84441 - Clinical Psychology in Cancer Care

Course Unit Page

Academic Year 2022/2023

Learning outcomes

Recognize the psychological and social aspects of malignnt diseases. Appreciate the emotional impact of cancer on patients and their families. Recognize the importance of the doctor-patient relationship and how it affects the treatment of a disease.

Course contents

overview of cancer pathology in the multidisciplinary and psychological contexts;

the main psychological approaches offered to the cancer patients according to the type of disease;

the evolution of psycho-oncology and its integration into clinical practice, outlining the psychological and cognitive aspects of cancer disease in its individual, family and social components;

delineate the components of patients and health professionals decision-making throughout the care pathway focusing on the fundamentals of the communication process and therapeutic relationship building;

define the psychological contributions of prevention and individual well-being;

identify psychological or psychotherapeutic support interventions according to the needs of the patient and family;

identify the needs of the health professionals and outline possible intervention strategies;


Bibliographic references will be provided at the beginning and during the class activities, in relation to the cases and interventions on which the discussions will be oriented.

Teaching methods


Attendance to learning activities is mandatory; the minimum attendance requirement to be admitted to the final exam is 60% of lessons. For Integrated Courses (IC), the 60% attendance requirement refers to the total amount of I.C. lessons. Students who fail to meet the minimum attendance requirement will not be admitted to the final exam of the course, and will have to attend relevant classes again during the next academic year.

Professors may authorize excused absences upon receipt of proper justifying documentation, in case of illness or serious reasons. Excused absences do not count against a student’s attendance record to determine their minimum attendance requirement.

Assessment methods

The oral exam will cover all the subjects of the course. The student has to answer questions to demonstrate his/her knowledge of specific subjects, the ability to understand the links between different parts of the course, and the use of appropriate terminology.

Gradation of the final grade:

Insufficient: lack of preparation. Serious and repeated conceptual errors.

18-19: knowledge of the basic concepts without serious gaps. Exposition of concepts and language as a whole acceptable.

20-24: knowledge of the basic concepts without gaps. Ability to analyze and link in partial autonomy. Exposure of discrete concepts and language.

25-29: preparation of good or very good level or even excellent preparation but with inaccuracies in the presentation that compromise the achievement of full marks. Ability to analyze and link independently. Exposure of concepts in the right succession and mastery of the language.

30-30L: full preparation, consolidated and without inaccuracies on the topics covered in the course. Ability to promptly frame the topic. Ability to analyze and connect independently. Concepts in the right succession and full command of the specific language.

Teaching tools

Slides, films, clinical case presentations, interactions with students will be used.

Office hours

See the website of Roberto Cattivelli