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An introduction to Psychology
A Level Psychology FAQs

Psychology can be defined as the ‘scientific study of the mind’ – how it influences our behaviour, from our communication and memory, to our thoughts and emotions. It is about individuals and their cognitive, biological, and social worlds, and how these factors affect how people think, act, and feel.  Many people argue that Psychology developed as a subject due to Darwin’s ideas. He suggested that all living things were related to one another, meaning that human beings can be studied scientifically, like the rest of the natural world. This allows us to gain a deeper understanding of other people.

To study Psychology at Bilborough, you will need a grade 5 in English Language. In addition to this, you will need at least a grade 4 in Maths and Science, one of which is required to be a grade 5. There is scientific reasoning and data analysis in the course and our students must be able to write effectively about their findings.

Our links with HE

The department has a Twitter account under the name of bilbopsy – come and join us there! To give you the best possible grounding for your future, we are busy forging links with the British Psychological Society, the Freud Museum, University of Manchester, York University, Keele University, Lincoln University, and other leading universities.

Course Structure

You will study 3 Components over two years:

Component One: Psychology: Past and Present: This component looks at five different approaches to explaining human behaviour: Behaviourist, Biological, Psychodynamic, Cognitive and Positive Psychology.

Component 2: Psychology: Investigating Behaviour: This component considers the best way to investigate human behaviour and requires the students to carry out two Psychological investigations of their own.

Component 3: Psychology: Implications in the Real World. This component considers a smaller number of topics in detail. Students will develop their knowledge from component 1. The topics under study are: Schizophrenic behaviours, Autistic behaviours, and Criminal behaviours.

All 3 components are assessed via exams, that are all equally weighted.


Psychology is the scientific investigation of human behaviour.

Should humans be investigated scientifically or are non-scientific methods a more appropriate method to investigate humans?

Are murderers brains different from non-murderers?

Read Raine, A., Buchsbaum, M. and LaCasse, L. (1997) Brain abnormalities in murderers indicated by positron emission tomography. Biological Psychiatry, 42(6), 495-508 and decide if this study has answered this question.

Does money make us happy?

Read Myers, D.G. and Diener, E. (1995) Who is happy? Psychological Science, 6(1), 10-17 and find the answer.

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