Mind Matters

Stella adds a brand new department to its roster

Vedika Shewakramani, I Year B.Sc. Psychology

This year, added to the many courses offered by our college, is yet another brilliant department – Psychology – which, contrary to popular belief, is not about reading minds, but is tremendously interesting all the same. We took this opportunity to interview the Head of the Psychology Department, Mrs. Mary Shanta Joseph, and Professor Divya Dovina, to find out more about how this came to be, and a little more on the department and the subject.

Stellaeidoscope: Besides the fact that the subject has been gaining popularity in the last few decades, what made the college decide to introduce the Psychology department this year?            

 Psychology Department: Like you said, Psychology is becoming increasing popular, and there is a demand to study it. It is included in every facet of life, and people are realizing the importance of understanding this. Stella, as a community, wants to empower its young women with this discipline. The papers set for the students in the department are oriented to instill a particular set of skills in the students. We also look to take the holistic growth of our students a notch higher by teaching them this subject, because of the avenues it covers.

How would you say the Psychology department is distinctive from the others in the college?                                                      

 The subject itself sets the department apart from others. The fact that we deal with people, their behaviours, and their thought processes, is something Psychology is known for. Also, it is taught from different points of views, and has a humanistic approach to it.

What do you hope for the students to be able to take with them at the end of this course?

We want the students to be able to leave with a sound knowledge of the workings of the mind. They’re expected to be equipped enough to be able to apply everything they’ve learned here in whatever they choose to do in the future, in terms of work and everyday life.

What, according to you, makes Psychology appealing to a student?

 There is an element of fascination in understanding the human mind and behaviour. Through Psychology, one hopes to make sense of trivial things that happen to us in our day to day lives, and everything that otherwise would seem random, is now explained with cause and effect.

What would be your favourite part about teaching Psychology?

 It would probably be teaching about everyday behaviours and conceptualizing all of it in a manner that it is systematically taught, right from how it all begins to where it ends, and giving every thought process and behaviour a scientific perspective. Also, the mind is considered very complicated, and dissecting that complexity while explaining it all to students is satisfactory. And Psychology is considered extremely complicated by some and plain common knowledge by others. It’s nice to be able to bridge the gap between these two by teaching the subject.

Do you have any concerns about the department, considering this is its first year?

 Well, no, there isn’t anything we’re worried about in particular. It’s not like we’re confident that it’s all going to go down smoothly, but we’re choosing to look at it from a positive angle, and we are quite optimistic. You could say that we’re up for a challenge.

The professors and students of the Psychology department are all geared up to explore a whole new dimension this year, and are ready to make a spot for themselves among us. We sure are glad to make way for them in the Stella family!

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