Shona Leeworthy from Bristol is studying BSc (Hons) Sport Psychology at USW.
How would you describe your course?
Fascinating, exciting, rewarding and full of variety.
What influenced you to study Sport Psychology?
It was the perfect combination of my interests. I competed as a national gymnast until the age of 16 and gained coaching qualifications, while at school Psychology was always my favourite subject.
A big reason was that USW’s Sport Psychology course was BPS accredited. Also, I loved the campus when I visited on Open Days. Treforest has a great sense of student community, and it’s also close enough to the city centre for shopping and nightlife!
What have been the most valuable aspects of the course?
There are many professional opportunities available to psychology students. For example, I am taking part in an internship over the summer, assisting Dr David Shearer’s research study on collective efficacy. This has allowed me to put my theoretical knowledge into practice, gain great insight into this career path and get practical experience for my CV.
What have been the highlights of the course?
As the course progresses, you get the opportunity to pick areas of study which interest you. So far I have enjoyed the biological and neuropsychology aspects. For the first two years we studied core areas of psychology, as well as sport psychology, physiology and exercise behaviour modules. I look forward to studying these further in my third year as well as specialising in other sport psychology topics. The course also provides opportunities to gain lots of hands-on experience including practical lab sessions and data collection using several research methods, which I find very interesting.
Would you recommend the Sport Psychology course?
Definitely – sport psychology as a profession is growing, and anyone with a passion for sport and psychology could benefit from this course. Even if you are unsure of which path you wish to take, the BPS accreditation allows you to focus on other areas of psychology such as clinical, forensic, neuro etc., and opens doors to a number of different career paths.
What are your future plans?
My plan is to study for a postgraduate degree, and progress into a career as a sport psychologist. However, the accreditation and sheer variety of topics that we cover on the course gives me a number of options to consider.