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    Psychology

    Psychology is the study of the human mind and behaviour. It is a scientific subject that uses empirical methods to collect and analyse data. It is available to study at Wath Comprehensive School at KS4 and KS5. Psychology is part of the Religion and Social Science Faculty. The Faculty hopes to inspire a love of inquiry and critical thinking as well as an understanding of the different approaches to studying human behaviours.

    Students at KS4 receive two lessons a week during years 9-11 whilst sixth form students receive five lessons a week dedicated to the subject.

    Key Stage 4

    Students that opt to study Psychology at GCSE level will study the new AQA 9-1 specification. Students will learn key psychological content but will also gain skills such as analytical thinking, statistical measures and evaluation. The syllabus has been designed so that students develop a wider breadth of knowledge that can be applied to a variety of different settings

     There are eight sections of the new specification:

    1. Memory
    2. Perception
    3. Development
    4. Research methods
    5. Social influence
    6. Language, thought and communication
    7. Brain and neuropsychology
    8. Psychological problems

    The course is assessed by two equally weighted external examinations at the end of Year 11, both of which are 1hr 45 minutes long. Students will be awarded a grade 9-1 at the end of the course.

    Sixth Form

    The A Level course takes two years to complete; students will sit Paper One and Two at the end of the first year and could leave with an AS at that point if they wished to. It is anticipated that most students starting the course will complete the full two year A level and sit all three papers at the end of the course. Once the three papers have been taken at the end, any results from the first year will no longer count towards the final qualification.

    Paper One

    • Memory: Theories of how memory works, different types of long term memory, problems with memory, eye witness testimony.
    • Attachment: Types of attachment, cultural variations, role of the father, evolutionary and learning theory of attachment formation and the importance for later life.
    • Social Influence: Conformity, resisting conformity and obedience.
    • Psychopathology: Defining abnormality, explanations and treatments of OCD, depression and phobias.

    Paper Two

    • Research Methods: How to conduct an investigation. How to look for strengths and weaknesses of other studies.
    • Approaches in Psychology: The emergence of Psychology, the assumptions, methods of research and strengths and limitations of the six major approaches.
    • Biopsychology: How biological structures and processes such as the endocrine and nervous system as well as the brain influence behaviour.

    Paper Three

    Issues and Debates in Psychology: Synoptic ideas that affect every area of psychological study. For example, is our behaviour a result of  nature or nurture? How far is behaviour within our conscious control or is it determined by other factors e.g. biology?

    Option 1. One of the following topics will be covered: Relationships, Gender or Cognitive Development.

    Option 2. One of the following topics will be covered: Schizophrenia, Stress or Eating Behaviour.

    Option 3. One of the following topics will be covered: Aggression, Forensic Psychology or Addiction.