1st Faculty of Medicine Charles University 1st Faculty of Medicine Charles University Department of Psychiatry

Characteristics, Goals and Study requirements

Characteristics of the study programme

Doctoral study programme "Medical Psychology and Psychopathology" is engaged in basic and applied research in biopsychosocial relationships. The proposed study opens up possibilities for interdisciplinary doctoral education not only for medical schools graduates, as well as graduates of psychology and some other related fields.

This field of study continues the rich tradition of teaching psychological and psychiatric sciences at the 1st Medical Faculty. Teaching of psychiatry was started in German in 1841 followed with English in the 1886. The very first habilitation in psychiatry in Austria-Hungary took place at our clinic (doc. Riedel). As the first in the Czech lands was here, in 1911, set up an experimental psychological laboratory and in the same year the teaching of medical psychology (Professor Mihajlo Rostohar) started here also. Specialized department of addictology ("Apollinaire"), was institutionalized in 1947 and this area was richly covered by prof. Vladimír Vondráček's publications. Focus on the biopsychosocial paradigm of the modern medicine (enriched by ecological, environmental dimension) in terms of its theoretical basis reflects the current state of knowledge achieved in modern science in existing developed societies.

Theoretical basis of cognitive systems theory of psychological disciplines (developmental psychology, personality psychology, etc.), but even applied fields, in particular clinical and medical psychology. Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences then represent a body of scientific disciplines concerned with understanding the human psyche and behavior. This approach not only psychological but also genetical, biochemical or physiological and their mutual interaction. What is important is the possibility of using these latest findings in the care of mentally and physically ill.

Graduate Profile

Graduates will be able to work with a professional foreign literature, prepare and implement a research project (including financial security), ie, acquire, evaluate and statistically process data obtained mainly with regard to the interdisciplinary focus and yet combine both quantitative and qualitative approach. Specifically, such applied research in the interplay of influences within the biopsychosocial (and ecological - environmental) medicine paradigm in research on the relationship between the patient and the healthcare professional when examining the progress and outcome of the psychotherapeutic process in the evaluation of treatment and rehabilitation programs in the examination of psychosomatic and soma-psychical context in research, care for the chronically and terminally ill. In the field of medical psychology research projects are mainly based on the empirical data obtained through specific psychological and psycho-mental processes (eg, scaling, testing or clinical methods) and the work of the other laboratory procedures. In addition, graduates can handle some methods of the social sciences (eg. methods used in sociology and cultural anthropology), including scientific reasoning and critical discursive process. In the field of behavioral sciences especially the research context of psychosocial and environmental factors, biological dispositions, including the use of modern instrumental methods of diagnosis. Great emphasis is placed on the ability to prepare and publish high quality scientific work both at home and in prestigious international journals and prepare students for their scientific career in general

Entry requirements

Condition of acceptance is finished master or doctoral degree especially in psychology or master degree from a medical schools or any other specializationhigh schools. The party of entry exam is examination of knowledge in a differentiated way. Graduates in natural sciences must demonstrate a deeper understanding of the fundamental psychological disciplines and clinical psychology. Conversely, graduates in humanities must demonstrate a deeper knowledge of the field of psychopathology, neuroanatomy, biochemistry and physiology, focusing on CNS. The applicant must present a proposition of a research project that will lead to a dissertation. Language skills of applicant may be checked during entry exam (English or another foreign language).

Study subjects / thematic areas

The content of lessons in each year will be focused especially on the following topics:

  1. Basics of research on psychological behavioral sciences
  2. Medical Psychology and Psychopathology
  3. Biopsychosocial approaches to health and disease
The content of the course is realized through these learning tasks:


  1. Passing coursework exam consisting of defense of their own written review thesis showing the interest of applicant in a chosen specialization followed by interpretation of the basic methods used in scientific work.
  2. Passing two courses in the 2nd and 3rd year of study.
  3. Language Examination in English
Other teaching content is specific due to the specialization of the candidate and are specified in the individual study plan.


Criteria for Thesis Defense

  1. Passing coursework exam consisting of defense of their own written review thesis showing the interest of applicant in a chosen specialization followed by interpretation of the basic methods used in scientific work.
  2. Passing two courses in the 2nd and 3rd year of study.
  3. Passing the state exam
  4. Presentation of the results of a research project at least at two postgraduate conferences organized in a class or at two other national or international conferences.
  5. At least two publications on the topic of dissertation in journals with impact factor (at least once as the first author).


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