BA Honours Psychology (140 credits)



The aim of this programme is to respond to the increased need for trained counsellors and life skills facilitators in South Africa, with a particular focus on the psychological challenges presented in the areas of family and community mental health. The programme helps students develop an integrated and relevant counselling praxis and it also prepares students for further studies in psychology, training them in social science research skills.



  • A candidate must have complied with all the requirements of an appropriate Bachelor’s Degree or appropriate Postgraduate Diploma
  • Third year in Psychology must have been passed with a minimum of 65%
  • Applicants must provide evidence of computer literacy.

  • On campus
  • Full-time: Minimum 1 year
  • Part-time: 1.5 to 5 years
  • January and July intakes



  • R315 per credit | total credits: 140Full time: 1st year R44 100

  • Registered as Cornerstone Institute (RF) NPC with the Department of Higher Education and Training as a private higher education institution under the Higher Education Act, 1997.Registration Certificate No.2001/HE08/006. NQF 8; SAQA 79046



  • Psychopathology (20 credits)
  • Therapeutic Psychology (20 credits)
  • Psychological Assessment and Measurement (10 credits)
  • Research Methods and Statistics (20 credits)
  • Independent Research Project (30 credits)
  • Family Psychology (10 credits) or Personality Theories (10 credits)
  • Developmental Psychology (10 credits)
  • Psychological Interventions (20 credits)



Psychopathology (20 credits)

This module is designed to prepare students for the recognition and diagnosis of mental disorders. A methodology for organising information about symptomatology and diagnostic material is presented. The use of structured and semi-structured diagnostic interviews will also be addressed.

Therapeutic Psychology (20 credits)

This module is designed to introduce students to mainstream theories of personality and behavioural change that inform the planning and management of psychotherapeutic interventions. Students will also be sensitised to the challenges to cultural applicability for mental health care professionals. Students will be introduced to case formulations and the ability to select effective treatment modalities.


Psychological Assessment and Measurement (10 credits)

This module is designed to introduce students to the history and context in which psychological assessment occurs in SA, as well as key issues in assessment, such as reliability, validity, norms and basic statistical concepts. The availability and use of assessment instruments are introduced.

Research Methods and Statistics (20 credits)

This module is designed to equip students to plan, execute, and critically evaluate research studies. Qualitative, quantitative and mixed-method approaches to data collection and analysis will be explored. Students will be able to select appropriate techniques for various research situations, execute these techniques and interpret the findings contextually within the conventions of the relevant research traditions


Choose Family Psychology or Personality Theories


Family Psychology (10 credits)

This module provides a theoretical and practical overview of family systems theory and development. This module will set the context in which the students will learn to build appropriate interventions for couple and family counselling. They will develop skills to create a therapeutic relationship and use appropriate counselling techniques.

Personality Theories (10 credits)

This module is designed to provide the student with an integrated view of key psychological theories that underpin personality formation, morivation for behaviour, optimal development and psychopathology


Developmental Psychology (10 credits)

This module provides students with an overview of the major theories of Developmental Psychology. Furthermore the module aims to address contemporary concerns in lifespan development from conception to late adulthood/death and dying. The course will engage with developmental theories from a range of orientations, including learning/cognitive theories, theories of language development and a socio-cultural perspective. Critical issues such a child development, the impact of HIV/AIDS, family dynamics, interpersonal relationships and cross cultural perspectives will be explored. Allows students to engage with the theory through various applications and gain a deeper understanding.

Psychological Interventions (20 credits)

This module will set the context in which the students will learn to develop appropriate psychological interventions for individuals, group, couples and family counselling. This module is completed in a semester and is aimed at theoretically and practically equipping students to develop skills to create a therapeutic relation and to use appropriate techniques during the counselling process. Appropriate interventions strategies for Trauma, HIV/AIDS, Divorce Counselling, Play Therapy and Substance Abuse will also be addressed. The students will be exposed to clinical and cross-cultural contexts and an understanding of the ethical issues related to working in such contexts will be explored.


Independent Research Project (30 credits)

This module is designed to facilitate the independent planning, execution and reporting/writing up of a research project in partial fulfilment of the degree programme.

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