The Department of Psychology

The Department of Psychology at Stellenbosch University has among the most productive academic psychologists in South Africa on its staff, several of whom have won prestigious awards and grants for their teaching and research. We are committed to conducting research, teaching, practice, and community service of the highest possible standard. As such, we continually measure our scholarly output against the best in the world. Our staff and students have published in the highest-ranking international academic journals and several former students have taken up positions in prestigious institutions in South Africa and around the world. Our department offers undergraduate modules in psychology, leading to a major in the discipline, and postgraduate training leading to registration as a psychologist. We also offer thesis-based research training leading towards the masters and doctoral degree. Our teaching and research programmes focus on key psychosocial issues affecting South Africa and the African continent. We are committed to contributing to the social relevance of psychology as a discipline and a profession in an academically rigorous and critical manner.

About Us

A teaching department

The psychology department is the biggest department in the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences in terms of student numbers. We currently have 1200 first year students, 800 2nd-years students, 600 third year students, 37 honours students (that is obviously when selection starts), 8 clinical masters students, 40 research masters students and 40 doctoral students.


A research department

Our growth as a research department has been substantial and we have become a world-renowned and internationally acclaimed research department. Many staff members are part of local, national and global research networks. The Department participates in research with a number of partners in both the global north and in the global south, as well as with international agencies such as the World Health Organization.


A community service department

Applied psychology has been a focus of the Psychology Department since the establishment of the Masters degrees in Clinical Psychology and Counselling Psychology in 1973. These prorammes were merged into one Masters programme in 2005. In the Masters Programme in Clinical Psychology between eight and ten students are annually trained as clinical psychologists and are able to register with the HPCSA as clinical psychologists in training.

Social Impact

Latest News

1410, 2021

Research Summary: Masculinities and Men Who Stutter

October 14th, 2021|

We sat down with Dane Isaacs, a graduate student at Stellenbosch University in Stellenbosch, South Africa, to talk about his groundbreaking research on masculinities among men who stutter. Read full article:

1310, 2021

Russel Botman: Memorial Lecture | Gedenklesing

October 13th, 2021|

You are invited to the annual Russel Botman Memorial Lecture, celebrating the life of Prof Hayman Russel Botman and his vision for Educational Justice. The topic of this year’s lecture is “ Revisiting critical hope [...]

1110, 2021

Brief prevention programme could help anxious SA children

October 11th, 2021|

A study at Stellenbosch University (SU) has shown that a brief mental health prevention programme can help to reduce anxiety in children from low-resourced, semi-rural communities in the Western Cape. The study focused on developing [...]

1110, 2021

Mental health services are not a luxury

October 11th, 2021|

Between 75% and 95% of people with mental disorders in low- and middle-income countries cannot obtain mental health services. The level of suffering and distress and their social consequences can be considerable, writes Ashraf Kagee and [...]

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