Psychiatry is the medical specialty that deals with the study and treatment of mental illnesses and of other disorders, both behavioural and physical, in which psychological factors are important as causes or clinical features.

Modern psychiatry has divided into a number of sub-specialities:

  • Child and adolescent psychiatry concentrates on disorders in children and adolescents.
  • Forensic psychiatry studies the interaction between psychiatry and the law.
  • Psycho-geriatrics examines the psychiatry of old age.
  • Consultation-liaison psychiatry deals with the interaction between physical and mental disease in the broadest sense and includes psychosomatic medicine and psychological reactions to physical disorders.
  • Social and community psychiatry is concerned with social determinants of mental illness and with the provision of a co-ordinated programme of mental health to a specified population.

Other sub-fields include the addictions, eating disorders and neuro-psychiatry.

The area of study of psychiatry thus includes a range of disorders that extend from those for which there are obvious brain abnormalities such as the various dementias through to deviations of personality development.

Areas of study

The Department of Psychological Medicine currently offers a Health Sciences specialisation in Child and Adolescent Mental Health and programmes in Health Psychology. Please see the relevant subject headings for information on these specialisations.

You can study Psychiatry in the following programmes:

What you will learn

Postgraduate Certificate in Health Sciences in Child and Adolescent Mental Health

Postgraduate Diploma in Health Sciences in Child and Adolescent Mental Health

More information

Child and Adolescent Mental Health PG Handbook