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AS/A2 Psychology at Cockburn John Charles Academy

Course description

Psychology is the study of the mind and behaviours. The course will give you an understanding of psychological research and understand the role of a psychologist.

Course content

The examination board has selected 15 specific research studies, which students have to understand and evaluate in great depth. The studies are drawn from the following areas of psychology:

  • Cognitive
  • Developmental
  • Physiological
  • Individual Differences
  • Social
  • Issues relating to the 15 studies including- advantages and disadvantages of laboratory, field and natural experiment and other research methods, evaluate ways of measuring behaviour, validity, reliability, reductionism, ethnocentrism, generalisability, ethics, quantitative vs qualitative data, psychometric testing, nature vs nurture, usefulness of psychological research.
  • You will also have the opportunity to study four methodological techniques used by research psychologists to carry out practical research. These include: experiments, correlations, observations and questionnaires. In addition, you will learn how to write hypotheses, carry out different types of studies, descriptive statistics and inferential statistics.

For detail about some of these studies please see

For Advanced GCE candidates study two of the ways in which psychology has been applied from the following: Forensic Psychology, Health and Clinical Psychology, Psychology of Education, Psychology of Sport and Exercise.


Entry requirements

5 GCSEs grades A*-C. or equivalent.  As you have to be competent at both essay writing and statistics you need to be literate and numerate, and will need to have a grade B in English Language and a grade C in Maths as well as an interest in scientific analysis and human behaviour. Furthermore, a satisfactory period of induction will need to be completed to assess potential candidates' suitability for the course. 


Unit 1 - 1 Hour written paper on research methods
Unit 2 - 2 hour written paper on the Core Studies

Unit 3 - 2 hour written paper on the applied areas
Unit 4 - 1.5 hour written paper on Research Methods and Approaches and debates in Psychology


Future opportunities

Psychology is an extremely diverse subject and one of the most popular degree programmes with fierce competition. Following a Psychology qualification further training can lead to clinical psychology, educational psychology, occupational psychology, health psychology, forensic psychology, research and teaching. Please see British Psychological Society website for details of career opportunities.

How to apply

You can apply for this course through UCAS Progress. Add this course to your favourites so you can start making an application.

Last updated date: 19 November 2014
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Key information

  • Start date: Next September