Environmental psychology


About this course

Environmental psychologists study the role of the environment in explaining human behavior and experience, investigating, for example, the effects of environmental characteristics (e.g., noise, presence of natural elements) on our behavior and well-being, or how space and environmental information can be used to achieve behavioral or cognitive goals.
Offering a concise but in-depth excursion into this sub-discipline of psychology, this course aims to assist students in acquiring solid expertise in knowledge and skills regarding how to understand, compare, and apply theories about human-environment interrelationships. The scope of the course ranges from classical ideas to the state-of-the-art in research and research methodologies on topics such as environmental perception, privacy regulation, perception of safety, restoration from stress, and the experience of virtual environments.
Throughout the course the following topics will be addressed:

  • The origin, scope, and structure of the discipline of environmental psychology

  • Environmental values and attitudes

  • Environmental appraisals and preferences

  • Safety perception

  • Privacy, territoriality, and personal space

  • Environments as a source of stress and as a source of restoration from stress

  • Research methods in environmental psychology (e.g., ecological validity, use of representations such as photographs or virtual environments)

Additional information:
The course consists of lectures and workshops. The main focus of the lectures is on theory: each lecture presents a specific topic, such as environmental cognition, environmental appraisal and preference, or stress restoration, and the relevant theories on that topic. Almost all lectures have a corresponding interactive workshop, which aims to provide a hands-on experience with the course material: for example, in small groups or through individual exercises, we will debate different topics, brainstorm on appropriate research methods to answer a research question, or apply research findings to real-life problems. Some workshops require submitting materials beforehand. The course focuses on independent learning, and students are expected to read and master both classical texts in environmental psychology, as well as state-of-the-art empirical work. Lastly, the course has two mandatory assignments which aim to familiarize students with the course material by comparing or applying theories taught in the lectures.

Learning outcomes

After successful completion of the course, the student

  • is able to describe the content, scope, and common methodologies of the discipline of environmental psychology.
  • is able to explain, apply, and critically examine key theoretical concepts, models, and mechanisms in environmental psychology and environment-behavior research.
  • is able to explain the rationale behind common research methodologies in environmental psychology
  • is able to appraise empirical evidence presented in the literature of environmental psychology, and is able to apply this evidence to environment-behavior related problems.

Required prior knowledge

You must meet one of the following collections of requirements

  • Collection 1
  • Completed Final examination Bsc program
  • Collection 2
  • Completed Pre-Master

Link to more information

If anything remains unclear, please check the FAQ of TU Eindhoven.


  • Start date

    3 February 2025

    • Ends
      6 April 2025
    • Term *
      Block GS3
    • Location
    • Instruction language
    • Register between
      15 Nov, 00:00 - 5 Jan 2025
    Enrolment starts in 123 days
These offerings are valid for students of Utrecht University