End of Term One: Exams, exams, exams…

A few weeks ago I took my very first set of exams in Maastricht, thus signifying the end of classes 1 and 2. I am pleased to say that they went well and I’m on to my next set, but I thought I should reflect on the exam process and the classes in general for those interested.

Infancy: Unlike many of my previous courses in psychology, Infancy was based on a particular period of life instead of one theme. We learned about psycho-biological changes that occur in this period, as well as the different ways to measure development in pre-verbal (and sometimes pre-born!) subjects. Lectures included: premature birth and cognitive development, prenatal exposure to teratogens and subsequent effects on brain development, how facial recognition develops and more.

Perception, Attention and Motor Development: In this course we studied three specific functions, perception, attention and motor development. There was a LOT of biology involved in this course, and particular emphasis was paid to developmental cognitive neuroscience methods. We also discussed what happened if normal development is interfered with.

Exams: The examination process in Maastricht is frankly terrifying, and very unlike what I experienced as an undergaduate. The room itself is large, used most typically for conferences. Fitting 500 or so people,the fluorescent lighting and endless coughing makes it difficult to concentrate on the 3 hours, 10 question essay exam. Luckily you can bring in snacks and go to the bathroom, and after 15 minutes of being seated it became easier to block out the noise.

I also finished up my first practical course, that consisted of SPSS data analysis and a paper. I studied how attention switching differs in children with ADHD and ASD. This was a great way to refresh my statistics and get ready for my thesis which is coming up quick!

And all done! My next set of classes are called: Social Emotional Development and the Development of Cognition and Language. While I enjoyed my first two classes,  before coming to Maastricht I was most excited for this second section, so hopefully it’ll go well. I’ll also post an update on my internship/thesis decisions as those come in!

As a side note, I am pleased to announce that I also passed my Dutch course and officially have a certification of A1(negative) dutch proficiency! The lowest possible proficiency you can achieve, it is nice to have gone to weekly classes and learn the basics. At the very least it helps in the grocery store.


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