Global psykologi



Mål og innhald

GLOBAL PSYCHOLOGY, also referred to at times as INTERNATIONAL PSYCHOLOGY is an emerging branch of psychology that focuses on the worldwide enterprise of psychology and is (i) concerned with an understanding of challenging contemporary topics that are not geographically bound, and which have a psychological dimension and (ii) designing contextualized, ethical, and socially responsible actions to address these challenges and support individual and social well-being (research, consultation, practice).

The goal of the course is to sensitize students to global psychological issues of particular significance to low-income countries.

This course is grounded in the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and will provide an opportunity for students to observe, examine and understand human behavior within its natural context in a low-income country, and the kinds of psychological help offered to members of the society.

As part of the course, students will be engaged in a 3-month obligatory field experience (internship) to gain an understanding of the complex socio-cultural, historical, political, economic issues affecting how people, organizations and environments interact. The goal is to facilitate the development of cultural sensitivity and awareness. Students will learn to establish respectful and ethical relations with global populations, considering the impact of their own culture on global cultures.

Psychology is a product arising from interaction among ecological, cultural, and political systems. Mainstream psychology as it is practiced in much of the world is rooted in the realities of Western industrialized countries. This approach to a large extent has shown very little cognizance to cultural, political, ecological, and social factors that affect people¿s emotions, thoughts, and behavior. Western conception of human behavior, thoughts, and emotions as well as its practice are often transported from one part of the world to the other in packages of "absolute truths". Notwithstanding great results, they have sometimes proven to be ineffective and even detrimental to the receiving group of people. Moreover, psychological services are often provided in a manner devoid of cultural awareness, cultural sensitivity and at best minimum cultural competence.

The crux of the course is to help students to expand their cultural horizon and provide them with first-hand close observation of psychological services in a low-income country



At the end of the course the student should be able to:

  • Describe the health care system of the LMIC (i.e. low or middle-income country) where the internship takes place.
  • Identify and describe indigenous psychological health care practices in the LMIC that the internship takes place.
  • Discuss how the social, cultural and political systems of the country the internship occurred may shape behavior, thoughts and emotions of the people in the country


  • Discuss how one's culture of origin views may facilitate or impede working with people of of cultural backgrounds different from one's own
  • Discuss how cultural-bound syndromes may arise from cultural beliefs and practices of a cultural society.
  • Discuss culturally based ethical dilemma one may face when working in different cultural contexts
  • Learn to cope with acculturative stress

General competence

  • Develop a global and an international perspective of psychology as a field
  • Develop an understanding for the limitations mainstream psychology may have when applied to people living in LMIC.
  • Understand how psychological practices are rooted in the socio-cultural, ecological political structures of the society
  • Relating competently and sensitively with people of different cultural backgrounds

Studiepoeng, omfang


Studienivå (studiesyklus)

Master / Third year Professional Psychology degree during their GAP semester




The first part of the course will be taught at the University of Bergen, and the second part (Internship) is hosted by a university in a Low-and middle income country (LMIC).

For the 2024/25 Academic year, the hosting LMIC university is the University of Ghana in Accra. The university of Ghana will be the host, however the internship will take place at different places in Accra.

Krav til forkunnskapar
Students should have completed at least 2 years of psychology, or a equivalent bachelor degree in psychology or social sciences
Tilrådde forkunnskapar
The student should preferably have a psychology or a social sciences background
Krav til studierett
Psychology students from the Professional Program in Psychology. As from Autumn 2024, the course is also opened to other students at the university with social sciences background,
Arbeids- og undervisningsformer
  • 2 - 3 weeks in-person and/or online seminar/lectures at the University of Bergen
  • 12 weeks Internship in a Low & Middle-income country
  • Self-chosen essay topic involving defining study area in accordance to the objectives of the course
  • Obligatorisk undervisningsaktivitet

    There are THREE obligatory activities

    1. Internship in the LMIC -- to be evaluated through the weekly reports from the internship sites.

    2. A self-chosen topic to write an essay on. This essay can be written individually or in a group of up to 3 students

    3. Oral presentation of the written report: A power-point presentation should be submitted after the presentation on


    Final grade (will be based on the three activities listed above: Internship weekly reports; self-chosen written essay and the oral presentation.

    INTERNSHIP: Weekly report of the preceding weeks¿ activities. [This may entail about 3 report per students during the 12 weeks. The reports will be submitted in groups of 2 or 3 students to the course leader. The reports should be approximately 500 word long]. This essay is to be submitted via

    SELF-CHOSEN ESSAY REPORT: The student is to choose a topic in the country where the internship is taking place and write an essay of about 10 - 15 pages long. The chosen topic should be approved by the course leader; and this should be approved by the middle of the internship. This report is to be submitted through INSPERA.

    ORAL PRESENTATION: To be based on the written essay based on the approved self-chosen topic. This presentation should last for about 15 minutes followed by 15 minutes of questions and discussion


    Pass or Fail
    Autumn semester
    A reading list with recommended literature will be made available before the start of the semester
    The course will be evaluated in accordance with the routines for participatory evaluation of the Faculty of Psychology and the Quality Assurance System of the University of Bergen.
    Hjelpemiddel til eksamen

    No restrictions

    Open access

    Department of Psychosocial Science
    Department of Psychosocial Science
    Administrativt ansvarleg
    Faculty of Psychology