MA Psychology

MA Psychology study course with a clinical focus (in English)

This M.A. programme explores one of the most differentiated and contemporary perspectives of the human psyche, and one of the most modern of the human sciences. As a science of the unconscious, psychoanalysis is not just a therapeutic method. It also represents a theory of science and knowledge ­– ­­one that is located between the natural sciences and the humanities, cultural studies and social sciences, and which connects these lines of tradition in an innovative, forward-thinking manner.

The Programme

With our Master programme, a unique, multi-layered study course is waiting for you that will prepare you for an equally diverse career and professional life. The study course’s clinical direction, which focuses on psychodynamic and psychoanalytic approaches, additionally provides solid education and training in research methods. At the same time, this is broadened on a fundamental level with in-depth knowledge from non-clinical application areas of psychological and psychoanalytic thinking.

While its curriculum is based on the recommendations of the German Psychological Society (DGPs), one focus of the program is on learning to apply fundamental diagnostic, counselling and therapeutic competencies. The course's psychoanalytic direction is reflected in the fact that, in addition to behavioural therapy, Gestalt therapy, systemic and other methods, the psychoanalytic methods represent the main focus here.

Ultimately, the psychoanalytic direction is also reflected in the fact that the students not only become familiar with psychoanalysis as a psychotherapeutic method, but also as a cultural theory and applied social science. The study course has been approved and officially accredited by the Berlin Senate.

Key Information

For questions about the organisation of the studies
Katja Overmann
Stromstr. 3b - Room 0.42
Tel.: +49 30 300 117-562

  • Examination Office M.A. Psychology (English track)
  • Questions about studies, course of studies
  • lecturer support
  • prospective student consultation


Personal office hours in the lecture period summer term 2024

Tuesdays and Thursdays 10 am – 12 pm and by appointment

Reachable by phone during regular office hours. Individual appointments in person or as a video call through Microsoft Teams are also possible.

Questions about application
Marius Digel
Tel.: +49 30 300 117-543
Victoria Shefer
Tel.: +49 30 300 117-547
Stromstr. 3b - Room 0.40/0.39

Degree Master of Arts
Study Area Psychology
ECTS 120 credits
Duration Four semesters (two years)
Programme Start Winter semester, compulsory Welcome Week in October
Previous Degree Bachelor’s degree in psychology or bachelor’s degree in humanities, social sciences, etc., accepted by uni-assist
Language English
Language Requirements English language proficiency certificate (C1 or TOEFL iBT 95 or IELTS 7 or Cambridge Certificate CAE)
Tuition €6,500 per semester, €1,130 per month, €24,800 for 4 semesters if paid in advance
Semester Fee €300 per semester (subject to change)
Internship Mandatory work placement of 330 working hours
Study Places 30 per semester
Location International Psychoanalytic University Berlin


The course comprises of 120 ECTS credits, which can be earned over four full-time study semesters. The ECTS credits are spread to a similar extent across three semesters, with the Master thesis to be written in the final semester.

The course is arranged in five areas of study. In addition, there is a compulsory elective subject which is intended to give the students the opportunity to focus on a scientific or academic field in line with their own interests (e.g. Clinical Neuropsychology, Social Trauma, Selective Areas of Work and Organizational Psychology or Other Fields). Furthermore, the students should gain work experience by completing a practical internship of at least 330 hours.

By organizing its modules by topic, the IPU strives to enhance the transparency of both the content and aims of the course, and to facilitate the possibility of study exchanges – also between study courses. Considering the students’ workload, IPU endeavors to distribute the credit load uniformly over the study course to the greatest extent possible. Furthermore, the IPU is committed to the goal of supporting the development of critically reflective professional skills which center on the human. Thus, wherever possible, the modules reflect and map typical areas of work in terms of practical applications, research, and teaching, and prepare the students for these roles. As a rule, the modules are taught in a time frame extending over two or three semesters at the most.

The MA Psychology programme is divided into five areas of study

  • Reflexive Psychology and Theoretical Psychoanalysis (Modules 1 and 8)
  • Social Psychology Studies (Module 2)
  • Developmental Psychology, Developmental Psychopathology and Studies of Disorder (Modules 3 and 4)
  • Diagnosis and Intervention (Modules 5, 6, 9 and 10)
  • Methods of Practice-Orientated Research (Module 7)

The content is spread across the following 10 modules
1. History of Psychoanalysis in the Context Establishing Psychology as a Science (6 ECTS)
Cognitive Interest and Methods in Psychoanalysis, Seminal approaches to the Conceptualisation of the Psyche
The module assumes psychoanalytical-depth psychology approaches embedded in the object formation and knowledge route history of science and ideas to the psychological and philosophical bodies of knowledge. The specifics of the psychoanalytical knowledge situation forms the reference. The theory history development of these approaches in relation to their discursive conditions and circumstances is conveyed.

