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Psychology

The psychology department aims to increase students’ understanding about human behaviour, both typical and atypical, with the belief that a greater understanding of the reasons for people’s behaviour is vital to the development of pupils with a rounded education, strong moral values and enhanced personal and social skills.

As a research-based subject, students have to learn to assess the credibility of theories using evidence and gain experience in dealing with current theories about human behaviour, ranging from mental health through to current developments in cognitive neuroscience.  Studying Psychology allows students to gain many key transferable skills, useful for other subjects at the same academic level and also higher education, such as learning how to analyse data and report-style writing.

The Psychology department follows the GCSE Edexcel specification.  A brief summary of what is covered is outlined below:

KS4 Middle V & Upper V (Years 10 & 11)

  • In  Middle V, we cover two different topics, one of which looks at how we see our world, including perception and illusions, drawing on the paradigms of biological and cognitive psychology.  The next topic looks at the fascinating debate over whether dreaming is meaningful from the viewpoint of two major psychological theories: Freud’s theory of dreaming and the more biological Activation Synthesis Theory.
  • Upper V is split into three topics, tackling some of the main debates in the field of Psychology.  The first topic looks at the debate of whether TV and video games affect young people’s behaviour and draws on psychological and social causes.  The second topic looks at the question of why we have phobias and also draws on biological and social explanations.  The third and final topic addresses the debate of whether criminals are born or made and similarly draws on biological and social causes.
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