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I'm currently in my second year of a Psychology degree at Royal Holloway and am having a great time. The atmosphere is great, the people are friendly and on top of all of this I'm learning things that I know will be useful for the rest of my life!
---The Degree ---
A psychology degree at Royal Holloway leaves you with an internationally recognised University of London degree, which is great, but it's what you study that really makes this course good.
Each of the three years of the course consists of eight half units (or a combination of half and whole units that adds up to this), some of which are examined and some which are more coursework based. In the first and second years there are no choices as to which aspects you can study, but in the third year there is quite a wide range of options available, so chances are you'll find something to suit.
The coverage of the course is quite wide, with biological, developmental, social, cognitive and abnormal aspects among what is covered, along with skills such as searching databases for studies and writing experiments up in research methods. Yes, you do have to do scary statistics, but honestly it isn't as bad as everybody makes out. It's all presented in a really easy to understand manner, with plenty of chances to ask for help! Besides, statistics exams are open book, so you don't even need to memorise the equations.
The staff on the course are all friendly and approachable, and every student has both an academic tutor and a personal advisor, both of whom are more than happy to help with any questions. Lecturers will always answer questions either in the lectures themselves or by email afterwards, and there is lots more useful advice on the student intranet which you can access throughout the degree.
Of all the universities I looked round, Royal Holloway instantly struck me as having it's own unique identity. Almost everyone on campus is friendly, and there always seems to be a really good community atmosphere.
So other universities may have a better social scene and more local amenities (they tell you you're only 40 minutes from London, but by the time you've got to the station it's more like an hour, and the last train back is at half eleven!) but most of the big universities seemed really impersonal, the sort of place you could easily find yourself isolated and lonely. You'd be hard pushed to experience that here!
So basically my advice to anyone considering a psychology degree at Royal Holloway would be to go for it! You'll have a good time while you're here, dropout rates are low and success rates high, and you'll be getting a useful degree that could lead you in to any number of careers.
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