2. Social Psychological Studies (6 ECTS)
Drive and Affect, Thought and Speech, Microsociology of Human Interaction
The module consolidates the students' knowledge about the theories and methods of social psychology, the reciprocity of bodily perception and the formation of language, and provides an introduction to the microsociology of conversation.

3. Developmental Psychology (6 ECTS)
Theories of Development / Developmental Psychopathology
The module provides an overview of theories and methods in developmental psychology, developmental psychopathology, as well as psychoanalytical development theories and methods.

4. General and Specific Studies of Disorder (9 ECTS)
Psychopathology and its Classification
The module conveys knowledge about the clinical psychological and neurobiological classifications and diagnoses, together with the concepts and findings from mental disorders, while permitting a comparison with the concepts of general and special psychoanalytical disorder studies.

5. Psychological Diagnostics (9 ECTS)
Theories and Practice of Psychological and Psychoanalytical Diagnostics
The module conveys knowledge and skills in psychological diagnostics and a comparison with psychodynamic methods.

6. Psychotherapeutic Intervention (9 ECTS)
Theory and Practice of Psychotherapeutic Intervention
The module conveys fundamental knowledge and basic competencies in psychotherapeutic intervention.

7. Research Methods (18 ECTS)
The module conveys research methodology knowledge and skills in diagnostics, developmental psychology on a cross-sectional and longitudinal basis, in health care epidemiology, comparative result and process research, in experimental designs, as well as in pure psychology research in the lab.

8. Science and Epistemology / Theories of the Subject (6 ECTS)
Processes of theory formation, non-clinical fields of psychoanalysis and psychodynamics
Psychoanalysis as epistemology and subject theory: Transdisciplinary readings of psychoanalytical theories, their formation of knowledge and their bodies of knowledge. Interfaces with psychological, social studies, humanities, cultural studies and/or human sciences epistemes.

9. Prevention and Counseling (6 ECTS)
Illness prevention, Health promotion, psychodynamic counselling concepts
The module conveys knowledge about prevention, health promotion and counselling methods together with their respective theoretical bases. The intention is to provide an oversight of the various fields of application (in both the world we live in and the working world) and especially to convey the "basic skills" required in the various settings for prevention work and counselling.

10. Elective (5 ECTS)
Clinical Neuropsychology, Social Trauma, Selective Areas of Work and Organizational Psychology, Other Fields

Our aim at the IPU Berlin is to make you familiar with the whole spectrum of discourse, so that the greatest possible range of professional options and perspectives are open to you afterwards. Regardless of the career direction you intend to take, the Master of Arts Psychology degree from the IPU Berlin will prepare and equip you for your professional future. The intention of the course is to enable you to work independently as a clinical psychologist, to further your scientific or academic studies and to pursue a university or higher education career as the case may be.

If you, as an international student, plan on working in the psychotherapeutic field after graduation from IPU Berlin, we kindly advise you to look at the requirements for the recognition as a therapist in your home country before applying at IPU Berlin.

How to Apply
Candidates wishing to enroll in the Master of Arts Psychology degree from the IPU Berlin can apply online via uni-assist. uni-assist is a non-profit organization that evaluates international school and university certificates on behalf of German universities. uni-assist assesses whether the submitted school/university certificates are equivalent to German school/university degrees, i.e. whether they qualify in principle for admission to university studies in Germany.

Current application deadlines can be found here. For more information please visit

We recommend that applicants from non-EU countries apply early, so that you have enough time to apply for your visa, to find an accommodation, etc.

uni-assist requires you to pay a processing fee (€75), which must be paid completely in advance. Otherwise your application can neither be processed nor forwarded to us. If your application is not complete, uni-assist will inform you and may request missing documents. You must submit all certificates as officially authenticated copies in the original language and, if the original documents are not in German or English, in a certified translation.

Application requirements and selection criteria:

  • Curriculum vita in a tabular format with a photo
  • Higher education entrance qualification (University Entrance Certificate / Secondary School Leaving Certificate)
  • Ideally a bachelor degree in psychology (Bachelor of Science) with a focus on clinical psychology (Degree certificate and final transcript of records OR a current transcript of records as proof that you are due to graduate soon. The degree certificate must be submitted by the end of December following enrollment at the latest.)
  • Fluency in English / level C1 as per the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages – CERF (English language proficiency certificate (C1 or TOEFL iBT 95 or IELTS 7.0 or Cambridge Certificate CAE) The certificate can be submitted up to the date of enrolment at the IPU.)
  • Interests in the field of clinical psychology / psychoanalysis, in addition to personal suitability (Motivation letter, maximum one page)


If you were awarded a degree in psychology without a clinical focus, the IPU grants you conditional admission and expects you to attend up to three compulsory "Bridging Course" (at additional costs) of 5 ECTS each prior to the start of the programme. Similarly, if you were awarded a Bachelor degree that is not psychology, but your transcript of records includes at least 45 ECTS of psychology courses, you can be admitted with the condition to pass the assigned bridging courses. The bridging courses cover the areas psychoanalysis, clinical psychology and research methods and supplement your previous achievements in other areas of psychology to 60 ECTS. If you have not yet completed your degree within the application period, you can still apply. In this case, you have to ensure that you are awarded your degree by the enrolment date.

