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Course Overview

This course has been designed to provide a broad introduction to the scope and nature of psychology as a science.

The emphasis is on applying knowledge and understanding rather than just acquiring knowledge, thereby developing students’ transferable skills of analysis, evaluation and critical thinking.

At AS, the specification offers a broad range of topics, with research methods in context.

At A2, there is a range of topic-based options which bring together explanations from different approaches and engage students in issues and debates in contemporary psychology.

This course allows you to study at your own pace. This course is suitable to be studied by all students irrespective of age, creed, religion or gender.

EXAM FORMAT

A Level Psychologyconsists of 4 units in total: AS Level = 2 units

A2 Level = 2 units AS Level Unit 1: PSYA1 – Cognitive Psychology, Developmental Psychology and Research Methods

Examination: 1 hour 30 minutes A2 Level Unit 3: PSYA3 – Topics in Psychology

Examination: 1 hour 30 minutes Unit 4: PSYA4 – Psychopathology, Psychology in Action and Research Methods

Examination: 2 hours

ASSIGNMENT INFORMATION

Throughout the course there will be self-assessment questions, and tutor marked questions, to enable students to monitor their progress.

RECOMMENDED HOURS OF STUDY

It is recommended that 150 hours of your time should be allocated towards study for the AS examinations. It is recommended that 150 hours of your time should be allocated towards study for the A2 examinations.

RECOMMENDED READING

AS: AQA Psychology A AS: Student's Book. Jane Wilson (2008) Nelson Thornes. ISBN-13: 978-0748798230 AS: AQA Psychology A A2: Student's Book. James Bailey: (2009) Nelson Thornes. ISBN-13: 978-0748798254

SUPPORT

As a student of MyDistance Learning College you will have access to tutor via email who will mark your work and guide you through the course to ensure you are ready for your examinations.

ENTRY REQUIREMENTS

Basic English reading and writing skills are required.

QUALIFICATION

AS +A2 = A level in Psychology. Both AS and A2 level courses and examinations must be successfully completed to gain a full A level.

LANGUAGE OF EXAMINATION

Units are provided in English only

EXCLUSIVE HIGH-VALUE PACKAGE FOR
STUDENTS - FREE!

When you become a Student of My Distance Learning College you are eligible to receive the following:

1. A fully functioning business website, with free personal domain name and hosting for one year worth at least £175

2. Professional listing on an online directory exclusively for graduates of My Distance Learning College Courses, which lets the world know that you're qualified - worth £39.99

3. Career consultancy and free CV appraisal by one of the industry leaders in the UK - worth £64.99

4. Employment tools, including expert advice on interview preparation - worth at least £67

Total Value is a minimum of £346.98 – it's almost as if you're getting your course for nothing!

What are you waiting for – order TODAY and get your career into overdrive!

Great news! We are now able to offer a next day delivery service that provides you with a specific time slot by email or SMS for when your course materials will arrive. No more sitting in all day!

An outline of what is offered in our A Level Psychology course:

AS Level

Unit 1: PSYA1 – Cognitive Psychology, Developmental Psychology and Research Methods

Cognitive Psychology – Memory

1. Models of memory

The multi-store model, including the concepts of encoding, capacity and duration. Strengths and weaknesses of the model

The working memory model, including its strengths and weaknesses

2. Memory in everyday life

Eyewitness testimony (EWT) and factors affecting the accuracy of EWT, including anxiety, age of witness.Misleading information and the use of the cognitive interview.Strategies for memory improvement

3. Developmental Psychology - Early Social Development

Explanations of attachment, including learning theory, and evolutionary perspective, including Bowlby

Types of attachment, including insecure and secure attachment and studies by Ainsworth

Cultural variations in attachment

Disruption of attachment, failure to form attachment (privation) and the effects of institutionalisation

4. Attachment in everyday life

The impact of different forms of day care on children’s social development, including the effects on aggression and peer relations.Implications of research into attachment and day care for child care practices

