Crisis Psychology and Disaster Response

Postgraduate course

Course description

Objectives and Content


The main objective is to introduce students to the research and practicum

area of crisis psychology and clinically anchored assessment,

intervention and counselling to families, health professionals, and

community based services. The goal and focus of the subject is inspired

by the UN sustainable development goals.


The main themes are (1) individual reactions and adaptation to trauma;

(2) assessment and screening of trauma and grief reactions; (3) preventive interventions in families, schools and the community setting

Learning Outcomes

On completion of this course, the students should have the following learning outcomes defined

in terms of knowledge, skills and general competence:


The student has in-depth knowledge of:

  • How psychological and social factors influence individual reactions and adaptation totrauma
  • Adaption of low threshold individual, family-, school- and community based interventions following trauma
  • Optimal ways to organize psychosocial support after severe trauma, both in the short and longer run


The student has the ability to

  • Explain the basic mechanisms involved in human responses to trauma
  • Select and use screening instruments, assessment and clinical evaluation of trauma survivors
  • Communicate to health and social service providers, families and NGO¿s about methods and approaches to adapt and cope with trauma
  • Facilitate families, schools and communities in developing, implementing and evaluating social support and outreach efforts;
  • Facilitate school and community-based interventions to prevent long term adverse health effects

General competence:

The student has the ability to

  • Assist in establishing family-, school- and community based programs,
  • Respond to families, teachers and communities with suggestions for adaptive action
  • Implement and utilize relevant research based screening and assessment instruments,
  • Help build, manage and evaluate psychosocial support after violence, abuse and trauma
  • Work effectively in concert with other health professionals, families and communities

ECTS Credits


Level of Study


Semester of Instruction


Place of Instruction

A limited number of international internship locations will be available.

The internship locations will be approved by UiB and carefully selected

by the partner institutions (NGO, university, private or public


Required Previous Knowledge

Students are expected to have completed at least two year of basic courses in studies in

psychology, social work or equivalent.

Access to the Course

The attendance to the course is limited to 25 students.

Priority will be given to students registered at the professional program in clinical psychology at

the University of Bergen who has been admitted to the 10/20 ECTS module of Global Mental

Health Practicum and students from the Inland Norway University of Applied Sciences (HINN)

and international students participating in mobility programs organized by Center for Crisis


Other master's students may apply subject to availability and fulfilment of basic knowledge requirements. Attendance is given through written application.

Teaching and learning methods
Teaching methods comprise about 20 hours of lectures, seminars and group presentations.
Compulsory Assignments and Attendance

Students are required to attend at least 80% of the scheduled lectures and seminars.

Compulsory activities must be completed and approved before the student can proceed to the assessment.

Forms of Assessment

Portfolio assessment with portfolio consisting of two products:

  1. Group presentation
  2. Group report
Grading Scale
Pass/ fail
Reading List
Recommended reading of about 450 pages. The reading list will be available from 1.06
Course Evaluation

The course will be evaluated in accordance with the Faculty of Psychology¿s routines

for participatory evaluation and the University of Bergen Quality Assurance System.

Programme Committee
Centre for crisis psychology, Faculty of Psychology
Course Coordinator
Centre for crisis psychology,
Course Administrator
Centre for crisis psychology, Faculty of Psychology