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Why do people dismiss psychology degrees? watch

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    I've seen quite a few people in the forums saying that psychology degrees are useless and are a waste of time and I really don't understand why someone would think that.

    Say if someone wishes to be an assistant psychologist which requires a masters degree in psychology, is the degree a waste of time even though it has allowed them to get a job that they find interesting and enjoy?

    Say if someone does a psychology degree and then progresses onto postgraduate study and becomes a chartered psychologist or a clinical psychologist and is earning up to £80,000 a year and helping people who are suffering with mental health issues, is their psychology degree useless?
    Should we just abolish all psychologists and let the mentally ill suffer with no help if psychology degrees are so useless?

    And what about forensic psychologists who do so much valuable work alongside the police to help catch criminals?

    And now for those who do not become psychologists at the end of their degree...
    So what if not everybody who does a psychology degree becomes a psychologist at the end of it? This is the beauty of a psychology degree- it does not narrow down your career path- it opens doors. If a student does not do well after having graduated with a psychology degree, then perhaps this is down to them as a person and not the degree. There are many, many, many degrees that are more 'useless' than psychology in the sense that they offer nothing to the students or society yet they do not even get mentioned or looked down upon like psychology does. I will not mention the subjects I have in mind as I do not wish to offend anyone.

    I'm not saying that psychology should be the new way of life, but it most certainly is NOT useless or a waste of time.

    I will be interested to see any opinions that people have on this topic in the comments. Pls no STEM fanatics who think that anyone who isn't a mathematician is a pleb.
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    I think in general it's because for any career other than becoming a psychologist, there is probably another degree out there that's more useful. And because it's a pseudo-science; a lot of it is theorising and hard to definitely prove when compared with the traditional sciences.
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    surely it's not the degrees that are useless... it's the people who carry their degrees and boast as if they've a god given right to employment. I think that's what most of the snobs don't understand. When looking for work, a graduate without work experience has as much chance as someone with 0 GCSE's but 6 years of work under her belt.
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    (Original post by jessyjellytot14)
    I've seen quite a few people in the forums saying that psychology degrees are useless and are a waste of time and I really don't understand why someone would think that.

    Say if someone wishes to be an assistant psychologist which requires a masters degree in psychology, is the degree a waste of time even though it has allowed them to get a job that they find interesting and enjoy?

    Say if someone does a psychology degree and then progresses onto postgraduate study and becomes a chartered psychologist or a clinical psychologist and is earning up to £80,000 a year and helping people who are suffering with mental health issues, is their psychology degree useless?
    Should we just abolish all psychologists and let the mentally ill suffer with no help if psychology degrees are so useless?

    And what about forensic psychologists who do so much valuable work alongside the police to help catch criminals?

    And now for those who do not become psychologists at the end of their degree...
    So what if not everybody who does a psychology degree becomes a psychologist at the end of it? This is the beauty of a psychology degree- it does not narrow down your career path- it opens doors. If a student does not do well after having graduated with a psychology degree, then perhaps this is down to them as a person and not the degree. There are many, many, many degrees that are more 'useless' than psychology in the sense that they offer nothing to the students or society yet they do not even get mentioned or looked down upon like psychology does. I will not mention the subjects I have in mind as I do not wish to offend anyone.

    I'm not saying that psychology should be the new way of life, but it most certainly is NOT useless or a waste of time.

    I will be interested to see any opinions that people have on this topic in the comments. Pls no STEM fanatics who think that anyone who isn't a mathematician is a pleb.
    I love psychology!:heart: What you have said is so true! People also don't realise that psychology is much more than to do with mental illness - psychology concerns every aspect of daily life
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    My uni offers a four year programme in which you can spend a year studying abroad or a year on placement and I would much prefer the yr abroad, so would this out me a disadvantage?
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    nucdev your perception?
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    I thought it was common for most psychology majors to go into careers unrelated to psychology, as long as you have a variety of options in what professions you want to go in which also allows progression, I wouldn't say that degree is useless, espeacially if you enjoyed studying it. I thought people only thought it was useless becsuse getting into postgraduate psychology programmes are very competitive.
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    I studied psyc at alevel and in the course we looked at the issue of whether psychology should be considered a science or not. There were various arguments for example the lack of paradigm, most of the people in my class sided with the idea that it isn't a science. This may be why it's looked down by many the fact that some see it as a psuedo science. Also the fact that some do a degree in psychology when they don't really know what they want to to at uni. For example in my college many applied to do psychology be they wanted to do a science but they couldn't quite justify applying to the hard sciences. Because of this psychology is oversaturated and this makes it difficult and competitive to get a job in the field unless you do postgraduate study.
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    I don't think it's a useless subject but tbh I think it's become a bit of a default option for a lot of students who don't have much of a plan... and probably has a lot more undergraduate places at UK universities than needed to match the real world demand for psych graduates.

    if you're good and have a realistic plan then go for it.

