What is psychology?

The study of psychology is based on scientific research principles and studies and involves a range of methods, including experiments, brain imaging, interviews, case studies and observations. Results from these studies are analysed using statistical techniques and in-depth qualitative procedures to explain or predict behaviour.

Psychology is a broad discipline that covers a number of topics, such as memory, child development, mental illness and social relationships.

The roots of the subject developed from biology and philosophy and the discipline draws on a number of different approaches to explain human behaviour.

Aims and Vision

Studying A level Psychology at DWHS provides an ideal opportunity for students to gain qualifications which offer an engaging and effective introduction to psychology which will appeal to a cross-section of students, regardless of whether they have studied psychology before.  It builds on skills developed in the sciences and humanities, and enables progression into a wide range of other subjects.

Students will learn the fundamentals of the subject and develop skills valued by Higher Education (HE) and employers, including critical analysis, independent thinking and research. Central to the study of Psychology at DWHS is thinking like a scientist: we seek to get students asking questions about the quality of evidence psychological theories are based on and to work independently investigating different research method employed to derive such evidence. Our learning takes place in mixed-ability classes, where every student is supported to develop these skills and achieve their full potential in this academically rigorous and demanding subject.

key stage 5

Psychology is the science of mental processes and behaviour.  It is the study of what humans and animals do and why they do it.

Psychologists do not simply explain people's behaviour but they use their understanding to help people overcome difficulties, and bring about changes for the better.

By taking A level Psychology you will be given a general introduction to psychological concepts, theories, r search findings and their application to real life. 

Exam Board: AQA

Year 1 Subject Content:

Introductory topics in Psychology:

  • Social influence
  • Memory
  • Attachment

Psychology in context:

  • Approaches in Psychology
  • Psychopathology
  • Research methods

Year 2 Subject Content

Introductory topics in Psychology:

  • Humanistic and psychodynamic approaches

Psychology in context:

  • Biopsychology including localisation of function, ways of studying the brain and biological rhythms

Issues and options in Psychology:

  • Issues and debates
  • Relationships
  • Stress
  • Aggression

Career Opportunities / Routes

As it offers a wide range of topics, students are able to go on to university studying psychology with possible joint degrees.  This will enable students to choose from a wide range of career pathways such as becoming clinical psychologists, educational or occupational psychologists.


Introductory topics in Psychology

  • 33%

Psychology in Context

  • 33%

Issues and options in Psychology

  • 33%