This course has concessions available

New: Positive Psychology – How Do We Flourish?

Mainstream Psychology has traditionally been problem-focused but is it possible to accomplish a good life (Eudiamonia)? Looking at influential theorists for example Seligman and Csikszentmihayi we will explore how Positive Psychology interventions can cultivate a strong sense of personal identity, autonomy and meaningfulness. We will also engage with the newer second wave of Positive Psychology, and its focus on how ostensibly negative life experiences can ultimately contribute to human flourishing.

Who is this course for

This course can inform anyone planning further study in Psychology, either at Mary Ward Centre or elsewhere, as well as those considering or currently working in a vocation such as life-coaching or the helping professions. It can be especially valuable in supporting our elders, including those with short-term memory loss, to value their life trajectories. Beyond that, examining our own sources of happiness and well-being as we reflect upon our lives can bring dividends in terms of personal growth.

What does this course cover

Revisiting the ancient Greeks' concerns with the ethics of a good life, an emerging movement in Psychological Science is refocusing upon positive human functioning, flourishing and fulfilment - central themes of what is known as 'Positive Psychology'. This participatory course will explore these humanistic topics, drawing upon the work of Seligman, Erikson, Allport and Maslow. It will explore central theories like Diener's tripartite model of subjective well-being and discover how it is measured scientifically (e.g. Ryff's Six-factor Model of Psychological Well-being).

What will it be like

Participation in our lively sessions will include pair and small group work, alongside tutor description and class discussion.

What else do you need to buy or do

Come along with an open mind - and some writing materials!

You will enrich and expand your learning experience by reading some of the material referenced for the course. This may be especially useful if you intend to go on to further study or planning related occupational training. Some of these sources will be available or discussed on accessible websites, others may be available from public libraries etc. Online booksellers can be a good source of academic books that are not always available in a general bookshop, and some stock second-hand copies.

What this course could lead to

Completing this course might form part of a programme of Psychology studies at Mary Ward Centre, or preparation for studying Psychology or related disciplines in Higher Education. It may provide a helpful theoretical background to those contemplating careers in lifestyle coaching or Counselling. It can also contribute to lifelong learning, personal development and understanding of human diversity.

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I've been to many Centres to study in London and the Mary Ward Centre is one of the nicest I've studied in.

MWC student


This course has concessions available for people who meet certain criteria

Got a Question about this Course?

Contact The Departmental Administrator.

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Why come to Mary Ward Centre?

Mary Ward Centre is the adult education centre with a difference.   We provide a wide range of subjects for people at all levels and run courses during the day, evening or weekend to suit your timetable.

Get inspired and enjoy excellent teaching in an environment where each individual’s learning experience is valued. That’s what makes Mary Ward Centre ‘the friendly place to learn.’