SWPS University - Main page


for our actions and their consequences. Engagement and mindfulness.


to new solutions, creativity, and cooperation. Readiness to accept different opinions and points of view.


in overcoming limitations, undertaking difficult projects, and engaging in meaningful initiatives.

We, the University!

This year we are celebrating the 25th jubilee of SWPS University. This is a celebration of our whole community. From the very beginning we have been building an institution and a community, which combine innovative education with intensive research and social engagement. We respect traditional academic values – truth, goodness, and beauty – and by complementing them with openness, courage, and responsibility, we shape our present and future.

25 lat


Events and jubilee-related information

Let's talk about our University and values

Special conversations with the key people of our University


From vision to implementatoin... a conversation about courage and determination required to establish and develop a university


a conversation with Professor Andrzej Eliasz, co-founder and the first rector of SWPS University

prof. dr hab. Andrzej Eliasz


About sustainable development and the role of universities in the contemporary world


a conversation with the Rector of SWPS University, Professor Roman Cieślak and Director General, Ewa Ger, Ph.D.

prof. dr hab. Roman Cieślak i dyrektor gen. Ewa Ger


About perseverance in changing the world for the better, flexibility in action, and readiness for the future


a conversation with Piotr Voelkel, who currently holds the statutory role of the Founder of SWPS University

Prezes Piotr Voelkel


Professor Andrzej Eliasz


Professor Roman Cieślak
Ewa Ger, Ph.D.


Piotr Voelkel, President

Changing the world for the better

25 selected projects conducted by our researchers, students, and alumni

Responsible for our words

Selected quotes from lectures and interviews given by our academics

Respect is a measure of our attitude towards others. It is important to see value in every human being.

25 lat

Ph.D. / Associate Professor

Katarzyna Popiołek

psychologist, specializing in interpersonal relationships

It has been scientifically proven that boredom is the most ruthless and effective killer of love.

25 lat


Bogdan Wojciszke

eminent psychologist, specializing in psychology of love and power.

Temperament is neither good nor bad, and it does not predetermine whether someone is good or bad.

25 lat


Jan Strelau

eminent psychologist, expert in psychology of temperament and personality

A conviction that ‘it can’t be done’ and ‘this is how it must be’ prevents any type of change.

25 lat


Roman Cieślak

psychologist, specializing in stress and trauma psychology

Sharing one’s struggles and admitting one’s mistakes are acts of bravery, not of weakness.

25 lat


Mateusz Banaszkiewicz

psychologist, specializing in health psychology and quality of life

Designing is not just a process of making pretty pictures. Designs also carry designers’ responsibility for the consequences of the implemented solutions.

25 lat

Ph.D. / Assistant Professor

Mariusz Wszołek

communication and design expert

If we lived in a world, where at every step, we observed people helping others, we, ourselves, would be helpful more often.

25 lat


Dariusz Doliński

renowned social psychologist

Proud of our past, embracing the future

History of SWPS University


SWPS is founded

Three professors working for the Institute of Psychology at the Polish Academy of Sciences - Mr Andrzej Eliasz, Mr Zbigniew Pietrasiński and Mr Janusz Reykowski establish our university. Professor Andrzej Eliasz becomes the first Rector.

The first field of study is launched - social psychology. Over 500 students begin their studies here..


At that time in Poland and abroad:

  • Wisława Szymborska receives the Nobel Prize in Literature,
  • the onet.pl website is launched,
  • Dolly the sheep, the first successfully cloned mammal, is born.


The first postgraduate courses are launched

The University starts admissions for postgraduate studies in negotiation and mediation, development of managerial skills, market research methodologies and customer service.

There are over a thousand people studying at SWPS now.


At that time in Poland:

  • the Constitution of the Republic of Poland is enacted,
  • TVN begins to broadcast.


The first research centre is established

The Experimental Psychology Laboratory begins its activities where research into automated processing of social information and attitude modification is conducted.

SWPS now has over 3 thousand students.


At that time in Poland and abroad:

  • a new administrative division of Poland’s territory into 16 provinces is introduced,
  • Poland becomes a member of NATO,
  • The Matrix premieres in cinemas.


Psychology is awarded the certificate of quality in education

SWPS is the first non-public university to be evaluated by a university accreditation committee (Pol. Uniwersytecka Komisja Akredytacyjna).

The founders agree to work towards achieving the full academic status of university.


At that time in Poland:

  • The Polish parliament passes a law establishing the office of Ombudsman for Children,
  • Gadu-Gadu, the first Polish instant messenger, is introduced to the public,
  • Andrzej Wajda receives an Oscar for his lifetime achievements.


The Warsaw campus of SWPS receives modern facilities

SWPS moves to a newly acquired building located at Chodakowska Street in Warsaw which from then on becomes its headquarters.

The first graduates receive their MA diplomas.


At that time abroad:

  • the terrorist attack on the World Trade Center unfolds,
  • the iPod is introduced to the public worldwide,
  • Microsoft rolls out Windows XP.


The Sopot campus is established

The university continues growing and starts ifs first satellite campus. Professor Alina Kolańczyk becomes the first dean of the Sopot branch.

