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Psychology A Level at Samuel Whitbread Academy

Course description

Psychology is the study of human behaviour and what causes individuals to behave in the way they do, looking at a variety of different approaches to explain their behaviour.

In the first year students will study for the first of three exams: Introductory Topics in Psychology. In this paper students will learn about the Psychology of Memory, Psychopathology, Attachment and Social Influence. Students will be discussing questions such as how do babies attach to a caregiver and what affect does early attachment have on future development. They will study what makes the majority of people conform to societal rules and expectations whilst others prefer to be in the minority and show in their individuality. In the second exam paper students look at Psychology in Context; within this unit they look at Biopsychology, Research Methods and Approaches within Psychology. This paper tests the students understanding of the scientific processes used within Psychology and how the different approaches seek to explain a variety of human behaviours from perspectives such as behavioural and biological. It is important to note that Research Methods is worth 25% of the entire grade.

In the second year students will build upon their knowledge and understanding from their first year. Students will learn from a range of options including Schizophrenia, Aggression and Cognition & Development as well as Issues and Debates withing Psychology. They will have to take a total of 3 exams at the end of their second year where they will be tested using a variety of multiple choice, short answer and extended writing questions.

Course content

Key Features

Teaching is through evaluation of key psychological research pieces, group work, mini activities, video and carrying out research. At A level understanding is tested through essay skills and short answers skills for the research method topic. Psychology will make you question everything about who you think you are and the independence of the way you behave. Research will interest and shock you! Dedication to learning new terminology is essential.

Entry requirements

• APS 4.4

• Grade 5 in GCSE Maths (discussion with department if a grade 4 is achieved)

• Grade 4 in GCSE Language and Literature

• Two grade 4s needed in GCSE Sciences

• If studied Psychology at GCSE a C grade is needed


• 100% external examination

Future opportunities

You could: follow a degree course in Psychology, Social Science, Nursing, Advertising, or any that is personnel based, enter a Higher National course in a related programme, seek employment in the area of human resources, the care sector, hotel management, advertising, police, prison service, probation and education.

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact Samuel Whitbread Academy directly.

Last updated date: 21 December 2017
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