Foundations in Clinical Psychology MSc


Student Profile

About me

Name: Gareth

Course:  MSc Foundations in Clinical Psychology

Study mode: Full time

Where I'm from: Britain

Why did you choose to study your postgraduate degree at Newcastle University?

"I'd heard really great things about Newcastle as a city and the University has a great reputation too. That made me start looking into the course here. One of the really important things for me was to be able get valuable research experience as well as the taught aspects of the course. I felt the course at Newcastle would really help me to do that. Not only do I have a dissertation and research methods modules but I have the opportunity to undertake a research apprenticeship, and work alongside experienced researchers at the university."

What do you most enjoy about studying your course? Would you recommend your course to your friends?

"I really enjoy the variety of the content on the course. It's opened my eyes to lots of areas that I hadn't previously been aware of or thought much about. From exploring cultural and historical issues relating to the field to hearing from current practitioners the course has really broadened my perspective of clinical psychology."

Describe what it is like being a postgraduate student compared to your previous studies, for example work load, class-size, or opportunities available outside your course:

"The classes are much smaller as a postgraduate. Undergraduate psychology courses tend to be really big and so it's been a nice change to have a smaller class and a more personal relationship with lecturers and staff, where there is the opportunity for discussions about the course content or individual work.

"I think the workload has increased, the essays are certainly much longer than I was used to writing at undergraduate. But I feel the structure of the course really helped me to ease into this. Especially since I had a gap between my undergraduate and postgraduate studies.

"One thing that has been different, and really beneficial, as a postgraduate is being able to access dedicated study spaces. Whether that's the postgraduate room in the library or the postgraduate space in the psychology building it's really helpful to have a quiet space with computers where I am able to go and work. Having facilities there to make plenty of coffee is handy too."

Do you feel part of a postgraduate community at Newcastle? For example, have you made use of common rooms, networking opportunities, worked with other postgraduate students or teaching staff?

"I feel this maybe doesn't apply to myself as much. I have worked with others on my course on group presentations and I feel this has been a valuable experience. Outside of my course I haven't had much interaction with other postgraduate students."

Describe your living situation, eg in University accommodation, at home, renting in a student house, etc… Was it easy to sort out your accommodation?

"I live in Leazes Terrace which are Postgraduate Halls. It's a really nice old building and so close to the University and City Centre. I knew nothing about Newcastle before I came but the information on the University website was very helpful and made finding a place to live really simple."

What do you enjoy most about living in/around Newcastle and would you recommend it to friends?

"I had never been to Newcastle before and was shocked by how much there is to do here. There's so much variety. I love the fact that the coast, the countryside and the city centre are all so close and really accessible. I've had a few friends come and visit me whilst I've been here and they've all said what a great city it is. I'd definitely encourage others to come."

Did you receive any funding information or support from the University before you started your course? If so, what did this include?


How have you funded your postgraduate studies?

"I was working prior to starting my postgraduate studies and so had managed to save up a bit. The majority of my funding for this year though has come from the postgraduate loan and I've got a couple of part-time jobs within the University which are really flexible around my studies."

What are your career aspirations after you graduate? Explain how studying at Newcastle is helping you to achieve your dream career:

"I hope to eventually become a Clinical Psychologist and so will be applying for the doctorate in clinical psychology, which is notoriously competitive. Studying this course at Newcastle has enabled me to really develop my research skills, with hands on "real-world" experience and also introduced me to areas of clinical psychology which I had not known much about before. I'm hoping this together with my previous work experience will have prepared me well for training in clinical psychology.
Also the careers service has been excellent in helping me to improve my CV and think about how I write job applications. They delivered a session as part of my course and I then went to have some one to one support with my CV and I was really impressed with how helpful and informative they were. It definitely improved my CV a lot."


What has been the highlight of your postgraduate experience at Newcastle?

"Two things stand out as being really valuable experiences from my time here at Newcastle. The first is the Research Apprenticeship module which has enabled me to work alongside a clinical psychologist in the NHS on a really worthwhile piece of research. It's helped me to develop my research skills, my understanding of the research process and also introduced me to an area of clinical psychology which I had not previously been exposed to. The second highlight for me has been the opportunity to study French as part of the University Wide Language Programme. I have been interested in learning French for a long time and had tried, without much success, to learn on my own so the opportunity to have free lessons every week and learn with students on other courses has been amazing."