Master of Science in Coaching Psychology

The information on this page applies to future students. Current students should refer to their faculty handbooks for course information.

Learn to help people improve their performance with a Master of Science in Coaching Psychology. Providing a solid grounding in theory and practice, this unique course will give you the skills to enhance productivity and quality of life of individuals, organisations and the broader community.

The Master of Science in Coaching Psychology teaches the applied science of human performance enhancement and coaching. This unique one-year course is a rare opportunity to be part of the fast growing and relatively new field of coaching psychology, which seeks to enhance human performance in work, relationships and life in general.

Coaching psychology is an applied positive psychology course and sits at the intersection of counselling, clinical and organisational psychology. This program provides you with a sound grounding in the theoretical and methodological aspects of coaching psychology and teaches fundamental applied coaching skills.

Our main focus is on coaching in business and organisational settings. The program aims to give you the knowledge to be a skilled coach, capable of coaching in an extensive variety of settings and with a wide range of clients including executive, management and personal coaching.

The Coaching Psychology program at the University of Sydney is one of the few postgraduate qualifications worldwide in coaching psychology. The Coaching Psychology Unit at Sydney is recognised as a world leader in the development of both coaching theory and its real world application. Ensuring students receive the best available training, coaching psychology is taught by practising coaching psychologists, and training and management consultants, all of whom have extensive experience in their specialised fields and many of whom have international reputations. The programs offer leading edge training in the theory and practice of coaching.

Program expectations
You can expect to gain both a sound grounding in the main psychological theories and principles that inform coaching practice and a foundation in the core skills of applied coaching. These theoretical and applied skills include:
- an ability to implement coaching in a variety of settings
- an understanding of the strengths, limitations and applications of coaching methodologies
- an ability to design and implement coaching programs in organisational settings
- an understanding of how systems, groups and teams operate, and the application of coaching within complex systems
an understanding of the central features of personal and organisational coaching
- an overview of the main forms of psychopathology found in coaching and how to deal appropriately with clients displaying mental health issues.

Course outline

View a sample study plan/course structure table.

Study plan

Study can be taken on a full-time or part-time basis. Your individual study plan will of course depend on the availability of units in a given semester.

Subject of the availability of supervision and suitable projects, candidates with a credit average in 24 credit points from the degree may be admitted to the research pathway. Contact the course coordinator for more information about the research pathway.

Embedded courses

Further course information

Progression rules

Under normal progression, a student shall undertake and successfully complete all units of study to the value of 24 credit points per semester as prescribed for the course. Candidates must maintain a credit average result or above, normally over at least the first four units of study, to qualify for admission to the research project units of study, and PSYC4721 and PSYC4722 to qualify for admission to the coaching practicum in PSYC4724. Students are required to attend all lectures, tutorials and other activities prescribed for their units of study.

Capstone experience

A capstone experience comprises one or more units of study designed to provide an opportunity to draw together the learning that has taken place during the course, synthesise this with prior learning and experience, and draw conclusions that will form the basis for further investigation, and intellectual and/or professional growth.

An elective research pathway capstone experience in the award comprises PSYC5016 and PSYC5017 (12 credit points total). Eligible candidates identify a research issue, review existing literature on the topic, formulate novel research questions, and test these questions through the application of contemporary psychological methodologies and appropriate data-analytic procedures.

A coursework pathway capstone experience in the award comprises PSYC4724 (6 credit points), consolidating the theory and skills acquired in core units of study through a coaching practicum over the course of one semester.

Course outcomes and further study

Graduate opportunities

After graduating, you could expect to gain employment in a range of jobs involving human resource development, private practice, organisational consultancy and professional services.

Course accreditation

While there is no generally recognised professional qualification for coaches, the program is consistent with the International Coach Federation (ICF) core competencies. Hence successful completion of the program may contribute toward accreditation in the ICF’s portfolio track. Similarly, if you have a four year degree in psychology, participation in the program may be able to be used as part of the requirements for registration as a psychologist via the supervision track. However, the program does not in itself qualify you for registration as a psychologist.

Further study

Many of our graduates have successfully pursued further study in a range of internationally recognised academic programs. If you would like to be part of Sydney's research community, you may wish to consider applying for admission to a higher degree by research. Research can be completed through a Master of Philosophy (MPhil) or a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD). Students completing a research degree undertake supervised research in specialised area of psychology and submit a written thesis at the completion of their studies. You can search for potential research projects and supervisors at Research Supervisor Connect.

Admission

Admission requirements

Our students are typically mid-career professionals with some coaching experience and prior coach training of some sort. A section of our students are professional coaches seeking to extend their practice and gain a thorough grounding in the psychology of coaching. Another section of our students are managers from a wide range of professions and industry sectors who have used coaching skills in the workplace and have undertaken ‘manager as coach’ training and leadership development programs. We also have a number of human resource and organisational development professionals in the program who typically have been involved in organising or delivering coaching in the workplace.

For admission to this course, you should have either:
(a) a three-year Psychology degree with a credit average; or
(b) a three-year degree in a cognate discipline with a major in areas such as (but not limited to) arts, humanities, business, science or law with a credit average.

A credit average means a minimum Weighted Average Mark (WAM) of 65.

You should also have at least three years relevant employment experience.

As entry into this course is competitive, applicants who meet the admission requirements are then ranked according to academic merit and coaching experience. Course numbers are limited and offers will be made to applicants on the basis of rank, subject to a strict enrolment quota. Top-ranked applicants will be made early rolling offers prior to the year of commencement. For all other applicants, the first offer round occurs in mid to late January in the year of commencement. The second and subsequent offer rounds occur throughout February in the year of commencement.

If you do not meet the requirements for admission into the Master of Science in Coaching Psychology you may wish to consider applying for entry into the Graduate Diploma in Coaching Psychology or the Graduate Certificate in Coaching Psychology.

