'I have always been fascinated with how the brain works and how small changes can have a massive impact...'
Bachelor of Science in Psychology
Studying towards a Master of Science in Psychology
Research Assistant, Department of Psychology, UC
A career supporting people’s health and well-being is an ideal goal for Cam, who hopes to become a clinical psychologist.
Originally intending to go into the design industry, with work and initial studies in graphic design, taking the summer course LING 101 changed his perspective and opened a whole new world into the sciences.
‘It one of the best decisions I’ve ever made in my degree,’ he says. ‘Since it was the main prerequisite course for Linguistics, when the first semester of the year started I was able to jump right into the 200-level papers which I did alongside my first year Psychology and Statistics courses. Summer school can be quite challenging as you have to get through such a large volume of work in only six weeks, but you have the full support of the lecturers and the rewards are well worth it – who wouldn’t want to fast track their degree!
‘You’re able to include such a wide range of different subjects within a BSc, which is a massive advantage as you can choose more courses that align with your own interests, but you’re also able to take classes that are supplementary to your subject major.’
With his new study pathway, Cam realised his particular passion for Psychology and his new goal to venture into clinical practice.
‘I have always been fascinated with how the brain works and how small changes can have a massive impact on how people think and function within their daily lives. Psychology was the perfect study path to explore this further and would lead to a career where I could work with people to improve their lives and achieve their own goals.’
The broad field of study in Psychology makes each day in his degree thoroughly interesting and exciting.
‘In one day you can move from learning about childhood development, to dissecting sheep brains, to learning diagnostic criteria for psychological disorders,’ he says. ‘My favourite classes so far have focused on the complex biological processes that make up the way we think, observe and interact with the world. From how things should be structured and work to what causes neurological disorders and abnormal behaviours to arise.
‘It’s amazing to learn about how everyday things such as coffee actually work to change the way our brain functions. Psychology makes you realise how incredibly complex and intricate but also how fragile our brains are, and how much impact one change can have.’
One great way to get more involved in his studies was joining and later becoming part of the executive team for UC PSYC, with Cam recently taking on the Vice President role for the club.
‘Being involved in a club exec has been an interesting and rewarding experience, you get to work with a wide range of other like-minded students, develop as a team and help guide new cohort Psychology students.’
His Research Assistant role with the Department of Psychology is another way of supporting the Psychology community at UC.
‘Being given the opportunity to be a research assistant within the Psychology Department has been incredibly rewarding and enjoyable. I have been able to get first-hand experience with everything that happens behind the scenes and have been able to see exactly what goes into carrying out first-class research, from assisting with ethics proposals, to data collection and analysis.’
Cam is especially looking forward to his postgraduate journey here at UC and the opportunity to conduct his own Psychology research.
‘Once you get to know people within the departments there is a great culture and people are always willing to help out when you need advice or guidance. The lecturers are brilliant, they aren’t just there to teach the class, but are really invested in your success and are always interested in your plans for future studies or ideas you might have for postgrad study,’ he says.
‘UC also offers a wide range of very attractive postgraduate pathways in Psychology which makes planning from undergraduate through to postgraduate much easier. The connections and relationships that you can build are so valuable and can open so many doors while at university.’