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    Thank goodness there are other people who feel that way because I thought I was the only one. :p: There are some great replies on this thread. I sometimes think that I may regret it and that does scare me a little bit but I try not to think about it. I'd like to think I'm sort of in the middle when it comes to seeing psychology as a science although I think I'm more scientifically inclined because I do look forward to the biological modules the most. I'm not wonderful at maths but the prospect of stats doesn't really bother me so I'm hoping I will be able to cope with it.

    Like others in this thread I could have gone for something like biological sciences, neuroscience etc but it doesn't have that subjectivity which psychology has which I found made a big difference when choosing courses. It just wasn't quite right. That and its only psychology which focuses on human behaviour with scientific aspects as far as I know.

    I guess the only way to know is to go to uni and find out! If I love it, great, if I don't and run away screaming then I'll see what it is I like the best and go from there. :p: I'd regret it more not trying.
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    (Original post by Retrospect)
    People like you and me (I hope) have researched what the study of psychology really involves, including looking at the job prospects realistically, and have reached some sort of conclusion in our heads regarding whether this is the right choice or not for us.
    Ahhh this is true for me. But I worry a lot because I'm not really an academic. I'm just trying to be "sensible" in choosing Psychology. And ironically this might not be a sensible decision after all.

    I've no idea if I can stick it. Worse that I've already dropped out of one course before, even if it was only Film and the main reason was the poor job prospects. ):
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    (Original post by yoyo462001)
    From the people ive talked to it seems like its just because of the maths, but really how hard could the maths be. Im assuming it will just be mainly statistics they do.
    ahh i hate people who say 'how hard can it be'.
    at cardiff we were asked to calculate a 2 way ANOVA by hand for a statistics assignment, not even the students doing maths could help us as its such a ridiculous thing to do by hand as its about 4 pages of sums! when we asked our tutors for help they couldn't even do it as so many people just use a statistics programme so there was no need to learn how to do it manually.

    http://www.docstoc.com/docs/11024584...ith-example%29

    if you can do all that ^^ you may be fine, but thats just year 1 stuff!
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    (Original post by Polly1101)
    ahh i hate people who say 'how hard can it be'.
    at cardiff we were asked to calculate a 2 way ANOVA by hand for a statistics assignment, not even the students doing maths could help us as its such a ridiculous thing to do by hand as its about 4 pages of sums! when we asked our tutors for help they couldn't even do it as so many people just use a statistics programme so there was no need to learn how to do it manually.

    http://www.docstoc.com/docs/11024584...ith-example%29

    if you can do all that ^^ you may be fine, but thats just year 1 stuff!
    Well with 2 way ANOVA if you know the step to find each bit then your fine, i agree its pretty ridiculous asking people to do all the calculations for it. Then again doing it manually isn't hard its just really long.
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    (Original post by Polly1101)
    ahh i hate people who say 'how hard can it be'.
    at cardiff we were asked to calculate a 2 way ANOVA by hand for a statistics assignment, not even the students doing maths could help us as its such a ridiculous thing to do by hand as its about 4 pages of sums! when we asked our tutors for help they couldn't even do it as so many people just use a statistics programme so there was no need to learn how to do it manually.

    http://www.docstoc.com/docs/11024584...ith-example%29

    if you can do all that ^^ you may be fine, but thats just year 1 stuff!
    I know what you mean about all the statistics you have to do by hand. Even a friend doing a maths degree and another doing computer-science didn't understand when I asked for help. :afraid:

    I almost think I'd be better at straightforward maths problems, even though that was always my weakest subject.
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    (Original post by GodspeedGehenna)
    The reasons I'm not happy studying Psychology:

    1. Too many undergraduates. It's a great subject, but its the open access that is letting it down big time. Instead of the swelling departments that we have now, universities need to bump up their entry requirements and accept only the leading students.

    Why? Not enough demand of Psych graduates to justify the supply. When everyone and their dog has a Psych degree, it looks bad. Even worse, when a large proportion of those representing the field are ditsy "i-wan-be-developmontol-clinukol-psychologost" types, it's even worse. I now cringe when I hear that someone is studying Psychology, and I hate telling people what I study. I'm actually embarrased by the choice I've made.

    2. Not enough Biology. I'm a firm Materialist, and I strongly believe that one day the cartesian gap will be bridged by neuroscience and there will be zero need for Psychologists or the concept of "the mind". This is probably my own fault for choosing Psychology over Neuroscience and is something I can get over once I select my third year modules. However, this means I fundamentally disagree with the prevailing opinion within most undergraduates in my field whom appear to still be selecting higher-level explanations over more fundamental lower-level theories.