If you are unsure whether you meet the requirements, send us your CV and the relevant documents and we will check your eligibility beforehand.

Knowledge of German language is not an admission requirement. However, we strongly encourage international participants to start taking German-language courses prior to the commencement of the programme.

The IPU chooses its students itself. Using our individualized selection process as the basis, we ensure that our students are suitable for us – and we for them. In doing so, we do not regard school and/or university results as the primary criterion for a successful course of studies.

All applicants who apply online and fulfil the formal requirements are invited to either a personal selection interview or – if they do not live in Germany – to an interview by telephone or video conference.

The interview takes approximately 30 minutes. It does not include any academic questions on psychology or psychoanalysis, and instead focuses on your personality and interests, your motivation for choosing this course and future profession, as well as your prior experience or social commitment as the case may be. The details of the interview are recorded and result in a recommendation to the university management to accept or reject the applicant.

University management then decides on the applicant's admission, while taking into consideration the various documents submitted and the impression gained at the selection interview. We inform the applicants in writing of our decision as quickly as possible.

Should your (conditional) admission be granted, you will receive an email and a "letter of acceptance". If your acceptance is conditional – i.e. you have not yet been awarded your Bachelor degree, still have to pass the TOEFL test, or should attend one or more bridging courses – you must submit the missing documents as soon as possible, but no later than by the start of the study course.
Please keep in mind that almost all extracurricular offers at the IPU Berlin are provided in German and that sufficient German language skills will strongly ease your everyday life in Berlin. All applicants of the MA Psychology study course with a clinical focus are thus strongly encouraged to start learning German before arriving.

After the selection interview, we issue a (conditional) admission notification and a "letter of acceptance". If you wish to accept our offer to enroll, we request you to sign and return the "letter of acceptance" and pay the deposit (€500) within two weeks. After that you will receive a study contract, which must be signed and returned within an additional two weeks. The first study fee instalment (including the student union fee) is due on September 1st.

You must be enrolled at IPU before the program starts. Certified copies of your qualifications are not required if you have already included them with your uni-assist application. However, there are several documents that you must submit personally to the student office:

  • Valid passport / identification card
  • Proof of health insurance
  • Signed study contract, if not already forwarded by post
  • Payment receipts for deposit and first tuition installment and the semester fee

International students must also submit:

  • Valid student visa / residence permit

In case of a conditional admission you must submit:

  • Proof of English proficiency
  • Certified copy of your degree certificate (alternatively you can bring the original and we certify the copies ourselves) and certified translations where necessary

Please pay special attention to your health insurance as it is illegal to be enrolled as a student without health insurance in Germany. Non-EU/EEA citizens also need to provide a proof of health insurance that is considered equivalent to the German statutory health insurance when applying for a residence permit.

Once enrolled, you will receive a registration certificate and a student ID card, which allows you to enter the IPU campus and use the public transport system in Berlin.

International students need their IPU registration certificate in order to apply for a residence permit.

In order to pay the fees, you can choose between three different payment options (full-time):
•    Payment on a monthly basis: € 1,130
•    Payment on a semester basis: € 6,500
•    Complete payment of study fees in advance: € 24,800

For Students who completed the BSc Psychologie at the IPU Berlin: €5,950 per semester, €1,030 per month, €22,700 in advance

Students with no/limited previous knowledge of clinical psychology, psychoanalysis, or research methods are required to attend up to three preparatory courses (€ 450 for one course, € 700 for two courses, € 900 for all three courses).

Semester Fee
Approx. €150 per semester
The semester fee includes a ticket for the public transportation system in Berlin valid throughout the entire semester. It includes a contribution to the Studierendenwerk (which is in charge of the university canteens and student housing) and the IPU Berlin student council (student representatives of the university).

Costs of Living
Students should expect to need € 800 to € 900 per month to cover all their costs of living (rent, insurance, personal expenses, etc.)

Financing Options
There are various financing options, such as scholarships, stipends, student or study loans, student grants and study support, available at the IPU Berlin, in addition to financial support under the German Professional Education Support Act (BaföG), as well as student jobs and other options to finance studying.

DAAD Scholarship Database
IPU Berlin overview of financing options

Furthermore, students may apply for the Deutschlandstipendium (Germany Scholarship). The Deutschlandstipendium provides financial support to high-achieving and engaged students from all over the world who are enrolled at the IPU Berlin. Students from abroad can apply from their second semester onwards. Based on the principle of a public-private partnership, businesses, foundations or private individuals sponsor young talent through a pledge of € 150 per month. The German Federal Government then matches this amount with another € 150. The intention of the Deutschlandstipendium is to support talented and dedicated students, especially those who have demonstrated great potential in terms of their commitment and career to date, as well as those who will gain or have already gained outstanding achievements in their studies or profession, while taking social, family and personal circumstances into consideration.