Marshmallows1
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Hi there I am a 2nd Year Biomed, and I picked modules within Neuroscience and Psychology. I genuinely thought psychology would interest me, but I find it soo difficult to understand the studies and I am not able to write good essays. For example, my essay was on the topic of whether self-control at age 4 can determine future life patterns and I got soo many improvements. This is super useful but the person who marked it had quite a few exclamation marks which makes me think that he is seriously yelling at me.

I am now left with a month before my exams, and I have to squeeze out 2 psychology essays in the online exam, I have no idea how I am going to do that.

I am a total beginner in psychology and if anyone has advice on how to structure my essays, any revision tips and what to take away from reading studies, please any advice would be greatly appreciated. I need every bit of help there is out there Thank you!
Last edited by Marshmallows1; 6 months ago
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TiffSlade
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Psych essays tend to go:
Introduction to essay
Explain what the phenomena is
Critically analyse it (nothing is perfect most things have a lot of criticism)
Conclusion

Explanations should include a reference to theories that underpin the idea. In terms of studies the methodology and findings are the most important sections, it tells you what they did and what they found, from that you can extrapolate to strengths and weaknesses of the study. Always try to find the seminal studies of an area (research that everyone uses) but also be aware that in psychology anything over 15 years old is considered to be quite old research.

Example
introduction: I am looking at whether self control in 4 year olds can determine future life patterns
Explain: what is self-control as a concept, how do you measure it? What do you mean by future life patterns?
Critically analyse: neuropsychology suggests that the reasoning section of the frontal lobe doesn't develop until you are between 18 and 25 therefore likelihood of longterm impact is low, however ...
Conclusion: the evidence suggests this is right answer.

Always write in 3rd person of course but this sort of thing should hopefully help???
Sorry if I got the general idea of you post wrong
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Marshmallows1
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(Original post by TiffSlade)
Psych essays tend to go:
Introduction to essay
Explain what the phenomena is
Critically analyse it (nothing is perfect most things have a lot of criticism)
Conclusion

Explanations should include a reference to theories that underpin the idea. In terms of studies the methodology and findings are the most important sections, it tells you what they did and what they found, from that you can extrapolate to strengths and weaknesses of the study. Always try to find the seminal studies of an area (research that everyone uses) but also be aware that in psychology anything over 15 years old is considered to be quite old research.

Example
introduction: I am looking at whether self control in 4 year olds can determine future life patterns
Explain: what is self-control as a concept, how do you measure it? What do you mean by future life patterns?
Critically analyse: neuropsychology suggests that the reasoning section of the frontal lobe doesn't develop until you are between 18 and 25 therefore likelihood of longterm impact is low, however ...
Conclusion: the evidence suggests this is right answer.

Always write in 3rd person of course but this sort of thing should hopefully help???
Sorry if I got the general idea of you post wrong
Thank you so much for your help, this is great! I had a follow up question, if that's okay. How do you describe a study? I got a few feedback marks for saying that my paragraphs tend to describe the study more than writing arguments for the study. So how much detail do you actually need for describing a study in your essay? What is your go to?
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TiffSlade
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(Original post by Marshmallows1)
Thank you so much for your help, this is great! I had a follow up question, if that's okay. How do you describe a study? I got a few feedback marks for saying that my paragraphs tend to describe the study more than writing arguments for the study. So how much detail do you actually need for describing a study in your essay? What is your go to?
I tend to start with what they say, what did they find then add in comments about methodology as relevant for example study x found that the 4 year old temperament links to secondary school detention levels, however because they used a sample of 6 pupils in a low socioeconomic area catchment school, it would be hard to generalise this finding beyond the context it was completed in.
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Marshmallows1
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(Original post by TiffSlade)
I tend to start with what they say, what did they find then add in comments about methodology as relevant for example study x found that the 4 year old temperament links to secondary school detention levels, however because they used a sample of 6 pupils in a low socioeconomic area catchment school, it would be hard to generalise this finding beyond the context it was completed in.
This is super helpful, thanks a bunch!
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