Clinical and Psychosocial Epidemiology

Rijksuniversiteit Groningen

Unsplashed background img 2

Deze opleiding

!Deze opleiding communiceert alleen in het Engels.
We tonen daarom de Engelstalige opleidingsinformatie.
Are you inspired to conduct high-quality innovative research with a strong focus on mental and physical health? And do you aspire to work alongside world-renowned researchers who are absolute leaders in their field? Join our research master!

open_in_newstudy website

typeonderzoek, 120 EC
start1 september
taalvolledig English
opleidingsduur2 jaar voltijd
numerus fixusnee

Mental and physical health and the reciprocal relationship between these two form the basis of the programme. The central idea is that psychological, biological and social aspects all play a role in any physical or mental condition. The CPE programme trains students to solve current health issues by applying innovative research designs and statistical techniques while making use of state-of-the-art facilities in a truly multidisciplinary setting. There is a strong focus on prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of physical and mental health conditions, taking clinical, public health, and psychosocial factors into consideration. Our students work with existing large databases or collect their own data among people with or without a chronic disease, across the whole age range.

There are four research departments involved within CPE: epidemiology, public health, health psychology and psychiatry. Top researchers from these four departments teach the courses, giving students the opportunity to fully acquaint themselves with different fields of research. In the second semester, students will get to choose in which department they would like to conduct their research for their master thesis project, becoming part of the department’s research group. Students will learn to design their own PhD project as part of the programme, which makes them well-qualified to attain a PhD position anywhere in the world. The best students will be offered the opportunity to continue with a PhD at the University Medical Center Groningen (UMCG).

We pride ourselves on the fact that there is a lot of personal attention for our students. The programme is built in a way that strongly encourages students to focus on their individual development as a researcher, in a unique and multidisciplinary setting. Because CPE is a small-scale programme, every student is known by their name and has ample opportunity for interactions and discussions with the teaching staff.

The programme also offers a track called Health Systems and Prevention. This track bridges the research focus of CPE with that of health systems, health policy and prevention. HSP Track students follow the basic CPE programme, but with a focus on health systems and prevention. This focus is mainly incorporated in the Master Thesis project, which for HSP students also includes an internship at a non-academic (Health) organization, the elective courses and the research meetings.

So, do you imagine yourself becoming part of our research community? Apply now!

Waarom aan de RUG?

  • Hybrid classes: both online and on-site
  • Pioneering in research side by side top-researchers of the UMCG
  • Unique programme that connects clinical, public health and psychosocial theory with methodological knowledge
  • Learn to use innovative techniques to resolve contemporary health issues
  • Small-scale programme, focused on your individual development
  • The opportunity to fully immerse yourself in a research topic of your own choice
  • Possibility to obtain a PhD position
  • Possibility of a scholarship (see 'Entry requirements')


Unsplashed background img 2
Clinical and Psychosocial Epidemiology consists of both mandatory and elective courses.
Depending on your knowledge, you will learn about the basics of medicine or the basics in psychology and psychosocial factors. Apart from broadening your knowledge in the field of health and the determinants of health, you will explore the fields of Public Health, Health Psychology, Community and Occupational Medicine, and Psychiatric Epidemiology. Strong attention is given to epidemiological research methods and statistics. You will be able to choose additional courses to suit your particular interests. Your individual development as a researcher is central to the programme and therefore you will be conducting research side by side with scientists who are leading experts in their field. Moreover, CPE is situated in the University Medical Center Groningen (UMCG), which means that you can benefit from a unique and interesting clinical setting and a unique availability of large data cohorts.

During the second year you will write your master thesis, which can function as the basis of your own PhD proposal. High-ranking students will be offered a full scholarship to continue with a fully funded three-year PhD programme!

1e jaar The first year starts with solidifying your basis in psychology, medicine, and epidemiology. Strong attention is also given to epidemiological research methods and statistics.
Master Thesis project proposal
Basics Courses
Clinical Epidemiology
Psychosocial Epidemiology
2e jaar The second year mainly consists of the master thesis project: data collection, data analyses and writing of the thesis. During the master thesis project, students choose some elective courses based on their area of interest, background knowledge, and the topic of their project within the departments of Public Health, Health Psychology, Epidemiology, or Psychiatry.
Writing a successful research proposal
Research Tools
Master Thesis Project
Specialisation Courses
Coaching Groups
Seminar and Research Meeting


taal van onderwijs100% en
onderwijsopzet15% zelfstudie
35% theorie
50% praktijk
literature study, colloquium, oral presentation, internship, computer exercise, research, research project, research proposal, tutorial, lecture, working group, group assignment, portfolio, group discussion, individual assignment, self study, project, seminar
instruction modes
Lectures, practical assignments, research, internship.
study guidance
Each student is assigned to a mentor who is responsible for the evaluation of the student's progress, abilities, and limitations. The mentor and student have at least one scheduled meeting every three months.
study abroad
An internship (abroad) is among the possibilities. Our international network stretches across Europe, and from Latin America to Asia!

