• Personal Statement:Psychology 37

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Psychology Personal Statement

My enthusiasm to study Psychology began when I came across the research of Dr. Paul Ekman. His ideas and theories on body movement fascinated me, particularly on how we can express so much through involuntary actions and facial expression and this is an area I am keen on. Naturally I have taken an interest in Psychology and have read Psychological news whenever I can. For example, I was interested in the new research into the neurochemistry involved in drug addiction from evidence using FMRI scanners showing that when an addict was offered a possible hit of cocaine; it triggers the VTA pathway and pleasure circuit. The shift towards addiction as more of an illness than a positive choice is clear in this research. Although I have not studied A level Psychology my understanding has developed giving me an interest in media that has a psychological dimension, to the extent where I have begun to ask questions, such as why these things were affecting a person and what causes us, as human, beings to act in a certain way. For example, in the novel 'The Kid' rather than being shocked about the treatment by his parents, I was more intrigued into how his childhood of violence influenced the way in which his life led to drug abuse.

Subjects I have studied at school have also increased my eagerness to study Psychology at degree level. Whilst studying English Literature, our title was, 'The Struggle for Identity'. Some of the texts we were required to read about had characters that were seriously disadvantaged early on their life; thus displaying difficulties as adults to deal with their past. This has also increased my analytical skills, especially in essay writing. Politics and Sociology have been a useful combination also, as they raise many issues regarding family and social class. A pertinent example we have discussed would be the recent London riots, which has highlighted key issues such as the concerns about single parent families and disenfranchised young people expressing their anger and the power of the judiciary. In Sociology, I was taught research methods by a Psychology teacher, whose explanations and examples from her subject increased my eagerness to eventually study Psychology.

I was fortunate enough to have some very valuable work experience, working at a local police station. This sparked an interesting analytical discovery, as I recognised that police officers were very closed off and kept to themselves. I wondered if this was because of their profession and having to withhold information, which could be classed as troubling, and could affect them as individuals. Out of school I volunteer at a care home; this is a rewarding experience. It has been enlightening to understand how many problems that the elderly suffer, such as dementia and how it can be resolved earlier on in life by simple brain training exercises.

I am planning to defer and take a gap year, as I believe I can broaden my knowledge and experience within the subject of psychology. Having explored New York and Washington on a school politics trip in the summer, I have developed a real affinity with the culture. I also have a close family relative that resides in America and I plan to volunteer at Camp America to be a counsellor at a special needs summer camp. In addition to this, I hope to use my time during my gap year to help make me a suitable candidate for my university course. I will be turning 18 and because of this, I intend to volunteer at a Drugs Helpline in Coventry and to also assist at the University Hospital available nearby.

Importantly, I now know I want to move from examining society as a whole to studying individual behaviour, motivations and want to absorb the theoretical perspectives so that I am able to make a more informed judgment about human behaviour.

I am an organised and effective student who is eager to study Psychology. I want to immerse myself in university life and hope to bring something significant to that community.

Universities Applied to:

  • University of East Anglia (C800) - Offer (ABB) Firm
  • University of Sheffield (C800) - Offer (AAB)
  • University of Essex (C803) - Offer (ABB)
  • Lancaster University (C800) - Offer (ABB)
  • Heriot Watt University, Edinburgh (C800) - Offer (BBB)

Grades Achieved:

  • English Literature A2 - Grade: B
  • Sociology A2- Grade: A
  • Government and Politics A2 - Grade: B
  • Religious Studies AS - Grade: C


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