Social Science Personal Statement
What makes us human? Are we truly autonomous beings, or are we actually bound tightly by the society and cultural climate that we live in? Or are we, as Satre said, 'bound to be free?'
I first discovered my interest in the workings of society when I studied the work of social psychologist Philip Zimbardo, as part of my A level Psychology course. From my initial interest, I read Skinner's Box by Lauren Slater which gave me more insight into various aspects of social psychology experiments, and attended a lecture given by Philip Simons on 'The Psychology of Power'. This gave me greater insight into the notions of power and authority, which is one of my main interests when it comes to sociological studies. In addition to my studies in Psychology, I also study Philosophy and English, both of which have helped me to write well constructed and balanced essays and to think logically about a given problem.
My work experience that I undertook recently has helped me to see the aspects of my subject being used in the real world. I worked for a company called ACB who study the sociological and psychological aspects of Television advertising. During my time, I was required to analyse field data in the form of video evidence and to input it into Microsoft Excel; an experience which has given me experience of raw data handling. This was fortified by the use of Microsoft Excel during my psychology coursework on majority influence and conformity, during which I was able to conduct a real psychological experiment and handle raw data, imputing it into a system to prove or disprove a given theory. Both of these experiences have driven my love of my subject, and to be able to see it being used in the real world.
Outside of the classroom, my passion for social studies continues. I regularly attend Politics, Philosophy and Psychology lectures at my school, as well as regularly participating in debating and public speaking. I recently participated in a debate called 'Should we be concerned with the power of the media?' in which I argued that the power of the media can dangerously influence young people, which helped me to think about the sociological and psychological implications of the media.
In my final year of school, I took on the position of Head of my school's Christian Union, as well as being a prefect. Both of these positions have given me the opportunity to meet new people, which has greatly improved my self confidence, and has enabled me to help others in my community.
This personal statement was written by charlied for application in 2009.
This is a statement that I submitted for Social Sciences at York, Cardiff and Bath, and for Sociology and Psychology at Edinburgh and Exeter. Hope it helps!