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Sarah Docherty

Career Path: Lab Demonstrator, Northumbria University
Location: Newcastle upon Tyne, UK

I decided to continue into postgraduate study at Northumbria on MRes Psychology course. I want to pursue a career in research and academia and this course would let me develop the skills and get the experience needed to do this.

What are you doing now?Sarah Docherty

I am studying full time and have a placement at The Brain Performance and Nutrition Research Centre, where I am assisting in the running of research. I also have a part time job as a Lab Demonstrator for the undergraduate Psychology students. I help the students improve their research skills, give guidance on how to write lab reports and give written and verbal feedback to improve grades.

What was it about Northumbria that made you decide to study here?

There was a wide range of modules available on the Psychology programme which meant I could choose topics to study that I was genuinely interested in. The lecturers were all experts in their field and I felt I could learn a lot from them.

If you took on a placement during your course how did you feel this helped you in your career/ with your studies?

I had two placements during my course and both helped my career in different ways. The first was external with the National Autistic Society and was an amazing experience, I learnt so much there and developed lots of different skills. The second was a Research Assistant placement within Northumbria's Psychology Department, this gave me a real insight to how psychology research is conducted and was what helped me to decide to pursue a career in the area.

What was the best thing about your course?

Having a balance between lectures and hands-on experience through workshops and placements.

How did studying at Northumbria help you achieve your career goals/ give your career an edge?

The reputation of the course definitely helped in getting interviews once I had graduated and moved to London.

Which skills/ knowledge did you learn on your course that you use most now throughout your career?

Writing lab reports, statistics and presentation skills.

What advice would you give somebody who is thinking of studying at Northumbria?

You won't regret it! The courses are great, taught by experts in the field with excellent facilities to help your learning. The social side is pretty fun too.

How would you describe your time at Northumbria in three words?

Fun, challenging and rewarding.

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