The scientific study of human thought and behaviour. Psychology is the most rapidly developing subject of the 21st Century. We pursue a better understanding of human behaviour by unravelling the biological, cognitive, social and cultural influences that underpin what we do and say, and why people think and behave the way they do. From the atrocities of war and inequality to the wondrous process of child development; from �broken minds�, aggression, stress and the effect of child abuse to intelligence, memory and �normality�, the reach of Psychology pervades all aspects of humanity. Psychology debates the extent to which we have free will, how influential nurture is and to what extent every individual is unique.
All Year 11 students applying to post-16 courses are encouraged to consider studying Psychology AS level; the course develops many essential learning skills that are broadly applicable to any university course or career path such as written and oral communication skills, data analysis, critical thinking and social aptitude. The subject content is fascinating but also actively promotes development of personal, social, emotional, moral, ethical, cultural and spiritual intelligence/awareness. The Psychology option complements any other subjects offered and the department has strong cross-curricular links with most other subject areas, including: History, Biology, Mathematics, Sociology, P.E. and Health and Social Care. The teaching team have a wealth of experience in supporting students to make excellent progress as evidenced by outstanding outcomes and a significant proportion of our students pursuing the study of Psychology and closely related subjects/vocations in Higher Education.
Introductory topics in Psychology
1 Behavioural Psychology/Social influence: Explanations and research evidence about the ways in which our behaviour and thought is shaped and influenced by the behaviour and actions of other people and how we in turn influence others.
2 Cognitive Psychology/Memory: Theories and evidence about how memory works and the level of accuracy of memory for specific details or events.
3 Developmental Psychology/Attachment: Explanations and evidence about the way in which we develop lasting and emotional bonds to other humans and how variation in our experiences influence our behaviour and thought throughout our lives.
Psychology in Context
4 Approaches in psychology: An introduction to the different perspectives in Psychology including: Learning Approaches � The Behaviourist Approach and Social Learning Theory; The Cognitive Approach; The Biological Approach.
5 Psychopathology: Characteristics, explanations and treatments of Phobias, Depression and Obsessive Compulsive Disorder.
6 Research methods: How research is carried out - scientific processes and techniques of data handling and analysis. The strengths and limitations and different methods.
The full two year A-level course comprises all AS content and additional higher level material. There are optional components, which will be determined by the staff in consultation with students.
For more detail of the exact course content and style of assessment see the full specification, sample questions and further guidance:
www.aqa.org.uk Subjects � Psychology � AS and A level � Psychology (7181, 7182)
Three written examinations each worth a third of the marks.
Paper 1: Introductory topics in Psychology
Paper 2: Psychology in Context
Paper 3: Issues and options in Psychology
All exams comprise of multiple choice, short answer and extended response questions.
Five or more GCSE grades 9-4 or equivalent, including at least Grade 5 in English Language or English Literature or History, and; Grade 4 in Mathematics
Many of our students will go on to study Psychology or a closely-related undergraduate course at University. A degree in Psychology is broadly useful for many post-graduate opportunities in Employment, Education or Training and is increasingly desirable owing to the widely applicable skills and knowledge that Psychologists use in their work.
Psychology A level complements all other subjects and provides an excellent grade outcome that will assist with entry to any University course or career path. Examples of vocational courses and academic subjects that our students have pursued at degree level include Mental Health Nursing, Counselling, Occupational Therapy, Language Therapy, Psychology, Neuroscience, Education, Business, Politics and History (as well, of course, as the ever popular Criminology and Forensic Psychology courses that attract high numbers of university applicants each year!)