Psychology

Psychology

Psychology literally translates as ‘the study of the human mind’ – but Psychology is more than this. Psychology is everywhere around us. It is intriguing, it is emotional, it is scientific and above all it is thought provoking. This course offers you the opportunity to learn about the science behind human behaviour by understanding how research is conducted and used to develop theories and laws about human behaviour.

Aims

  • To stimulate curiosity, interest and enjoyment of psychology
  • To explore how psychology has contributed to an understanding of individual, social and cultural diversity
  • To enable students to understand and use subject-specific terminology
  • To promote awareness of the ethical responsibilities of psychological researchers
  • To provide opportunities for the development of research skills

Course Content – Year 12 

  • Social Influence
  • Memory
  • Attachment
  • Psychopathology
  • Approaches in Psychology including Biopsychology
  • Research methods

Course Content – Year 13

  • Approaches in Psychology
  • Biopsychology
  • Research Methods
  • Issues and debates in Psychology
  • Relationships
  • Schizophrenia
  • Forensic Psychology

Course Offered

AQA A level Psychology, which consists of three two-hour examinations:

Paper one (2 hours, 96 marks, 33.3% of A level)

  • Social Influence
  • Memory
  • Attachment
  • Psychopathology

Paper two (2 hours, 96 marks, 33.3% of A level)

  • Approaches in Psychology
  • Biopsychology
  • Research methods

Paper three (2 hours, 96 marks, 33.3% of A level)

  • Issues and debates in Psychology
  • Relationships
  • Schizophrenia
  • Forensic Psychology

There is no coursework element in either of these programmes.

Teaching Approaches

These seek to create a relaxed but purposeful teaching and learning environment and include:

  • Teacher presentations
  • Note-making
  • Source-based work
  • Student presentations
  • Extended writing
  • Class discussion
  • Marking exercises
  • Review of essay and test performances

Is this course right for me? 

Psychology A level is highly valued by many Universities for both Psychology and non-Psychology related studies. Those that study Psychology open up a pathway to careers including Counselling, Therapy, Teaching, Occupational Therapy, Mental Health Nursing, Forensic Psychology, Police Work, Criminology, Sport Psychology, Business, Advertising and Marketing.  It is most closely related to Biology and Mathematics, in terms of GCSE subjects and you should aim to have good GCSE grades in Science and Maths in order to undertake this subject.

What can I do next? 

Postgraduate training and study is a requirement to become a chartered psychologist. Many Psychology graduates spend a year or more gaining work experience before embarking on postgraduate study due to course entry requirements.

Popular courses for Psychology graduates include one-year MSc programmes in forensic, occupational, health or sport and exercise psychology.

Other graduates qualify as teachers as a route into educational psychology. Whilst a teaching qualification is no longer a requirement for this profession, it is still recommended as the most popular route.

For those entering clinical psychology, a three-year Doctorate is required, though few graduates are able to enter this immediately after their undergraduate degree.

Subject minimum entry requirement

You do not need to have studied Psychology at GCSE to start this A level course.  However, you do need good grades (a grade 6 or higher) in Maths and Biology at GCSE to get the most out of it.

“Completing the Psychology A level at QEGS enabled me to have a greater understanding of behaviour in a variety of situations. The course covered a wide range of areas within Psychology, which made it very interesting.”

“I have thoroughly enjoyed my first year of studying Psychology; I have learnt a lot of interesting workings of many psychologists and their theories. I have enjoyed it a lot as the teacher has been really supportive and approachable and has always been happy to help, which gave me a lot of confidence.”  

Facilities and Resources

The department is based in Singleton House, all lessons taking place in modern and well-appointed rooms. The department has excellent resources in the form of specialist textbooks, magazines and DVD recordings.

Ms A Jones
Subject Leader, Psychology & Sociology