The Psychology GCSE Syllabus is brought to life in an entertaining course that looks at questions such as: Why do we like some people and not others? How can an individual overcome a fear of spiders? Can you improve your memory?

Psychology is the science of the mind and behaviour. No matter who we are or what we do, some greater insight into this field will be relevant, and this is one reason why Psychology is one of the most popular of all our courses.

The syllabus focuses on the methods of psychology and its practical applications. Step by- step guidance is given with the necessary research projects.

Each lesson of the Psychology GCSE begins with a set of clearly stated objectives and an explanation of its place in the overall programme of study. Effective learning is encouraged through frequent activities and self-assessment questions, and there is guidance for the preparation of coursework and a large number of simply drawn and easy-to-copy illustrations.

There are eleven tutor-marked assignments, including one practice exam paper. No previous knowledge of the subject is assumed or required.

The Syllabus:

The Psychology GCSE course prepares students for AQA GCSE Psychology syllabus 4180, for exams in May/June 2018. Assessment is by two written papers (50% each). A resit paper will be available in May/June 2019.

Exam Paper 1 - Making Sense of Other People (1 Hour, 30 Minutes) is 50% of the total marks. The exam consists of: five compulsory questions. Questions 1 to 4 are topic-based questions carrying 15 marks each and question five is a research methods question carrying 20 marks.

Summary of Content:

  • Memory
  • Non-verbal communication
  • Development of personality
  • Stereotyping, prejudice and discrimination
  • Research methods

Exam Paper 2 - Understanding Other People (1 Hour, 30 Minutes) is 50% of the total marks. The exam consists of: five compulsory questions. Questions 1 to 4 are topic-based questions carrying 15 marks each and question five is a research methods question carrying 20 marks.

Summary of Content:

  • Learning
  • Social influence
  • Sex and gender
  • Aggression
  • Research methods

Please Note: This specification will be available until the May/June 2018 exams, and a new specification (8182) with the new grading system (9 - 1) has been introduced in 2017 for first exams in May/June 2019. A course for the new specification is available for students wanting to sit their exams in 2019. Please contact us if you want further information on the 2019 specification.


There are no prerequisites for starting this course.


No coursework is required.

Additional Reading:

No additional textbooks are required to study the Psychology GCSE course, although there are recommendations for supplementary reading within the course materials.

Student Support:

Every student receives a personal tutor with whom they should keep in regular contact. All tutors are fully qualified experienced teachers holding either a Postgraduate Certificate in Education or a degree in education. Most work from home and are able to offer flexible contact times. The tutor will contact students with an introductory letter and a telephone call to help decide on a study plan. They will also let the student know the best ways and times for contact.

There is no limit on how often you can contact your tutor. The advice and encouragement our tutors provide are an important part of your learning experience. You can contact your tutor by Phone, Post or Email. There are tutor-marked assignments (TMA's) in every course. These help the student to consolidate their learning and prepare for examinations.

All tutors have a Freephone 0800 telephone number and most will have Skype capabilities. Whilst you are still actively submitting assignments, you should expect to be in contact with your tutor regularly. Remember, to get the most out of your tutor, you will need to tell them when you need assistance.

Examination Centres:

There are currently over 300 testing centres across the country, so finding one close by is not very difficult. In December/January we contact you to start arranging your examination dates. We always try to give whatever help we can with examination information, but the entering of students for examinations and any dealings with the examination centres are entirely the responsibility of the student.

Nearest Examination Dates:

Please review the GCSE Overview page for detailed information on possible examination dates and procedures.

GCSE Examination Fees:

Examination fees need to be paid direct to your chosen exam centre. Prices for exams will vary depending on the exam centre's administration costs. You can find out further information about the Private Candidate process and locate suitable exam centres from the AQA Private Candidate Page.

Studying from Abroad:

It is possible to study GCSE Courses from anywhere in the world. However some home study courses are easier to study from abroad than others and some restrictions to the type of tuition available apply. If you wish to study a GCSE then you will need to sit the examinations in the UK. Please remember that most GCSEs have several examinations which may well be spread over several weeks.

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