Course: AS and A2   

Exam board: OCR

Entry Requirements: A*- B in GCSE English Language and Maths

Minimum GCSE Average Points Score: 42


Course Description: 

To give you a perspective into how psychology is taught we study ten psychological research studies.  The research stems from a wide range of topics ranging from memory to obedience to authority. There is also a strong focus on critically examining the methodology that psychologists use to gather their evidence. Students will conduct their own research using the four key psychological methodologies: observation, correlation, experiment and self-report. We also cover five key psychological approaches: developmental, social, individual differences, cognitive and physiological. There are two exams that students take at the end of the first year.  The first exam consists of the core psychological studies and second consists of research methods.

In the second year there we will build on the knowledge you have gained in the first year of study, core studies and research methods, and in addition learn a new topic of applied psychology. The applied psychology topic consists of the following units outlined below. In the final year of study, students take 3 exams on the following topics, Core Studies, Research Methods, and Applied Psychology.

Health psychology includes

  • How do we get people to behave in healthy ways?
  • How can we deal with the causes of stress?
  • What makes people mad and how do treat them? Here we look at therapies such as Cognitive-Behavioural, drugs and ECT.
  • What kinds of mental illness are there? Here we get to look in detail at schizophrenia.

Forensic Psychology includes:

  • Why do people become criminals? Are these people born bad or made bad?
  • How do we catch criminals (profiling)? What kinds of questions do you need to ask a criminal to catch him or her out?
  • How do juries reach verdicts and are they any good?
  • What happens after a guilty verdict? Does prison work to reform criminals?


Why you should consider this course:


Why do I feel like this?  Why do I think those thoughts?  Why do I behave like that?  How can I make myself feel good?  Psychologists have been studying people for over a century now so on this course you get to find out about a range of theories and research that has furthered our understanding of behaviour. Studying psychology also develops your research skills and ability to critically evaluate.


Subject suitability for degree course or future career:


Psychological thinking is really useful in a wide range of careers from personnel work, management, advertising, social work, education, police work and law. A psychology degree can also lead to psychology specific careers in research, clinical, forensic, and educational and business psychology.

Psychology combines well with almost every other course, either science or humanities subjects as it offers a balance to the more traditional areas and develops research and critical thinking skills.


Contact name:  Mr G Pheysey