The Psychology department seeks to engage students in the process of psychological enquiry to develop autonomous students who are critical, reflective thinkers with enquiring minds. We aim to develop students with a growth mind-set who readily take on challenges and constantly strive to be better. We hope as students explore human behaviour in the context of real-life issues, they develop an understanding of themselves and others which will encourage them to pursue this subject post 16.
This is a brand-new subject offered to students as they embark on their GCSE studies. Students will be introduced to stimulating topics that they have not yet encountered before in their learning.
The foundation year covers fundamental topics such as research methods and ethics which underpins all areas of Psychology.
In this foundation year, students will study 4 topics which will give them a flavour of the course should they wish to continue with the option at the end of Year 9. We cover key topics to allow exposure to tier 3 subject specific vocabulary in the course and to develop their skills of thinking analytically when considering psychological theories.
The first topic is Topic 5 – Social Influence and looks at how other groups and individuals can influence our behaviour. This will give the students an appreciation of how we behave in certain social situations. We explore obedience to authority, conformity, and crowd behaviour.
The second topic is Topic 2 – Memory. Students will explore different psychologist’s views of how memory works by looking at how we remember and forget things alongside some important case studies in research.
The third topic, Topic 4 –looks at the brain and neuropsychology. Students will explore the different areas of the brain and how it works. We will also look at what happens if the brain is damaged and methods used to study the brain in addition to considering the ethical issues associated with this.
Each topic will have two key studies that students will study in depth. Students will be exposed to studies and research that goes beyond the specification to provide not only depth and breadth to their learning experience but to also prepare them for A –level which many students opt to take. This course helps to bridge the gap between the next stage and promotes curiosity to pursue the subject further.
Students will receive weekly homework and fortnightly assessed work in the form of exam style questions to prepare them for potentially continuing with the course in Year 10. Examples are shown below in the photo section.
All students in year 9 take part in ‘Careers Week’ lessons in the Autumn term which enable them to link their work in Psychology with their futures. We explore several careers that link to Psychology that they may not have considered.
The GCSE content has 5 compulsory topic areas: development, memory, psychological problems, social influence and the brain and neuropsychology. There are two optional topics which are criminal psychology and sleep and dreaming. These topics are studied in Year 11.
Students who continue with the course will study 4 topics during this year. We begin with Topic 1 – Development. The next topic is Topic 11 – Research Methods which explores psychological research which is central to Psychology. Psychology uses a range of different research methods to examine human behaviour. The content of this topic will be examined in both papers in the GCSE examination.
The second topic in Year 10 is Topic 3 – Psychological problems. This topic will look at the causes of psychological problems such as addiction and unipolar depression and will also explore potential treatments.
Finally, students will begin Topic 6 – Criminal psychology. Students will consider why certain individuals become criminals and what can be done to prevent crime and anti-social behaviour. This topic will seek to determine whether criminals are born or made. Finally, students will study how effective punishments are for criminals and look at other possibilities such as rehabilitation.
Students will receive weekly homework and fortnightly assessed work in the form of past GCSE questions to prepare them for the examination at the end of Year 11.
All students in year 10 take part in ‘Careers Week’ lessons in the Autumn term which enable them to link their work in Psychology with their futures. We explore several careers that link to Psychology that they may not have considered. During the Summer Term, students will participate in a Psychology talk led by the University College Worcester on’ Media effects and criminality.’ This will extend the content they will have studied as part of their course in Topic 6 and challenge their thinking on the impact of the media on our behaviour.
Students will complete Criminal Psychology and will also have time during the first term to fully prepare for their PPE in November. Time is given to re visit topics covered in the foundation year and Year 10 10 for Paper 1. The aim is to build their confidence before they sit their first full examination paper.
The final option Topic 9 – Sleep and dreaming explores the importance of sleep and theories around why we dream. Sleep disorders will also be studied in addition to two dream theories.
Students will receive weekly homework and fortnightly assessed work in the form of past GCSE questions to prepare them for the examination at the end of Year 11 and their PPEs.
Students are given a wealth of support materials to help them throughout their GCSE course and are given numerous booklets to prepare them for their first PPE in November and again for the second in February. Students will have had a huge amount of exposure to past GCSE questions during their assessed fortnightly work to develop their application of knowledge and exam skills.
GCSE Psychology follows the Edexcel GCSE specification. Students sit two papers Paper 1 and Paper 2. There are no tiers in Psychology.
Board and specification:
GCSE Edexcel Psychology (1PS0/01 and 1PS0/02)
The GCSE specification can be found on the link here
Year 11 Psychology Hub – Friday Week B 3pm – 4pm
|Psychology: Exam Board (Pearson) Resources||External Link|
|Psychology: School Revision Guide||School PDF Document|