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Work experience in health psychology: our students’ placements

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Preparing students for professional practice is at the core of our programme. In the module Advancing Professional Practice in Health Psychology, students have the option to undertake a work experience placement. The structure and format of this is flexible, and the choice of setting can be negotiated between the student and the course team.

Examples of placements our students have undertaken include:

  • Research work in the Applied Research Centre for Health & Lifestyle Interventions
  • Clinical support work in drugs and alcohol rehabilitation
  • Community public health outreach work with a football club
  • Clinical support work in hospital haematology services

Because our programme is long established, we have good links to organisations that offer placements. This work experience is very valuable in establishing your professional and career network. Some of our students who undertake placements go on to paid employment with the same organisations after they graduate.

Here is a very brief snapshot of the key learning experiences our 2012/13 cohort of students have undertaken on their placements:

  • Conducting a literature review on factors that influence food choice, especially for people with learning disabilities.
  • Participant observer in a community based weight management group for people with learning disabilities.
  • Presenting to a multidisciplinary professional team research findings on determinants of food choice in people with learning disabilities.
  • Drawing on principles of motivational interviewing to deliver a participative health and wellbeing class to people at a Sikh temple.
  • Drawing on principles of cognitive behavioural theory to deliver a healthy eating workshop to people at a Sikh temple.
  • Producing posters to increase engagement with a walking group for people with long term mental health conditions.
  • Co-facilitating a healthy eating workshop for people with long term mental health conditions.
  • Dealing sensitively and professionally with a patient’s disclosure of non- adherence to treatment.
  • Attending external, cross-organisational training on promoting health and wellbeing.
  • Developing a new range of supported physical activities for people with long term mental health conditions.
  • Participant observation in a weight management group.
  • Collecting and analysing patient reported outcomes (e.g. HRQoL) pre and post a group intervention for obese patients seeking bariatric surgery.
  • Redesigning information leaflets for renal patients.
  • Conducting a literature review on the relationship between sleep apnoea and obesity.
  • Teaching NHS colleagues about psychosocial aspects of end stage renal failure.

2 Comments

  1. Amrita Pala says:

    Hi,
    I wanted some more information about these placements. I am really interested in doing this placements as I am currently doing a Msc in health Psychology.

  2. carolpercy says:

    Hi Amrita, These are placements arranged between our Coventry students, our Coventry course team and our external collaborating organisations. We retain a list of contacts and possible placements for the benefit of our own students. Your MSc health psychology course team at your own institution may be able to advise on any placement links they have.
    Good luck. 🙂

    Carol P

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