5. Methods and techniques

Candidates will be expected to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the following research methods, their advantages and weaknesses:

 Experimental method, including laboratory, field and natural experiments

Studies using a correlational analysis

Observational techniques

Self-report techniques including questionnaire and interview

Case studies

6. Investigation design

 Candidates should be familiar with the following features of investigation design:

Aims

Hypotheses, including directional and non-directional
Experimental design (independent groups, repeated measures and matched pairs)
Design of questionnaires and interviews
Pilot studies
Control of extraneous variables
Reliability and validity
Ethical issues and ways in which psychologists deal with them
Demand characteristics and investigator effects

7. Data analysis and presentation

Candidates should be familiar with the following features of data analysis, presentation and interpretation:
Presentation and interpretation of quantitative data including graphs, scattergrams and tables

Analysis and interpretation of quantitative data. Measures of central tendency including median, mean, mode. Measures of dispersion including ranges and standard deviation

Analysis and interpretation of correlational data. Positive and negative correlations and the interpretation of correlation coefficients

Presentation of qualitative data

Processes involved in content analysis

Unit 2: PSYA2 – Biological Psychology, Social Psychology and Individual Differences

Biological Psychology – Stress

1. Stress as a bodily response
The body’s response to stress, including the pituitary-adrenal system and the sympathomedullary pathway in outline

Stress-related illness and the immune system

2. Stress in everyday life

Life changes and daily hassles

Workplace stress

Personality factors, including Type A behaviour

Distinction between emotion-focused and problem-focused approaches to coping with stress

Psychological and physiological methods of stress management, including Cognitive Behavioural Therapy and drugs

Social Psychology - Social Influence

3. Social influence

Types of conformity, including internalisation and compliance

Explanations of why people conform, including informational social influence and normative social influence

Obedience, including Milgram’s work and explanations of why people obey

4. Social influence in everyday life

Explanations of independent behaviour, including how people resist pressures to conform and pressures to obey authority

The influence of individual differences on independent behaviour, including locus of control

Implications for social change of research into social influence

Individual Differences - Psychopathology (Abnormality)

5. Defining and explaining psychological abnormality

Definitions of abnormality, including deviation from social norms, failure to function adequately and deviation from ideal mental health, and limitations associated with these definitions of psychological abnormality

Key features of the biological approach to psychopathology

Key features of psychological approaches to psychopathology including the psychodynamic, behavioural and cognitive approaches

6. Treating abnormality

Biological therapies, including drugs and ECT

Psychological therapies, including psychoanalysis, systematic desensitisation and Cognitive Behavioural therapy

A2 Level

Unit 3: PSYA3 – Topics in Psychology

Biological Rhythms and Sleep

1. Biological rhythms

Circadian, infradian and ultradian rhythms, including the role of endogenous pacemakers and of exogenous zeitgebers

Consequences of disrupting biological rhythms, for example shift work, jet lag

2. Sleep states

The nature of sleep

Functions of sleep, including evolutionary explanations and restoration theory

Lifespan changes in sleep

3. Disorders of sleep

Explanations for insomnia, including primary and secondary insomnia and factors influencing insomnia, for example, apnoea, personality

Explanations for other sleep disorders, including sleep walking and narcolepsy

Aggression

1. Social psychological approaches to explaining aggression

Social psychological theories of aggression, for example, social learning theory, deindividuation

Explanations of institutional aggression

2. Biological explanations of aggression

The role of neural and hormonal mechanisms in aggression

The role of genetic factors in aggressive behaviour

3. Aggression as an adaptive response

Evolutionary explanations of human aggression, including infidelity and jealousy

Explanations of group display in humans, for example sports events and lynch mobs

Cognition and Development

1. Development of thinking

Theories of cognitive development, including Piaget, Vygotsky and Bruner

Applications of these theories to education

2. Development of moral understanding

Theories of moral understanding (Kohlberg) and/or prosocial reasoning (Eisenberg)