As part of the embedded program, upon successful completion of the Graduate Certificate in Coaching Psychology, you may gain entry to the Graduate Diploma in Coaching Psychology through an internal “upgrade”. In turn, upon successful completion of the Graduate Diploma in Coaching Psychology, you may gain entry to the Master of Science in Coaching Psychology through an internal “upgrade”.

A very limited number of Commonwealth Supported Places (CSP) may be available to domestic applicants for this course from year to year. All domestic applicants who are successful for admission into this course are automatically ranked and assessed for CSP by the Faculty of Science on the basis of academic merit and coaching experience. No additional application to the Faculty is required. Only top-ranked applicants will be granted CSP, subject to yearly availability. Late applicants will not be considered for CSP.

How to apply

Domestic students

How to apply

Apply online by clicking 'Apply Now' on the right hand side of this page and follow the prompts to complete and submit your application. You can also save your application and finish completing before the closing date for online applications. Applications are made directly to the University and assessed by the Faculty of Science.

Please note you must supply supporting documentation with your application in order for your application to be considered, including:
1. Official transcripts of all previous tertiary study;
2. CV or resume;
3. A short cover letter (500 to 1000 words) outlining your prior coaching and business experience, your interest in the program and your overall goals on graduation; and
4. The names of up to 3 referees.

You need to scan, upload and attach this supporting documentation to your application. To help the assessment process, we request that you you upload no more than 5 attachments to your application. If you wish to submit more than 5 documents for consideration, please consolidate documents into 1 attachment. All transcripts should be consolidated into 1 attachment.

Please note that admission into this course is only available for Semester 1 intakes. Admission into Semester 2 intakes is not available.

International students

How to apply

Overseas applicants may apply (i) directly to the University by using the online application form, or (ii) through a University overseas representative (education agent).

Apply online by clicking 'Apply Now' on the right hand side of this page and follow the prompts to complete and submit your application. You can also save your application and finish completing before the closing date for online applications. Applications are made directly to the University and assessed by the Faculty of Science.

Please note you must supply supporting documentation with your application in order for your application to be considered, including:
1. Official transcripts of all previous tertiary study;
2. CV or resume;
3. A short cover letter (500 to 100 words) outlining your prior coaching and business experience, your interest in the program and your overall goals on graduation;
4. The names of up to 3 referees; and
5. Evidence to demonstrate satisfaction of English language requirements.

You need to scan, upload and attach this supporting documentation to your application. To help the assessment process, we request that you upload no more than 5 attachments to your application. If you wish to submit more than 5 documents for consideration, please consolidate documents into 1 attachment. All transcripts should be consolidated into 1 attachment.

Please note that admission into this course is only available for Semester 1 intakes. Admission into Semester 2 intakes is not available.

Fee disclaimer

Domestic students

Annual review for postgraduate student contribution amount

Importantly, student contribution amounts are subject to annual review by the University, and are likely to increase each year of your period of study (subject to a Commonwealth specified cap), effective at the start of each calendar year.

Postgraduate Domestic Tuition Fee

This 2016, tuition fee for a domestic postgraduate student represents the fee that is payable by you in the calendar year you commence your course, commencing in 2015 for a standard annual full time load of 48 credit points (1.0 EFTSL). If your study load is more or less than the 1.0 EFTSL your fee will differ.

Annual review for postgraduate domestic tuition fee

Importantly, tuition fees are subject to annual review by the University, and are likely to increase each year of your period of study, effective at the start of each calendar year.

Additional incidental fees

For some courses there are incidental fees additional to the student contribution and/or course fee. Some of those fees are significant, for example, faculty-specific materials, tools, protected clothing and equipment. For further information about these additional incidental fees, please visit the University's Future Students' website.

Potential for inaccuracy

Whilst every reasonable effort has been made to include correct and up to date information in this prospectus, you are also advised to consult directly with the Student Centre for domestic students or the International Office for international students so that they can provide you with specific and up to date information about those fees.

The academic requirements that are displayed are applicable to currently available courses only, and are updated annually in October and may be changed without notice. The Faculty Handbook and the University of Sydney Calendar are the official legal source of information relating to study at the University of Sydney, and you are referred to those documents

Please note that if you are classified by the University as a Research Training Scheme student in accordance with the Other Grants Guidelines (Research) 2010, you will be exempt from the payment of any SCA or tuition fees for courses undertaken as part of a Research Masters degree and Research Doctoral degree. More information about your eligibility for this Scheme is available here.

International students

International tuition fees for postgraduate students

This 2016, tuition fee for international postgraduate students represents the fees that are payable by you in the calendar year you commence your course, commencing in 2016, for a standard annual full time load of 48 credit points (1.0 EFTSL). If your study load is more or less than the 1.0 EFTSL your fee will differ.

Annual review

Importantly, tuition fees are subject to annual review, and are likely to increase each year of your period of study, effective at the start of each calendar year.

Additional incidental fees and health insurance

For some courses there are incidental fees additional to the tuition fees. Some of those fees are significant, for example, faculty-specific materials, tools, protected clothing, and equipment. The University's Future Students' webpage has further information about these additional incidental fees for postgraduate coursework students and postgraduate research students.

In addition to the fees indicated here for the course of study, International Students studying on an Australian Student Visa must have appropriate health insurance for the duration of their studies on a Student Visa through an approved provider of the Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC) scheme. This is a requirement of the Australian Government, unless otherwise exempted by the Government.

Potential for inaccuracy

Whilst every reasonable effort has been made to include correct and up to date information here, you are also advised to consult directly with the Student Centre for domestic students or the International Office for international students so that they can provide you with specific and up to date information about those fees.

Student profiles