How to revise A Level Psychology: Social Influence and Psychopathology

By Ad McLaughlin

Revision playlists for Social Influence and Psychopathology

I am a teacher and have also been working with OUP on some new AQA A Level Psychology projects, thinking about revision in a year where students have never sat formal exams, much of the learning has been online or in masked, freezing cold conditions, and with high levels of absenteeism. The not-so-motivated students have gaps in their knowledge and even the motivated ones are struggling with tricky concepts like the Biological explanation of OCD if they missed the lesson. We teachers love an in-depth explanation of the inner workings of the orbitofrontal cortex, but then we wouldn’t be teachers if we didn’t, right?

With this in mind I made some revision videos specifically for the 2022 AQA Advanced Information topics that are based on the cognitive science concepts underlying the Oxford Revise revision guides: Knowledge-Retrieval-Practice.

The videos provide a refresher of knowledge and clearly identify the AO1 and AO3 content. At the end of the videos, learners are advised to practise retrieval through a short-answer test and then are given practice questions to consolidate their knowledge and hone exam technique. The questions vary in difficulty with advice and tips given on structuring the tricky 16-markers (including this one on the behaviourist approach to explaining phobias).

I have included as many images as possible in the videos, not only for double-encoding, but in some cases, such as this cute kitten, to give students a warm fuzzy feeling about the tricky timed question before they attempt it.

Example still from the video that shows an AO3 evaluation point with a meaningful warm, fuzzy picture (!) to help them recall the information.

I have made two playlists that cover everything on the advanced information for Social Influence and Psychopathology. Hopefully, students will work their way through the playlist and engage with the retrieval and practice questions independently. I am setting my students some of the timed essays to be completed in class to give them the extra ‘encouragement’ (yes, ok, accountability) to complete the work.

Another aim for the videos is that students can engage with them while doing other activities. Being cooped up in a pandemic was rotten for most, but I can’t image being 15 and stuck with my parents for the best part of two years! I’m expecting and hoping that students are going to be out and about engaging with their hobbies once again; these videos could be listened to/watched while at the gym or on a bus journey, etc., with the consolidation activities completed later. 

Of course, we all know, that the more effort a learner puts into their revision, the better they will recall the knowledge. On that note I know I’ll be encouraging my students to make their own videos and hopefully these videos will give them a wealth of ideas.

Good luck to all of us this year for Exams 2022, yes it’s all about the learners, but isn’t it the best feeling in the world when the learners we have nurtured achieve or even exceed their goals?

Author Ad McLaughlin shares advise on how to revise A Level Psychology

Author: Ad McLaughlin

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Psychopathology playlist: Definitions of Abnormality 1 for the Psychopathology Unit of A Level Psychology

Social influence playlist: 05 Situational Variables affecting Obedience. Revision for A Level Psychology (2022 exams)

Author Ad McLaughlin shares advise on how to revise A Level Psychology

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