3. Development of social cognition

Development of the child’s sense of self, including Theory of Mind (Baron-Cohen)

Development of children’s understanding of others, including perspective taking (Selman)

Biological explanations of social cognition, including the role of the mirror neuron system

Unit 4: PSYA4 – Psychopathology, Psychology in Action and Research Methods

Psychopathology

You are required to study one disorder

Schizophrenia

Clinical characteristics

Issues surrounding the classification and diagnosis of schizophrenia, including reliability and validity

Biological explanations of schizophrenia, for example, genetics, biochemistry

Psychological explanations of schizophrenia, for example, behavioural, cognitive, psychodynamic and socio-cultural

Biological therapies for schizophrenia, including their evaluation in terms of appropriateness and effectiveness

Psychological therapies for schizophrenia, for example, behavioural, psychodynamic, and cognitive-behavioural, including their evaluation in terms of appropriateness and effectiveness

Psychology in Action

You are required to study one contemporary application

Media Psychology

1. Media influences on social behaviour

Explanations of media influences on pro- and anti-social behaviour

The effects of video games and computers on young people

2. Persuasion, attitude and change

Persuasion and attitude change, including Hovland-Yale and Elaboration Likelihood models

The influence of attitudes on decision making, including roles of cognitive consistency/dissonance and self-perception

Explanations for the effectiveness of television in persuasion

3. The psychology of ‘celebrity’

The attraction of ‘celebrity’, including social psychological and evolutionary explanations

Research into intense fandom, for example, celebrity worship, stalking

Psychological Research and Scientific Method

You are required to study all of the following

1. The application of scientific method in psychology

The major features of science, for example replicability, objectivity

The scientific process, including theory construction, hypothesis testing, use of empirical methods, generation of laws/principles (eg Popper, Kuhn)

Validating new knowledge and the role of peer review

2. Designing psychological investigations

Selection and application of appropriate research methods

Implications of sampling strategies, for example, bias and generalising

Issues of reliability, including types of reliability, assessment of reliability, improving reliability

Assessing and improving validity (internal and external)

Ethical considerations in design and conduct of psychological research

3. Data analysis and reporting on investigations

Appropriate selection of graphical representations

Probability and significance, including the interpretation of significance and type1/type2 errors

Factors affecting choice of statistical test, including levels of measurement

The use of inferential analysis, including Spearman’s Rho, Mann-Whitney, Wilcoxon, Chi-squared

Analysis and interpretation of qualitative data

Conventions of reporting on psychological investigations

Summary of Assessments

Unit 1: PSYA1 – Cognitive Psychology, Developmental Psychology and Research Methods

• 50% of AS Level
• 25% of A2 Level
• Examination: 1 hour 30 minutes

Structured compulsory questions based on Cognitive Psychology, Developmental Psychology and Research Methods.

Questions include short answer, stimulus material and one 12-mark question requiring extended writing in which QWC will be assessed.

Unit 2: PSYA2 – Biological Psychology, Social Psychology and Individual Differences

• 50% of AS Level
• 25% of A2 Level
• Examination: 1 hour 30 minutes

Three compulsory structured questions, one based on the Biological Psychology content, one based on the Social Psychology content and one based on the Individual Differences content.

Questions include short answer, stimulus material and one or more 12-mark questions requiring extended writing in which QWC will be assessed.

Unit 3: PSYA3 – Topics in Psychology

• 25% of A Level
• Examination: 1 hour 30 minutes
• Three essay-style questions chosen from eight topics:
•  Biological rhythms and sleep 
• Perception 
• Relationships 
• Aggression
• Eating behaviour 
• Gender
• Intelligence and learning 
• Cognition and development
• QWC will be assessed in each essay

Unit 4: PSYA4 – Psychopathology, Psychology in Action and Research Methods

• 25 % of total A Level
• Examination: 2 hours
• Three sections:

Psychopathology: One essay-style question chosen from three. QWC will be assessed in this essay.

