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Psychology is the study of the human mind and behaviour: a science which uses cutting edge research to give a better insight into everyday issues and current events, from obsession with body image to involvement in gang violence. Topics included in the new specification include: approaches and methods related to the core areas of psychology – cognitive, social, biological, developmental, individual differences and research methods. Alongside the different approaches, pupils will learn about the issues and debates that exist in psychology. Pupils will also focus on a range of topics in greater detail using the different approaches, issues and debates; these include gender, stress and aggression.

Assessments are via a variety of question such as multiple choice, short answer and extended writing/essays, which target the skills of knowledge and understanding, application and evaluation. Students’ understanding of research methods, gained through classroom experience of practical psychology, will be assessed using a scenario-based question style and research methods questions embedded in topics.

The specification will appeal to a cross-section of students, regardless of whether they have studied the subject before. It builds on skills developed in the sciences and humanities, and enables progression into a wide range of other subjects. If you enjoy studying human behaviour in different contexts, can apply a critical eye to different theories, and are comfortable sharing your opinions in group discussions, this course will suit you. As well as good English skills, good numeracy is essential as you will analyse statistical data to evaluate the results and validity of different experiments. Psychology is a useful foundation for a wide variety of degrees – from Social Studies to Law and Criminology, and careers – from social work to marketing. This qualification offers an engaging and effective introduction to 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.

For more information on the course we study, please visit the AQA website. In addition to the school’s general entrance criteria, you will require a Grade B in GCSE Biology.

For example essays and further information on the course please visit