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    I am aiming to become a clinical psychologist, but I have a bundle of questions. Anyone that can answer any of these would really be useful.

    1. How would I find out which uni's are 'best for psychology'? Is there such a thing? What would make one 'better' for a subject than another?

    2. Does the reputation of the university matter? Like, if you got the same outcome at Cambridge university as another person in Birmingham university would you be more employable at one than the other?

    3. Right now, studying A-level psychology, I feel it is already quite complex. In order to cope with a clinical psychology degree course, should I be finding this stuff relatively easy to do when teaching myself?

    4. I expect I know the answer to this, but when you are learning certain concepts in a subject like psychology - does anyone else feel it is difficult to apply them to real life situations? Will a university course provide the sufficient experience and learning that I need to be able to do this? Or should this be innate?

    5. What advantage would someone who wants to do psychology as a career gain from doing a PhD?
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    I can't answer all the questions, but I'll try.

    1 + 2. Your best option would be university ranking tables, although those are quite misleading at times. Instead of looking at universities as a whole, looking at departments and the faculty is better. But these are quite generic - you should look at which one fits you better, and which university you'd feel more comfortable in. With regards to outcomes, in the end, it's your performance that counts. The reputation of the university you go to does play a part in future career options, however it's not the only thing that matters. Most employers tend to look at your performance first, at least, that's what I've seen and heard.

    4. A university level course will go into more depth than a secondary school course, and is often quite different. I plan on studying Economics, and I understand what you mean when you say it's hard to apply a concept to real life situations. Therefore, I read the business news every day, and I try to apply content I've learned to the article. It helps me revise both the syllabus content, as well as providing me with examples to use in my answers. It's not an innate skill or ability, you can only learn it through practice, so just keep thinking about how anything you learn can apply to everyday situations.

    I hope this helped?
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    (Original post by oscaranderson)
    I am aiming to become a clinical psychologist, but I have a bundle of questions. Anyone that can answer any of these would really be useful.

    1. How would I find out which uni's are 'best for psychology'? Is there such a thing? What would make one 'better' for a subject than another?

    2. Does the reputation of the university matter? Like, if you got the same outcome at Cambridge university as another person in Birmingham university would you be more employable at one than the other?

    3. Right now, studying A-level psychology, I feel it is already quite complex. In order to cope with a clinical psychology degree course, should I be finding this stuff relatively easy to do when teaching myself?

    4. I expect I know the answer to this, but when you are learning certain concepts in a subject like psychology - does anyone else feel it is difficult to apply them to real life situations? Will a university course provide the sufficient experience and learning that I need to be able to do this? Or should this be innate?

    5. What advantage would someone who wants to do psychology as a career gain from doing a PhD?
    1) Rankings are quite good a way, although they take into account various things that you might not be interested in. Research quality plays a big role in rankings, but at undergrad teaching quality will matter more.

    2) To some extent-- employers are less likely to know the difference in workload between, say, Durham and Exeter. However it does matter - getting a first from a higher ranked university will tend to matter more since employers will assume that to get in the top 10% of your class at UCL (where entry grades are AAA*) your cleverer than someone who did the same at a met. Oxbridge also have more money for teaching and employers are aware your likely to have done more work there-- although they may not necessarily care.

    3) Kind of. A level is more about memorising facts, at degree level there are less facts.

    4) For most jobs you'll never apply your psychology degree subject-specific knowledge, but use other skills if you've learnt. A degree is also just a trophy showing your capable of something. I think psychology does teach us alot about our selves, but its not necessarily useful knowledge. For example if you learn about perception you find out that people can be faceblind, or can only pay attention to one object at a time, or taste words. This tells us a lot about sensory processing, and how at a deep level our senses aren't real (e.g. colour) but a creation of the mind, but isn't necessarily "applicable" to everyday life

    5) Research skills. Presentation skills. Interpersonal skills. Its direct training to be a lecturer, but can be transferable to private sector research industries aswell. It can also provide you with expertise in an area of research which lets you move on to professional psychology (educational psychology, forensic, neuro, etc.). I suspect most people, however, simply do it out of interest. However, getting funding to do a PhD is fairly difficult, and you dont get paid much, so its not worth it for economical reasons...

    Either way, im going to stop procrastinating and get back to work now....
 
 
 
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