Head of Department: Ms Clayson
Psychology Teachers - Dr Cole & Ms Clayson
Intent (What we aim to do)
The Psychology Department’s curriculum covers all aspects of the AQA A Level examination specification (i.e. Cognitive, Social and Developmental Psychology, Psychopathology, Biopsychology, Schizophrenia, Addiction, Gender, Issues and Debates, Origins and Approaches and Research Methods).
The curriculum provision aims to provide students with a wider understanding of Psychology and of the topics and key themes being examined and is designed to develop students’ passion for the subject.
The course also provides students with the core skills to enable them to facilitate their learning in Psychology. It also endeavours to provide students with an empathy (Caring Individuals) and understanding of people (Active Citizens). that will help them in their future (Prepared for their Future) lives no matter what career path they might ultimately choose to take.
Enrichment is seen as being key to the implementation of the curriculum and there are a variety of opportunities made available to students.
Implementation (How we achieve our aims)
The Psychology curriculum is carefully planned to address the AQA Psychology Specification. The organisation of the course ensures that key skills are taught early on so that students can access all aspects of the curriculum to the best of their ability.
There is an emphasis on pre-learning and independent learning. This is seen as being key to the development of students as learners and is intended to help facilitate their progression into higher education.
Planning is shared with students as this ensures that there is a strong collaboration in which all are certain about the intended progression and destination.
There is a logical sequence of lessons which is designed to develop students as reflective learners.
Students are encouraged to engage with the mark schemes to give them a firm grasp of examiner and teacher expectations. Regular feedback is given in a variety of formats and students are encouraged to respond to this and improve any weaker aspects of their work(Responsible Learners). There are half-termly progress checks which are reported formally. In addition to this there are regular in class tests and Mock examinations all of which is designed to give students a strong sense of self-efficacy and an understanding of how to progress up to the next level.
Impact (Our Curriculum will enable students to)
The Psychology curriculum intends to offer students the best possible preparation for and result in their final A Level examination. It also aims to develop their personal and scholastic skills and giving them a broad grasp of Psychology, which could be applied to other curriculum areas.
We aim to give our students a lifelong passion for the subject which will enrich their life and even those that they come in contact with.
Psychology is only available to student at Key Stage 5, following the AQA exam body.
Course description ;
In Year 1 students cover six key topics; Memory, Social Influence, Attachment, Psychopathology (abnormal behaviour), Biopsychology and Approaches in Psychology. Students will also study Research Methods examining the various different ways that psychologists conduct their research. This will involve the students themselves designing, carrying out their own investigations and analysing their results.
In Year 2 students will study the option topics of Schizophrenia, Addiction, Gender plus the compulsory element of Issues and Debates and Research Methods.
A LEVEL EXAMINATION
This is a linear course which culminates in three exams;
Paper 1 – Introductory Topics in Psychology (33.3% of total A level)
Paper 2 – Psychology in Context (33.3% of total A level)
Paper 3 – Issues and Options in Psychology (33.3% of total A level)
WHY STUDY PSYCHOLOGY?
Students really enjoy this subject because they find it relevant to their everyday life. There is a wealth of fascinating material to reflect upon ranging from false memory to serial murder and the causes of hallucinations. The course is examined through a range of questions ranging from multiple choice questions, short answers to extended writing. It is therefore beneficial to have an interest in both English and essay writing as well as Science, where the scientific method is applied to psychological enquiry. The Research Methods paper has a strong mathematical focus so an interest in statistical analysis would also be helpful.
The emphasis on research methods is important and relevant for many subjects you may take at university level. An A level in Psychology puts you on course to study a Psychology related degree and taking this subject will clearly be useful for any career which involves the understanding of and working with people. Possible career paths include teaching, nursing, Management, the police, social work, speech and language therapy, counselling, psychiatry, sales and marketing as well as certain job roles within the military.