HNC’s A Level Psychology students recently took part in an enlightening series of lectures on schizophrenia and forensic psychology with guest speaker, Dr Guy Sutton, Director of Medical Biology Interactive (MBI) and an Honorary Lecturer at the University of Nottingham Medical School.

In A Level Psychology, students explore a wide variety of topics, including forensic psychology and mental health conditions such as schizophrenia. Dr Sutton, whose primary areas of interest include neurodevelopment and neuropathology, delivered a fascinating university level workshop focusing on brain structure and anatomy – topics that directly link to the learning our students undertake in the classroom. As well as exploring the theory behind brain anatomy and function, students also experienced a live dissection of a sheep’s brain, demonstrating in real life the brain structures explored in the session.

This fascinating activity was followed by a lecture on schizophrenia, a long term mental health condition that is characterised by disruptions to thought processes, perceptions, emotional responses and social interactions. During the lecture, students explored the impact of schizophrenia on the brain and how changes to the brain’s structure might cause it to malfunction and present with a range of different, and sometimes incredibly debilitating, symptoms. The group then took part in a valuable discussion about how we can treat these symptoms, and the impact that the right treatment can have for individual patients. Finally, the group also explored how a malfunctioning brain can lead to criminal behaviour- from those who suffer brain injuries turning to a life of crime post injury, to adults who suffered childhood abuse committing violent crimes – and whether there are any effective treatments available to stop these behaviours.

Tracey Holland, Teacher of Psychology, comments “Dr Sutton has once again delivered a truly engaging lecture, providing an in-depth insight into brain structure and anatomy and bringing a hands-on and dynamic element to the lecture with a truly fascinating brain dissection! Many of our students aspire to progress to a Psychology based career, and being able to take part in university level lectures to stretch and challenge their knowledge really does give them the edge when applying for competitive university courses. Thank you to Dr Sutton for providing such a brilliant experience for our students.”

Join us on 30 November at our Open Event to find out how we enrich our students learning. Find out more here.

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