Holistic Psychology

Holistic Psychology is the study and practice of how to return to our natural wholeness. This field is the synthesis of ancient knowledge and methods with modern technological advances. The method is based on experiential learning and personal clearing. The ancients knew this as “healer, heal thyself.” 

Students will learn and experience a vast resource of body, emotional, and psychological disciplines through independent study, practicum, and guided self-learning. The program teaches how to connect to innate “inner knowing” through use of the right brain. It is the goal of this program for the graduate to attain a higher human evolution and become a reflection of that which they offer in service to others. 


Masters Program:  45 Credits

(30 Credits in Required Courses, 15 Credits in Electives)

Doctorate Program:  90 Credits

(55 Credits in Required Courses, 35 Credits in Electives)

 Combined Masters/Doctorate Program:  120 Credits
(50 Credits in Required Courses, 70 Credits in Electives)

Course credits toward your degree may be earned in the following ways:


  1. Taking courses at other universities or colleges.

  2. Students may request and submit for IUPS approval (through their mentors), permission to earn credits for workshops, and other programs not mentioned above.

  3. Many students earn course credits by having their mentor assign books to read on the course topic, and writing papers that demonstrate their understanding of the assigned material. Credits can also be obtained by attending conferences, workshops, and retreats as well as through assigned projects. A key criteria for earning credits in this manner is for students to demonstrate how learning this subject matter impacts their lives personally and professionally. Integration of course material is of paramount importance at IUPS. 

  4. Students also have the opportunity to design their own electives, truly giving students the opportunity to customize their education. A sample syllabus is provided to assist students in meeting university standards. The student submits the proposed course syllabus to the mentor and the university for approval.

Course #     Credits    Required Core Courses - Masters Degree

HPY600            3         Theories and Principles of Holistic Psychology

HPY 605           3         Studies in Eastern Traditions

HPY 609           2         Multi-Cultural Counseling
HPY 610           2         Childhood Development Studies
HPY 620           2         Somatic Methods for Releasing Subconscious Belief Patterns 
HPY 640           2         Principles and Application of the Right Brain
HPY 655           3         Exploring Domains of Consciousness
HPY 656           3         Overview of Energetic Healing Methods
HPY 800         10         Master's Thesis Project

Course #     Credits     Required Core Courses - Doctorate Degree

HPY600            5         Theories and Principles of Holistic Psychology

HPY 605           4         Studies and Application of Centeredness in Eastern Traditions

HPY 609           3         Multi-Cultural Counseling
HPY 610           3         Childhood Development Studies
HPY 611           2         Understanding the Role of Mother and the Female Principle in Childhood Development
HPY 612           2         Understanding the Role of Father in Childhood Development
HPY 620           3         Somatic Methods for Discharging Subconscious Belief Patterns 
HPY 630           4         Skills and Strategies in Therapeutic Feedback
HPY 640           3         Understanding and Therapeutic Application of the Right Brain
HPY 651           3         Skills and Strategies for Inner Child Therapeutic Processes
HPY 655           5         Exploring Domains of Consciousness
HPY 656           3         Overview of Energetic Healing Methods
HPY 800         15         Dissertation Research Project


Below are examples of electives that one may consider taking as part of a degree program in Holistic Psychology. Students, in concert with their mentors, shall determine which electives are most relevant to their educational aspirations.

Course#    Credits      Electives
HPY 660        1-5         Neuro Linguistic Programming
HPY 661        1-5         Chinese Five Elements
HPY 662        1-5         Gestalt Therapy
HPY 663        1-5         Bioenergetic Therapy
HPY 664        1-5         Tai Chi Push Hands
HPY 665        1-5         Affect of Eye Movement in Therapy
HPY 667        1-5         Introduction to Bach Flower Essences
HPY 668        1-5         Introduction to Aromatherapy
HPY 669        1-5         Introduction to Yoga
HPY 670        1-5         Introduction to Movement Awareness Methodology
HPY 671        1-5         Introduction to Mantra and Chanting
HPY 672        1-5         Introduction to Breathwork for Emotional Clearing
HPY 673        2-5         Matrix Energetics
HPY 674        1-5         Prayer, Gratitude and Forgiveness 

Holistic Psychology Course Descriptions 

HPY600    Theories and Principles of Holistic Psychology

This course examines the methodologies, theories, and research that support the holistic vision in psychology. Emphasis is placed upon the interaction of the physical, psychological and spiritual. Students will be encouraged to evaluate their own beliefs around identity and self-actualization processes. 


