Misconceptions about psychology – we can not read your mind!

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When I tell people I studied Psychology, their first response is generally “so can you tell what I’m thinking?”. Psychology does not mean I’m a mind reader, it does not mean that I can tell what you’re like just by looking at you, and it does not mean that I’m studying every person that I walk past!

Psychology is the study of the mind and how people interact in society, no psychologist will ever claim that they can mind read!

Some people also think that a psychologist is the same as a psychiatrist, the type of people that lie you down on a sofa and talk to you about your feelings. Yet again this is not what we do.

People think that psychology experiments are all about strapping people and animals up to machines and testing them with electrical signals and exams. Whereas in reality a lot of experiments use observational techniques, interviews and it is only very few that take the approach of a lab experiment with machines and testing.

If you’re thinking about studying psychology then it is definitely a fascinating topic, and well worth taking the time to study! But make sure you know what you’re getting yourself in to, do your research before you apply (this is true for any subject!) so you know what to expect.

You don’t want to turn up to your first lecture expecting body language, mind reading and lab experiments, and find it’s a lot of theory, statistics and observations!