For the first time, SWPS receives the right to confer the degree of doctor in psychology.


At that time in Poland and abroad:

  • the Euro Area is born - the common currency, the euro, is adopted by most of the Member States,
  • Daniel Kahneman wins the Nobel Prize for applying tools used in the study of psychology to economic research,
  • the Polish Internet Library is established.


The first doctoral degree at SWPS

On 12 December 2003, Anna Siwy-Hudowska becomes the first doctor to receive her degree at SWPS. She is awarded the title for research conducted under the guidance of professor Jan Strelau.

SWPS launches its first 5-year psychology degree programme in English, which is the first such course to be offered in Poland.

The University becomes a member of the Conference of Rectors of Academic Schools in Poland.


At that time abroad:

  • China becomes the third country in history to independently send a man into space,
  • Swedish activist Greta Thunberg is born,
  • Arnold Schwarzenegger begins his tenure as the governor of California.


The Wrocław campus is established

The Faculty of Psychology in Wrocław is currently the best-rated faculty of social sciences in Poland (evaluated at A+ by the Ministry of Science and Higher Education).

SWPS becomes a member of the European University Association.


At that time abroad:

  • Facebook is created,
  • Poland is accepted as a member of the EU,
  • NASA lands its Opportunity rover on the surface of Mars.


Distinction by the Polish Accreditation Committee and entitlement to confer the degree of doktor habilitowany in psychology

The first psychology degree program in Poland to have received such high rating by the Polish Accreditation Committee.


At that time abroad:

  • YouTube goes online,
  • The European Parliament passes a resolution recognizing the right of homosexual people to marry as a civil right and a human right.


The Faculty of Philology is launched in Warsaw

The Faculty comprises the Institute of English Philology, the Institute of Scandinavian Philology, the Middle East Centre and the Centre for East Asian Civilisations.


At that time abroad:

  • the world’s population reaches 6,5 billion,
  • women win the right to vote in parliamentary elections for the first time in Kuwait,
  • YouTube is bought by Google for $1,65 billion,
  • the English version of Wikipedia now has 1 million entries.


The right to confer the degree of doctor in cultural studies

This makes SWPS the only non-public university with qualifications to grant the degree of doctor in two faculties and to confer the degree of doktor habilitowany.


At that time abroad:

  • the iPhone is presented to the world,
  • Google Translate is launched,
  • Poland joins the Schengen Area.


The right to confer the degree of doctor in sociology

This is the third qualification to confer doctoral degrees awarded to our university. New academic and research centres are being established, including the Centre for the Study of Democracy, the Centre for Polish Literature and Language and the Centre for Comparative Studies in Literature and Art.


At that time abroad:

  • the Phoenix lander touches down on the surface of Mars,
  • scientists film a moving electron for the first time in history in Lund, Sweden,
  • the Large Hadron Collider starts operation at the CERN centre in Geneva.


The Faculty of Law in Warsaw is established

The University decides to offer studies in law and officially establishes the Faculty of Law, with professor Teresa Gardocka appointed as the dean.

There are now over 11,000 students studying at the university.


At that time abroad:

  • Barack Obama is elected the 44th President of the United States of America,
  • Jerzy Buzek becomes President of the European Parliament,
  • the World Digital Library is launched.


Campuses in Poznań and Katowice open their doors

SWPS opens new branch campuses. The Wroclaw faculty achieves the highest academic rating among all university faculties in Poland. The Faculty of Psychology in Warsaw and the Faculty Arts and Social Sciences in Warsaw are also ranked in the highest category.


At that time in Poland and abroad:

  • The iPad is presented in San Francisco,
  • The WikiLeaks scandal unfolds,
  • The Copernicus Science Centre opens the first wing of its building with five galleries.


The School of Form and the Institute of Graphic Design are established

SWPS adds new programmes to its offer. The School of Form is established in Poznań, offering studies in the field of design. In Wroclaw, the first students begin their studies in the field of Graphic Design.

The Senate of the University grants an honorary doctorate to professor Philip Zimbardo for his outstanding contribution to the development of psychology and for promoting international academic cooperation.

Scientists from SWPS - professor Leszek Koczanowicz, professor Aleksandra Łuszczyńska, professor Grzegorz Sędek and professor Bogdan Wojciszke receive the “MISTRZ” award from the Foundation for Polish Science.


At that time in Poland and abroad:

  • the national census takes place,
  • Minecraft is officially released for gamers worldwide,
  • the Polish Presidency in the Council of the European Union begins.


The right to confer the degree of doctor in the field of law

This is the fourth qualification to grant doctoral degrees in SWPS. Studies in Design in Poznan and Psychology in Sopot receive an award in a competition of the Ministry of Science and Higher Education.

SWPS becomes the best non-public university from the perspective of the number of grants obtained from the National Science Centre.

SWPS students are awarded in the Student Nobel Prize 2012 competition and the "Diamond Grant" competition.


At that time abroad:

  • The Curiosity rover successfully lands on the surface of Mars,
  • a new elementary particle, the Higgs Boson, is discovered experimentally.


Wrocław campus receives the prestigious A+ category

The "A+" category is awarded to less than 4% of all the institutions under assessment.

