Here is an exemplar personal statement for a University application. This answer takes into account our recommended structure, available here for reference. Also, check out the FAQ’s of applying for University. You can browse around the site for more information and content. This exemplar answer is for a Psychology undergraduate course.
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I feel excited about the insights into the workings of the brain which may be made possible by advances in scanning technology and enticed by the questions raised during open day lectures.
Having been fortunate enough to attend university and departmental open days, witnessing the evident enthusiasm of psychology students and the intellectual energy of the lecturers at these institutions, has only served to further increase my academic hunger for the subject. Will we ever understand consciousness? How do we come to be the way we are? Can psychological research ever become completely value free and unbiased?
My strongest area of interest is now predominantly perception, followed by abnormal psychology. I have been particularly inspired by Richard Gregory’s ‘Eye and Brain’ and also intrigued by ‘Abnormal Psychology’. The way in which studying perception starts with something that is taken for granted and unravels all of its intricate complexities and mysteries is fascinating. The theory that perceptions are not a snapshot of reality, but rather the brain’s bet on what is most likely to be out there has certainly changed the way I think about the visual world.
Recently, I interviewed an educational psychologist about the work involved in her career and the qualifications required for her line of work. Not only has this experience given me insight into the applications of psychology; i.e. how psychological theory can aid educational methods and help vulnerable children, it has enhanced my desire to follow a psychological career.
During my summer holiday, I completed a work experience placement at a care home for elderly people who have dementia. The Home took a person centred approach to dementia care, which I have found has much improved my understanding of how mental illnesses can affect the individual’s life and the lives of those around him/her. It was also surprisingly enjoyable.
The A level subjects I am studying will ensure that I have the mathematical ability for the course, and that I am accustomed to working within a scientific discipline using methodological means of finding conclusions.
I am a Senior Prefect at school and I partake in a variety of extracurricular activities such as ‘Team QE’, a group of students that help out at school events (such as intake and open days), and Japanese club. These activities have given me the opportunity to extend my breadth of knowledge and widen my experiences. Out of school hobbies such as training in martial arts and practising a musical instrument have taught me self-discipline and the value of team work, whilst growing Japanese maples (Acer Palmatum) has given me perseverance and patience; good things are always worth the investment of time.
Since choosing Psychology as a GCSE option, the scientific study of the human mind and behaviour has enthralled me. Therefore, I now wish to study empirical psychology at degree level in order to increase my knowledge, and work towards my aim of following a career in clinical or research psychology. Whilst of course I cannot be assured of answers to the above questions, I am very motivated to learn and contribute more.