    (all IMO)
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    (Original post by grl9096)
    My uni offers a four year programme in which you can spend a year studying abroad or a year on placement and I would much prefer the yr abroad, so would this out me a disadvantage?
    Not necessarily. There will most likely be opportunities in the country you'll be studying abroad in, even if you end up volunteering or working part-time. If not, you'll have plenty of time to do placements after you've finished your degree. However, these will probably be quite low paid at first but once your experience builds up, better opportunities will arise in the future.
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    (Original post by jessyjellytot14)
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    I've just been accepted to do an Masters in Organizational Psychology - the way I see it, if you enjoy what you're doing and make a decent living out of it, why should it matter?

    There are much, much worse degrees out there than Psychology - this is the study of mental health and anybody who denies it's importance clearly doesn't understand how serious mental issues can be to an individual.

    I don't agree with people arguing fiercely that Psychology is as much a science as Biology/Chemistry, because you can't categorise them in the same way. Personally I don't think it's a natural "science", simply because I don't think that's how people typically define the word science.
    However this doesn't make it any less important.

    All I would say is, if you like Psychology then just do it. There are over 90 different areas in this discipline and a whole host of job opportunities around the world. If you're happy with the subject and you have a plan for the future, just do the degree regardless of whether your friends think it's a valid area of study or not.
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    (Original post by jessyjellytot14)
    I've seen quite a few people in the forums saying that psychology degrees are useless and are a waste of time and I really don't understand why someone would think that.
    From what I've seen the main issue is there's far more people doing psych at degree level than there is professional jobs. It also struggles from a lot fair calls of it being pseudoscience. Look at last year the problems of reproducible studies and a similar thing happening again this year with the fMRI scans.
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    (Original post by jessyjellytot14)
    I've seen quite a few people in the forums saying that psychology degrees are useless and are a waste of time and I really don't understand why someone would think that.

    Say if someone wishes to be an assistant psychologist which requires a masters degree in psychology, is the degree a waste of time even though it has allowed them to get a job that they find interesting and enjoy?

    Say if someone does a psychology degree and then progresses onto postgraduate study and becomes a chartered psychologist or a clinical psychologist and is earning up to £80,000 a year and helping people who are suffering with mental health issues, is their psychology degree useless?
    Should we just abolish all psychologists and let the mentally ill suffer with no help if psychology degrees are so useless?

    And what about forensic psychologists who do so much valuable work alongside the police to help catch criminals?

    And now for those who do not become psychologists at the end of their degree...
    So what if not everybody who does a psychology degree becomes a psychologist at the end of it? This is the beauty of a psychology degree- it does not narrow down your career path- it opens doors. If a student does not do well after having graduated with a psychology degree, then perhaps this is down to them as a person and not the degree. There are many, many, many degrees that are more 'useless' than psychology in the sense that they offer nothing to the students or society yet they do not even get mentioned or looked down upon like psychology does. I will not mention the subjects I have in mind as I do not wish to offend anyone.

    I'm not saying that psychology should be the new way of life, but it most certainly is NOT useless or a waste of time.

    I will be interested to see any opinions that people have on this topic in the comments. Pls no STEM fanatics who think that anyone who isn't a mathematician is a pleb.
    Sorry but I also feel you do not need special abilities to do a psychology degree
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    Psychology is a science but it just seems to be more flexible in the way that it is taught. Psychology is also much more difficult to predict and to work with (in terms of a career) because cases are so individual and requires the psychologist to be very person-centered (a trait uncommonly seen in other sciences/STEM subjects (apart from a medical professional ,GP))

