abbiemagowan1
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I am currently halfway through my first year of my psychology degree, and I am unhappy for a number of reasons. I am very unhappy living in university accommodation due to unsociable flatmates and experiencing feelings of loneliness 90% of the time for this reason. I have also really struggled to make friends on my course due to the large number of students studying psychology (around 200) and the fact that we have obscenely low contact hours, so we're only in for 6 hours a week and most of this is in a lecture setting, not in small groups, again making it very hard to make friends. I am very disappointed with my university experience so far, I was so excited to move away from home and begin this new chapter but I just feel like I am so unhappy after being hit with obstacle after obstacle.

I began studying psychology after aspiring to become a Clinical Psychologist throughout my GCSEs and A Levels, as I am very interested in working in mental health services. I was aware before starting my degree that this would require an undergrad, postgrad and years of work experience and I was happy to do so as this was the career I aspired to. However, now I am becoming frustrated with Psychology. It is extremely research heavy and I find most of the theory incredibly dry and unable to be applied to an interaction with a patient, which is what I would like to focus on. This has turned my attention towards mental health nursing, and after doing hours of research into this career and speaking to friends who are on the course I am genuinely beginning to think this could be a great option for me. I have applied through UCAS to start MH Nursing in September at a different uni. However, if anybody is already on this course and is an mH nurse, I have a few questions:

-What clinical skills e.g bloods, injections, cannulations etc are involved in the mental health nursing course?

-What are the advantages of a career in MH nursing over a career as a psychologist??

-In your experience working in mental health services/on placement, do you find that nurses are treated as secondary to psychologists and psychiatrists?
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Charlotte's Web
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(Original post by abbiemagowan1)
I am currently halfway through my first year of my psychology degree, and I am unhappy for a number of reasons. I am very unhappy living in university accommodation due to unsociable flatmates and experiencing feelings of loneliness 90% of the time for this reason. I have also really struggled to make friends on my course due to the large number of students studying psychology (around 200) and the fact that we have obscenely low contact hours, so we're only in for 6 hours a week and most of this is in a lecture setting, not in small groups, again making it very hard to make friends. I am very disappointed with my university experience so far, I was so excited to move away from home and begin this new chapter but I just feel like I am so unhappy after being hit with obstacle after obstacle.

I began studying psychology after aspiring to become a Clinical Psychologist throughout my GCSEs and A Levels, as I am very interested in working in mental health services. I was aware before starting my degree that this would require an undergrad, postgrad and years of work experience and I was happy to do so as this was the career I aspired to. However, now I am becoming frustrated with Psychology. It is extremely research heavy and I find most of the theory incredibly dry and unable to be applied to an interaction with a patient, which is what I would like to focus on. This has turned my attention towards mental health nursing, and after doing hours of research into this career and speaking to friends who are on the course I am genuinely beginning to think this could be a great option for me. I have applied through UCAS to start MH Nursing in September at a different uni. However, if anybody is already on this course and is an mH nurse, I have a few questions:

-What clinical skills e.g bloods, injections, cannulations etc are involved in the mental health nursing course?

-What are the advantages of a career in MH nursing over a career as a psychologist??

-In your experience working in mental health services/on placement, do you find that nurses are treated as secondary to psychologists and psychiatrists?

You'll learn all of those clinical skills as a student (except cannulation as this is only offered at a few universities) and more. How often you put them into practice really depends on what area you will be working in. In some MH areas there are very few clinical skills used.

No one can tell you X is better than Y for you because your priorities and what is important to you would be very different to someone else. You're also going to have a hard time finding someone with experience of both careers.

Nursing can be a very solitary profession. You will mostly learn in lectures and be out on your own (or maybe with 1-2 other students) on placement. When you're working 12 hour shifts and travelling up to 1.5-2 hours each way, it's very hard to fit in time to be sociable. It's not generally a great course in terms of making friends or giving you much small-group learning as you don't spend a great deal of time with other students. Nursing is also increasingly research focussed and there are vast amounts of theories that you need to be aware of to help lead your practice. If this isn't something you enjoy then you may find this an issue. This is not intended to put you off the degree, but I think you do perhaps need to make sure you have a realistic view of what you are signing up for.
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