Aurelie Haus (24, Germany), Human Decision Science
There were a few other options to choose, but Maastricht had it all

“My background is in mathematics, so I had no knowledge of psychology or economics before I came to Maastricht. I didn’t know the city either: I come from Düsseldorf and did my bachelor’s in London. I’m proud that I was able to adapt to the new city and new people as well as new topics during this master’s year. The fact that our course consisted of twelve people helped, too.  

Towards the end of my bachelor’s I got interested in psychology, but I couldn’t enrol in a psychology master's programme without having done a bachelor's in that field. There were a few other options to choose, but Maastricht had it all. It was in English, the courses were interesting and it was close to home. This master’s was a really good way to broaden my horizon. I could kill two birds with one stone.

Before the programme started I got in contact with a fellow student through Facebook. We met a few times, decided we liked each other and got a really nice flat together on the Markt. Our living room was big enough to have study evenings with ten people. In the day time, when I had to read papers, I liked to sit on a bench in the park. I had no distractions there, like making tea or visiting the toilet.

Apart from the obvious additional knowledge I acquired, I also acquired new skills, such as reading scientific articles and how to applying research methods. For one course we had to write a research proposal, in another we did a small experiment. It helped to familiarise ourselves with research before starting on our master’s thesis. I was always interested in doing research, but learning proper methods enhanced my enthusiasm.

My master’s thesis was about queuing systems. In the mathematical queuing theory you try to minimise the queuing time. Psychological factors that have to be considered in terms of the wellbeing of the customer ask for optimisation in a different way. I tried to show that there are connections between mathematics and psychology and that they should be combined. I would like to do a PhD in this field too. But I'm not sure if I want to start it right away, or work for a few years. Before my master’s, I worked as a data manager in London for a year and that opened my mind and made me see what I wanted to do. So that’s what I'm debating the moment.

My future can be anywhere in the world. My mom’s from France, my dad is German and since he’s a pilot I’m used to flying around, seeing new places. I wouldn’t mind to go somewhere else to do a PhD for a couple of years.”