Melis Ulug, from the 2010-11 intake gives her views on the MSc in Political Psychology.
"Studying for an MSc in Political Psychology completely changed my way of thinking and provided me with diverse perspectives to understand controversial issues in the world that we are faced with in everyday life. Studying political psychology in Belfast in particular provides students with an enriched backdrop for understanding the world. Because of the nature of the subject, you inevitably find yourself examining the international environment with other students on the course, each bringing their own country’s unique perspective and cultural problems to the table in class discussions and providing a sophisticated perspective in which to view the different issues and gain deeper understanding about the world.
At the same time, Political Psychology is an interdisciplinary field where you are learning not just psychology but also sociology, politics, and so on. The School’s Centre for Research in Political Psychology (CResPP) provides a warm and welcoming environment for new students. The staff are very approachable and extremely supportive and encouraging with students always encouraged to attend conferences and improve their skills in the field.
I would strongly encourage people who want to learn both theoretical and practical implications of the political issues from psychological perspectives to take the MSc in Political Psychology at Queen’s. I am convinced that if you are planning to stay in academia, or to work within a political arena and helping to solve societies’ problems, you are coming to the right place. I am glad I choose Queen’s and CResPP to undertake my MSc and I am so happy to have had this experience!”
Students from the 2008-09 intake give their views on the MSc in Political Psychology.
Doing a Masters in Political Psychology is one of the most challenging things I have ever had to do, but also one of the most enjoyable. You are constantly pushed to improve your level of work and to achieve higher marks. The range of modules provides you with both an in depth knowledge of the many aspects of political psychology and a high level of competence in various types of research methods and statistics. Everyone in the Centre for Research in Political Psychology is very friendly and approachable, and more importantly give you time and excellent feedback on your work.
I would recommend this course to serious students who enjoy being challenged academically, what you get out of this course will depend on what you put into it. This course will not only give you an edge over other applicants for entry into postgraduate research courses, but will also surely give you an advantage when applying to the job market, especially in the current economic climate.
Sarah-Beth McAllister, F-T student, MSc in Political Psychology. 2008-09
The course has been a journey, sometimes hard work but always fun. The course is well designed and incorporates different teaching methods in small groups. The first semester included looking at theoretical perspectives, qualitative research methods and research design. The theoretical perspectives was very interesting, full of vibrant discussion, which comes to life in the second semester when you look at the more applied aspects of political psychology. I particularly enjoyed qualitative research methods because most of it was new and fresh. The research design was not my strongest subject but it was taught well and I managed to come through it. In summary if you are looking for something a little different in psychology which is a relatively new and exciting then political psychology at Queen’s could be your thing.
Peter McKenzie, F-T student, MSc in Political Psychology, 2008-09
I was attracted to the MSc Political Psychology course straight away because it was an opportunity to continue to study Politics (my BA degree is Major/Minor Politics with Economics) and pursue my interest in Psychology. The Political Psychology approach is a really interesting and thought provoking approach to looking at real issues such as media, leadership, citizenship, conflict and peace building and evaluating policy interventions. It opens up exciting areas of research interest and I'm keen to continue to a PhD. There's a good mix of teaching approaches, ranging from reading, lectures, class discussion and practical exercises, and the teaching staff are all very helpful and supportive, which I've really appreciated being a part-time student. One of the strengths of this course is the combination of theory, applying the theory, and also developing quantitative and qualitative research skills. I've found this really useful in my current job and it will also be a great advantage when it comes to my future career prospects. This is a new course and I'm sure it can only be a good thing to be able to say that you are contributing to a developing research discipline, especially one where there is great potential to make a difference.
Lisa Boal, P-Tstudent, MSc in Political Psychology, 2008-09
My experience of the MSc in Political Psychology was a thoroughly positive one. The topics covered were wide-ranging and always very interesting. The quality of teaching was excellent and employed a diverse range of methods – including group discussions, films and other exercises. Furthermore, in class we always had the valuable experience of applying and integrating knowledge from the lecture and readings with real-world phenomena. Guest lecturers and seminars were a core part of this also. I found the staff to be receptive at all times to the queries and concerns of students. In terms of dissertation preparation I also found the staff to be fully supportive and very helpful. I have enjoyed my time on this course immensely and would not hesitate to recommend it to anyone who is interested in gaining experience in the very exciting and growing field of Political Psychology. Its location at Queen’s University Belfast is important also as I think it really helped me to make what I learned applied, to see how it could be useful, rather than theory just for the sake of it.
I am certain that CResPP will become an integral centre for research in this field and I am proud of the fact that I was able to take part in this course in its inaugural year.
Emma O'Dwyer, F-T student, MSc in Political Psychology, 2008-09