    Of course we can argue that psychology is and isn't a science but that comes down to the definition of 'science' and what a scientific subject should constitute.
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    (Original post by skeptical_john)
    From what I've seen the main issue is there's far more people doing psych at degree level than there is professional jobs. It also struggles from a lot fair calls of it being pseudoscience. Look at last year the problems of reproducible studies and a similar thing happening again this year with the fMRI scans.
    In my opinion, this isn't due to the fact that there is a lack of professional jobs (for example, there are currently not enough psychologists/counselors/therapists available for the large increasing numbers of people suffering from mental illness, hence why a lot of people have to wait up to a year after referral until they can receive mental help) but I think the main reason is that a lot of people choose to do a psychology degree because they find it interesting and not because they would like a career out of it. This of course is not the degree's fault.
    In addition, many of the professional jobs require post-graduate study which I guess people who do not want a psychology related career are not willing to do, which makes sense.
    Do you know of any articles that talk about the problems of reproducible studies and fMRI scans? (Not being rude, I am just generally interested).
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    This is a good one on the recent fMRI

    http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/ne.../#.V4t9yzXG9_l

    On the psych reproducible studies last year just google it was pretty much mainstream news and there is no shortage about it.
    ie
    http://www.nature.com/news/over-half...y-test-1.18248

    Yes there will always be much more demand for mental health services as there people available until the country starts to take it seriously.

    I've not seen anyone calling for psych to be abolished though? I think it needs to narrow down its focus perhaps on how to deal with mental illnesses and much more rigorous and transparent studies.
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    (Original post by IYGB)
    Sorry but I also feel you do not need special abilities to do a psychology degree
    Fair do's but this doesn't mean that psychology degrees are useless or a waste of time.
    Saying that though, if you compare the entry requirements for psychology courses compared to the entry requirements for other courses, you'll see that the requirements are level with or sometimes higher than the STEM subjects which suggests that you do in fact need 'special abilities'.
    I'll give you a few examples:

    University of Bath:
    Psychology: A*AA, Maths: A*AA, Natural Sciences: A*AA, Chemistry: AAA

    University of Loughborough:
    Psychology: AAB, Physics: AAB, Chemistry: ABB

    University of Lincoln:
    Psychology: AAB/ABB, Biology: ABB/BBB, Maths: BBC/BBB, Chemistry: BBC/BBB
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    (Original post by jessyjellytot14)
    Fair do's but this doesn't mean that psychology degrees are useless or a waste of time.
    Saying that though, if you compare the entry requirements for psychology courses compared to the entry requirements for other courses, you'll see that the requirements are level with or sometimes higher than the STEM subjects which suggests that you do in fact need 'special abilities'.
    I'll give you a few examples:

    University of Bath:
    Psychology: A*AA, Maths: A*AA, Natural Sciences: A*AA, Chemistry: AAA

    University of Loughborough:
    Psychology: AAB, Physics: AAB, Chemistry: ABB

    University of Lincoln:
    Psychology: AAB/ABB, Biology: ABB/BBB, Maths: BBC/BBB, Chemistry: BBC/BBB
    Although I don't discredit psychology in any way (I think it's a wonderful subject), the reason why entry requirements are higher is probably more to do with the fact it's more competitive!

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    (Original post by Changing Skies)
    Although I don't discredit psychology in any way (I think it's a wonderful subject), the reason why entry requirements are higher is probably more to do with the fact it's more competitive!

    Posted from TSR Mobile
    Yeah I totally agree but this further disproves the previous poster's statement that you do not need 'special abilities' to do a psychology degree because if you are able to get a place on a competitive course with high entry requirements, then you clearly do have 'special abilities'!
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    (Original post by Changing Skies)
    Although I don't discredit psychology in any way (I think it's a wonderful subject), the reason why entry requirements are higher is probably more to do with the fact it's more competitive!

    Posted from TSR Mobile
    I agree to an extent.

    As another said above, a lot of people choose to do Psychology because it's interesting. Nowadays, most people think it's just normal practice to "get a degree" and since Psychology is a popular subject in general, you'll find a lot of Psychology graduates with no real intention of having a Psychology-related career.

    However, this doesn't mean people should use this as a means of invalidating the discipline as an area of study because you have many people - myself included - who go on to study at Masters or Doctorate level.

    Whether you like it or not, Psychology is an essential subject. You may not believe it to be a "science" strictly speaking, but only a fool would deny it's importance.

    The person claiming you need no "special abilities" to study Psychology clearly doesn't understand. Anybody can "study" anything at the Undergraduate level (if they're clever enough to get the entry requirements), but it requires a lot of "special abilities" to do well in your degree and study it at the Postgraduate level.
 
 
 

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