Toelating en kosten


1 september 2022

aanmelding deadline : 1 mei 2022
collegegeld nog niet bekend

After you complete your application, the selection committee will assess whether your educational/academic background and motivation meet the specific programme requirements. If so, students will be invited to take part in an interview during which they can present their research (Bachelor thesis) and elaborate on their motivation to become a researcher. In addition, admissible students should complete and pass an online statistics test in which basic statistical knowledge is tested.

Please consult our detailed description of the application and selection procedure.

For enrollment, please note that you have to apply for the programme via Studielink. Students with a Dutch degree should, after applying via Studielink, send an e-mail to for further instructions about the application procedure.


The Graduate School of Medical Sciences offers scholarships to excellent non-EU/EEA students under the Abel Tasman Talent Program. You can read more about the scholarships here.




Students who hold a VWO level high school diploma including English, meet the English language requirement

Bio(medical) sciences, Pharmaceutical Sciences, Health Sciences, Psychology, Social Sciences, Human Movement Sciences, Life Sciences, Biology, Sociology, Econometrics, Pedagogy, Economics, Demographical Sciences

reference letter
Students need to submit one letter of recommendation by an academic or previous supervisor


inbegrepen in collegegeld
registration fee

estimated monthly costs

bron: Nibud
303kamerhuur in Groningenrond het landelijk gemiddelde
172collegegeldop basis van € 2060 per jaar
80studieboeken en -spullen
77uiterlijkkleding, kapper, schoenen
132vrije tijdstappen, uit eten, vakantie
42vervoernaast de OV-kaart

€ 1171totale maandelijkse uitgaven landelijk gemiddelde is € 1181
Hiernaast staat een overzicht van de gemiddelde kosten die een uitwonende student heeft. Niet iedere student heeft met iedere kostenpost te maken. Het totaalgemiddelde is dus niet gelijk aan de optelsom van alle kostenposten.

Bekijk ook de uitgebreide toelichting: wat kost studeren?

Studenten en studentenleven


26 studenten volgen deze opleiding
69% daarvan is vrouw
4 eerstejaars gestart in 2017
25% daarvan is vrouw
29331 studenten aan de Rijksuniversiteit Groningen
51% daarvan is vrouw
bron: StudieData


The Medical Faculty Association (M.F.A.) Panacea is the study association for medical students of the Rijksuniversiteit Groningen.
On the one hand, Panacea's aim is to represent the interests of its students by for example maintaining close contact with the faculty and the professors, but on the other hand, Panacea also aims to offer added value to the study life by organizing various activities. These activities range from a Medical Career Day to a symposium in which students can learn everything about a specific medical topic.
International Federation of Medical Students' Associations - The Netherlands, better known as IFMSA-NL is a national network of medical students working to a common goal of improving Global Health.
Global Health has become an important international issue in recent years. Thus challenging international healthcare to rise to the occasion. To meet this challenge head on IFMSA-NL organizes a wide variety of projects, congresses and internships to train future medical professionals in the problems of Global Health. IFMSA-NL is represented at all eight Dutch medical faculties and exists of 800 active member and is able to reach at least all 7200 medical Bachelor student in the Netherlands. IFMSA-NL offers students a platform to use, share and improve their knowledge and skills through projects and trainings

Op kamers in Groningen

55216studenten studerend
31914studenten woonachtig   
€ 303gemiddelde kamerprijs
kamer betaalbaarheid
21 m2gemiddelde kameroppervlak
kamer beschikbaarheid
bron: Nationale Studenten Enquête

aan het woord: studenten en docenten

Manon Schallig, student
'Fascinating how the brain and mind work'

