Psychology A Level
What will I learn?
Paper one – Introductory Topics
This approach will include types of conformity, explanations for obedience, explanations of resistance to social influence and the role of social influence on social change. Learners will study research by famous social psychologists including Asch, Milgram and Zimbardo and will gain a detailed understanding of how behaviour can be influenced by key social factors.
This is part of Cognitive psychology. Cognitive psychologists are concerned with the internal processes of the mind of which memory is one. Learners will assess different models and explanations for memory. They will have the opportunity to take part in numerous memory experiments and tests in order to develop understanding of types and functions of memory. This will include explanations for forgetting and factors affecting the accuracy of eye witness testimony.
Developmental psychology focuses on the behaviour of infants from birth through to adulthood. This includes care giver and infant interactions, and explanations of attachment including learning theory and critical period for attachments to be formed. Learners will have the opportunity to study key case studies of deprivation and the effects of institutionalisation.
Paper two – Psychology in Context
Key Approaches and explanations of psychology will be explored. These include Learning, Cognitive and Biological.
Topics include the division of the nervous system. The structure and function of sensory, relay and motor neurons and the process of synaptic transmission. Learners will also study the function of the endocrine system and the fight or flight response.
This includes definitions of abnormality. Mental Health issues including phobias, depression and OCD, explained from different psychological perspectives.
Students will learn scientific process and techniques of data handling and analysis. They will be able to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of experimental methods, observational techniques, self- report techniques and correlations.
In year 2 Learners will have the opportunity to develop knowledge and understanding of Issues and Options in psychology. These include:
- Issues and debates, for example the nature/nurture debate
- The role of gender, including gender development
- Schizophrenia, including classification, diagnosis and treatment
- Forensic psychology including defining crime, explaining criminal behaviour and dealing with offending behaviour
GCSE Grade 5 or above in Maths and English, and grade 5 or above in a Science preferred.
A GCSE points average of 5.0.
How long will it take to qualify?
How will I be assessed?
Assessment will be through 3 unseen written exam papers sat at the end of the course.
Additional Learning Opportunities
There are opportunities to attend lectures and workshops at Universities. Useful activities include the Psychology Society in which you can explore the subject outside your AS/A Level studies or related subjects such as Counselling, School Experience, Sign Language or Preparing for Medicine.
Who is this course aimed at?
Psychology is suited to students who:
- like science and are open-minded and interested in the world around them
- have an analytic mind and want to understand the reasons for behaviour using a scientific approach
- aim to work in practically any career where other people are involved
- are prepared to look beneath the surface of any claim/debate
- are willing to read ahead in preparation for class activities and work to weekly deadlines
Many students aspire for careers in teaching, social work, counselling, the police force, personnel or medicine but this qualification teaches you research, analytical, communication and logical thinking skills which are transferable to a wide variety of courses and jobs.
- A Level
- 2 Years