What I love about my course at Leeds Beckett
Hello everyone! I’m Mishani, a third-year student at LBU, and I’d like to share my experience of studying BA (Hon) Sociology and Psychological Studies (SPS). I’ll be talking about class structure, modules and teaching methods as well as how the overall experience has been so far. I hope this helps anyone looking to pursue a similar degree here.
Why I chose the course
I chose this course specifically because I had studied Psychology for my A-Levels and Sociology for my GCSEs, and knew I wanted to pursue a career that was predominantly based in Psychology. The choice to study a joint honours was made in the hopes of gaining a sociological understanding of practical settings that would complement psychological knowledge. As for studying it at LBU, a range of factors helped me make a decision.
One of the first aspects I examined when applying to the SPS joint degree was the topics it would cover. Modules are structured into six per year and three per semester (specific details regarding module structure are available here). All modules throughout the first and second years are core modules and are compulsory. You will be able to choose elective modules in the third-year from a fantastic number of choices; this is what I have had most fun (and difficulty) with before embarking on my third year.
The first year introduces you to studying Sociology in a practical setting, encouraging an exploration of human behaviour in Leeds through the Doing Sociology in Leeds module (which I hugely enjoyed). The second-year modules are as equally engaging as the first, but require more work on the student’s part. There’s more theory involved but since I like reading research papers (convenient, I know) it’s been great. I especially loved studying the Sociology of Gender and Feminist Perspectives module.
2. Teaching methods and lecturers
I couldn’t have asked for better tutor support during my first two years studying the course, as the lecturers are always more than happy to prioritise students’ understanding of the subject matter. All the SPS degree tutors have been encouraging of my ideas and opinions; as a student, it means a lot to have your perspectives appreciated by someone with extensive experience in the field.
The interactive teaching style employed by the lecturers has played a major role in helping me realise the direction of the career I wish to pursue.
I am currently working towards my aspirations to become a Psychologist. Through studying my course I have discovered that my strengths lie in immersive research and that I enjoy academia. Realising my interests, developing them and honing my skills have been the result of the guidance I received from my tutors, in addition to the knowledge gained from the course modules. Being encouraged by my tutors to explore different aspects of the modules led to an increased level of motivation throughout the course, while ensuring that I was heading in the right direction in terms of career choice.
3. Class Structure
In my first year, each class consisted of different student sizes as there were those of us studying Sociology as a single honours, Sociology and Criminology, Sociology and Psychological Studies, or Social Psychology. Each class brought the opportunity to expand your social network and connect with other students. Group work was frequent and while I have tried to avoid it in the past (and failed - cue traumatising memories of high school), at university it was a surprisingly enjoyable experience.
The students I have met through this course and school are as passionate about the subject matter as I am and contribute to the discussion well, which really serves to enrich the learning experience.
Apart from realising that A Level Psychology is different to the subject matter at university, I’ve come to terms with accepting the learning curve and really embraced the group work. I’ve learnt to express ideas confidently (courtesy of a supportive group of tutors) and the course itself has been enlightening, to say the least, undoubtedly opening up an avenue of career paths. It’s definitely been a wonderful experience, and I hope reading about my experience helps you decide if studying this course or one similar is right for you.