Psychological approaches and assumptions:
o other people, culture and society influence people’s behaviour.
• Learning assumptions:
o behaviour is a learned response from environmental stimuli
o behaviour can be learned from observation and imitation.
• Biological assumptions:
o behaviour is influenced by central nervous system (CNS), genes and neurochemistry
o behaviour is a product of evolution.
• Key concepts:
o reconstructive memory, including the role of schema (shortening, rationalisation and confabulation)
o cognitive priming, including the role of cognitive scripts and different types of priming (repetition, semantic and associative)
o cognitive biases, including fundamental attribution error, confirmation bias and hostile attribution bias.
• Key concepts:
o conformity (normative social influence and informational social influence)
o types of conformity, including internalisation, identification, compliance
o social categorisation (formation and effect of stereotypes).
• Key concepts:
o classical conditioning – learning by association, to include the role of the unconditioned stimulus, unconditioned response, neutral stimulus, conditioned stimulus and conditioned response
o operant conditioning – learning by consequences, to include the role of positive reinforcement, negative reinforcement and punishment
o social learning theory – learning through observation, to include the role of observation, imitation, modelling and vicarious reinforcement.
• Key concepts:
o the influence of biology on behaviour
o genes, including the role of genotype phenotype and the SRY gene; neuroanatomy, including basic localisation of function and sex differences in brain structure; neurochemistry, including the role of sex hormones and neurotransmitters
o evolutionary psychology, including the environment of evolutionary adaptation, survival of the fittest, sexual selection and genome lag.
Use of psychology to explain contemporary issues of aggression in society. Learners should be able to demonstrate knowledge of different types of aggression, including hostile and instrumental. Learners should understand and apply knowledge of how psychological concepts and research can be used to explain aggression in society:
• cognitive, including priming for aggression, hostile attribution bias
• social, including conformity to social/group norms, stereotypes
• learning, including operant conditioning, social learning
• biological, including evolution, brain structures, neurochemistry, genes
Use of psychology in business to explain and influence consumer behaviour:
• cognitive, including schema, cognitive priming (including subliminal messages and brainwashing techniques in advertising), biases in information processing
• social – conformity to social norms (‘Bandwagon Effect’, social proof)
• learning – classical and operant conditioning, social learning (the use of celebrity in advertising)
• biological – neuromarketing (scanning techniques to detect brain changes in consumer decision making).
Application of psychology to explain gender:
• The influence of the following on gender:
o cognitive – role of biases and schema in gender (gender schema theory)
o social – peer influences (normative and informational), conformity to gender roles
o learning – conditioning, social learning o biological – role of sex hormones (before and after birth), evolutionary explanations for masculinity/femininity.
While Stowupland High school is classified by postcode as an urban school we have a strong rural element. Students need horizons widening and explicit links made with a multicultural Britain whilst linking learning to surrounding industry that uses Psychology:
Applied Psychology is 40% internally assessed portfolio work and 60% externally examined;
Within school students are given end of unit tests and low stakes tests on the externally assessed units as a way to diagnose areas of weakness and enable staff to target help for students to improve.
In the BTEC National units, there are opportunities during the teaching and learning phase to give learners practise in developing employability skills. Where employability skills are referred to in this specification, we are generally referring to skills in the following three main categories:
• cognitive and problem-solving skills: using critical thinking, approaching non-routine problems applying expert and creative solutions, using systems and technology
• interpersonal skills: communicating, working collaboratively, negotiating and influencing, self-presentation
• intrapersonal skills: self-management, adaptability and resilience, self-monitoring and development.
In addition to the skills learnt there is also much discussion of where these skills could be used and how we can apply our knowledge to specific job roles. These include: