New College has a tradition of excellence in Experimental Psychology and has a large intake of students studying psychology, many who choose to focus exclusively on this subject.
Students seem to benefit both from the fairly large, and broad, intake, meaning that there is a strong cohort of students in each year studying psychology, some of whom study it ‘pure’ (at least, after the first two terms), while others combine it with Philosophy, or Biomedical Sciences. Each new academic year there are 5 new students, and across the College there are, at any one time, no fewer than 15 students who can be sources of advice and support with questions relating to the course.
New College is unique in having two Fellows in Psychology, both of whom are senior professors, with international reputations, but who remain active in their work as Tutors, and committed to the education, training and pastoral support of their students. Moreover, the two Fellows (Professor Kia Nobre, Professor of Cognitive Neuroscience, and Professor Miles Hewstone, FBA, Professor of Social Psychology) have research interests that span the breadth of the field (‘from neurons to neighbourhoods’ we like to say). Professor Nobre works on attention from a neuroscience perspective, and is well versed in multiple techniques of brain research (e.g., fMRI, EEG, MEG). Professor Hewstone is engaged in research on contact, segregation and intergroup conflict, and his work involves a range of approaches from laboratory experiments to surveys in the field. Students at New College benefit from the specialized teaching of these two senior professors, on neuroscience and social psychology, respectively, ably supported by two Stipendiary Lecturers, one in each broad area (Dr Holly Bridge and Dr Katharina Schmid). Having access to this broad expertise also gives New College students unrivalled access to a wide range of topics in which they can be supervised for their final-year Dissertations and Research Projects by their College Tutors.
Beyond the College itself, students also count on the ample teaching and research-related resources of the Department of Experimental Psychology, including the large research groups of both senior professors (whose post docs and senior graduate students provide supplementary teaching and supervision, especially with respect to research projects). The Department is recognized as one of the best in the world, and has always achieved the highest ratings in national evaluations for both teaching and research.
New College students are expected to be intellectually curious, highly motivated, and enthusiastic. They typically achieve at high levels in degree examinations, while also being well-rounded individuals who contribute to as well as benefit from wider university life (whether on the sports field, in the concert hall, on the stage, or by being active members of the JCR).
After graduating with their degree in Experimental Psychology, alumni of New College have many options available to them, valued as they are as graduates who are both literate and numerate. In the last decade or so many of our graduates have gone on to pursue further study or research either in psychology (e.g, in clinical psychology) or in another academic field (e.g., medicine, law), while others have achieved outstanding success in areas as varied as banking, management, and the Civil Service.
For further information on how to apply, entrance requirements and selection criteria, please see the University website and the Department of Experimental Psychology's website.
There are 5 places available. All A-level combinations are acceptable, although some background in the natural sciences and biology is useful. Tutors are looking for candidates with a wide range of interests, intellectual curiosity, and independence of mind.