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1. Portsmouth Grammar School International Baccalaureate Group 3: Psychology Course Guide September 2009- May 2011 Name: ………………………………… Welcome…
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  • 1. Portsmouth Grammar School International Baccalaureate Group 3: Psychology Course Guide September 2009- May 2011 Name: ………………………………… Welcome to Psychology!
  • 2. Welcome! Congratulations! You have completed your GCSEs and hopefully enjoyed a long, hot (and sometimes wet!) summer. You have made an important choice this year, to study IB and the choose psychology as your Group 3 subject. We want to ensure, throughout the year and beyond, that you look back and know that you made the right choice! Reading this induction booklet and completing our induction programme will help you to be sure about the choices you have made. You are about to embark upon an intense and exciting couple of years in which you will discover a whole new subject which hopefully will inspire you and help you to... • understand more about effective learning and, thus improve your study habits • enhance your self knowledge, improve your relationships • develop an empathic and compassionate outlook and an appreciation of human diversity • support you to take risks and consider perspectives and outlooks that differ from your own • develop crucial scientific research skills, which will allow you to evaluate evidence and devise and conduct research studies This year, you will develop understanding and skills in the following areas... • the three levels of analysis is psychology; the socio-cultural level, the cognitive level and the biological level and explore how these three interact to provide an integrative approach to the understanding of human experience and behaviour • psychological theories, research, terminology, concepts, studies and methods • how psychological knowledge is generated through studying a range of psychological methodologies, designing and reporting psychological investigations, analyzing and interpret data • the skills of analysis, interpretation and evaluation • ethical issues in Psychology, including the ethical implications of psychological research • ways in which psychological research can be applied at the individual and community level
  • 3. Working together Studying the IB diploma will be a big step up from GCSE and the subject of psychology will be new to you, although you may already have some understanding of what it involves from things you have watched on television, books and articles you have read. I am sure soon become inspired and passionate about Psychology. Many people find the subject fascinating as we often focus on phenomena with which we are all familiar. Sometimes students find their interest slipping, as they become embroiled in new terminology, complex further reading and the multitude of perspectives and methods that psychologists use to approach their subject, not to mention the statistics, experiments and report writing! For this reason, it is vital that you keep on top of your studies from the out-set as success will require not just interest and an enquiring mind but determination and a lot of hard work. This will be an intense year where you will develop new skills and ways of thinking alongside a lot of new subject knowledge. Your fellow students will become a very important source of support if you can learn to work well together and learn from each other. At revision time, often pupils who plan and work together, succeed together. When you tell some-one else your intentions, you make them real, some one will know if you don’t meet your goals! Once you have had a chance to get to know each other as sixth formers, choose your ‘study buddies’ or learning mentors carefully. Work in teams and support each other. Work as a class. Results day will be even more rewarding if you have all achieved the very best that you can as a group. You will need to work hard individually and encourage and support each other. Teaching a topic to another student is a great way to learn it really thoroughly for yourself as well providing help to your friend. Teach and test! Supporting and complementing your studies Clubs: Mrs. Pakes runs a criminal psychology club on Tuesday lunchtimes and Miss Wood runs Psychology Plus on Monday lunchtimes. The Criminal Psychology club is for any interested pupils from year 10 upwards. Psychology Plus is particularly helpful for those pupils who are thinking of studying psychology at university as it provides an opportunity to develop interests outside of the syllabus by researching, summarizing and current research, watching and discussing TV programmes and films Clinics: We will run a specific additional support session for IB psychologists on Mondays after school from 4-5 pm. Tutorials: If you wish to chat to us one-to-one or as small group, please book a tutorial with either teacher. Don’t forget to keep a record of all tutorials attended; we expect every pupil to attend at least one tutorial per half term even if it’s just to check that your notes are in order.
  • 4. Targets: At varying points throughout the term, there will be opportunities to review, revise and assess your learning. You will be asked to set short term targets to improve your studies. Targets help you to achieve your goals. Goals are your dreams, where you want to be in five years, 10 years, 20 years. The ways to make them a reality is to set targets which are... Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, Timed targets To reach each target, you will need to set individual tasks for each week, each day, each study session and tick them off as you go. Catch yourself getting it right, celebrate success, however tiny! It’s good to talk... If at any point during the year, you feel that you need to go over anything more slowly or to talk about anything that you feel is getting in the way of your understanding and importantly, your enjoyment of the course, please come and talk to us as soon as possible, don’t delay! Course Structure and Assessment Exams may seem a long way off, nearly two years in fact, but it’s important to have a detailed understanding of what lies ahead from day one. Don’t worry we will have plenty of practice along the way! Paper 1: The Core All psychology students, standard and higher levels sit this paper. The core comprises of the three levels of analysis in psychology; biological level, cognitive level and socio-cultural level. The biological level of analysis demonstrates what all humans share, whereas the cognitive and socio-cultural levels of analysis reveal the immense diversity of influences that produce human behaviour and mental processes. Section A comprises three questions (each marked out of 8); the questions assess your understanding of each of the three levels of analysis. You must answer all the questions and should spend approximately 1 hour on this section, (i.e. 20 minutes per question). The questions will only use command terms from assessment objectives one and two, i.e. state, define, outline, describe, distinguish, apply, explain, and analyse (more about assessment objectives later!) Section B comprises essay questions and should also take approximately 1 hour. You must choose one question from a choice of three. Questions will all include assessment objective three command terms, but may also include assessment objective one and two terms as well. The essays in this section are marked out of 22. You will receive detailed mark schemes separately.
