Psychology B.Sc.


Key Info

Basic Information

Bachelor of Science
Start of Studies:
Winter Semester
Standard Period of Studies:
6 semesters
ECTS Credits:
180Mehr Informationen

What does that mean?

ECTS are credit points that measure the workload of one's studies.


Admission Requirements

  • Abitur or equivalent HZB Mehr Informationen

    What does that mean?

    General higher education entrance qualification (Abitur), subject specific university entrance qualification, or an equally recognized university entrance qualification (HZB)

  • Proficiency in German --- Mehr Informationen ---

    What does that mean?

    You must provide documentation of your language skills for the language of instruction at the time of enrollment. The exam regulations stipulate the relevant requirements.

Admission to First Semester

NC for WS 2020

Admission to Higher Semesters

NC for the 2nd-6th Core Semester

Enrollment Requirements

  • SelfAssessment --- Mehr Informationen ---


    RWTH Aachen self assessments are online advising processes for deciding what to study. Participation in one (rarely two) of these self assessments is mandatory. You can find which self assessment you need to take for this subject in the course of study description under "Prerequisites". You will need to show proof of participation in a subject specific self assessment in order to enroll (not to apply). You can print out the participation certificate yourself.

Dates and Deadlines


How do thinking, memorizing, and learning work? What structures and functions of the brain are responsible for these tasks? How can attention and awareness be measured? How can they be promoted? How do we make the right decision in a certain situation? And are we even the ones doing that?

Psychology deals with the explanation and prediction of human behavior and experience. It investigates cause and effect relationships by observing, experimenting, and testing. Psychology develops models on the basis of empirical results in order to understand and explain human perception, thinking, and behavior depending on different factors such as environmental conditions, genetic preconditions, individual development. Psychology is interested in both biological aspects, for example the structure of the brain and nervous system, and social aspects, for example behavior in a group, social interactions.

Larger subdiscplines include occupational, industrial, and organizational psychology; clinical psychology; and pedagogical psychology.

At RWTH students receive a comprehensive fundamental education in all three disciplines. Due to the special composition of the course of study it does not include an opportunity for students to specialize in clinical or pedagogical psychology. Prospective students, who wish to pursue therapeutic training after their studies and need to provide documentation of clinically-oriented studies, should note this.

The focus of the course of study is oriented towards the following psychological research focuses at RWTH:

  • In occupational, industrial, and organizational psychology diagnostic decisions related to the work world play a significant role. Here, aptititude diagnostic processes are developed, for example. RWTH's other research fields include the interactions of humans and technology like ergnomics and workplace design, and the optimization of social systems in the work world – work teams, organizational structures, occupational health promotion, occupational rehabilitation.
  • Health psychology deals with maintaining physical and mental health and quality of life. It also deals with health-promoting measures in the context of primary (e.g. preventive measures), secondary (e.g. health training) and tertiary prevention (e.g. vocational rehabilitation).
  • Cognitive science and neuroscience mainly investigate cognitive processes and their neuronal foundations. Relevant topics include, for example, perception and learning processes but also changes to cognitive skills through development, social influences, and other factors.

Characteristics of the RWTH Course of Study

The psychology course of study at RWTH is a basic course of study. That means that focus is placed on a comprehensive, methodical education. Psychologically relevant work and research fields at RWTH focus particularly on the work world. You can get an initial look at the RWTH Institute of Psychology's current research by going to the webpages of the individual chairs. Prospective students interested in working in therapy later on should pay attention to the fact that the Institute of Psychology is oriented towards research and teaching and not clinical psychology. This document from the Institute of Psychology serves as a helpful decision aid.


Degree Content

Students receive an intensive education in all psychological methods, that is in observation, experimentation, testing, and measuring, and in empirical and mathematical methods of data processing and interpretation. An internship interval lasting six weeks offers a look at the variety of fields of application and can be separated in to multiple sub-internships.


Academic Year Module Content Methods and Application Modules

Fundamental Modules:
Introduction to Psychology, General Psychology, Social Psychology, Differential Psychology, Personality Psychology

Methods Modules:
Descriptive Statistics, Inferential Statistics,
Experiment Planning

Fundamental Module:
Developmental Psychology,

Application Module:
Industrial and Organizational Psychology

Methods Modules:
Psychological Diagnostics, Test Theory, Independent Scientific Work


Fundamental Module:

Application Module:
Directive Communication Psychology and Media Psychology

Bachelor's Thesis

You can find details about the program layout on the department`s website (de).

Topical Modules – Minors

In addition to the broad course plan, students select a topical module from an elective catalog of offers from other disciplines: marketing, ergonomics, applied geography, psychoacoustics, sociology, and linguistics and communications. Furthermore there are language and rhetoric courses and the required hours as test subjects.


