Department Vision:

Psychology is the study of the mind and behaviour and therefore the subject is relevant to everyone.

The aim of the department is to provide students with a solid grounding in Psychology. A variety of teaching and learning activities are utilised and students are given the opportunity to foster their independent study skills and to work as part of a group.

The skills that are developed will assist students in both their future courses of study and career paths. Students are able to apply their knowledge and understanding of human behaviour and gain a scientific insight into what makes people behave in particular ways.

As such, a qualification in Psychology is advantageous for a variety of occupations and future courses of study. Some students decide to study Psychology at degree level following their introduction to the discipline at SFX.


  • Ms P.Finlay Subject Coordinator of Psychology
Courses: GCSE and A Level

Key Stage 4 – what course are you following with exam board and spec title:

GCSE Psychology – OCR J203

Year 10

Term 1 Psychological Problems:

An introduction to mental health

Theories/Explanations of


Theories/Explanations of

Clinical Depression

Application: The development of treatments 

Research Methods

Term 2 Topics & Content: Development

Piaget’s Theory of Cognitive


Dweck’s Mindset Theory

Willingham’s Learning Theory

Application: The changing role of education

Research Methods

Term 3: Criminal Psychology

Theories/Explanations of why

criminal/anti-social behaviour occurs

The Social Learning Theory

Eysenck’s Criminal Personality Theory

Application:  The changing nature of


Research Methods

Year 11

Term 1 Topics & Content: Social Influence



Situational Factors

Dispositional Factors

Application: Changing attitudes

Research Methods

Term 2 Topics & Content: Sleep and Dreaming

Key Concepts: The functions, features and benefits of sleep

The Nature of Dreaming

The Freudian Theory of Dreaming

The Activation Synthesis Theory of Dreaming

Application: Development of treatments

for insomnia

Research Methods

Term 3 Topics & Content:


The Multi-store Model of Memory

The Theory of Reconstructive Memory

Application: Techniques used for recall

Research methods

Key Stage 5 – what course are you following with exam board and spec title: AQA A Level Psychology 7182

Year 12

Term 1 Topics & Content:

Research Methods

Approaches in Psychology

Learning approaches

The Cognitive approach

The emergence of Cognitive Neuroscience.

 The Biological approach

 The Psychodynamic approach

 Humanistic psychology

Psychopathology: Definitions of Abnormality

Behavioural approach to explaining and treating Phobias

Cognitive Approach to explaining and treating Depression

Biological approach to explaining and treating OCD

Term 2 Topics & Content:

Psychopathology cont.

Social Influence: Conformity, Obedience, Minority Influence

Resistance to Social Influence

Role of Social Influence process in Social Change

Term 3 Topics & Content:

a)Attachment: Caregiver-infant interactions 

Animal studies of attachment

Theories of Attachment

Ainsworth’s ‘Strange Situation’.

Maternal deprivation. Romanian orphans

The influence of early attachment on childhood and adult relationships


Models of memory

Types of long-term memory

Explanations for forgetting

Eyewitness Testimony

The cognitive interview.

Year 13

Term 1 Topics & Content:

a) Relationships –Evolutionary explanations

Factors affecting attraction

Theories of romantic relationships

Virtual relationships

Parasocial relationships

b) Issues and Debates – Gender and Culture

Free will and determinism

Nature nurture

Holism reductionism

Idiographic nomothetic

Ethical implications

Term 2 Topics & Content:


Classification and diagnosis

Biological explanations

Psychological explanations


b) Biopsychology

Localisation of function

Ways of studying the brain

Biological Rhythms

C) Research Methods

Term 3 Topics & Content:


Risk factors

Explanations for nicotine addiction

Explanations for gambling addiction

Reducing Addiction

Behaviour change

b) Research Methods

Out of Hours Activities : Grade booster sessions every Weds 3.10 -4.00pm, visits to revision seminars, museums.
Department Website Links (including exam boards, revision sites etc):