Curriculum Intent

Psychology Curriculum Intent

“When you want to know how things really work, study them when they're coming apart” (William Gibson)

Psychology is part of all of us, it is who we are and how we came to be. It makes us question our reality and explore the influences on body, mind and behaviour. As people, we often think that by existing in the world we understand its impact upon us, but it is through the study of a range of psychological perspectives and key psychological research that truly opens our eyes to the complex interplay of factors which impact on the actions we take each day. We do not learn to read people’s minds but to read the situation and make predictions using scientific knowledge about how the environment may influence each individual in differing ways.

The psychology curriculum is delivered by subject specialists, expertly placed to deliver core knowledge within the context of the modern world on a local and global scale. Students will be enabled to use their existing knowledge and understanding from maths, biology and personal development to create strong foundations from which they are able to create an increasingly detailed and evidence-based understanding of human behaviour. The curriculum has been designed to cultivate a synoptic mind; students will utilise skills and knowledge of different aspects of their learning alongside examples drawn from their own experiences. Students will understand how society makes decisions about scientific issues and how the sciences contribute to the success of the economy and society.

Students will be facilitated to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of psychological concepts, theories, research studies, research methods and ethical issues. Research skills; in design, practicality and analysis; being paramount. Students will develop the mathematical skills needed in order to conduct careful analysis of research findings. As a result, students will be confident in problem-solving and critical thinking. Students need to critically explore evidence, never accepting anything as fact. They will be able to compare theories or ideas and evaluate their usefulness in terms of the amount of insight into human behaviour that they provide.

The curriculum has been sequenced to provide carefully chunked lessons that have been planned to maximise student exposure to a number of different psychological approaches and perspectives. Students will be scaffolded to build their knowledge and supported on their learning journey through towards the application of this knowledge. Questioning from teachers and peers will afford students the opportunity to deepen their thinking. Students will be able to apply their knowledge to unique situations and are given chances to do so based on current events on a regular basis. Students will have excellent literacy skills and will be exposed to a variety of information sources from news articles and published research. Students are provided regularly with developmental feedback and NA6 study challenges are used to consolidate and further their understanding. Examination style questions will be used throughout but in Year 13 the focus will be on the recall, retrieval and application of year one (12) content.

June 2024

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