HPY 605   Studies and Application of Centeredness in Eastern Traditions

This course explores the theories and concept of internal Centeredness. Students will study and discuss concepts from Taoism and the Tao Te Ching and will practice the Asian exercises to classically train internal centeredness. The course continues the exploration into the state of being known as centeredness, or being centered. Students will go deeper into the practices of connecting to center and releasing physiological and psychological distractions and impediments to centeredness. This course will also particularly focus on the skills and strategies of regaining centeredness after “losing” centeredness. Students will have the opportunity to deepen their connection to their internal energy system. The focus will be on Asian methods such as Tai Chi and Chi Kung.

HPY 609     Multi-Cultural Counseling

This course acquaints students with the importance of taking into account and respecting the individual client's cultural experience. Topics covered include the psychological implications of being a member of a minority group, questions about the universality of the human experience, and implications of a multi-cultural society, and the phases of acculturation clients may be experiencing.


HPY 610   Childhood Development Studies
This course focuses on the works of Pia Mellody and the five major principles of functional childhood development. Students will both study and discuss these principles along with completing the corresponding workbook on the five principles.

HPY 611   Understanding the Role of Mother and the Female Principle in Childhood Development
This course will explore the understanding of the Female Principle, also known as animus and yin, and the role of mother in core childhood development.

HPY 612   Understanding the Role of Father in Childhood Development
This course will explore the understanding of the Male Principle, also known as anima and yang, and the role of father in core childhood development.

HPY 620   Somatic Methods for Discharging Subconscious Belief Patterns
This course explores the theory and practice of somatic release method for clearing physiological trauma associated with dysfunctional childhood learning. It also delves into the theory and practice of additional modalities to release childhood beliefs from the emotional and physical body.

HPY 630   Skills and Strategies in Therapeutic Feedback
In this course, students both develop skills to be used in recording therapeutic feedback from questionnaire material, and gain insight into the concepts behind these skills and strategies. Students focus on refining the skills explored in the first section, with students engaging each other in practice exchanges as well as facilitator feedback.

HPY 640   Understanding and Therapeutic Application of the Right Brain
This study and practicum course will explore the theories supporting the nature and function of the right, and students will practice utilizing the right brain in therapeutic methodologies.


HPY 651   Skills and Strategies for Inner Child Therapeutic Processes
This course explores therapeutic methods for the integration and connection of the adult and inner child personifications.

HPY 655   Exploring Domains of Consciousness 
This course explores ancient traditions and new findings of scientific research in the area of consciousness studies.


HPY 656   Overview of Energetic Healing Methods 
This course will focus on the upcoming field of energetic healing, its theories and methods. Students will receive an introduction to the SpectraVision Bio Scanning technology and principles of homeopathy.

HPY 800   Dissertation Research Project
A doctorate level dissertation is required and the proposal must be submitted to the mentor and department chair.  Upon approval, students will work with their mentors to gain direction for research, format, and editing.  This project will be a culmination of the student’s knowledge, making a significant contribution to the field of Expressive Arts Therapy.



Students enrolled in the Holistic Psychology Ph.D. program are required to take 40 elective credits. In the combined M.A./Ph.D. program, students are required to take 70 elective credits. Elective courses may be recommended by the university to ensure the student receives a well-rounded education and students are encouraged to take electives that focus on their core areas of educational interest. Alternative electives to the courses below may be designed by students and submitted to their mentor and the university for approval, truly giving students the opportunity to customize their education. A sample syllabus can be provided to interested students. In addition, with prior university approval, students can receive course credits for certain relevant workshops and conferences attended.


