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Psychology A level at The Corsham School

Course description

Psychology involves the scientific study of human behaviour and attempts to explain what makes us who we are. A’ level Psychology covers a broad range of topics such as explanations for abnormal behaviour, scientific research methods, infant development and the psychology of aggression.

A level psychology is a fascinating subject that allows students to develop valuable scientific research skills in addition to gaining wider understanding of psychological theories and ideas. Students gain skills in comparing theories that account for a wide range of human behaviours and learn to discuss and convey these ideas developing analytical skills.

Course content

Each unit is worth 33.3% of the A Level. All examinations take place at the end of the 2 year course. Students are assessed though multiple choice, short answer and extended writing on each paper.

Unit 1 Social Influence: How individual behaviour changes in groups. Explanations for conformity, obedience and social change.

Memory: How our memory works and the reliability of eye witness testimony.

Attachment: Early infant development and the effects of deprivation.

Psychopathology: Definitions of abnormality, explanations for phobias, depression and OCD; treatment for these disorders.

Unit 2 Approaches in Psychology: Origins of Psychology, the emergence of Psychology as a science. Psychological and Biological approaches.

Biopsychology: The nervous system, the structure and function of neurons and the endocrine system; Brain structure and function, ways of studying the brain and biological rythmns.

Research Methods: Scientific processes, techniques and data handling skills. Inferential statistical analysis and the range of experimental techniques used in psychological research.

Unit 3 Schizophrenia: The clinical characteristics, biological and psychological explanations and the effectiveness of therapies from both approaches.

Gender: Role of chromosones and hormones. Psychological explanations for gender development and atypical gender development.

Aggression: Biological mechanisms and social explanations for aggression. Institutional aggression (prisons) and media influences including computer games.

Entry requirements

5 or more GCSEs C grade or above to include Maths and English


3 externally examined units

Future opportunities

Psychology is a valued A level subject by Universities and employers alike. It is particularly relevant for those who wish to pursue a degree course in healthcare, social care, nursing, sports psychology and related fields.

It is relevant to a wide range of careers including marketing, teaching, counselling and the police force.

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact The Corsham School directly.

Last updated date: 06 November 2017

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