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Psychology in the Sixth Form (AS & A2)

A-Level Psychology

If you are fascinated by human behaviour, and eager to develop an understanding of yourself or of people in the world, then Psychology is for you.

Here at Altrincham College, our Psychology students will gain scientific knowledge; relevant to behaviour, develop skills in analysing statistical data, as well as develop their communication skills.

Career Oportunities:

Our students will finish the course equipped with the knowledge to progress to university, with the potential to excel in careers in Health and Social Care, Marketing and PR, Management, Human Resources, Education, and Public Sector work, Child Psychology and Criminal Psychology.

Meet the Psychology Department

Name Title
Mrs K Jones Department Lead

Entry Requirements

Five or more A*‐ C (9-4 under the new grading system) grades at GCSE including English Language, Maths and Science.

Grade B (5/6) in English Language is preferred.

Course Content
AS Psychology Units Students will learn about five major approaches to Psychology in the AS course

Topic 1 & 2

(Social and

  • Social Psychology and
  • Cognitive Psychology.

Topics 3 & 4

(Biological and

  • Biological Approach and Learning Theories.
Course Content
A Level Students will study two of four major applications in Psychology.

Topics 1-4

(Foundations in Psychology)
  • Social Psychology
  • Cognitive Psychology
  • Biological Approach and Learning Theories.

Topics 5 & one other

(Applications in Psychology)

Students will focus on:

  • Clinical Psychology (mandatory)

Any one of the following:

  • Criminological
  • Health
  • Child Psychology

Topic 9

(Psychological Skills)

  • Psychological skills (synoptic section covering conceptual and methodological issues)

Learning Methods and Assessment

In each unit, students will:

  • Discover a key topic of research,
  • Learn about important studies related to that topic, and
  • Find out how research is conducted in that area of psychology.

Specifically AS, students will learn to use statistical tests to help interpret data collected in class exercises and be expected to conduct questionnaires, interviews, experiment and observations. Students will be required to format hypotheses and record results in a variety of ways, such as reports, graphs and tables and use these results to format a conclusion.

Assessment at AS level

Unit 1 Social and Cognitive Psychology 1 hour 30 minutes (50% of AS)
Unit 2 Biological and Learning Theories ‐ 1 hour 30 minutes (50% of AS)

Assessment at A level

Unit 1 Foundations in Psychology‐ 2 hours (35% of A level)
Unit 2 Applications of Psychology – 2 hours (35% of A level)
Unit 3 Psychological skills – 2 hours (30% of A level)

All students are expected to be hardworking, highly motivated and have a real interest in people’s behaviour and its explanations. They must be able to learn independently and be able to stick to deadlines.

Psychology provides many opportunities to develop skills in assessing debates and arguments. You will need to:

  • Be willing to have your opinions and values challenged
  • Be willing to listen to and take on board new ideas and novel arguments
  • Be able to see both sides of an issue; not rejecting one side simply because you initially believe it is wrong.