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Miss Emma McCarron

Introduction / Welcome

Psychology is a diverse discipline where you learn how Psychologists reach conclusions about human behaviour. It provides a fascinating insight into the reasoning behind the human mind and behaviour, which aims to answer the most interesting questions in life; “Why do I behave differently from my siblings even though we were brought up in the same household?”; “Why do I have a phobia of spiders?”; “Why do people obey authority figures?”. The course covers a vast number of topics including Mental Illness, Animal Behaviour and Criminal Perspectives. You will develop your knowledge and understanding, by experiencing the opportunity to investigate some of the main Psychological perspectives, such as Developmental, Social, Forensic, Cognitive, Behaviourist and Biological Psychology. You will be introduced to central debates, investigate methods used in Psychological research and apply what you have learned to real life contexts through a range of social, cultural and contemporary issues.

During this two-year course, you will develop transferable life skills and a high level of self- awareness by developing an insight into not only why you think, feel and behave the way that you do, but the reasons why others do too.

The following are some of the units we will cover:

  • Social Influence: In this topic we will study the way other people can affect our behaviour. This includes why we conform to peer pressure or obey an authority figure.
  • Memory: We will cover how our memory works and whether our recall of events is always accurate.
  • Attachment: We will learn how important early attachment to a caregiver is for our future lives, and what can happen if we fail to form attachments in childhood.
  • Psychopathology: This includes how we define the term abnormality and the causes and treatments of phobias, depression and Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD)
  • Approaches in Psychology: This introduces the different beliefs in psychology such as whether behaviour is due to biological factors or as a result of learning from the environment.
  • Biopsychology: This will lead to a greater understanding of the way biological factors can shape our behaviour including the role of genes and specific brain areas.
  • Research Methods: This covers how research is carried out in psychology and strengths and weaknesses of these techniques in studying behaviour.
  • Issues and Debates in Psychology: In this topic you will be introduced to the issues that we need to consider when conducting research such as whether we can apply our findings to all cultures in the world and issues of gender and ethics.
  • Forensic Psychology: In this topic we will cover the reasons why people commit crime, how offender profiling can be used by the police and how we can punish such offenders.


  • This is an exam-based course. This qualification is linear. This means that you will complete a range of topics throughout the two years and complete 3 exams at the end of the two years. We cover and complete the work for two AS exams to give students some experience and provide valuable time to develop your exam technique.

Extra-Curricular Activities

Post 16 Mental Health and Well-being Team.

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