    3. Not enough stats. I love stats.

    4. Most of Psychology is not useful. I dread the day when someone asks me "So what has Psychology done for mankind?" if I am unable to refer to cognitive neuroscience instead.

    5. The students are annoying 9 times out of 10. They all seem to think they're going to waltz into the D.Clin.Psych the September after graduation.

    6. A-Level Psychology is a joke in its current state. It needs to either be reformed or scrapped completely. It makes the field look bad.

    Good thread. I needed that rant. Now back to my essay/watching Evan Almighty.
    Okay, you have given me quite a scare. I don't want to become a Clinical Psychiatrist or anything, in fact I cannot think of a worse thing to spend your life doing. Thats not true, being a Dentist must suck,

    Anyway, I want to become a writer and maybe play around with shares and what not. I took Psychology and choose to do it at Uni to get a better idea of myself and those around me and get a better perspective of the world around me. Are you telling me that Psychology will not help me understand people better?

    I find this hard to believe a, even after the two years of A level, I am developing skills such as not automatically judging people and realising no matter how evil or stupid someones actions are, there is a reason for it that stems beyond one word phrases.

    May I also ask why you have continued with the course if you hate it?

    Also would that statistics get me used back to numbers? I havent done maths since getting a B at GCSE and found it tediously hard my whole life. How much will I struggle?
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    (Original post by adam_zed)
    Okay, you have given me quite a scare. I don't want to become a Clinical Psychiatrist or anything, in fact I cannot think of a worse thing to spend your life doing. Thats not true, being a Dentist must suck,

    1. Anyway, I want to become a writer and maybe play around with shares and what not. I took Psychology and choose to do it at Uni to get a better idea of myself and those around me and get a better perspective of the world around me. Are you telling me that Psychology will not help me understand people better?

    I find this hard to believe a, even after the two years of A level, I am developing skills such as not automatically judging people and realising no matter how evil or stupid someones actions are, there is a reason for it that stems beyond one word phrases.

    2. May I also ask why you have continued with the course if you hate it?

    3. Also would that statistics get me used back to numbers? I havent done maths since getting a B at GCSE and found it tediously hard my whole life. How much will I struggle?
    For the sake of convenience, I have numbered your questions.

    1. Psychology will give you new perspectives on human behaviour, but you're not suddenly going to be able to predict behaviour; only apply post-hoc explanations to why it happened. Whether or not you believe that is useful is a different matter. Personally, I don't.

    2. I have continued it because I do actually enjoy some components of it such as neuroscience and statistics. I also want to apply for graduate entry medicine after I graduate.

    3. There is a lot of statistical analysis in Psychology. About 1/3rd of your first and second years will be dedicated to statistics. Then in your third year, a big proportion will be putting those skills to the test when you do your research project.
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    (Original post by GodspeedGehenna)
    For the sake of convenience, I have numbered your questions.

    1. Psychology will give you new perspectives on human behaviour, but you're not suddenly going to be able to predict behaviour; only apply post-hoc explanations to why it happened. Whether or not you believe that is useful is a different matter. Personally, I don't.

    2. I have continued it because I do actually enjoy some components of it such as neuroscience and statistics. I also want to apply for graduate entry medicine after I graduate.

    3. There is a lot of statistical analysis in Psychology. About 1/3rd of your first and second years will be dedicated to statistics. Then in your third year, a big proportion will be putting those skills to the test when you do your research project.
    1. Well actually this is why I originally took Psychology for A Level, but having realized what Psychology was really about I enjoy it far more now anyway. This common misconception about psychology annoys me, as when I tell people thats what I want to study at Uni, they automatically think I am sizing them up.

    2. What particular career do you want to follow?

    3. Would the Stats not help me if I went into marketing or even wanted to dabble in my spare time on the Stock Exchange?
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    (Original post by adam_zed)
    1. Well actually this is why I originally took Psychology for A Level, but having realized what Psychology was really about I enjoy it far more now anyway. This common misconception about psychology annoys me, as when I tell people thats what I want to study at Uni, they automatically think I am sizing them up.

    2. What particular career do you want to follow?

    3. Would the Stats not help me if I went into marketing or even wanted to dabble in my spare time on the Stock Exchange?
    Do you mean what speciality of medicine? I can't really decide yet, but neurosurgery, neurology and emergency medicine are really interesting. I haven't had the chance to see neurosurgery/neurology yet, but I would really like to.

    I'm sure stats would help, yeah.
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    I agree that there are so many students studying psychology that you have to do alot to stand out from the rest. But there still are unis that have better reputations than others so that will make those students stand out, and if you have a genuine interest in psychology then volunteering etc shouldn't be much of a compromise to get yourself even further ahead.