Dutch student Manon Schallig joined the research master Clinical and Psychosocial Epidemiology (CPE) after completing the bachelor Human Movement Sciences. 'The subjects I liked best – psychology and medicine – form the base of CPE.'Also appealing to her: the fact that the programme is small-scale and top researchers share their knowledge on the reciprocal relationship between the psychological and physical health. ‘There are sixteen students of ten different nationalities in my year...
With success. Every student is motivated and involved.’Top research
The master track CPE trains students to become top researchers. Each one of them will explore the fields of Public Health, Health Psychology, Epidemiology, and Psychiatry. Within these four fields, Manon will have the choice to apply to divergent research projects. ‘In January the Principal Investigators will submit a list with projects to apply for. My aim is to participate in the research programme of Interdisciplinary Centre Psychopathology and Emotion regulation or the department of Psychiatry, where Clinical Neuropsychology is a topic as well.’Psychotic disorders
‘It fascinates me how a small dissimilarity in someone’s brain, can cause an emotional and psychological “malfunction” of some kind,’ Manon explains. ‘Psychotic disorders like schizophrenia and bipolar disorders are quite common. For healthy people it’s hard to imagine what this mental disorder means, because it is intangible.’Functions of the brain
The twenty-three-year-old student is also enrolled in a second master programme: Clinical Neuropsychology, which is focussed on the associations between the brain and neuropsychological functions like cognition, emotion and behaviour. ‘Dementia caused by Alzheimer’s disease is a terrible disease but unfortunately also common. My upcoming internship and thesis will focus on the relationship between Alzheimer’s dementia and disease insight. To PhD or not to PhD
At the end of the master thesis project, Manon will have written a PhD-proposal, which could give her access to a PhD-position at any top institute. ‘I don’t know yet if that’s my future, there are plenty of CPE alumni that choose another path,’ she says. ‘Moreover, it’s somewhat of a misconception that you are only admitted for CPE when you are a straight A-student aiming to do a PhD. The commitment and motivation you show in the admittance interview and during the master track can outweigh your grades.’

lees verder ...
Rena , student
'I work on what matters to me'

At the time of this interview, Rena is busy packing her suitcase for Ethiopia. As part of her thesis in the master's programme Clinical and Psychosocial Epidemiology (CPE), she is going to collect data among midwifery students in order to evaluate their stance on disrespectful maternity care in the field. 'The fear of it being mistreated plays a huge role in the maternity mortality in Ethiopia.'Western Europe has one of the best medical health care systems in the world when it comes to safe and respectful treatment by medical staff...
‘In Ethiopia however,’ Rena explains, ‘only twenty to thirty percent of mothers-to-be visit a medical professional. Most women go into labour unsupervised, which causes huge risks for mother and child.’Abuse
Is a slap on the thigh encouraging when a woman does not push enough? Is shouting and yelling acceptable if a woman does not collaborate? Is it okay for a nurse to give a 16-year-old a reprimand for having an abortion? And what if it’s the second time for the girl? ‘There are seven major categories of disrespect and abuse that childbearing women encounter during maternity care, thus is the conclusion of research by Bowser and Hill performed in 2010. These categories are processed as scenarios in my questionnaire. I hope to get 400 midwifery students to participate. In particular, I am interested in assessing differences between male and female respondents. The results can be relevant for improving their education.’Reproductive health
Rena Bakker isn’t new to Ethiopia. During her bachelor studies in Psychology in Groningen, she ends up working there. ‘This internship sparked my enthusiasm for working in the field of developmental aid.’ After finishing her bachelor’s degree, Rena Bakker completes another internship in the healthcare branch of international development cooperation. Back in Groningen she enters the CPE-master’s programme, where her mentor introduces Rena to Jelle Stekelenburg, professor Obstetrics & Gynaecology with years of experience working in third world countries. ‘CPE enabled me to get in touch with these people. But you still have to be motivated to do a lot on your own,’ she says. ‘Most of the preparations for my research and corresponding travel and data collection aspects are done by myself. In my opinion it is a good thing that students are able to do hands-on research if they are motivated enough.’Groningen
How does she look back on her time in Groningen? ‘With all their different educational backgrounds, everyone in the master’s programme has their own speciality. We are all very motivated and ambitious. That creates a good environment and an easy way to make friends. Also, Groningen is an enjoyable city to live in, I keep on coming back to it.’

lees verder ...
Matheus Silva Gurgel do Amaral
'Winning the prizes was great, but sharing science is the most important'

In his master's thesis, Matheus Silva Gurgel do Amaral focusses on health literacy: the skill of handling health information by individuals, so they can make conscious decisions regarding their own health. 'It is very important to keep improving access to health information and think about the most effective ways to deliver it so people use this knowledge for their well-being,' Matheus explains. 'Obviously, patient-provider communication plays a big role in this...
'It is important to share science,' the student says. 'Topics that we research in Groningen can be of great importance to other countries and vice-versa. Talking about it leads to new perspectives and maybe even opportunities for further research by like-minded researchers.'Person-to-person
Before coming to Groningen, Matheus worked as a resident doctor in a hospital in Brazil. His understanding of the communication that takes place between a doctor and a patient is the perfect background for his current research. 'I paid a lot of attention to not talk to patients, but with them. It frustrates me when doctors remain distant from the people coming in for medical care. Health literacy is very patient oriented, and that fits me.'Data
Working as a researcher, however, was completely new to Matheus. In the first year of CPE, strong attention is given to statistics and research methods. A good preparation for what follows in year two of the programme. 'Most of my days are spent analysing large data cohorts at the University Medical Centre. Statistics, data, writing my thesis. It couldn't be more different from the work I used to do,' he says, smiling. 'But I love to learn and it is fundamental for a PhD track.'Reflecting
Matheus did his research on the study opportunities abroad before coming to Groningen. 'Dutch universities are known for being well organized and highly qualified. I did most of my preparations on line on this website called Nuffic Neso, which also deals with cultural differences. From punctuality and buying your first bicycle to the Dutch rain alert Buienradar – yes, every detail has been covered.' There was only one thing he didn't expect to find. 'Work, social life and me time are well balanced in the Netherlands. In Brazil, I worked around 80 hours a week. When I tell that to my Dutch friends and co workers, they look at me like I'm crazy. I love how the Dutch claim their free time and allow others to do so as well.'

