The three-year undergraduate program involves six semesters of study with a total of 180 ECTS credit points (CP). The curricular structure follows an innovative and student-centered modularization scheme - the 3C-Model - that groups the disciplinary content of the three study years according to overarching themes:
Study program structure
The ﬁrst study year is characterized by a broad offer in disciplinary education that builds on and extends the students’ entrance qualification. Further ISCP students select four modules from other study programs of their interest and to pursue a minor.
Students can still change to another major at the beginning of the second year of studies if they have taken the corresponding modules of the study program in the first year of studies.
ISCP students take the following discipline-specific CHOICE Modules in their first year of study:
- CHOICE Module: Essentials of Cognitve Psychology (7.5 CP)
- CHOICE Module: Essentials of Social Psychology (7.5 CP)
The introduction modules establish a general framework of human cognition in which many phenomena of thinking, interaction, and communication can be analyzed and predicted. Attention, perception, learning and memory will be some of your topics in the first semester, as well as intelligence, language, emotion, motivation, and personality. You will use the conceptual and analytical tools from the first semester in your explorations of major fields of psychology in the second semester. In the module component developmental psychology, you will look at how people acquire their capacities, which are learnt (and at what age), and which are innate. In the module component social psychology, you will deal with the influence the actual or perceived presence of others might have on people’s behavior. What can and cannot be inferred from psychological theories, how they relate to models and hypotheses, and what it takes for research findings to be “valid” are some of the topics in the Essentials of Psychological Methodology module component.
In their second year, students take modules with a total of 45 CP from in-depth, discipline-speciﬁc CORE modules. These modules aim to extend the students’ critical understanding of the key theories, principles, and methods in their major at the current state of knowledge and best practice.
ISCP students take 30 CP from the following CORE modules:
- CORE Module: Learning and Memory (5 CP)
- CORE Module: Social Psychology (5 CP)
- CORE Module: Organizational Psychology & Communication (5 CP)
- CORE Module: Neurobiology of Behavior (5 CP)
- CORE Module: Neuroscience Methods (5 CP)
- CORE Module: Attention, Sensation, and Perception (5 CP)
- CORE Module: Judgment & Decision Making (5 CP)
- CORE Module: Health Psychology (5 CP)
- CORE Module: Cultural Psychology (5 CP)
The Learning and Memory module is geared toward understanding, how information is stored and retrieved, why we forget, and whether we can improve memory. Students will learn how biopsychologists arrive at their insights by getting to know their methods in the Neuroscience Methods module. In the Attention, Sensation, and Perception module, students will deal with essential processes for humans and other animals to learn about the world.
In the Social Psychology module, students will take an in-depth look – from the lab to the ‘real world’ – at the role of the actual or imagined presence of others as one of the more obvious of those factors. Students will also look at culture as one of the less obvious drivers in the Cultural Psychology module, analyzing why people from different corners of the world perceive the same things in very different manners. In the Organizational Psychology and Communication module, students will adopt a social cognition perspective in the study of behavior in organizations, as well as of fundamental processes of (non-)verbal communication and interaction.
15 CP in CORE modules can be selected in the second year of studies according to interest and with the aim to pursue a minor in a second field of studies.
During their third year, students prepare and make decisions for their career after graduation. To explore available choices fitting individual interests, and to gain professional experience, students take a mandatory summer internship.
The 5th semester opens also a mobility window for ample study abroad options. Finally, the 6th semester is dedicated to fostering the research experience of students by involving them in an extended Bachelor thesis project.
ISCP students take major-specific and major related advanced Specialization modules to consolidate their knowledge at the current state of research in areas of their choice.
