We spoke to Executive MSc Behavioural Science student Lauren Bachynski about how the programme is helping her to understand and approach the ways that individuals and organisations work effectively in work environments, and make decisions.
Tell us about yourself and why you chose the Executive MSc Behavioural Science programme.
My background is in research, strategy, and design. My interest in behavioural science began when I was an undergraduate student studying economics. I was interested in the evolution from rational choice theory, in which decision-making is based on rational self-interest, to the more nuanced view of behavioural economics influenced by heuristics and cognitive biases. I went on to do a master’s degree that focused on how the design of the workspace influenced behaviour, and more broadly, organisational culture and performance.
My goals in pursuing an EMSc in Behavioural Science at LSE are to gain a deeper understanding of the theoretical concepts, methodologies, and tools of behavioural science. More specifically, I am interested in how our environments and internal cognitive processes promote decisions and behaviours that enable individuals and organisations to achieve their desired outcomes.
What is your current job?
I am an Applied Research Consultant for the company Steelcase. I am based in New York City but work as part of a global team to help leading organisations align the design of their workspace with their desired work experience, culture, and long-term strategic objectives.
What are your future career plans?
In the future, I want to divide my time between research and consulting. I am passionate about research. I hope to contribute to the progression of the field by helping to build a strong foundation of empirical knowledge – while also affecting real-world outcomes.
What skills have you gained from the Exec MSc Behavioural Science programme?
The programme has helped to provide a conceptual and theoretical understanding of key concepts within behavioural science and related areas such as judgment, decision-making, policy appraisal, organisational culture, and ethics. The courses in research methods have provided a skillset to test, measure and evaluate behavioural interventions.
What tips would you give a professional thinking of doing this programme?
Read academic papers published in the field before you apply. You will need to do a lot of this once you are in the programme, so make sure this is something that you find interesting and enjoyable.
I can’t emphasize enough how important planning and managing your time is to stay on top of readings, course work, and your dissertation while working full-time.
See where the programme and your interests take you – where you end up may not be where you anticipated. Keep an open mind and stay curious.
Push yourself out of your comfort zone and take courses that don’t necessarily relate to your background and experience. It will expand your understanding of the field and potentially uncover new interests. I took the course in ‘Policy Appraisal and Ethics’ which was quite a departure from anything I had done in the past. It ended up being one of my favourite courses and helped me to understand another approach to decision-making, my primary area of interest.
Name three personality traits of an EMSc Behavioural Science student.
Curious, analytical, self-motivated.
- Find out more about the Executive MSc Behavioural Science programme here.