Colin McElvenny currently teaches Psychology at KYS International School. He began studying Psychology at the University of Alabama in the United States where he had the opportunity to work on a variety research projects within the fields of clinical and social psychology. During this time, he was able to look at other aspects responsible for human behaviour including religious studies as well as race and gender studies. While in the state of Hawai’i he taught biology for 3 years and human physiology.

Psychology is an enthralling science that is concerned with the study of behaviour and the mind. A unique yet challenging aspect of psychology is its multi-disciplinary approach. The subject connects many topics including computer science, biology, philosophy, sociology, and economics.

At KYS International School, studying psychology is exciting, challenging, and useful. As you study topics such as cognition, social interaction, development and more, you will get a better understanding of a range of issues such as detecting lying through micro-expressions, obedience to authority, children’s imitation of aggression, physiological and psychological responses to stress, and multiple personality disorder, to name a few. Studying these issues allows for a wide range of applications in real-world settings which includes improving educational settings, treating mental illness, using the work environment to improve productivity, reducing stress, creating artificial intelligence, and more.

Careers in psychology are diverse, with over 50 subdivisions within the field. For example, many companies will seek psychologists to help with various issues including increasing employee morale, productivity, and effectiveness of recruitment. Psychologists have also been found useful in marketing and advertising, neuroscience, education, and of course, therapy. You will gain knowledge of the wide array of job opportunities that a psychologist may pursue.

Psychology is an interesting field of study with many career options. The skills gained in this course, including critical thinking, data analysis, written and verbal communication, and self-directed learning will easily apply to any other subject, field, or career."

Description of Subject

AS Psychology aims to encourage an interest in and appreciation of psychology through an exploration of the ways in which psychology is conducted. This exploration includes:
  • a review of a number of important research studies
  • an opportunity to look at the ways in which psychology has been applied.

AS Level students will tackle the Themes as well as 20 core studies; 5 from each of the main psychological approaches.

  • Methodology
  • Approaches and perspectives
  • Issues and debates
Core content
  • Cognitive psychology
  • Social psychology
  • Developmental psychology
  • Physiological psychology
  • The psychology of individual differences

A Level students will continue on to focus on a number of the Specialist Choice areas.

Specialist choices
  • Psychology and education
  • Psychology and health
  • Psychology and environment
  • Psychology and abnormality
  • Psychology and organization
Assessment in Psychology
For the Advanced Subsidiary Level qualification:
Candidates take Papers 1 and 2. Both papers must be taken at the same exam series.
Paper 1

Type of paper: Short-answer and structured essay questions, based on Core Studies
Duration: 1 hour 30 minutes
Section A: 15 short-answer questions (60 marks)
Section B: 2 structured essay questions (20 marks) with a choice of one core study from a list of three in each question

Weighting AS: 50%
Weighting A2: 25%

Paper 2

Type of paper: Structured essay questions
Duration: 1 hour 30 minutes

Section A:
1 question on methodology with a named core study (25 marks)
1 question on approaches and perspectives, and issues and debates,
with a named core study (25 marks)

Section B:
1 question on approaches, issues and debates (20 marks)
related to a number of core studies, from a choice of 2 questions

For the Advanced Level qualification:
Candidates take Papers 1, 2 and 3. Papers 1 and 2 must be taken at the same exam series, but Paper 3 may be taken at a later exam series.

Weighting AS: %
Weighting A2: %

Paper 3

Type of paper: Short-answer and structured essay questions
Duration: 3 hours
Candidates study 2 specialist options from a choice of 5
For each option chosen there are 3 sections:
Section A: short-answer questions (6 marks)
Section B: 1 structured essay: topic areas (20 marks)
Section C: 1 structured essay: applying psychology (14 marks), from a choice of two questions
Weighting A2: 50%