  • 5. Paper 2: The Options The options paper is 1 hour for SL pupils, who only have to write one essay, and two hours for higher levels pupils who have to write two essays. Essays are marked out of 22, just like section B of paper 1. The purpose of this paper is to assess your knowledge and understanding of the options studied (assessment objectives one and two) and to give you the opportunity to demonstrate application of psychological research, analysis, synthesis and evaluation in relation to the option, (assessment objective three). Paper 2 consists of fifteen questions on the five options, three on each of the following: 1. Abnormal psychology, 2. Developmental psychology, 3. Health psychology, 2. 4. Psychology of human relationships, 5. Sport psychology All PGS IB psychologists, standard and higher levels, will study: Option 1: Abnormal Psychology with Miss Wood. Higher level pupils will also study Option 4: ‘The psychology of human relationships’ with Mrs Pakes. Paper3: Qualitative research methodology Only higher level pupils have to sit this one hour paper. The purpose of this paper is to assess your knowledge and understanding of qualitative research methodology. The paper consists of a set of compulsory questions based on an abstract or an extract from a study, interview, observation or scenario (approximately 500 words) including, for example: • the aim • participant characteristics • the research method used • results and /or findings. The total mark for paper 3 is 30 marks. These marks will be distributed across assessment objectives 1, 2 and 3. The maximum for any one assessment objective will not exceed 12 marks nor be lower than 8 marks. The assessment weighting of paper 3 at HL is 20%.
  • 6. The Internal Assessment This is a piece of coursework which takes the form of a simple experiment which will be assessed through a written write up which will be marked by Miss Wood (internally assessed). A sample will be sent to the IB moderators to ensure that our marking is in line with the rest of the world, (externally moderated). Standard and Higher level write-ups will be marked in different ways; higher level pupils have to take a more in-depth approach and use slightly more complicated statistical analysis, called inferential statistics, where we assess statistical significance, or the probability that our results arose due to chance. We will start this piece of work at the end of this year and it will be completed in the first term of the second year. We will complete a practice practical and write up first and you will be set some interim deadlines to help with your organisation and planning. Summary of assessments Duration Value Question style Marks Paper 1 SL and HL: SL: 50% Section A: 3 x short Section A: /24 The Core 2 hrs HL: 35% answers; 20 mins per Section B: /22 question Total: /46 Section B: 1 x essay question; 1 hour Paper 2 SL: 1 hr SL: 25% One hour essays out of / SL: /22 Options HL: 2 hrs HL: 25% 22 HL: /44 1 x essay (SL) 2 x essays (HL) Paper 3 HL only: 1 hr HL only: 20% Short answer questions HL only: /30 Higher level only in response to an Qualitative research in extract psychology Internal assessment SL and HL: 8 wks SL: 25% Written report, SL: /20 lesson time plus HL: 20% internally assessed and HL: /28 HW externally moderated
  • 7. What makes IB Psychology special? The IB Learner Profile The IB Diploma hopes to nurture ten special qualities in its learners; by now I am sure you are fully conversant with these principles. In Psychology, we have tried to signpost how each of our activities and enrichment opportunities relate to the IB learner profile. As you learn more about more about what psychologists do, how they work, how they think, feel and behave within the world that we live in I would like you to add your thoughts and comments to our ongoing display which aims to demonstrate how when and how psychologists are ... Theory of knowledge Psychology lends itself really well to the ‘theory of knowledge’ component of your course and there will be lots of opportunities to embed tasks into the curriculum which tie in with what you are learning about in your TOK lessons. Questions related to theory of knowledge activities that you might consider during the course include the following: • To what extent are the methods of the natural sciences applicable in the human sciences? • Are the findings of the natural sciences as reliable as those of the human sciences? • To what extent can empathy, intuition and feeling be legitimate ways of knowing in the human sciences?
