This post is from Anne Pearson, Lecturer in Psychology at Salford. Anne is the Undergraduate Admissions Tutor and Programme Leader for BSc (Hons) Psychology and Counselling. Below she reflects on our most recent Open Day and offers some advice to prospective students about what to include in their personal statements when applying for courses.
“Our recent Open Day attracted visitors from as far away as Cornwall to see and hear about the opportunities Psychology at Salford offers undergraduates. As admissions tutor I gave a presentation to prospective students and their families about the details of our Psychology programmes at Salford (please see Salford’s Coursefinder for further details), as well as tips on what to include in a winning personal statement for university applications. Naturally enthusiasm for Psychology is important and it’s important for applicants to demonstrate this by writing about things they have done which show their commitment to the subject, whether it’s through reading about or utilising psychological concepts. Visitors also toured our facilities and participated in a Stroop experiment hosted by Dr Catherine Thompson in the Psychology computer suite.
If you haven’t been to see us and would like to, please get in touch (contact details here). For sixth forms in the Greater Manchester area we are also happy to arrange bespoke visits for groups of students wanted to study for a degree on our single and joint honours Psychology programmes. We look forward to meeting you!”
This post is from Dr Linda Dubrow-Marshall, a Lecturer in Psychology at Salford. Linda is a clinical and counselling psychologist (HCPC Registered) and a BACP Accredited Counsellor/Psychotherapist. Below she reflects on teaching Level 6 (Year 3) undergraduates who are taking a module called The Psychology of Mental Health. The session was on Psychosis and Schizophrenia. If you participated in the session, Linda would really like your feedback.
“My goal in contributing to the teaching of The Psychology of Mental Health is to help students to develop a personal framework to understand serious mental illness that is humanistic and compassionate. I had previously taught a lecture on “Mood Disorders” where I showed a DVD in which Stephen Fry interviewed several well-known people with mood disorders. The students seemed to appreciate the DVD as it extended their understanding of the facts about mood disorders to a more personal appreciation of what it is like for someone to live with a mood disorder. I took that feedback on board in planning my lecture on ”Psychosis and Schizophrenia”, and decided that even better than a DVD would be to bring in a service user and carer for part of the session, which I did.
Also, as part of my participation in the PGCAP (Postgraduate Certificate in Academic Practice) programme, I participated in a mixed-reality game with the other PGCap students to explore teaching and learning directly linked to our practice. The goal was to come up with innovative ideas to enhance a specific teaching and learning situation. I worked with a partner, Robert Purvis, who really helped me to develop my idea of using plasters to have people experience the painful experience of having a sticky label. Robert gave me the idea to write specific diagnoses on the plasters. Robert and I won the prize for the best collaborative ideas – the web page about the competition is available here.
On the 5th of November, I piloted this idea by trying it at the beginning of my lecture on “Psychosis and “Schizophrenia”. I noticed that the class had already been divided into learning sets, so I asked them to try an experiential learning exercise in these groups. I asked them to pick a plaster from the envelope and put it on their wrist, read the diagnosis, and reflect on what their life might be like if they had been given that diagnosis. They could consider it from the viewpoint that it was a new diagnosis that they just found out about and didn’t even understand, or something that they had for awhile. They were then to introduce themselves to their learning set as follows: “Hi, my name is ____, I am a ____, and let me tell you a little bit about my life…” I asked them to reflect on the experience, share with each other, and have a representative give a brief report to the larger group, leading to a group reflection. One of the things which I found interesting was that the learning sets had been communicating with each other via email and did not necessarily even know what the people in their learning set looked like. I enjoyed everyone’s participation and feedback. One person put the label on their clothing because it would hurt to put it on their skin – part of my point about labels hurting. People felt confused by their diagnoses and did not know what they meant. Some people felt very shy because they suddenly had this label and did not want to talk about it. The paranoid people did not feel they trusted the group in order to talk about it, demonstrating that they were really getting into the role.
I would very much appreciate feedback from students in general about the plaster exercise, and especially from those students who participated. I would also be grateful for feedback about incorporating service users and carers into the lecture. My PGCAP tutor recorded part of this exercise, and if students want to give their permission for their recordings to be put on the blog, please email firstname.lastname@example.org to give permission for this.”
You can also listen to Linda and Robert pitch their collaborative ideas for teaching and learning below.
Our very own Dr Ashley Weinberg will be talking about the psychology of politicians on WHYY radio this Monday 5th November at 7pm GMT (3pm EST). WHYY radio broadcasts across Greater Philadelphia, U.S but you can listen from anywhere online here. The show, In the Public Sphere, will discuss what type of person runs for public office in contemporary times.
***Update*** You can now listen to an MP3 of the show.
The Directorate of Psychology and Public Health will be hosting the following research seminars. The seminars will take place in AllertonL420 at 4pm-5pm. All interested staff and students at the University of Salford are welcome to attend.
8th November 2012: Engagement with characters in framing and persuasion through news narratives, Barbara Maleckar (University of Winchester)
29th November 2012:How does virtual infidelity lead to jealousy? Dr Martin Graff (University of Glamorgan)
The seminar series will continue in February 2013 – watch this space!
Please contact Dr Catherine Thompson if you would like further information about the seminar series – c.thompson[at]salford.ac.uk
This is the blog from the University of Salford’s Psychology team. We hope that our blog will be of interest to colleagues, students, psychologists and anyone with an interest in psychology. It would be great if you could get in touch and tell us what you would like us to write about, what you want to know about the department, and also if you would like to contribute to our blog.
*Update* 25/10/2012 – there is now some content under the different pages of this site. Please have a look around and get in touch if you would like to know something we’ve not covered.