Positive Psychology Courses: 10 Educational Chances of a Lifetime
Positive psychology changed the face of illness-oriented classical clinical psychology. Martin Seligman is the founder of this new approach, which keeps spreading and gathering proofs from scientific studies about human strengths and happiness.
This field is based on the belief that people intend to develop what is best within their selves, improve their personal experience regarding work, love and play. Every human being aims to a meaningful life; positive psychology offers the chance to gain fulfillment, prosperity and happiness through an orientation toward positive emotions.
The good news is that it can all be learned: there are a lot of promising training programs that will teach you how to apply the principles of positive psychology to almost every professional domain (education, health or business).
When it comes to education in the positive psychology field, the opportunities are various: you can choose from short courses, trainings, workshops, online courses or even a 2-year Master of Applied Positive Psychology Program (MAPP).
What Positive Psychology Courses are out there?
Here a list of 10 (both online and offline) positive psychology courses brought to you by big universities, small organizations and professional individuals.
1. Stanford University
Stanford University organizes a workshop on positive psychology, called ‘The Pursuit of Happiness’. The workshop addresses people who want to grow personally and improve their well-being. Each class includes group guided practice, class discussion and personal reflection.
The course is held every Tuesday, from 6:30 to 8 pm, starting with February 11 until March 11, 2014.
The instructors are Frederic Luskin, PhD, Director of the Stanford University Forgiveness Project and Carole Pertofsky, M.Ed. Director, Wellness and Health Promotion Services and ”I THRIVE @ STANFORD”. Other courses by these instructors include: “The Practices of Happiness”, and “Mind-Body Medicine”.
Here you’ll find more info on Stanford’s positive psychology course. Thanks for the addition to this article Carole!
2. Harvard University
There is also a great course in positive psychology taught at Harvard University, namely positive psychology 1504.
If you want to get a better sense of what this course has to offer, you can find extensive information on this course by clicking on the Harvard logo.
3. Positive Psychology Training (.co.uk)
Positive Psychology Training offers a series of short courses in this field, which are recommended for both personal and professional growth. The courses can be held in your firm, molded to your organization’s needs.
The options are varied and you can find a course or workshop on almost every particular field you’re interested in: Positive Psychology Masterclass, Happiness Workshops, Positive Psychology at work, Positive Psychology Online, Resilience for the Recession, Positive Leadership Masterclass.
The content of each of these courses will be delivered to you through personal coaching sessions.
4. Maastricht University (The Netherlands)
The program that Maastricht University (one of the best universities in the Netherlands) proposes is intended to offer both a familiarization with the concepts that underlie positive psychology and also a more profound approach to this field.
A Positive Psychology program at Maastricht University in the Netherlands will start in January 2015.
The course takes about 3 weeks (36 hours) and intends to familiarise the students with the main concepts and ideas of positive psychology. Also, it offers the chance to practice a wide range of positive psychology intervention techniques (from simple journaling exercises to mindfulness meditation). Moreover, the program will help you learn how to design a research project on positive psychology.
Through lectures, interactive meetings, practical workshops, group discussions, and student presentations, the attendants will become familiar with the field of positive psychology, being able to successfully apply intervention techniques.
5. City University London
Why not take a short course at the City University of London?
Generally, positive psychology has three central concerns: positive emotions, positive individual traits and positive institutions. You’ll learn how to understand positive emotions and experience contentment about yesterday, happiness in the present day and hope for tomorrow.
You’ll be taught how to look for positive individual traits, like self-control, courage, compassion, curiosity, creativity or self-knowledge. Understanding positive institutions refers to the strengths that help the health of the communities, like justice, teamwork, responsibility, tolerance or parenting. You can apply this knowledge to your workplace, community or family.
If you’re a psychologist, a psychotherapist, a counselor, a coach, a teacher or a professional, and you’re interested in specializing in positive psychology, you might consider following either a long term course, or a MSc Program:
6. University of Pennsylvania
The University of Pennsylvania offers a Master of Applied Positive Psychology (MAPP) program, during which you will learn to apply the principles of positive psychology to your professional life.
This program can also prepare you for advanced studies (PhD., M.D., J.D.). The MAPP program gives you the opportunity to meet and interact with a vibrant community of intelligent and well-prepared people, who share your interest in this field of study.
Tip: Check out Dr. Nico Rose’s blog about his experiences with the MAPP program at UPenn!
When feeling good feels better than good: the Benefits of Emotional Contrasting http://t.co/q6pxrTWY20
— Dr. Nico Rose (@DrNicoRose) 17 januari 2014
7. Buck’s New University
The positive psychology part-time course offered at Bucks New University allows its students to explore cutting-edge ideas in this field, as well as a chance to further its development. This course might appeal to you if you’re active in the field of human resources, organization development, psychotherapy, counseling or teaching.
The course encourages proper application of each student’s skills while studying the knowledge and applications of positive psychology. Applying these principles in student’s lives is focused upon, while the base of evaluations consists of personally chosen projects.
Tutors from the university’s own psychology department, as well as guest experts will deliver this course in a professional, engaging and efficient manner.
Check out the MSc Applied Positive Psychology at Buck’s New University‘s website, or watch their intro video below.
8. University of Melbourne
The Master’s course offered here intends to provide the attending students with the necessary knowledge and skills to competently utilize positive psychology principles. The course emphasizes critical thinking and promotes scientific methods, while empirical research is evaluated in order to find best-practice processes.
The course focuses on engaging the students in a variety of both theoretical and applied tasks, involving them in multiple learning tools such as debates, case studies, journaling, and role plays, as well as encouraging them to apply what they learn to their own daily activities.
At the end of this Master of Applied Positive Psychology, students will possess a solid sense of professional integrity and the necessary knowledge to successfully apply positive psychology.
For more info on this course, visit the University of Melbourne‘s website.
9. University of East London
In the course of the University of East London, you’ll learn about the history, theory and basic research methods used in this field, and also how to apply the theoretical principles in your profession. You can either use this information in order to improve your professional skills, or you can go further and change the direction of your career and become yourself a trainer in positive psychology.
Through the courses of this program you will find: ‘Positive Subjective Emotion’, ‘The Psychology of Hope and Resilience’, ‘Pathways of Change’, ‘The Journey of Change’, ‘Strengths-based Development and Engagement’ and ‘Positive traits and motives’. As a psychotherapist, you’ll be taught to identify and nurture your patient’s strengths.
As a teacher, you’ll learn how to concentrate on the children’s aptitudes and their positive traits, helping them to flourish. As a trainer, you’ll teach others about their resilience skills, helping the growth of communities and organizations.
If you prefer the comfort of your room, you can access an online course in positive psychology as well, namely:
10. The Whole Being Institute
If you’re looking for a shorter, more focused course, then Tal Ben Shahar’s Introduction to Positive Psychology Course online course might be for you. During this 5-week course, you will understand the basic principles of positive psychology, how to benefit from expressing gratitude and accepting your own and others’ emotions, and how to maintain such changes, eventually transforming them into positive habits.
The course is very flexible, since each class lasts only 60-90 minutes and you can take it at any time during the five-week online course. It is entirely up to you to decide the level of dedication towards the course, since there are no grades, nor any homework evaluations. At the end, when all lessons are completed, you will receive a certificate of completion.
These courses will give you the theoretical ground in order for you to have a better understanding of how emotions works, but even better, they will teach you how to make changes in your life, family, organization or community. You’ll be able enjoy life more, to be more optimistic, happy and creative, thus improving your health. All you have to do is choose the kind of course that fits you the best and start on your path to happiness.
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