Darrah Ferrer

Darah Ferrer

Please tell us a bit about yourself and your background?

I graduated in Psychology back home in the Philippines. I’ve been a chorister since I was in primary school and I always loved singing in a group. Having psychology as a background made it feel natural for me to study Applied Psychology of Music. 

What is it that makes you passionate about your area of study?

Growing up I was part of my school choirs and I became really involved with my university’s choir. Being a part of choir became part of my identity and a way to relax and feel connected. When I realized that my friends would voice the same reasons for why they sing, it dawned on me that there must be a connection between music and psychology, especially in terms of well-being. I joined this course to understand this connection better and I am enjoying learning and being a part of the School of Music.

What aspects of the course are you enjoying the most?  

I really enjoy the intersectionality of it, exploring the different ways music and psychology interact. It helps answer the question of ‘what does music do to humans and why is it important?’ from different perspectives allowing a broad view of the field of music psychology and its varied applications. 

How have you found the shift to online learning during the pandemic and do you have any tips to share with others?

I was really worried about learning online, especially since technology is not my strong suit. But the faculty and staff have really been helpful with everything and have been very understanding about the pandemic and all related difficulties. My tip is to try to keep to a schedule or make a to-do list. It’s easy to get lost in social media and doing other things, but having a list of things to do or deadlines help keep track of what you need to focus on for the day.

What other activities are available for students to take part in outside of their studies, and which ones have you tried out yourself?

There are so many activities that students can take part in outside of just academics. The Leeds University Union (LUU) and the different school organizations arrange social activities like free Zumba or meditation classes for everyone as long as you sign up. I joined free Macrame sessions twice and it was the first time I tried macrame. The projects were easy to do; I still use the coaster I made during the session at home.

What do you plan to do when you’ve finished your course, and how do you think the skills and knowledge you’ve developed/are developing at Leeds will help with these plans?

My time on my course has really opened my eyes to how music is being used in different areas of psychology. I’m taking with me the ability to evaluate and help apply my different research findings to everyday life and situations.