lees verder ...
Adelita Ranchor, Programme Director
'Conduct research side by side leading experts'

As healthy ageing is high on the global agenda, interest sparks for the master programme Clinical & Psychosocial Epidemiology (CPE). Programme director prof. dr. Adelita Ranchor: 'Our students aim to improve mental and physical health from a multidisciplinary perspective.'CPE offers a multidisciplinary approach to research the cause and effect between mental and physical health and behavioural changes. Its strength lies, according to prof. dr. Adelita Ranchor, in the high involvement of top researchers. ‘The programme has been established in 2007 by a dedicated group of researchers...
Throughout the programme students are supported by a scientific supervisor.’Master thesis project
Where the first year solidifies the students’ basis in psychology, medicine, epidemiology, research methods and statistics, the second year focuses on the master thesis project. Students can proceed within the UMCG departments of Public Health, Health Psychology, Epidemiology, or Psychiatry. ‘To give an example of a research project,’ the programme director says, ‘one of our students is examining how depression, anxiety and fatigue influence neurocognitive symptoms after organ transplantation.’ Students have the freedom to choose a research project that suits their personal interest. ‘They can use data from large cohort studies, such as Lifelines, or set up their own data collection. On top of that, every student is embedded within the research team of their supervisor with whom there is a close collaboration.’Research or business or government?
Most CPE students use the master thesis as the basis for a PhD proposal, which in some cases is rewarded with a fully funded three year PhD programme. But not all students choose to do so: ‘We see international students return to their home countries to implement their new knowledge in the local public health system. Plus, there are good job perspectives in international business and government as well,’ prof. dr. Adelita Ranchor explains. ‘To help students orientate, career perspective workshops are organised to see the full scale of social impact and implications of the master programme.’

lees verder ...


Unsplashed background img 2


1/2 RUG
Clinical and Psychosocial Epidemiology
€ 303 gemiddelde kamerhuur
4 eerstejaars
25% vrouw
? uur contacttijd/week
2/2 RUG
CPE Track Health Systems and Prevention
€ 303 gemiddelde kamerhuur
? eerstejaars
NAN% vrouw
? uur contacttijd/week
disclaimer: bovenstaande cijfers en beoordelingen zijn aangeleverd door de opleidingen zelf. Wij kunnen de juistheid niet garanderen.

Feiten en / studie in cijfers


bron: Nationale Studenten Enquete
algemeen oordeel3.93.9
De Nationale Studenten Enquete is het grootschalige onderzoek van de overheid onder studenten in Nederland naar de kwaliteit van opleidingen aan hogescholen en universiteiten.
In 2017 hebben meer dan 280.000 studenten hun oordeel gegeven over hun studie en instelling.

Clinical and Psychosocial Epidemiology aan de Rijksuniversiteit Groningen is beoordeeld door 21 respondenten. Gemiddeld waarderen ze de opleiding met 3.9 uit 5.

Na de studie

Unsplashed background img 2

Beroepsperspectief / arbeidsmarkt

Your master thesis can function as the basis of your own PhD proposal. High-ranking students will be offered a full scholarship to continue with a three-year PhD programme at the UMCG!

If you do not wish to continue as a researcher, there are plenty of other opportunities. Alumni currently work as consultants for the World Health Organization (WHO), policy officers in the government, consultants for pharmaceutical or biotechnological companies or as university teachers.

For those students interested, you can choose to take courses to become a registered Epidemiologist A. You can find specific information about the epidemiologist training programme here.

Potentiële beroepen

beleidsmedewerker volksgezondheid (wetenschappelijk)
gezondheidsvoorlichtings- en opvoedings-(gvo)consulent (wetenschappelijk)
hoofd gezondheidheidsvoorlichting en -opvoeding
hoofd volksgezondheid
inspecteur volksgezondheid
manager instelling gezondheids- en (op)voedingsvoorlichting
secretaris gezondheidsraad
wetenschappelijk onderzoeker bewegingswetenschappen, gezondheidswetenschappen
bron: CBS


Admissions Office
Meer informatie?
Bezoek de website van deze opleiding.

open_in_newstudy website