Overcoming challenges to thrive in Deakin’s Psychology program

My name is Dat, and this is a story of my experience at Deakin University.

I’m currently studying a Bachelor of Psychological Science at Deakin. I came to Deakin three years ago, as my first time studying abroad. I began my studies by completing a Diploma of Health Science at Deakin College.

To be honest, my first year living and studying away from home was challenging, but also exciting. Everything in Australia is different from Vietnam – the language, culture, people, and the weather. The language barrier was one of the most difficult challenges to overcome. Initially, I did not have enough vocabulary to fully understand what people were saying to me, or to explain myself. Local people usually spoke too fast for me to hear, and my poor listening skills often made me confused and stressed when I was trying to respond. Thus, I felt anxious every time I tried to talk to a local person. In addition, the cultural differences made normal conversation even harder as we barely had the same topic of interest and concern, or the same way to behave and express feeling, thoughts, and emotions. The new environment seemed tough, and it was.

A new journey with challenges and excitements began in Melbourne at 2013.

A new journey with challenges and excitements began in Melbourne

However, Deakin College and Deakin University helped me a lot to overcome all the tough times and challenges in my life as an international student. Deakin College offers Assignment Checking Assistance which helped me double-check the grammar and structure of my assignments. The lecturers were always nice, thoughtful, and friendly. All of my lecturers spoke slowly and clearly so that international students like me could understand them. They encouraged me to ask questions and listened closely to me when I had one. Throughout my Deakin College program, different cultures in the classroom were usually considered advantageous, as it enabled students to have a multi-dimensional view of study topics.

Throughout my Deakin College program, different cultures in the classroom were usually considered advantageous, as it enabled students to have a multi-dimensional view of study topics.

When I finished my diploma at Deakin College and transferred to Deakin University, my studies became more challenging, but again there were a number of assistant services, such as Assignment Check, Peer Assisted Study Sessions (PASS), and library support. Furthermore, Deakin University also provides other services supporting other aspects of local and international students lives, such as the JobShop – which helps students to find part time jobs – a student medical service, and International Student Support officers, who provide counselling and other assistance.

“Life is tough, but don’t forget you always get support when you need” - Me and Melbourne Oversea Vietnamese Student Association (MOVSA)

“Life is tough, but don’t forget you always get support when you need” – Me and Melbourne Overseas Vietnamese Student Association (MOVSA)

Importantly, Deakin lecturers and staff are amazingly polite, enthusiastic, and loving. But in my opinion, the best thing when studying at Deakin is a great ability to study online. I could log in to Deakin’s Cloud Campus (online) and access my course materials (readings and lecture slides) anywhere, at any time during the week. I personally enjoy Modules, which is recorded content of weekly topics with lecture slides and further explanations. Modules helped me to overcome my language barrier as I could listen to any part of the lectures again if I had not understood them in class. It became even more helpful when I was preparing for exams.

Enjoying another wonderful aspect of student life – Making new friends and traveling with them after exams!

Enjoying another wonderful aspect of student life – Making new friends and traveling with them after exams!

I’m pleased with my Psychology major at Deakin. It has been such an interesting, motivated, and supportive environment to study. Throughout my course, I have been taught many theories of human behaviour and the most modern trends of theoretical application in the psychological field. Moreover, I also learned helpful and practical skills, such as applying theories in behavioural explanation and intervention; critical evaluation in psychological intervention, or real life issues; and coaching behavioural change in individuals and groups. In other words, the Bachelor of Psychological Science course at Deakin provides me with a lot of knowledge. It has improved my understanding of people’s thoughts, behaviours, and tendencies, as provided me with practical skills that will assist my future career.

There is still a long way for me to go to achieve my dream career, but I am looking forward to my fourth year of psychology and thereafter, entering the workforce. I believe Deakin will continue to support me throughout my future journey, as they always have.

For further information about studying at Deakin and to view the many degrees on offer, visit our international student page.

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