Student portrait – Pauline van Schaik
"During the last semester of the Master of Science Programme in Psychology, you will be encouraged to utilize the research and critical thinking skills acquired during the first three semesters of the program.
In these last four months of the master you will work independently on a topic of your choice. Initially it was difficult for me to decide on a topic, as the amount of possibilities seemed endless. I had always been interested in neuropsychology, and understanding human behavior by examining the brain. When I saw a presentation by prof. Elia Psouni on the neuropsychological correlates of attachment theory, I instantly realized this was the right topic for me.
During the Advanced course in Developmental and Personality Psychology I first familiarized myself with the topic by writing a literature review and research proposal. This proposal formed the basis for my thesis one year later. I would encourage everyone to pick a thesis topic you feel comfortable and familiar with, as gathering, analyzing, and interpreting data can take a lot more than time you think. Having read up on the topic before, I was able to fully focus on designing the experiment and gathering participants.
During these four months I learned how to use and analyze EEG, write a research article, and I learned how to manage a large project. After the master in Lund I have continued my studies in the Netherlands. Quickly I realized that the independent, critical, and detail oriented attitude I acquired in Lund has aided me strongly throughout my further career. Currently I am a PhD student studying the neurological disease Multiple Sclerosis.
My interdisciplinary research background still aids me daily in being successful in my job."