Departmental approach to the curriculum
Psychology is the study of the mind and behaviour. The AQA psychology A level is an introduction to many aspects of this and gives an insight into this fascinating subject.
During the two years of study you will cover extensive research methodology units which give an overview of conducting research, ethics, data collection and analysis as well as statistical testing to determine significance of findings.
You will study the major approaches within psychology which includes a large section on biological psychology as a reflection of modern, science-driven psychology.
Additionally, you will also get an introduction to several core topics with the field including human memory, attachment, social influence and psychopathology.
Through their study of psychology, students will learn the fundamentals of the subject and develop skills valued by Higher Education (HE) and employers, including critical analysis, independent thinking and research.
Psychology is useful for any job that requires interaction or an understanding of human behaviour and development.
- Business, management, teaching, research, social work and careers in medicine and healthcare
- Sports - helping athletes to build mental strategies to improve their performance and handle pressure
- Education - studying child development and helping children experiencing difficulties with their education
- Clinical and counselling - treating people with mental health needs
- Occupational - aiming to increase the effectiveness of an organisation and improve job satisfaction
Long Term Curriculum Overviews
Year 12 and 13
Exam Board: AQA A Level Psychology
Course Requirements: Students must have a grade 6 or above in English Mathematics and Science.
In Year 12: Students will sit an internally assessed examination. Questions range from short mark questions to extended writing.
In Year 13: Students will sit externally assessed examinations. There are three 2 hour exams. Questions range from short mark questions to extended writing. These are sat typically at the end of May and into mid-June. See the AQA website for specific dates.
At least 10% of the overall assessment of Psychology will contain mathematical skills equivalent to Level 2 or above.
At least 25–30% of the overall assessment will assess skills, knowledge and understanding in relation to research methods.
'The Big Picture' Curriculum Map
'The Big Picture' Curriculum Map
This document will provide a visual overview of the department's curriculum from Key Stages 3 to 5. This is in a student-friendly format to support them in their understanding the of the department's curriculum.
Department Assessment Matrix
This document will provide an overview for assessment for Key Stages 3, 4 and 5.
Key Stage 3 Judgement Descriptors
This document will give you an overview of the criteria for Emerging, Developing, Secure and Mastery judgements at KS3 for this subject.
How can you help your child succeed in psychology?
Please encourage your young psychologists to report to you their daily diet regarding psychology.
It is such a fascinating subject that discussions around the dinner table debating why someone has behaved in the way they have will be a perfect way help consolidation of what is being learnt at school.
Find an opportunity to engage in conversation about news stories as these topical areas of discussion will help them think and learn outside of the specification and beyond!
We expect students to actively participate in class discussions, to have an open and enquiring mind and to work and always think independently, you can help to encourage this.
Students will need to utilize their free time effectively to ensure that all work is completed. Through their learning of Psychology students will learn about the importance of sleep, the need for focus with out the distraction of mobile phones and social media. Parents can help ensure students are completing their independent learning at home, They should be matching every hour taught with an hour of their own consolidation.
Helpful websites and further information
There are several resources alongside your main textbook that we recommend aiding your learning and revision of the topics we cover:
Psychology A Level Exam board: