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Psychology A-Level at Chesham Grammar School

Course description

Psychology is the scientific study of mind and behaviour. The A level course is a balance between classic research and the latest developments in a fast growing discipline.

The aims of the course are to develop your knowledge and understanding of psychological theories and their relationship to social, cultural and contemporary issues and to promote your appreciation of how science works through psychological investigations and the ethical implications of research.

This course will appeal to students who are interested in the science behind understanding the behaviour of both the normally and abnormally functioning individual. You will need to be able to communicate effectively both orally and through written work and you will need to be able to analyse information from a variety of sources.

Course content

Topics in AS and A2 (those items underlined are only assessed at A2 level)

  • Memory: Models of memory, features if memory, forgetting, eyewitness testimony
  • Attachment: Caregiver-infant interactions in humans, types and explanations of attachments, Influence of early attachment on later relationships
  • Approaches: Origins of Psychology, approaches to psychology, Comparison of approaches
  • Biopsychology: The divisions of the nervous system, synaptic transmission, the endocrine system, localisation of function in the brain, hemispheric lateralisation, ways of studying the brain
  • Psychopathology: Definitions of abnormality, characteristics of phobias, depression and OCD, explanations and treatments of disorders.

A2 Topics

  • Issues and Debates: Gender and culture in Psychology, Free will and determinism
  • Schizophrenia: Characteristics, explanations and treatments
  • Relationships: Formation, maintenance and breakdown
  • Forensic Psychology: Defining crime, offender profiling, biological explanations of criminal behaviour, psychological explanations of offending behaviour, dealing with offenders

Entry requirements

For Advanced level courses, students will be expected to have successfully completed GCSE level examinations, with an average score of 46 points from their best eight GCSEs.

The average is worked out by converting each grade to a numerical score where:

A* = 58, A = 52, B = 46, C = 40, D = 34, E = 28, F = 22 and G = 16 b.

In an A level subject to be taken there is a requirement of grade B or above at GCSE (Grade A or above in Maths, Music and the Sciences), either in the subject itself or in an appropriate related subject in the case of new courses, as indicated on the subjects’ requirement. At least a C in English Language and Mathematics.

Subject Specific

GCSE Grade B or above in Science

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact Chesham Grammar School directly.

Last updated date: 01 May 2015
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