Rehabilitation Psychology

Study Rehabilitation Psychology at AUT

What is Rehabilitation Psychology?

Rehabilitation psychology focuses on applying psychological knowledge to support people living with illness, injury or disability to optimise their health, well-being, participation and choice. The AUT postgraduate programme in Rehabilitation Psychology provides a pathway towards application for registration as a Psychologist with the New Zealand Psychologists Board (pending accreditation from the NZ Psychologists Board) under the generic scope of practice.

Following completion of a Bachelor in Psychology (honours) degree, students can enrol in the Master of Health Science Psychology (Rehabilitation Psychology).

Masters programme

In the masters programme, students will develop their knowledge and skills in the following areas:

  • Psychological theories of living with a chronic health condition
  • Delivery of psychological Interventions
  • Working with people affected by a chronic health condition and their families in a rehabilitation context
  • Assessment of people with physical illness and disability
  • Evaluation of evidence about the effectiveness of rehabilitation
  • Conducting research in a rehabilitation psychology area

Students can finish their studies here or if they wish to, they can then apply for a place on the PgDip in Rehabilitation Psychology programme. Places on the PgDip programme are limited and selection is based on an application and interview process.

PgDip programme

In the PgDip programme, students will learn the skills to work as a psychologist within the context of rehabilitation. An internship is an integral part of the programme and is a full year of practice (4 days a week working in a practice setting – the equivalent of 1,500 hours as required by the Psychologists’ Board) and 1 day a week on campus at AUT North Campus. The PgDipRehabPsych is available as a full-time study option only.

Why AUT?

AUT has an international reputation for high quality research and teaching in rehabilitation. This course will draw on our staff's expertise across vocational rehabilitation, psychology, sports injury and working with people and their families to provide a solid foundation in rehabilitation psychology.

What do graduates go on to do?

Graduates can go on to work in a variety of settings including inpatient and outpatient rehabilitation centres, community support agencies, disability advocacy, health care management, planning and policy and consultancy. Some students go on to pursue further study in psychology (such as clinical, counselling or health psychology).  This qualification does not currently lead on to registration as a psychologist in New Zealand.

How to enrol

There are a number of ways for you to enrol:

Online: or see the faculty's webpage on postgraduate enrolment.