Introduction into the subject, what is covers broadly, elements which impact daily life, how useful it is for students, ethos, drive, ambitions

How you extend the more able and support the less able

Psychology is defined as the scientific study of the mind, brain and behaviour. Within the subject you will have the opportunity to explore many questions about what it means to be human and how people think. The subject will allow you to develop an understanding of the things that can influence how our mind works, from the chemicals that influence our brain to the way others treat us.

The study of psychology offers a window into human interactions that can be useful for students wanting to work in any field that involves dealing with people. In addition to this students will learn the skills and techniques needed to carry out Psychological research on others. Careers in psychology extend into sports, business & marketing, health care and neuro-science and education to name but a few. 

At John Fishers the Psychology department aims to extend students learning with hands on approach to the study of in-depth scientific research, a strong focus on teaching the evaluative skills needed for exam success and opportunities to extend their learning outside of the classroom by carrying out practical research projects. The department also offers a weekly Psychology drop-in session to support students in year 12 and 13 with their learning, revision and general organisation.

The courses on offer from the subject at each key stage

(What exam board you follow- Any key results, accolades, ALPS, University destinations)




Psychology is only available at KS5 when students begin their A-Levels. At this point they will be studying the AQA specification. The benefits of this board is that it offers a variety of key topics within the field of psychology and is widely used around the country meaning that many resources are available to support you in your studies.

Below you can see the topics studied in year 12 and 13 as well as the sorts of questions you should be able to answer at the end of each topic…


Social influence

  • Are some people more likely to conform than others?
  • Why do people Obey authority figures?
  • How can someone resist social influence?


  • How are memories created? (Multi-Store Model, The Working Memory Model )
  • Why do people forget?
  • How accurate is memory?


  • Why & how do we form attachments with people?
  • Do animals form relationships like humans do?
  • Does adoption or neglect effect your attachments?


  • Where does our behaviour come from?
  • How does thinking actually work?


  • What is “normal” / “abnormal” behaviour?
  • How do we treat phobias, OCD and Depression?

Research Methods:

  • How do we study people’s behaviour scientifically?



  • Why do males and females act differently?
  • What is Androgyny?
  • What is gender identity disorder?


  • What happens to your body when you stress?
  • How can people cope with stress?
  • Are drugs the solution to stress?


  • Why are some people more aggressive than others?
  • What biological factors lead to increased aggression?
  • Do violent computer games & films make someone more aggressive?

Issues & Debates

  • Is psychology sexist? (Gender Bias)
  • Is psychology racist? (Cultural Bias)
  • Are we in control of our own actions? (Free Will vs. Determinism)
  • Are we born to be different or do we learn to be different? (Nature vs. Nurture)
  • Does all behaviour have a single cause? (Holism vs. Reductionism)
  • Are we really unique? (Idiographic vs. Nomothetic)

Departments approach to learning, lessons and assessment

What the department strives to do and achieve

Any twitter, social media, websites you use to blog etc

Activities or events which you do, attend etc


Department facilities

Organisations, networks, bodies that you are members of, attend or use. Eg Collins Connect

Resources you use or encourage students to use eg Business review, English association

Within the John Fisher Psychology department our approach to learning is a very hands on approach to the delivery of academic content. It is true that Psychology is a complex subject that requires learners to write essays on theoretical ideas. However the joy of the subject is that it is based on human experience. So, whenever possible, students will be taking part in experiments and designing research to test the theories they are learning about.

On top of this they will need to understand the importance of exam techniques and will be given the opportunity to develop the skill of evaluating research and theories as much of their final grades rest on this. As such lessons are focused not on the delivery of theory but around developing exam skills. To mirror this student’s will also sit a variety of assessments from in class essays to end of topic tests made from real past paper questions.

The department aims to produce psychology students who are confident in their own exam readiness, but more importantly to inspire an interest in the study of psychology. Our vision is for students to leave with critical mind that allows them to challenge preconceptions about human behaviour in the real world.