  • 8. • Are there human qualities or behaviours that will remain beyond the scope of the human sciences? • To what extent can information in human sciences be quantified? • Do knowledge claims in the human sciences imply ethical responsibilities? • To what extent do the knowledge claims of the social sciences apply across different historical periods and cultures? • Does psychological research ever prove anything? Why do we say that results only indicate or suggest? • How are ethics involved in the study of psychology? When and how do ethical standards change? • Noam Chomsky has written, “… we will always learn more about human life and human personality from novels than from scientific psychology.” Would you agree? Internationalism Embracing cultural diversity and fostering a sense of internationalism in its learners is at the heart of the IB’s mission. In psychology, we hope to embed this sense of global citizenship through encouraging reflexivity, that is, an awareness of one’s own inherent biases and those of psychologists who have gone before us, who have at times presented explanantions human experience and behaviour common only to white, middle class, and predominantly male academics and their students. Internationalism will be actively incorporated into our curriculum through an exploration of cultural differences and pupils will be routinely encouraged to question and challenge whether findings, concepts or explanations would have validity in other cultures. How to make the most of psychology... We will begin each new topic with a clear overview of the syllabus area, learning objectives and core vocabulary for your glossary, to ensure that you are completely aware of what you need to know. You will receive a topic booklet containing the majority of the handouts and activities for that block of work and detailing homework and deadlines. Occasionally your teacher will set homework which is not in the topic book or may give out additional handouts. • Every lesson: Consolidate or cement your understanding of class notes every lesson, within 24 hours where possible. We will teach you some systems for keeping notes, for example ‘brain frames’, adding to a brain frame for just 5 mins can help with consolidation
  • 9. • Each week: Standard and Higher level pupils will receive one piece of work each week from Miss Wood which should take around 60-80 minutes. Higher level pupils will be set an additional piece of work by Mrs Pakes which should take around 40 minutes. You will be given one week to complete your work however it often pays to complete your work on the night it is set or start your work during our weekly clinic to ensure you are ‘on the right track.’ • Every half term: Half term grades will be based on home, class work and formal mid-term tests which may comprise multiple choice questions, short answer and essay questions. We may not always follow the same format so be sure to listen to instructions carefully! • At the end of a topic: At the end of every topic, we will want to inspect your folders and expect to see your completed brain-frames, glossaries, neatly organised notes and revision materials. We will expect to see that you have completed each task and kept your ‘tutorial record’ and ‘tracking progress’ sheets up to date (more on that later!). • Help us to help you: If you have any additional needs which affect your studies, e.g. hearing or visual impairment, dyslexia, dyspraxia, please let us know as soon as possible so that we can do our best to differentiate our teaching. Also if there are things you find difficult or indeed things that you particularly enjoy which help you to learn effectively please let us know! Tracking your progress • You will receive a sheet called ‘Psychology: Tracking Progress’, which will help you to improve your use of independent study time, to review your written work and to make better use of your teacher’s feedback. • Each time a piece of work is set, jot down the title, date set and deadline here. You will need to keep a more detailed record of the task requirements in your planner or exercise book. • When you have completed the work, circle the deadline to indicate that this was met. • When you receive marked work back, write down the date and record your marks. This will give you an overview as the course progresses, of how you are getting on. In the R/C/D column please note if you were awarded recognition or asked to attend a clinic, tutorial or detention. • The targets column is the most important of all. Read your teacher’s feedback carefully and use this column to interpret how you could improve the piece specifically or indeed improve your knowledge of the area more generally. Write SMART targets (specific, measurable, attainable,
  • 10. realistic and timed). For example, don’t write ‘try harder next time’ try ‘book tutorial for clarification’, ‘read article in Psychology Review’, ‘complete additional questions in Cardwell’ etc.! • In the last column, note down a sensible time at which this could be achieved. Never leave it more than a week, always ‘strike while the iron is hot’! • Circle the date when you have had a chance to review this piece of work. • When you receive work back, you should also write a specific target which relates to what you are going to do to try and improve your next piece of work; write your target onto the top of a blank mark sheet to hand in with your next piece. This will encourage you to stay focused on ways to improve your work rather than ‘just getting it done!’ What happens if I am away? If you are way, many of the handouts will be contained in the topic booklet; however you should book a tutorial and/or come to clinic as soon as possible to make sure that you fully understand any missed work. Any additional materials not contained within the booklet will be easily accessible in our base-room. If you are away when work is returned it will be put in the marked work area in 3014. The induction programme As you can see there is a lot to learn and we will be getting started quickly! But before we start there is just time for some vital tasks. We hope that you will enjoy our induction programme and that it will allow you to… • get to know your new class and teachers • challenge your preconceptions of o what psychology is and what it is not o what psychologists do and what they don’t o why it is important in the world today o why it’s not just a load of common sense! • gain a sound understanding of how the course is structured and how you will be assessed throughout the year • identify yourself as an IB psychology student and know what this means • learn a new way of thinking which may change your life forever; the six thinking hats!
  • 11. Bon voyage! Keep this booklet safely at the start of your folder and refer to it regularly as the information it contains is integral to your understanding of the structure of the course and how you will be assessed amongst other things. All that remains to be said is good luck and I am looking forward greatly to getting to know you over the course of our next two years together. Good luck!
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