Sunday, February 6, 2011

The Calm Before the Storm

Happy New Year! My Honours year officially begins with our introductory meeting next week. I am feeling excited, but a little nervous. Honours year really is the great unknown. Everyone I have spoken to has said it is hardest year in psychology but also the most rewarding. Personally, I just want to start and find out what it is all about! 

In my last post I mentioned that I had planned to peruse my statistics notes. That hasn't happened! But I am on my holidays after all. I have however, been reading up on various areas of psychology like autism, children with disabilities and their parents. Unfortunately, a feasible thesis topic has yet to jump out at me. I am sure the introductory meeting and talking to supervisors will soon change this though.

Ideally I will find an original topic that I have an interest in that can also be explored using first year psychology students as participants. My perfect supervisor would be approachable, accessible, knowledgeable and patient with my statistics questions. I am reasonably proficient with statistics but I still like to ask lots of questions and get some reassurance because I do tend to tie myself up in knots every once in a while. I'm sure anyone out there reading this who has studied psychology understands where I am coming from. Keep your fingers crossed I get my wish list please!

In my quest to come up with potential thesis project ideas I've been enjoying reading Oliver Sacks' "Musicophilia." It's a great account of the relationship between music and the brain, and just as good as "The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat." For the uninitiated, Sacks' books present case studies about people with various neurological disorders; everything from Autism to Tourette's. They give you an insight into different conditions and what the world looks like from a patients' perspective, posing some interesting questions. I would definitely recommend adding Oliver Sacks to your reading  list. You don't need to be studying psychology or neurology to enjoy them and you can probably find them in your local library. Reading Musicophilia has been a nice way to take a break from reading journal articles whilst still learning about psychology.

Until next time..

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