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Cross-cultural Psychology of Health and Illness


Entry requirements



This course looks at culture, health, disease and health care from a psychological perspective and at cultural aspects of core psychological concepts and models.

Course objectives

After completion of the course, students are prepared for a culturally diverse society and able to:

  • Identify cultural aspects of personality, psychopathology, stress, pain and illness, distinguish cultural influences on health beliefs, lifestyles and health;

  • Understand communication between health care professionals and migrant patients and the use of healthcare facilities;

  • Develop awareness of the impact of culture on social and professional settings.


For the timetable of this course please refer to MyTimetable



Students must register themselves for all course components (lectures, tutorials and practicals) they wish to follow. You can register up to 5 days prior to the start of the course. The exception here is that first-year bachelor students are assigned and registered for all components in the first semester or academic year by the administration of their bachelor programme. The programme will communicate to these students for which course components and for which period the registration applies.


You must register for each exam in My Studymap at least 10 days before the exam date. Don’t forget! For more information, see the enrolment procedure.
You cannot take an exam without a valid registration in My Studymap.

Carefully read all information about the procedures and deadlines for registering for courses and exams.

Students who take this course as part of a LDE minor or a premaster programme, exchange students and external guest students will be informed by the education administration about the current registration procedure.

Mode of instruction

This course consists of 8 2-hour lectures (weblectures are available, with the exception of clinical video material).

Assessment method

Written exam with multiple choice and open questions focusing on insight and application of the learned material, weighted 70% and 30% respectively.

The Institute of Psychology uses fixed rules for grade calculation and compulsory attendance. It also follows the policy of the Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences to systematically check student papers for plagiarism with the help of software. All students are required to take and pass the Scientific Integrity Test with a score of 100% in order to learn about the practice of integrity in scientific writing. Students are given access to the quiz via a module on Brightspace. Disciplinary measures will be taken when fraud is detected. Students are expected to be familiar with and understand the implications of these three policies.

Reading list

  • Heine, S.J. (2020). Cultural psychology (Regular or International student edition), 4th edition. New York NY: Norton & Company, Inc. ISBN 978-0-393-42189-7 or 978-0-393-64469-2.

  • A set of articles available via Brightspace.

Selected chapters from the book by Heine, the articles on Brightspace, the lecture slides, as well as the information from the lectures are all part of the exam material.

Contact information

Dr. Rebecca Schaefer

Dr. Kaya Peerdeman