Can you read my mind?: What studying Psychology at Warwick is really like
This blog post is to give more insight into what undergraduate Psychology is like at Warwick, written in the form of a practical report – something you will have to do a lot of here as a Psychology student. In this report I will shed light onto the realities of studying the subject hopefully in order to give you a more realistic viewpoint on the field as a whole.
Psychology is simply put the scientific study of the human mind and its functions, especially those affecting behaviour in a given context. Key emphasis on the ‘scientific’ part. In the first introductory lectures, the status of Psychology a science will be engrained into your mind. To say Psychology is not a science is to strip it of its core.
The ‘Psychology in Context’ module that gives insight into the History of Psychology clearly explains the roots of the subject and highlights its advancements. In the 19 Century, Psychologists began to move to combine physiology with psychology and it developed into a more empirical science where the senses were investigated experimentally. Objectivity superseded subjectivity with the Scientific Method becoming an integral part of research and theoretical development. As a result, you should be prepared to study science when you choose to study Psychology at degree level – especially at Warwick.
The psychology department at Warwick is recognised as one of the UK’s top research departments so it is no surprise that the degree is specifically tailored to encourage students to also become diligent researchers.
At Warwick, in accordance with guidelines from the British Psychological Association, the first year allows you to have an introduction in all aspects of Psychology. This is done through 4 compulsory modules that introduce psychobiology, history, development, memory and social aspects of Psychology. What some people may not anticipate is the emphasis on methodology and statistics. Both have whole modules dedicated to them in which you are trained to become a competent psychologist. Seminars and practical groups will ensure your practical and mathematical skills are refined and will enable you to conduct a research project on an area of particular interest each. By third year, you will be ready to conduct your own research project that draws upon both knowledge and skills you have acquired throughout the years.
After one year of studying Psychology, I unfortunately cannot read your mind. Instead I have introductory but well-rounded knowledge of the study of the human mind and behaviour as well understanding into the ways in which we go about researching and reporting it. Our conclusion is that, Psychology is an interesting and varied subject that allows you develop wide theoretical understanding but also practical understanding, all in a scientific context.
Although a lot of emphasis is put on research, the department work closely with the NHS, the police and international bodies such as the United Nations. There are a wide range of career paths of which you can transfer the skills you have developed during your studies. The departmental careers consultant provides verbal and practical advice and offers guidance for a wide range of career paths. So whether you become a psychological researcher or an investment banker, the important thing is to understand is the degree equips you with a wide range of skills and the department will support you in seeing how that transfers into the world of work.