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psychology Psychology - AS/A2

Exam Board: WJEC

What causes mental illness? Why are we scared of certain animals? How does the brain work? How does your childhood affect your adult personality?

Is Psychology for you? • You must have achieved at least 5 GCSEs at grade C or above, including at least a grade C in English Language. You are interested in human behaviour and methods used to investigate it. You have a good science background.

You are naturally curious and would like to know the reasons for our behaviour such as why we dream, why some people are aggressive and what causes phobias. You may wish to consider studying AS/A2 Statistics which will help you understand and analyse data – a valuable skill for Psychology students.

What will I learn? How will I be assessed?

AS Year

All assessment for this course is through written examination.

Approaches in Psychology You will learn about the four main approaches to Psychology, including the main assumptions, theory and therapy for each. You will also learn how to evaluate and compare and contrast approaches.

Core Studies and Applied Research Methods You will explore ten studies covering five areas of Psychology, learning about the procedure, the findings and conclusions and how to evaluate them. You will also learn about the ways of conducting Psychological research and how to apply this to a new situation.

A2 Year

There are plenty of opportunities to enrich your knowledge of Psychology outside of the classroom. We offer visits to relevant exhibitions and museums. First year Psychology students can take part in a two day trip to London which involves visiting the Science Museum and also experiencing a hypnotherapy session at London Zoo to cure phobias of spiders. Second year Psychology students, as part of the Criminal Psychology unit, visit Chester Crown Court to observe a real life court case and get to see Psychology in the court room for real. The Department also arranges for academic speakers to visit College. An example is our annual ‘Brain Day’ during which you can learn from University lecturers. We also help you explore whether you would be interested in studying Psychology-related subjects further at University by arranging for students to hear high profile speakers on subjects such as Criminology or careers in Psychology. The College has lots of exciting enrichment and C.V building opportunities including the chance to earn the Duke of Edinburgh’s Gold Award, learn a new skill, learn a language, join a club, take up or develop a sport or take on a new challenge. See the College Prospectus for further information about what is on offer.

Research Methods and Issues in Research You will have the opportunity to conduct your own Psychological research using different methods and learn about the issues involved in carrying it out.

Controversies, Topics and Applications You will learn about Criminal Psychology, memory and Abnormal Psychology including depression and schizophrenia.

Expect more from your sixth form

What activities can I get involved in?


Where does it lead? Psychology students can go on to specialise in a particular area in Higher Education, such as Educational Psychology, Sports Psychology, Therapy or Occupational Psychology. The skills you learn will also readily transfer to many other careers. These skills include oral and written communication, computer literacy, numeracy, problem-solving and the ability to carry out independent research. The study of Psychology is also good preparation for any career involving people. These include careers in education, health, marketing, management, human resources and government services, including the police.

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