level of English language competence. For this degree you will require an IELTS minimum score of 7.0, with no element below 6.5.

If you have applied to study a full-time taught Masters, MRes, MPhil or PhD at LJMU, you should check if you require an Academic Technology Approval Scheme or ATAS certificate. It can take four to six weeks to receive an ATAS certificate, so please make sure you apply as early as possible. You can find out more on the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) website. Alternatively, contact LJMU’s International Admissions Team for guidance. Please note: international students entering on a Tier 4 visa cannot study part time. Students entering the UK on alternate types of visa may be in a position to study part time. Please contact LJMU’s International Admissions Team for further details before making your application.  In order to obtain a visa you will also need to show evidence that the money required to cover your tuition fees and living expenses has been in your bank account for at least 28 days prior to submitting your visa application. So please make sure that your finances are in place before applying. For more details, go to our international website

For advice on any aspect of the application process, please contact LJMU’s International Admissions Team.

Application and selection

As with all health psychology training nationally, you must secure a suitable placement work prior to interview.

Will I be interviewed?

All candidates will be interviewed.


7.0 (Minimum of 6.5 in each component)


58-64 (Min. 51 in each component for UKVI Purposes)

Is RPL accepted on this programme?


Please Note: All international qualifications are subject to a qualification equivalency check via NARIC.

Financial support

Tuition fees

All full and part-time students enrolled on postgraduate taught programmes at LJMU are liable to pay an annual tuition fee. You can opt to pay your tuition fees in full at the start of each academic year or pay by instalments. If you need advice about how you will pay your tuition fees, please email to LJMU’s Student Funding Team as soon as possible.

Sources of funding


Postgraduate loans

Postgraduate Masters loans are available for the 2017/18 academic year. The new loans, of up to £10,000, are available for students attending eligible full and part-time Masters courses, in line with the existing qualification framework for England. Administered by the Student Loan Company, the loans will be available to those under 60 at the start of their course.

Loan repayments will begin the April after course completion, with the first cohort of borrowers commencing repayments in April 2019. Repayments will be made at a rate of 6% of income above an earning threshold of £21,000. This threshold will be frozen until 2021. For details of loan terms, conditions and eligibility, go to: 

LJMU Alumni Award

Final year undergraduates and alumni of the University are eligible to apply for a 20% reduction in their postgraduate tuition fees if they choose to progress onto a higher degree programme at LJMU. Both Home and international LJMU students and alumni can apply for this award (subject to eligibility criteria*). 

Postgraduate International Scholarships

LJMU offers scholarships for international applicants accepted onto taught masters programmes (excluding distance learning programmes) and research degrees. Current LJMU international students and alumni interested in pursuing postgraduate study and research at the University are eligible to apply for these scholarships along with new applicants. 

English for Postgraduate Studies Bursary

A Bursary is also available for international students who need to improve their IELTS score prior to enrolling on their postgraduate course or research programme at the University. This course is run by LJMU’s International Study Centre.

Earn While You Learn

Working while you study means you may be able to pay for your course without taking out any further loans or at least reducing the amount you need to borrow. Working while you study also gives you the skills valued by employers, such as managing your workload and prioritising your time.

LJMU’s Vacancy website can help you find graduate vacancies, sandwich/industrial placements, internships / summer work, part-time jobs, volunteering opportunities and work-based learning placements. Over 1,000 local and regional employers regularly list opportunities on the website.

Professional and Career Development Loans (PCDL)

Many students fund their postgraduate studies via Professional and Career Development Loans. This is a bank loan which you will have to pay back once you’ve completed the course. However, while you are studying any interest on the loan will be paid for you by the Skills Funding Agency. PCDLs worth between £300 and £10,000 are available for eligible postgraduates to fund up to two years of study (three if the course includes work experience). The loan is split into course fees and living costs. 

Employer sponsorship

Some organisations and companies fund the cost of postgraduate studies for their employees as they recognise the value of having well qualified staff. Check out our courses and see if there are any on offer that could enhance your current career. Remember, employer support doesn’t always have to be financial; it can take other forms too, such as flexible working arrangements, day release and time in lieu of study.

Support for disabled students

Disabled Students’ Allowances or DSAs are designed to help meet the extra course costs students can face as a direct result of a disability, on-going health condition, mental health condition or specific learning difficulty. DSAs don’t have to be paid back and the type of support you receive will be determined by your specific needs not your household income. Please contact LJMU’s Disability team for further advice: 0151 231 3164/3165.

Council tax exemption

All full-time postgraduate students studying courses lasting one year or more are eligible for a council tax exemption certificate.

Graduate employment

A growing number of health psychology graduates work in health education, health promotion, health administration and health audit. There are also opportunities in the organisational aspects of delivering health care within the health service and in research/teaching.

Staff on the course have supervised trainees working in the health service, universities, private healthcare companies including occupational health, health and safety laboratories, pharmaceutical companies, and in private practice offering health coaching and therapeutic interventions. 

For all the options for health psychologists, please see the British Psychological Society careers web pages.

International Study

International applicants are required to demonstrate equivalent qualifications to the standard requirements for entry when applying for courses at LJMU.

Students must also demonstrate a proficiency in communicating through English, for example via an IELTS tests or equivalent.

Please note: UK visa restrictions mean that international students are only permitted to study on a full-time basis.

Please contact LJMU’s International Team by visiting for more information and advice.


LJMU has launched a range of generous international scholarships for students enrolling at the University.

These prestigious scholarships take the form of tuition fee waivers and are available for outstanding international students applying for taught postgraduate programmes and research degrees.

You will need to complete an additional application form in order to be considered for these scholarships. Full eligibility criteria and the online application form are available here:

Applications for these scholarships are welcomed from:

  • new international applicants
  • current LJMU international students hoping to progress onto postgraduate study at the University
  • LJMU international alumni

The University may make changes to a programme of study or module where such changes are deemed to be beneficial to students, are minor in nature and unlikely to impact negatively upon students or become necessary due to circumstances beyond the control of the University.
Further guidance on programme changes

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