    I am one of the typical 'doc-clin-psych' wannabes but i am under no impression that i'm going to get in straight away. I am well aware that i will have to spend the next 3+ years gaining valuable experience where ever i can. I know that 0% of students get straight onto a doctorate course having just graduated.
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    (Original post by Polly1101)
    ahh i hate people who say 'how hard can it be'.
    at cardiff we were asked to calculate a 2 way ANOVA by hand for a statistics assignment, not even the students doing maths could help us as its such a ridiculous thing to do by hand as its about 4 pages of sums! when we asked our tutors for help they couldn't even do it as so many people just use a statistics programme so there was no need to learn how to do it manually.

    http://www.docstoc.com/docs/11024584...ith-example%29

    if you can do all that ^^ you may be fine, but thats just year 1 stuff!
    St Andrews make all 1st and 2nd years do statistics by hand. We don't touch SPSS until 3rd year. Whilst it was a total pain, it has given me a much better idea of how statistics work and why you use particular tests etc.

    Maths was one of my weakest subjects at school. Statistics are hard but not impossible. It's just a set of rules. Don't scare people!
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    There's a lot of stuff I agree with on here but I'll just pick out some bits.

    (Original post by Meliae)

    I've also been leaning more and more heavily towards neuroscience, but I didn't apply for it because I'm most interested in the higher level functions studied in psychology. I also prefer the variety in psychology and the, I imagine, greater opportunities for debate.

    To be honest, I'm not particularly interested in the practical applications, just understanding the mind for its own sake, and I loathe things like consumer and sport psychology. I think I prefer asking questions and asking more questions than actually finding absolute answers. Hmm... perhaps psychology will suit me after all.
    I'm the same. I think I'd like to specialise in neuroscience after my undergrad, we're touching on it Biology at the moment and it's fascinating. I'd love to combine my two biggest interests, Bio and Psych, and be in a super duper job half way haha.

    (Original post by GodspeedGehenna)
    Difficulty is not the definition of a good A-level.

    A-Level Psychology does not do the subject well. While good in some ways, it just focuses way too much on memorisation and regurgitation. It just expects students to remember a bunch of studies and spurt it back out. There is very little expansion of understanding, in that it treats every topic as if they are isolated cells of theory.

    The exam questions are far too predictable and students take advantage of that.

    It also needs to focus more on experimental design and statistical methods. The fact that AQA have pulled their coursework module is just stupid (if anything, coursework should consist of multiple lab reports), and their attempts to copy-cat Physics/Chem/Bio papers is not appropriate for the subject. It needs to be essay based. Bring back the 24 mark essays x3 per module.

    It also needs to encourage students to use research databases like PsychINFO and MetaLib to formulate their own opinions. It presents Psychology as a clear cut field: "This is theory X, it has research A B and C supporting it, and D E and F against it", with no other existing research other than that.

    It's not working well. Needs serious reform.
    Could not agree more. You are not taught how to think for yourself at all (I'm sure we all know plenty of Psychology students who will never learn that). There are too many A-Level courses that get you to jump through hoops by regurgitating textbooks and it's a waste of time on everyone's part. I personally would love to do Psych A-Level coursework and am very much looking forward to lab reports and the third research project, again something a far few people I know wanting to continue with Psych haven't got a clue about either. Taking on an EPQ at college was the best thing I've done to be honest and I'd recommend it to anyone wanting to do Psych or who has a lot of research tasks on their plate with their future degree.

    Sorry, but I like my debates, opinions and the beauty that is individual interpretation, hence my interest in Psychology :yep:

    Balls, think I shoulda done Psych with Neuroscience sometimes! Oh well, I'll post-grad it up with llacerta :p:
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    (Original post by yoyo462001)
    Yeah definitely but with most statistics its just simple maths, im not sure whether its just the endless formula or notation that scare people but i dont think any unis require A level maths for uni psychology hence it must be doable for those at a GCSE level with hard work of course.
    The statistics isn't difficult. It's mainly the illusion of being difficult with the algebra. That puts off most students from putting extra study on how to interpret things.

    BODMAS is a very simple mathematic concept.
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    (Original post by Meliae)
    Good to hear. Where do you study?

    I agree with you there. In my A level course, there appears to be a determination to keep 'psychological' approaches very much separate from 'biological' approaches as if the mind and the brain are totally independent entities. It pisses me off because it leads to all sorts of logical inconsistencies.
    To be honest, I've found the whole emphasis on biology and determinism rather off-putting in this degree.

