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Psychology A level at Okehampton College

Course description

Psychology is the academic study of human mind and behaviour. Psychological research and theory seeks to offer explanations for how we think, feel and behave in a variety of contexts; as such the application of Psychology is huge. Given the diversity of Psychology as a subject, you are provided with the opportunity to study some of the key branches of the subject. Each branch of Psychology is diverse, explaining and focusing on behaviour in ways that are unique to that approach. It is an increasingly popular science relevant to everyone which as a subject focuses on a variety of behaviour and phenomena

A Level Psychology will involve 2 years of teaching and learning assessed in three examinations taken at the end of the course. Examinations will be a mixture of multiple choice questions, short answer questions and essay questions. A Level Psychology involves the exploration of three main modules.

Course content

1. Research methods in Psychology:
This module involves having ‘hands-on’ experience of carrying out 4 mini practicals – an experiment, observation, self-report and a correlation. You will learn to plan, design and evaluate your own research and suggest how to make improvements. In addition you will analyse and interpret data through descriptive and inferential statistics.

2. Psychological themes through core studies:
This module involves looking at classic and contemporary core studies and how they deepen our understanding of human behaviour and how they link to the 5 areas of psychology: Developmental, Cognitive, Social, Biological and Individual Differences. Classic studies include Milgram’s study on obedience, Loftus and Palmer’s study on eyewitness testimony and contemporary studies include Bocchario’s study on Whistle Blowing.

3. Applied Psychology:
We will study Issues in Mental Health and Criminal and Environmental Psychology. The mental health module will include the history of mental illness, the medical model explanation of mental health and alternatives to this model. Criminal psychology will include what makes a criminal – is it nature or nurture, collecting and processing of information and imprisonment. Environmental psychology includes looking at stress, the workplace and the psychological effects of the environment. In addition we will look at the key issues and debates in psychology e.g. nature vs nurture, freewill vs determinism.

Entry requirements

A minimum of 5 A*- C GCSEs which must include a B grade in English, Maths and Science

Future opportunities

Psychology allows you to develop a range of skills and qualities that are transferable to a variety of careers including teaching, management, sport, social work and careers in healthcare. If you pursue psychology further there are a range of options available to you including research or becoming an applied clinical, educational, forensic or health psychologist.

Further information

There is the possibility of gaining an AS qualification in Psychology. This would involve 1 year of teaching and learning that would be assessed in two examinations taken at the end of the year. Examinations would still consist of a mixture of multiple choice questions, short answer questions and essay questions. Research methods and Psychological themes through core studies are the two modules you would be tested on at AS.

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact Okehampton College directly.

Last updated date: 16 August 2016

Key information