During their studies students must complete a full time internship lasting six weeks. The internship must be supervised by a psychologist – Diplom or Master – and can be distributed among different internships.

Programs Abroad

The faculty maintains research and teaching cooperations with a number of European and non-European universities, such as the EU mobility program ERASMUS+. Psychology students current have the possiblity to complete their year abroad for example at the University of Maastricht, the Department of Experimental Psychology at Ghent, and at Vilnius University.

RWTH students profit not only from the Faculty's exchange programs but also from the University's strategic partnerships with international universities. They can, for example, complete short stays at one of the IDEA League universities while completing a term paper.

The UROP Abroad program, the only one of its kind in Germay, offers the possibility to participate in research projects at international universities during Bachelor studies. These stays abroad are partially funded by RWTH-specific funding.

All of RWTH's collaborative programs are listed on the webpages about studying abroad. Subject-specific offers are published on the department's website.



Personal Prerequisites

Those interested in studying psychology should be interested in human behavior and experience and be prepared to attentively observe. Furthermore prospective stduents should be able to logically think, since this is an important prerequisite for exact testing and experimenting in the natural sciences. In addition to good mathematical skills, it is important the students master the English language, since a great deal of psychological literature is in English.

Enrollment Prerequisite

RWTH "Psychology" Self Assessment


Decision Aids

Most prospective students want to select psychology in order "to be able to help people" after their studies. Though these motives are not wrong, there are two things to note. First, one should be aware that these studies contain a large methodological portion like planning trials, statistics, and diagnostics. Second, it is important to remove the idea of "helping" from simply a clinical-therapeutic field. After completing psychology studies in Aachen, you can help people by,

  • improving your memory and effectively implementing learning strategies
  • distributing work for yourself better in order to avoid costs from multitasking or working
  • creating a more ergonomic work place
  • finding the right applicant for a company
  • going back to work after stopping due to illness or learning a new profession.

Due to the national restricted admission, it is particularly worth it to be familiar with psychology as a subject and think about possible alternatives. If you want to become more familiar with psychology, you are invited to attend a lecture as a school student.

Alternatives include different pedagogical or social-pedagogical courses of study. They offer the possibility to continue training in pediatric and adolescent psychotherapy. Those primarily interested in the natural science side of psychology, can also look for information about a neuroscience course of study or behavior-oriented biology. Last but not least, medical studies provide access to psychological and psychotherapeutic topics – above all within the medical discipline of psychiatry.


Media Library

Do you want more glances and impressions? Use the diverse information available! You can find our recommendations in the media library.


Career Prospects

Due to their specialization RWTH Aachen graduates work in scientific research, provide assessments, design and accompany operational educational measures, and provide support with the selection of personnel. They work in research institutes and labs, occupational protection institutions, technical testing centers, corporate consulting, in testing and surveying, and at personnel service providers.

In cognitive psychology they accompany and optimize learning processes, for example at training facilities and continuing education and re-training institutions.

In health psychology they help individuals with a wide array of questions regarding rehabilitation and continuation of their work, or re-orientation.

As specialists for perception and decision processes they investigate user behavior and can support advertising and marketing campaigns.


Master's Degree Prospects

In the Master's in psychology students expand and advance their technical skills in cognitive psychology, occupational psychology, personnel and occupational psychology, and health psychology.

Aside from their mandatory courses students select a project in one of these four sub-disciplines, thus choosing an individual focus. This allows them to optimally prepare for their later career field.

The Master's program also particularly values comprehensive, methodological training. It teaches fundamental skills in psychological diagnostics and subject-specific research methods. Students work, for example, on test design and analysis and drawing up reports.

The project in their selected concentration provides the first practical experiences in the application of measurement and scale models, multivariant processes, and evalutation methods.


Examination Regulations

Regulations that apply for all Bachelor and Master courses of study as well as detailed information about the necessary documentation of required language skills can be found in RWTH’s Comprehensive Examination Regulation. Examination regulations are only published in German as they are legally binding.

Subject Specific Exam Regulations regulate academic goals, the course of study layout, and exam procedures. The appendix to the regulations contains the description of the modules, from which the course of study is composed.



The psychology Bachelor's course of study is offered by the Faculty of Arts and Humanities.

The Institute of Psychology at RWTH is shaped by its fundamental orientation towards the natural sciences and experimentation and its focuses on cognitive psychology and activity regulation. It is dedicated to interdisciplinary questions stemming from medical technology and traffic psychology, professional development, work-related stress management, and diagnostics and intervention within the context of health psychology.