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Psychology: Social Influence (track)


Why are emotional appeals effective in some advertising campaigns while they're not in others? How do we encourage people not to cycle in pedestrian areas? How to study the effectiveness of measures to prevent tax evasion? Many organisations and companies benefit from effectively influencing the behaviour of citizens or consumers. There are public health agencies trying to encourage people to exercise regularly, whereas advertising agencies try to increase sales of a particular product and municipalities try to discourage littering in parks. But how can we develop a strategy that is effective in achieving these goals?

Language of instruction

🎓 Unique use of social psychology to ethically influence people's behaviour and solve societal issues

Master's Week: 18-24 Nov
Master's Week: 12 -16 Feb
Visit an open day or event
Here's why you want to study Social Influence at the UvA

Small-group teaching approach 

An emphasis on

behaviour with societal implications

Learn about behaviour driven by

emotions, motivation, attitudes and group dynamics

work through various case studies and

learn how to analyse human behaviour

Video Social Influence
Social Influence

Social psychology as a science aims to explain and predict human behaviour. The emphasis here is on understanding the role of the social context. Knowledge about determinants of behaviour, such as emotions, motivation, attitudes and group dynamics, can increase the effectiveness of interventions. These determinants play a significant role when you, for example, want to encourage citizens to separate their waste or help care for the elderly, or if you want your target group to purchase specific products.

Is Social Influence right for you?

Yes, if you are interested in:

  • The social psychology that drives human behaviour
  • Understanding the principles of social influence
  • Developing evidence-based interventions for societal problems, creating marketing strategies, doing applied research or solving other human behaviour challenges
  • Working on applied questions together with other students
  • Pursuing a non-academic career in government, NGO, or marketing

Discover the Master’s programme & tracks

The Social Psychology programme group offers specialisations in three tracks. Social Influence is one of them.

The other tracks are:

Facts & Figures
Degree programme
MSc Psychologie
60 ECTS, 12 months
Language of instruction
Starts in
CROHO code
Roeterseiland campus