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This course is for people who want to explore a wide range of human behaviours from a variety of different, often conflicting, perspectives.

You will be required to learn a number of detailed psychological studies and to develop a strong critical awareness of the research methods used. We also engage with topics such as ethics, gender bias and the question of free will.

This is a scientific course and it is an excellent way to develop your powers of analysis and evaluation of what may first appear to be common sense assumptions.

Whilst we do not teach you how to read people’s minds, the course will challenge you and help you to develop a better understanding of yourself and those around you.

Course Content

The three modules to be covered over the two years will be:

Unit 1

Introductory topics in Psychology

  • Social influence (conformity, obedience, minority influence and social change)
  • Memory (models of memory, explanations for forgetting, eye-witness memory)
  • Attachment (care-giver infant interactions, explanations for attachment, maternal deprivation research)
  • Psychopathology (abnormality definitions, phobias, depression and OCD)

Unit 2

Psychology in context

  • Approaches in psychology (behaviorist, cognitive, biological, psychodynamic, humanistic)
  • Biopsychology (nervous system, fight or flight response, localization of function, brain scanning techniques, biological rhythms)
  • Research methods in psychology (experimental and non-experimental techniques, data handling and analysis)

Unit 3

Issues and options in Psychology

In depth look into how psychology is applied to 3 areas from a selection, including cognition and development, schizophrenia and forensics, and an exploration of issues and debates in psychology including, gender & culture bias, free will & determinism, nature-nurture debate, ethical implications of research.

Methods of Teaching, Learning and Assessment

The courses are taught by well-qualified and experienced members of staff. Students will learn through a variety of methods including whole-class lessons, group work, and individual work, and will have the opportunity to carry out a set piece of psychological research. Students will be expected to carry out reading and note-taking as part of their extension work.

Methods of Assessment

The A-level Psychology course is 100% exam-based. 



A variety of primary texts, journals, video clips and internet based resources are used within the classroom and most resources are also available on the college’s virtual learning environment.

All students will have access to the approved online AQA textbook to use during the course. In addition to this, the library provides a range of resources which students are encouraged to use throughout the course.


Students have the option to go on multiple trips throughout the course e.g. to local universities, a zoo and a variety of conferences including criminology conferences.


The skills and knowledge acquired through studying Psychology provide a sound basis for students who wish to enter higher education.

It is also a suitable course for those who wish to take up employment immediately from college.

The course provides a useful background for nursing, personnel work, and teaching.

Some students may wish to follow through their interest in this subject to work in an applied area of psychology such as; forensic psychology, criminology, counselling and sport and exercise psychology.

Where can this course lead?

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