Studies in law among the best academic programmes according to the Ministry of Science and Higher Education.

Professor Cialdini receives an honorary doctorate from SWPS.


At that time abroad:

  • The European Union welcomes its new Member State - Croatia,
  • Royal Baby is born,
  • a meteor shower hits Chelyabinsk,
  • Lem, the first Polish scientific satellite, is launched into space.


Cultural Studies receive a distinction from the Polish Accreditation Committee

Cultural Studies offered in the Faculty of Cultural Studies and Philology receive a distinction after an audit by the Polish Accreditation Committee. This is the first such high result for cultural studies in the history of the Committee’s activity.

SWPS joins the nationwide celebrations of the 25th anniversary of the first partially free elections in Poland.


At that time in Poland and abroad:

  • The Polish version of Wikipedia reaches one million entries,
  • The Voyager 1 probe enters interstellar space - a boundary which humanity has never crossed before in history,
  • Heweliusz, the second Polish satellite, is successfully launched into space.


The first private university in Poland!

SWPS receives its sixth qualification to confer the degree of doctor in the field of literature studies. It can now use the word “university” officially as part of its name.


At that time in Poland and abroad:

  • the first successful face transplant is performed,
  • doctors in Poland successfully perform the first chain transplant,
  • “Ida” directed by Paweł Pawlikowski is receives an Academy Award for best foreign language film.


The “Polish Nobel Prize” for professor Wojciszke

The prize is awarded to professor Bogdan Wojciszke by the Foundation for Polish Science for developing a model of causality and communality as the basic dimensions of social cognition.

Distinction for the Psychology programme in Warsaw and the Faculty of Psychology in Wrocław. The Sopot campus obtains the right to grant the degree of doctor in the field of psychology.

After 20 years of service as Rector of the university, professor Andrzej Eliasz hands over the chair to professor Roman Cieślak.


At that time in Poland and abroad:

  • Donald Trump is elected the 45th President of the United States of America,
  • Great Britain holds a referendum which will later trigger the Brexit process,
  • crisis breaks out around the Constitutional Tribunal in Poland,
  • Netflix becomes available in Poland.


The Strefa Psyche YouTube channel awarded the “Złoty Spinacz” distinction

The YouTube channel of SWPS University’s Strefa Psyche is awarded the prestigious Złoty Spinacz distinction by the Polish Public Relations Companies Association in its Branded Content category. It also wins first prize in the Genius Universitatis competition organized by "Perspektywy” magazine in the Content Marketing category.


At that time abroad:

  • unrest in Poland due to the controversial reform of the judiciary,
  • Android (and by extension Linux) becomes the most popular operating system on the planet,
  • Leonardo da Vinci's "Savior of the World" is sold for $450 million in an auction in New York.


The right to confer the degree of doktor habilitowany in the scope of legal science

The Faculty of Law in Warsaw receives the right to confer the degree of doktor habilitowany in legal science.


At that time in Poland and abroad:

  • a nationwide women's protest against stricter abortion laws takes place under the informal name “black Friday”,
  • prince Henry and Meghan Markle take their marriage vows,
  • the 23rd Olympic Winter Games start in Pyongyang, South Korea.


The right to confer the degree of doctor in the psychology discipline for campuses in Poznań and Katowice

Campuses in Poznań and Katowice receive the qualification to grant the degree of doctor of social sciences in the scope of the discipline of psychology.


At that time abroad:

  • scientists present the first-ever image of a black hole in the centre of the M87 galaxy,
  • the series of thousands of forest fires in the Amazon begins,
  • Mr Pawel Adamowicz, the mayor of Gdansk, is attacked with a knife during the 29th Grand Finale Fundraiser of the Great Orchestra of Christmas Charity. He dies the next day as a result of his injuries.


Establishment of the Faculty of Design in Warsaw

School of Form moves to Warsaw. The Faculty of Design in Warsaw is established. Doctor Agnieszka Jacobson-Cielelcka becomes the dean of the newly founded unit.

The university receives the qualification to grant doctoral degrees in the discipline of political and administration sciences. This is the sixth doctoral qualification received by SWPS University.

Professor Jan Strelau, a legendary figure in Polish psychology and a very important person for our University, passes away.


At that time abroad:

  • The coronavirus pandemic is announced on 11 March,
  • Great Britain leaves the European Union,
  • Luxembourg becomes the first country in the world to introduce completely free public transport within its borders.


25th anniversary

Today, SWPS University is the first and only non-public university in Poland, an institution respected not only by the academic community, but also by the business environment.

University in numbers:

  • campuses in five Polish cities: Warsaw, Wrocław, Sopot, Poznań and Katowice,
  • nearly 90 study tracks and specializations in more than a dozen fields of higher education study,
  • doctoral studies and over 100 postgraduate courses,
  • over 15 thousand students,
  • remarkable staff with high academic degrees, including professor (75), doktor habilitowany (59), full-time Ph.D. (183),
  • countless academic degrees conferred, including Ph.D. (153) and doktor habilitowany (37),
  • 6 qualifications to confer the degree of doctor and 3 qualifications to grant the degree of doktor habilitowany.