Psychology in Action: One question chosen from three.

Research Methods: One compulsory structured question.

Examination Centres

MyDistance Learning College provides expertise support and advice for students in their studies through their comprehensive course packs and tutoring system.

However, we do stress that it is the student’s responsibility to find a centre to register and take their exams with. We are aware that sometimes this is difficult or even impossible to arrange.

Now we have come to an arrangement with centres in Birmingham, Bristol and Harrogate so,please contact them directly for fees and a timetable.

We realise this may still involve a good deal of travelling for some students but the long-term benefits of being able to gain A Levels far outweigh the short-term expense and inconvenience.

Recommended Centres

English Maths Science Tuition Centre Ltd.
40 Showell Green lane
Sparkhill
Birmingham,
B11 4JP
England
United Kingdom

Tel: 0121-771-1298

info@englishandmaths.com

http://www.englishandmaths.com/Index.php

------------------

3A Tutors Ltd 
1A High Street
Staple Hill
Bristol
BS16 5HA

Tel: 0117 9109931

Email: enquiries@3at.org.uk

--------------------

Harrogate Tutorial College
2 The Oval
Harrogate
HG2 9BA

Telephone +44(0)1423 501041

E-Mail study@htcuk.org

---------------------

Campbell Harris Tutors Ltd
185 Kensington High Street
London
W8 6SH
Telephone 020 7937 0032

Email principal@campbellharris.co.uk

Web Site http://campbellharris.co.uk/Content.asp?ID=18

The contract for sitting exams is between you and the centre and we will provide you with comprehensive instructions on when and how to deal with the examination centre.

Please visit AQA for exam information.

http://www.aqa.org.uk/admin/p_private.php

When you have successfully completed this course you will receive an A-Level in Psychology. Once you have this certification you will be able to further enhance your employability in the sector, industry or area of interest by continuing your studies to the next level if you wish.

Do your courses meet the latest syllabus changes?

Yes, all our course materials meet any changes and will be updated free of charge if further changes are made.

Why do I have to find a centre myself?

We have students all over the UK and Europe and it is impossible for us to arrange dates and times for individual students.

What if I cannot find an examination centre in my home town?

If you wish to gain the qualification then be prepared to travel it is worth it!

How much are exam fees?

These vary from centre to centre so please check with your local centre.

Are the courses paper based or on-line?

All our courses are paper based and come in attractive sturdy folders.

How do I contact my tutor?

Tutors are all working Teachers or Lecturers so contact is by email only.

Why can I not take my exams when I have completed the course and why do I have to wait?

Exams are taken at the same times as schools and colleges and are not flexible.

I want to take my exams but there are only a few months to study, is this possible?

Depending on the time of year, it is sometimes impossible to complete your studies in a short space of time as your work has to be marked and checked. More importantly the examination boards have cut off times which are not flexible.

Will I receive UCAS points on completion of this course?

Yes all of our A Levels carry UCAS points. The number of points awarded will depend on the grade you achieve.

What is a clinical psychologist?

A clinical psychologist works with clients with the aim to reduce distress and improve psychological wellbeing. They often work as part of a multidisciplinary team (such as doctors, community mental health nurses, social workers, etc.) to help their clients overcome problems.

Clinical psychologists work with people of all ages with varying needs, including those with:

• Challenging behaviours

• Depression

• Eating disorders

• Addiction problems

• Learning disabilities

• Schizophrenia

What does a clinical psychologist do on a day-to-day basis?

Clinical psychologists will be responsible for assessing the needs of a client using varying psychometric tests, observation and interviews. They will work alongside other professionals to devise and monitor an appropriate programme of support for the client. Clinical psychologists will work with clients to provide therapy and treatment for a range of mental health problems

How do I become a qualified clinical psychologist?

Obtaining status as a qualified clinical psychologist requires the completion of a British Psychological Society (BPS) accredited psychology degree. You will usually need a classification of 2:1 or above, although some providers will also accept a 2:2 degree plus a Masters degree.