HPY 660   Neuro Linguistic Programming
This course is based on the research project to determine common characteristics and modalities of great achievers. Students will learn about sensorial preferences such as auditory, visual, or kinesthetic dominant behavioral traits. The course will also describe the understanding of how linguistics affects behavior strategies and patterns. 

HPY 661   Chinese Five Elements
This course will describe the ideological foundation of Chinese Acupuncture called the Five Elements. Students will learn about the Elements of Fire, Earth, Metal, Water and Wood and how they are reflected in all living things. They will also learn the holistic correspondences of these Elements in human life. 

HPY 662   Gestalt Therapy
This course focuses on the study of Fritz Perl’s work developed in the 40’s-50’s. Students will learn the Gestalt understanding about perception, gestalt formation and the tendency of organisms to complete the incomplete gestalt, to form "wholes" in experience. 

HPY 663   Bioenergetic Therapy
Founded by Alexander Lowen, M.D., bioenergetics is a further development of the psychoanalytic work of Wilhelm Reich. Bioenergetics combines work with the body and work with the mind to create an in-depth understanding of who the person is, and what s/he needs in order to be fully alive and vibrant.

HPY 664   Tai Chi Push Hands
Pushing Hands is a simplified form of sparring popular with students of Tai Chi. Lacking the punches and kicks common in the practice fighting of many external martial arts, Pushing Hands is a gentle sport of control where success is achieved by upsetting the balance of one's opponent. 

HPY 665   Effect of Eye Movement in Therapy
This course is an overview of different theories and methods associated with use of the eyes for therapeutic processes. The course explores RET (Rapid Eye Technology), EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing), Tibetan eye work, and Bates vision correction work. 

HPY 667   Introduction to Bach Flower Essences
Overview of the subtle liquid extracts known as flower essences and the effect the different essences have on our emotional and spiritual selves. This body of knowledge was most clearly developed in the 30’s by Dr. Edward Bach. 

HPY 668   Introduction to Aromatherapy
Overview of the principles and applications of the oils of botanical plants. Students will study the therapeutic as well as the fragrance indications of the plants.  

HPY 669   Introduction to Yoga
This course will review yoga as a spiritual practice. Included will be study of the eight-fold limbs of yoga and the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali.

HPY 670   Introduction to Movement Awareness Methodology
This course will overview the works of Feldenkrais, Alexander, Trager and others. Students will experience and learn the structural and psychological benefits of conscious movement work. 

HPY 671   Introduction to Mantra and Chanting
This course studies the science and application of mantra and chanting from the different spiritual traditions. Students will practice and observe the affect of these ancient pure sounds. 

HPY 672   Introduction to Breathwork for Emotional Clearing
This course will review the use of the breath to purge emotional trauma and physical trauma from the body. The course will include introduction to yogic pranayama and Rebirth breathing.

HPY 673   Matrix Energetics 
Matrix Energetics is a complete system of healing, self-care and transformation. It is a transferable and teachable phenomenon, powered by intent, which has a physical and observable effect every time. Complete beginners as well as seasoned health care practitioners are able to perform and utilize this work to effect change with no waiting and no running of energy. Matrix Energetics is based on the laws and expression of subtle energy physics and the concepts and laws of quantum physics, superstring theory and Sheldrake's Morphic Resonance. Advanced ancient principles reviewed, as well as quantum-based consciousness in transforming lives, healing, and well-being. Students also learn how to streamline the work and help the practitioner make choices on where and how to use this work quickly.


HPY 674   Prayer, Gratitude and Forgiveness
This course focuses on utilizing prayer with a focus on gratitude and forgiveness to bring one's life into balance, and healing pain and patterning that has been passed down for thousands of years.