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Psychology A Level at Beechen Cliff School

Course description

Psychology is the science of the mind. The human mind is the most complex machine. It is the source of all our thoughts and behaviour. How can we study something as complex and mysterious as the mind? We cannot see someone thinking, so how do psychologists go about studying the mind? In fact, psychologists adopt a similar approach to scientists in other fields. Nuclear physicists interested in the structure of atoms cannot observe protons, electrons and neutrons directly. They predict how these elements should behave and devise experiments to confirm or refute their expectations.

If you are fascinated by the idea of understanding the brain - if you want to grasp the complexities of human behaviour - Psychology A’Level is for you. You will be exploring various areas to do with cognitive behaviour, developmental and even biological psychology by focusing on specific topics. Psychology will offer you a unique academic experience. You will need to be able to learn scientific information such as the aims, procedures and findings of studies but you will also need to be able to evaluate these theories critically and provide relevant evidence. Some answers require you to be concise but there are also longer essay based answers, thus again providing diverse experiences and useful transferable skills - developed through the study fascinating topics.

Most importantly, Psychology gives you an opportunity to learn, understand and evaluate issues happening around you in your everyday life, which could then be applied to the wider world. Therefore, it is not just a factual subject but enables reflection on one’s own.

Course content

Compulsory content
1. Social influence
2. Memory
3. Attachment
4. Psychopathology
5. Approaches in Psychology
6. Biopsychology
7. Research methods
8. Issues and debates in Psychology

Optional Content.

One from:
9. Relationships
10. Gender
11. Cognition and development

One from:
12. Schizophrenia
13. Eating behaviour
14. Stress

One from:
15. Aggression
16. Forensic Psychology
17. Addiction


Paper 1: Introductory Topics in Psychology (1-4 above)
Paper 2: Psychology in Context (5-7 above)
Paper 3: Issues and Options in Psychology (8 above and one from 9-11 and one from 12-14 and one from 15-17)

Future opportunities

Biology and/or Physical Education are particularly well suited for studying with Psychology. It is however an A’Level that can be studied alongside any combination of subjects.

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact Beechen Cliff School directly.

Last updated date: 10 May 2017

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