The Psychology Department (PD) was founded in 2001 and has since been developing training and research activities in the field of Psychology. We offer both a 1st studies cycle (Bachelor in Psychology) and a 2nd studies cycle (Master in Clinical Psychology and Counseling).
Considering that training and research are the basis of university activity, the Psychology Department created the Research Centre in Psychology – CIP (FCT assessment – good – allows for accreditation with funding), whose research strand is Psychosocial Vulnerability and Unstable Contexts. The research strand has several ongoing projects and, since 2015, the centre has a scientific journal – PSIQUE – published every semester. It is an online, open-access publication.
From a pedagogical perspective, the PD favours experiential and participating learning, in line with Bologna guidelines, fostering students to develop an active involvement in their learning process. The concern to provide consistent and practical learning based on “learning by doing” is supported by practical classes in hospitals; by the Psychometrics and Neurosciences Laboratories; and by the possibility that students are given to observe psychological sessions in the Centro Universitário de Psicologia e Logopedia (CUPL).
We believe that learning is the result of several factors, including individual well-being and motivation. This has led us to create the Gabinete de Apoio Psicológico e Promoção da Saúde – GAPS – an office that provides psychological support to the academic community (lecturers, students and staff) and promotes active resolution of individual issues that may result in vulnerability factors. The Department has also created an office to support students overcome the difficulties that may arise when attending university, thus preventing school dropout – Gabinete de Tutoria. This office aims to assist student struggling in terms of their learning or in adapting to social life, in particular, to academic life.
One of the variables that most contributes to knowledge acquisition and consolidation is attendance and participation in class. Students are, therefore, fostered to attend classes and become involved in academic, social and cultural activities.
In regards to the academic staff, our approach has been to have a group of lecturers with relevant pedagogical experience in their field (most of them hold a PhD) and in research.