Inside the mind of a psychology student…

May 6th, 2011

Around 50 A-level students have had a taste of university life with two mini ‘seminars’ at The University.

Academics gave lectures on autism, aggression and schizophrenia, while postgraduate students organised lab tours and hands-on experiments.

Lucy Cragg, RCUK academic fellow in translational neuroscience and outreach officer at the University’s School of Psychology, said the workshops had been designed to complement the A-level curriculum while extending into new areas.

In Visual Neuroscience, students were asked to wear prism goggles, which shift everything horizontally, and throw balls into a basket, sparking hilarity. Within a minute, their eyes adjusted and the balls landed in the basket. But immediately after the goggles were removed, the students’ aim failed as their eyes then had to readjust.

And in Cognition and Language (electrical brain cells and subliminal messages), postgraduates Emily Coderre and Kate Bailey demonstrated how an EEG (electroencephalograph) measures the pattern of a brain’s electric activity.

Other workshops were Behavioural Neuroscience: is your memory as good as a rat’s?, NITES (Nottingham Integrated Transport and Environment Stimulation): tracking drivers’ eye movements, Personality, Social Psychology and Health: social problem-solving & are you a morning person?, Human Development and Learning: the use of eye-tracking technology, and Cognition and Language: subliminal priming.

Students came were from George Spencer Academy, Stapleford, Rushcliffe School, The Nottingham Emmanuel School, Bramcote Hills College and Christ the King School, Arnold. The Brain Awareness Week event allowed the postgraduates to experience training in outreach activities.

The School’s Summer Scientist Week runs from August 8-12. For more information, visit or visit for a round-up and a video of last year’s event.

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