    It's these attitudes that stop psychology from exploring other 'softer' fields that can offer alot of insight if done properly imo. It's sort of like how supposedly the study of consciousness was swept under the carpet because psychology had to be 'scientific' and all that. It's a limiting factor.
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    I'm a potential Psych drop-out.
    Currently in my first year at University of Birmingham.
    I'll give you my reasons. I was under no illusions regarding course content (my A level teacher was very honest with us about how ridiculous the A level paper was and that it was nothing like degree level psychology) andI actually really enjoy the science emphasis.
    I probably could have researched career prospects a little better, but I think when I applied it wouldn't have changed my decision, I wanted to be a clinical psychologist and was willing to work long and hard to get there.
    What has changed is my own priorities. I am realising that after having a couple of years out I want to get on with life and I'm just not willing to spend years putting more time and more money into academia that might not even get me where I want to be! Hence, as you may be able to figure from my sig , I have decided to opt for a slightly more secure career choice and am transferring to nursing.

    I don't regret trying psych because I do love the subject, but I think you need to be honest with yourself about how much you're willing to put into it and what are you going to do if it doesn't work out? Does advertising appeal? Consumer surveys? Cos it's the sort of career where many psychology graduates end up, and it isn't where I want to be.
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    (Original post by Tombola)
    To be honest, I've found the whole emphasis on biology and determinism rather off-putting in this degree.

    It's these attitudes that stop psychology from exploring other 'softer' fields that can offer alot of insight if done properly imo. It's sort of like how supposedly the study of consciousness was swept under the carpet because psychology had to be 'scientific' and all that. It's a limiting factor.
    In my A level classes, it's like x behaviour/disorder has these possible biological explanations (neurotransmitters, hormones etc) and these possible psychological explanations (psychodynamic, behavioural etc). Criticisms of each are that they 'ignore' the other explanations. I'd prefer them to be more integrated and not treated as being so independent from one another. I like the biological side, but it makes no sense to me to treat the mind and brain so separately when whatever happens in one influences the other.

    Speaking of which, I'd love there to be some mind/brain philosophy in there, or just some more philosophical approaches in general. I tend to prefer the more philosophical areas like free will and consciousness. (I'll probably have to wait til 3rd year for that I know but I read about them.) I thought about applying for joint psych and phil but the courses seemed to be very separate rather than integrated as I wanted (i.e. philosophical approaches to psychology). I also wanted the neuroscience side too. Psych with cogsci at Sussex sounded amazing but I didn't really want to go there. PPP at Oxford would be great too if you could actually do all 3 Ps. If I end up there, it's supposed to be pretty easy to switch so if I end up wanting more philosophy or neuroscience, hopefully that'll be an option.
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    (Original post by Tombola)
    To be honest, I've found the whole emphasis on biology and determinism rather off-putting in this degree.

    It's these attitudes that stop psychology from exploring other 'softer' fields that can offer alot of insight if done properly imo. It's sort of like how supposedly the study of consciousness was swept under the carpet because psychology had to be 'scientific' and all that. It's a limiting factor.
    To be honest, I kind of go the other way with that.

    As a materialist, I fundamentally believe that consciousness, qualia and all that can, and will, be explained at biological levels alone and there will be no need for such terms that otherwise encourage dualism.

    I don't think there is any other way to explain such phenomena.
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    (Original post by GodspeedGehenna)
    To be honest, I kind of go the other way with that.

    As a materialist, I fundamentally believe that consciousness, qualia and all that can, and will, be explained at biological levels alone and there will be no need for such terms that otherwise encourage dualism.

    I don't think there is any other way to explain such phenomena.
    There might not be. I'm sure lots of things such as consciousness will be explained at biological levels eventually, but I find it difficult to imagine how it could trump other explanations in offering insight on human nature.

    When it reaches that stage, I'd probably get bored of it. There's a reason I'm not studying biology. Perhaps I'm being silly and not really understanding sciences properly, but it usually feels extremely limited. I know that biology at A-Level contained a large element of memorisation, and while I can see biology at degree becoming more abstract. It probably contains the whole 'Here are the right answers' attitude to it.

    There's a reason I'm studying psychology over biology. So I'm probably on the extreme opposite to you.
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    Heyy!
    OMG I'm in a similar situation aswell.
    I visited Birmingham university for an applicant visit day on 8th february for Psychology, and like you, i was surprised at how much maths/science that was involved in the course. I started to doubt whether Psychology is for me, seeing as maths is my weakest area and I honestly don't want to drop out, after the fees are at £9000 per year..

    - What course did you change to ?

    I didn't know its possible to change course, I'll probably have a look at English or social work at Birmingham and see if they could let me on..
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    I'm currently in the middle of a "is Psych for me?" meltdown.
    Whilst I love the Biology, I am sometimes left wondering what use my degree is, as my career interests have changed from Criminal Psychology to thinking more along the lines of Christopher Hitchens and Richard Dawkins.

    Really, I'm not sure where to go, but the Neuroscience/Biological Psychology fields are most appealing to me right now.
 
 
 
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