Psychology Personal Statement

‘We cannot change anything unless we accept it. Condemnation does not liberate it, it oppresses.’ When I first read this passage by Carl G. Jung, I couldn’t absorb it until the time when I tried to deter one boy from bullying the others in my class at middle school.

It was at that time then I realized the inner meaning, which can be applied to many situations including assisting others. Although every student avoided him, I attempted to make allowances for him, accept him, and communicate with him starting with his childhood.

After several in-depth sessions I saw his sharp eyes become softer. In addition, we have established friendship and kept in touch till now. It was my first time to experience the magic power of words which was affirmed by Sigmund Freud that sparked my interest in psychology. Since then, I started to search lost souls through forums and contacted them via email.

Regardless whether the consequence is positive or negative, the gratitude came from the recipients who confirmed my aspiration to dedicate my life to help more people find inner calmness and balance.

I had always believed my campus life would commence in the way of a major in psychology. However my college entrance examination scores were high enough to gain early admission to Shanghai Jiao Tong University, in which Psychology is not available.

Surprisingly though, and to my delight, it offered a General Psychology course in the first semester in nursing. Ever since my first psychology course, I have been fascinated by social psychology.

As shown in Milgram’s shocking experiment held in 1963 at Yale University, that under larger institutional structures people tend to merge their unique personality and personal and moral code, surrendering individual properties to the service of malevolent systems of authority. It stimulated my orientation of doing research in relation to behavioural psychology.

Unfortunately, I was diagnosed with chronic gastroenteritis and was urged to rest by doctors, which severely disturbed my study. ‘There’s no disaster that can’t become a blessing…’ said by Richard Bach.

During the time of convalescing, I got chance to read the seventh edition of Psychology Core Concepts edited by Philip G. Zimbardo which was not only like a breath of fresh air, but forced me to think in a radically new way: I was finally confronted with the notion of psychology not just as basis of psychotherapy, but also as a way of explaining social phenomenon.

How does ‘Social Psychology’ function away from the written page, in the lives of individuals and societies? I had ignited my passion for experimental psychology.

During autumn semester 2009, I began a research project on adolescent girl. Seeking out ways in which factor tangibly entice girls to diet, I searched a great deal of correlative literatures from the 1950s to the time of the dissertation.

By using previous studies for reference and going through the investigation sections of dialogue from several disparate high schools, I was able to ascertain numerous potential factors. After that, I analyzed weight and self-image data of girls from three individual senior high schools to investigate how the collected variations affected dieting of girls.

The appealing research revealed the extent to which actual weight and attention to appearance causes girls to take-action to restrict their diet.

Trying my hands at writing this thesis gave me more confidence to pursue an academic career with regards to psychology. After recovering from the illness, my academic performance also improved as expected and I eventually got over 82 average points in both junior and senior semester years.

If the prior experiences whispered in my ear, the social practice truly opened my eyes. Volunteering for Sunshine Home and BEAN Shanghai–charitable organizations which the former aids people suffering from dementia and latter supports orphanages, migrant schools, the elderly and the disabled-reaffirmed my eagerness to be qualified as a psychologist.

Meager as it was, I had found a way I could give to help more vulnerable people.

In order to succeed in my endeavors toward psychology area, I now realize that a master’s degree in psychology is essential. But when I graduated from college in 2010, I didn’t know how to directly change my education major in psychology or engage in professional work related to psychology.

Thus, I decided to secure a position which would grant me experiences for observation and communication with people, yet which would also permit me to continue developing the research and English writing skills I needed to tackle the challenges of graduate school.

I have fulfilled this goal by working as a geriatric nurse in a general hospital before and a documentation consultant and translator for one foreign firm later. The experience has been both enjoyable and invaluable.

Although I have carved out comfortable niches in both of the jobs, with opportunities to study abroad and good salaries, I have become increasingly aspired to psychology. So I decided to leave these jobs to continue along the academic psychology path.

Through a Masters program, I plan to further explore the study of social psychology. I believe that, by adopting more specialized theoretical knowledge of psychology, methods of inquiry can be formulated that allow for the research works to be both technically sound and sociologically insightful.

Thus far, my studies have concentrated largely on superficial results, and I am particularly interested in studying these areas in more specific historical and far-reaching influence. I am also in pursuit of the enhancement of knowledge in statistics and measurement, which will allow me to unearth facts containing more practical value concealed from the experiment.

Eventually, I would like to continue my education in psychology postgraduate research.

I believe the Master of Arts in Psychology program is uniquely equipped to guide me toward listed objectives especially in social psychology. While searching for a graduate school that would accommodate my situation without a psychology major, I was thrilled to find a program not only provides this chance, but offers a specialized optional course for social psychology.

Furthermore, I have long admired your esteemed university for its significant achievements in the teaching and research of psychology. Your program of psychology, with its well-structured curriculum as well as a clear strategy for promoting a distinctive Chinese voice matches my academic background and interest perfectly.

To me, studying psychology at your university is like being brought to a land of milk and honey. With my future aspirations in mind, I look forward to the rewarding challenges in the following years.

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This personal statement was written by konnoasami for application in 2013.

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