nl en

Psychological Assessment and Interventions in Chronic Disease


Entry requirements

Only open to master’s students in Psychology with specialisation Health Psychology


In this course the epidemiology of, and specific psychosocial problems associated with a variety of chronic diseases and physical problems (e.g. coronary heart disease, pain syndromes, diabetes) are introduced. Commonly used psychological assessment instruments measuring these psychosocial problems and related concepts are discussed such as illness cognitions, pain, coping, social support, self-management, stress, and health-related quality of life. Finally, disease-specific psychosocial intervention strategies for the enhancement of quality of life and/or self-management in patients with chronic disease are addressed.
In the seminars the use of different assessment instruments and the practical use of specific intervention strategies in patients with chronic disease are addressed. These interventions are based on cognitive behaviour therapy and self-regulation/behaviour change principles.

Course objectives

On completion of the course students:

  • know relevant theoretical backgrounds for the study of psychological consequences and interventions in chronic disease.

  • have acquired skills concerning diagnosis of psychological consequences and interventions through in-class assignments.

  • have learned to reflect and comment on the use and relevance of psychological interventions in chronic patients.


For the timetables of your lectures, work groups and exams, please select your study programme in:
Psychology timetables



Students need to enroll for lectures and work group sessions.
Master’s course registration


Students are not automatically enrolled for an examination. They can register via uSis from 100 to 10 calendar days before the date. Students who are not registered will not be permitted to take the examination.
Registering for exams

Mode of instruction

7 review-type lectures of 2 hours.
7 seminars/work group sessions of 3 hours. Attendance is mandatory.

Assessment method

The final grade for the course will be calculated on the basis of the result of the written exam (50 %) and the paper (50 %).

Written exam:
There will be a written exam, consisting of essay questions.

Literature for the exam:

  • Book will be announced later.

  • Lecture slides posted on Blackboard.

Students are requested to write, together with another student, a paper on the psychosocial consequences, assessment and the effectiveness of psychological interventions related to a chronic disease. During the last seminar students present this paper to the whole group.

The Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences has instituted that instructors use a software programme for the systematic detection of plagiarism in students’ written work. In case of fraud disciplinary actions will be taken. Please see the information concerning fraud.

Reading list

Book will be announced later.

Contact information

Dr. Véronique De Gucht