Head of Department – Mrs N Risdon

Entry Requirements

Science – Grade B Maths – Grade 6 English Language – Grade 6 is preferred

Examination Board: AQA

Introduction/General Advice and Requirements

This qualification offers an engaging and effective introduction to Psychology, which will appeal to a cross-section of students, regardless of whether they have studied Psychology before. It builds on skills developed in the sciences and humanities, and enables progression into a wide range of other subjects. Students will learn the fundamentals of the subject and develop skills valued by Higher Education (HE) and employers, including critical analysis, independent thinking and research.

Psychology is a complex subject. To complete this course successfully you will need to be able to analyse and evaluate issues and ideas and express those ideas in writing. Due to the scientific nature of the subject an interest in how science works including the testing of ideas and interpretation of evidence is essential.

Course Content & Assessment

The emphasis of the course is on applying knowledge and understanding rather than just acquiring knowledge, thereby developing students’ transferable skills of analysis, evaluation and critical thinking. There is a large scientific component to the course which will promote students’ skills in solving scientific problems and students will come to understand how scientists investigate phenomena in their attempts to explain the world about us.

The compulsory content is as follows:

  1. Social influence
  2. Memory
  3. Attachment
  4. Psychopathology
  5. Approaches in Psychology
  6. Biopsychology
  7. Research methods
  8. Issues and debates in Psychology

Biopsychology, research methods and issues and debates in Psychology are taught in the second year of the course.

The optional content will include relationships, schizophrenia and aggression

The A level will be assessed through three equally weighted units each two hours long

Paper 1: Introductory topics: assessing compulsory content 1-4 above

Paper 2: Psychology in context: assessing compulsory content 5-7 above

Paper 3: Issues and options: assessing compulsory content 8 above and optional content.

CAREER OPPORTUNITIES

As well as its obvious application for people wishing to go on to study medicine it applies to any career where an understanding of people is important, such as social work, teaching, law and politics.