My first moments in Groningen were rather overwhelming. I come from a small village in Germany so it was a big change. Also, the university where I previously studied was very small; I was not used to having so many people around. I also had to get used to speaking English. After I arrived, I took an intensive Dutch course for a month, only to find out afterwards that this was not necessary since everyone here speaks good English.
What motivated me to study psychology was a book by Daniel Kahneman called ‘Thinking, Fast and Slow’. I was so intrigued about finding out more about psychology that I dropped my computer science programme and switched to the UG. Kahneman’s main research field in psychology is cognitive psychology. My favourite course unit in the Bachelor’s programme was also cognitive psychology. These factors inspired me to choose the Cognitive Psychology and Psychophysiology (CPP) track; I think it is the most interesting topic in psychology.
The CPP programme is very practical. You learn how to conduct research by using different instruments. There are many course units where you learn how to use tools such as eye-trackers and EEGs, or understand the principles underlying fMRI and TMS. In the field of cognitive psychology, it is essential that you are able to work with these tools.
The structure of this programme is a bit different to the other programmes. You follow all your course units during the first semester, and during the second you only write your thesis. I think this structure is very beneficial for students, since you have all the theoretical knowledge before writing your thesis.
Robin Hake, 24, masterstudent in Cognitive Psychology and Psychophysiology