September 19, 2018

A Level Psychology

A Level Psychology: Exam board – Eduqas (3 terminal examinations)

Psychology is a stimulating, distinctive and attractive subject choice. It provides exciting opportunities for learners to study a variety of historical and current psychological approaches. They will be required to study classic and contemporary psychological research covering a variety of perspectives and topics. Learners will also study principles of investigating human and animal behaviour and apply psychological information to everyday situations. They will also explore contemporary issues raised in psychological research and be encouraged to work scientifically through their own psychological research.

Unit 1 – Psychology: Past to Present

The purpose of this component is to give a solid grounding in some of the basic core aspects of psychology. The intention therefore is to allow the learner, through the study of classic research, to gain an appreciation that psychology continues to develop and evolve. The early ideas should not be dismissed but rather studied in context with consideration of the advances made in more recent years. Learners will be asked to explore contemporary debates using their knowledge and understanding of the five approaches (biological, psychodynamic, behaviourist, cognitive and positive); through these approaches learners will also gain an appreciation of the fields of social and developmental psychology.

Unit 2 – Psychology: Investigating Behaviour

The purpose of this component is for learners to acquire the skills of working scientifically.

Principles of research:

The central aspect for this component is that of psychological research, from the initial planning stages through to analysing and evaluating. It is designed to introduce learners to the methodologies used by psychologists and to gain an appreciation of the impact of choices made on the outcomes of the research. Learners should appreciate the limitations of scientific research and when dealing with the complexities of humans as test material, there are several issues which need to be considered. In order to contextualise some aspects of research methods learners are required to consider the methodologies used by both social and developmental psychology

Personal investigations:

To ensure true appreciation of the principles of psychological investigation the learners are expected to gain first-hand experience of two research methods. Learners will be required to respond to questions concerning these investigations in the assessment. The two investigations required each year are provided in advance. Learners are encourages to use ICT in researching, designing, analysing and presenting their investigation. Learners will be expected to apply their knowledge of research methods to each investigation, including the following aspects: hypotheses; variables; methodology (including experimental design if appropriate); sampling; descriptive statistics; graphical representations; inferential statistics; reliability; validity; ethics.

Application of research methods to a novel scenario:

The third aspect of this component is for learners to apply their knowledge and understanding of research methods to novel research scenarios, making judgements on the details of psychological research.

Unit 3 – Psychology: Implications in the Real World

Having learnt about the various psychological approaches in Component 1, learners are expected to apply this knowledge and understanding to human/animal behaviours. Learners should be able to explain and draw conclusions about the possible causes of these behaviours and understand that psychology has the potential to impact on society as a whole by developing methods of modifying behaviour. In addition, learners should explore five controversies that continue to pose challenges for psychology. These controversies can be considered synoptically and draw on the content from the whole of the specification.