ISCP students can choose four of the following Specialization Modules:
- Specialization: Human Neuroscience Advanced Lab (Intersession) (2.5 CP)
- Specialization: Pathophysiology and Psychotherapy of Depression (2.5 CP)
- Specialization: Managing Demographic Change in Organisations (2.5 CP)
- Specialization: Lifespan Behavioral Neuroscience (5 CP)
- Specialization: Psychology of Food (2.5 CP)
- Specialization: Psychology of Happiness (2.5 CP)
- Specialization: Science of Happiness (2.5CP)
- Specialization: Applying Social Science Research (5 CP)
The specialization modules are intended to let you apply the general psychological skills you acquired during your first two years of study to specific fields of empirical research or professional practice in order to expand and refine those skills and to foster self-reflection on your career perspectives. As defined by the specific needs for action in a given field, you will familiarize with and acquire new and advanced methods of problem analysis, data collection and analysis, and problem-solving. The modules in application-oriented fields (e.g., Managing demographic change in organizations) may also focus on exploring additional professional skills (e.g., conflict management) and specific career profiles. While the specialization modules vary widely in their topics, all modules take contemporary developments and current issues into account, as well as your interests. Some of the points that will usually be covered in the specialization modules include, for instance:
- ways quantitative theories may (and may not) be applied to individual people, groups of people, or institutions;
- practitioner-research strategies to bridge the generalization gaps unaddressed by academic theories;
- defining specific actions based on empirical data;
- communicating without information loss high-level research to non-experts (who might be in decision-making roles);
- goals and formats of stakeholder management when applying research findings.
As a core element of Jacobs University’s employability approach students are required to engage in a mandatory two-month internship of 15 CP that will usually be completed during the summer between the second and third year of study. This gives students the opportunity to gain first-hand practical experience in a professional environment, apply their knowledge and understanding to a professional context, reflect on the relevance of their major in employment and society, reflect on their own role in employment and society, and find professional orientation. As an alternative to the full-time internship, students interested in setting up their own company can apply for a start-up option to focus on the development of their business plan.
The Jacobs Track, an important feature of Jacobs University’s educational concept, runs parallel to the disciplinary modules across all study years and is an integral part of the study program. It reﬂects a university-wide commitment to an in-depth training in scientific methods, fosters an interdisciplinary approach, raises awareness of global challenges and societal responsibility, enhances employability, and equips students with extra skills desirable in the general ﬁeld of study. Additionally, it integrates (German) language and culture modules.Methods and Skills modules
Methods and skills such as mathematics, statistics, programming, data handling, presentation skills, academic writing, and scientific and experimental skills are offered to all students as part of modules within the Methods and Skills area. Students are required to take 20 CP in the Methods/Skills area.
ISCP students take the following Methods modules:
- Methods Module: Academic Writing and Academic Skills (5 CP)
- Methods Module: Data Collection and Empirical Research Methodologies (5CP)
- Methods Module: Qualitative Research Methods (5CP)
For the remaining 5 CP ISCP students can choose between the following two Methods modules:
Big Questions modules
- Methods Module: Applied Statistics with R (5CP)
- Methods Module: Applied Statistics with SPSS (5CP)
The modules of the Big Questions area intend to broaden the students’ horizon with applied problem solving between and beyond the disciplines. The offerings comprise problem-solving oriented modules that tackle global challenges from the perspectives of different disciplinary backgrounds and that allow, in particular, a reflection of the acquired disciplinary knowledge in economic, societal, technological, and/or ecological contexts.
ISCP students select 2-4 modules (10 CP) from a broad portfolio of Big Questions modules.Community Impact Project
In their 5th semester, students are required to take a 5 CP Community Impact Project (CIP) module. Students engage in on-campus or off-campus activities that challenge their social responsibility, i.e., they typically work on major-related projects that make a difference in the community life on campus, in its neighborhood, in Bremen, or on a cross-regional level.Language modules
Jacobs University supports its students in acquiring and improving these skills by offering a variety of language modules at all proﬁciency levels. Emphasis is put on fostering German language skills of international students as they are an important prerequisite for non-native speaking students to learn about, explore, and eventually integrate into their host country and its professional environment. All students take four language courses in the first and second year.
The curriculum of the study program is outlined in the schematic study plan: