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The basics
Study abroad : Subject Guides

Studying Psychology abroad

We tell you all you need to know about studying psychology abroad

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Simply put, Psychology is the scientific study of the human mind and human behaviour. Within psychology there are certain sub-categories that can be studied, ranging from sports psychology to clinical, social behaviour and health psychology. The variety that the subject offers makes it one of the most sort after and rewarding degrees in the world. If you have chosen to study psychology then the word is your oyster. As one of the newest recognized sciences in the world the subject will help you to understand the human mind and body.


What is Psychology and why should you study it?

You might be wondering what the purpose of studying one of the newest sciences out there is. Well, once you realise that psychology is purely the study of human beings then you being to understand that the subject is all around us. Who you are, how you interact with your family, what you’re going to do in the future and how you react to strangers are all part of your psychological makeup – it touches on everything that we do! Not only will you come out of the degree with a greater understanding of the people around you, but you will also understand yourself better.


A psychologist doesn’t simply sit in a comfy office, and scribble notes as their patient tells them their feelings. In fact, talk therapy such as this barely scratches the surface of psychology and can technically be seen as psychiatry anyway. When some people look at psychology they see a dead end degree with no purpose, but there is much more to the subject then meets the eye; below is an example of just a few of the fields in the subject:


Aviation psychology is the study of the behaviour of pilots and other crew members. The job performs research on the safety of an airline and checks the suitability of the pilot – without an aviation psychologist air travel would be a lot less secure.


Clinical psychology is the study of mental illnesses. Psychologists who specialise in this field diagnose and treat individuals who are mentally distressed.


Community psychologists importantly research the issues that might plague a community as a whole, which can include social and health issues.


Counselling is a form of psychology and is a way of providing care to an individual who may be distressed or require a person they don’t have a relationship with to listen to them.  


Environmental psychology looks at the relationship between people and their surroundings. The surroundings don’t necessarily have to be natural, they can be created spaces as well. 


Forensic psychology explores the relationship between people’s actions and the law.


Military psychologists are tasked with helping army recruits and soldiers through emotional or extreme mental anguish. They also play an important role in helping soldiers integrate back into civilian life after they have completed their service.


School psychologists focus on helping children cope with academic, emotional and behavioural problems. 


As you can see there are several different examples of the important work a psychologist does. Without the help of psychology in a military environment or in helping decide whether a pilot is fit to fly the world would not be a very safe place. If you decide to be a psychologist you could help hundreds of people without even knowing it.


Would you be a good psychology student?

Studying psychology abroad will always be a big leap from a Pakistani secondary school. So, you must have complete confidence in your own social skills and the ability to integrate into a new country’s culture is essential. If you are thinking of moving to the United Kingdom, the United States or Australia be ready for a culture shock and be ready to learn about the psychology of that culture. In a broad sense, psychology works the same all over the world but slight differences in different countries can provide different views on the subject.


You must also be an intelligent and personable person who is able to help the lives of others in a meaningful and empathetic way. Showing leadership qualities is also important for a psychologist. This will help you to act in a professional manner and if you begin the degree with the understanding that you must help others no matter what the cost then you are more likely to succeed in the course. Remember, a lot of psychologists highlight how emotionally draining the profession can be, so a strong will is extremely important for this degree – a lot of psychologists might even have their own psychologist to help them through this emotional distress.


What can you do with a psychology degree?

There are hundreds of different jobs available directly related to a psychology degree. These include several of the fields that have been mentioned above: clinical psychologist, counsellor, educational psychologist, forensic psychologist and sports psychologist are just a few of the jobs you can secure. However, you might also choose to be a teacher or a further education lecturer. Alternatively, you might choose to use your expertise as a market researcher, a careers adviser or an advice worker – like we said, the possibilities are endless!


What universities are best?

Guardian statistics from April 2015 scored universities in order of their world ranking in psychology.


The top three universities on the list where Harvard, Cambridge and Stanford University. However, not every university on the list was as prestigious as these three, although most of the ones in the United States were the more expensive, private universities.


Also on the list where several universities in Amsterdam as well as Cardiff University, the University of Queensland, the University of Auckland, the University of Edinburgh, Manchester University, Exeter University and Florida University.


Psychology is an up and coming degree all over the world, and to move from Pakistan to Amsterdam, Australia, the United Kingdom or the US, would be a fantastic education choice in terms of your degree. No Pakistani University is at the forefront of psychological study, but you could be if you choose to study abroad!

What are you waiting for? Search for your perfect Psychology course abroad now!


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