3 years of postgraduate study leading to a Doctorate in Clinical Psychology is needed to be eligible for chartered status and entry onto the HPC register, which then enables you to use the protected ‘clinical psychologist’ title.

How much can I expect to earn as a clinical psychologist?

The starting salary for a trainee clinical psychologist is around £25,528, rising to £30,460 for qualified staff. This rises to £46,621 for more experienced psychologists and as much as £45,254 - £80,000 for those responsible for managing departments or large specialist sections.

Psychology

Alevel (AQA) + MDLC Diploma
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This course has been designed to provide a broad introduction to the scope and nature of psychology as a science.The emphasis is on applying knowledge and understanding rather than just acquiring knowledge, thereby developing students’ transferable skills
Knowledge is one thing. Practical application is another. This excellent A-level course provides a broad introduction to the scope and nature of psychology is a science, with emphasis on applying that knowledge and understanding. The course delivers a tho
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Reasonable standard of literacy, plus a healthy dose of enthusiasm
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Course Overview

This course has been designed to provide a broad introduction to the scope and nature of psychology as a science.

The emphasis is on applying knowledge and understanding rather than just acquiring knowledge, thereby developing students’ transferable skills of analysis, evaluation and critical thinking.

At AS, the specification offers a broad range of topics, with research methods in context.

At A2, there is a range of topic-based options which bring together explanations from different approaches and engage students in issues and debates in contemporary psychology.

This course allows you to study at your own pace. This course is suitable to be studied by all students irrespective of age, creed, religion or gender.

EXAM FORMAT

A Level Psychologyconsists of 4 units in total: AS Level = 2 units

A2 Level = 2 units AS Level Unit 1: PSYA1 – Cognitive Psychology, Developmental Psychology and Research Methods

Examination: 1 hour 30 minutes A2 Level Unit 3: PSYA3 – Topics in Psychology

Examination: 1 hour 30 minutes Unit 4: PSYA4 – Psychopathology, Psychology in Action and Research Methods

Examination: 2 hours

ASSIGNMENT INFORMATION

Throughout the course there will be self-assessment questions, and tutor marked questions, to enable students to monitor their progress.

RECOMMENDED HOURS OF STUDY

It is recommended that 150 hours of your time should be allocated towards study for the AS examinations. It is recommended that 150 hours of your time should be allocated towards study for the A2 examinations.

RECOMMENDED READING

AS: AQA Psychology A AS: Student's Book. Jane Wilson (2008) Nelson Thornes. ISBN-13: 978-0748798230 AS: AQA Psychology A A2: Student's Book. James Bailey: (2009) Nelson Thornes. ISBN-13: 978-0748798254

SUPPORT

As a student of MyDistance Learning College you will have access to tutor via email who will mark your work and guide you through the course to ensure you are ready for your examinations.

ENTRY REQUIREMENTS

Basic English reading and writing skills are required.

QUALIFICATION

AS +A2 = A level in Psychology. Both AS and A2 level courses and examinations must be successfully completed to gain a full A level.

LANGUAGE OF EXAMINATION

Units are provided in English only

EXCLUSIVE HIGH-VALUE PACKAGE FOR
STUDENTS - FREE!

When you become a Student of My Distance Learning College you are eligible to receive the following:

1. A fully functioning business website, with free personal domain name and hosting for one year worth at least £175

2. Professional listing on an online directory exclusively for graduates of My Distance Learning College Courses, which lets the world know that you're qualified - worth £39.99

3. Career consultancy and free CV appraisal by one of the industry leaders in the UK - worth £64.99

4. Employment tools, including expert advice on interview preparation - worth at least £67

Total Value is a minimum of £346.98 – it's almost as if you're getting your course for nothing!

What are you waiting for – order TODAY and get your career into overdrive!

Great news! We are now able to offer a next day delivery service that provides you with a specific time slot by email or SMS for when your course materials will arrive. No more sitting in all day!

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