Is A2 Psychology a lot harder than AS?

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qwerty123A
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I just wanted to know how similar A2 Psychology is in terms of difficulty, to AS - as I got an A at AS and want an A* at A2

P.s. my exam board is AQA A
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angelcake123
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I love psychology at A2
I prefer the essays (AS had too many short questions)
I prefer the topics

It just depends on your preference and how hard you'll work and how much faith you have in yourself (and God if you believe).

Good luck
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Limerence
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I do Edexcel and a lot of it is repeated, such as methodology. However I'd definitely say it's still much harder since there's a lot more content and terms to become familiar with. This makes gaining marks much more difficult in exams.
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jlwman_
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I'm doing a degree in psychology (3rd year) with no prior knowledge of it.. i did music tech before. so don't stress it's fine
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CleverGirl383
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There's nothing too difficult about A2. It's just more content than AS, so if you were struggling with workload, you'll struggle even more and find yourself spending hours learning material. However, you do go over some topics you've already done like approaches/research methods just in more detail, so it's not necessarily new content that you are learning. This being said, A2 psychology places much more of an emphasis on analysis and evaluation rather than simply recalling the material so this is a skill you need to master. A2 psychology is also synoptic, meaning you'll have to draw on your knowledge from different areas of psychology to illustrate your ideas. The A2 mark scheme is much harder than AS, you have to write much more material to be worthy of a mark and to score the highest marks in the top bands, you need extremely detailed and thoughtful analytical points, for example:

At AS, it would be sufficient to write this for full marks when writing about determinism:

The biological approach is deterministic, meaning it claims all behaviour is caused by behaviours outside of our control. This a weakness of the approach because it means we have no free will.

At A2, for full marks:

The biological approach is deterministic, meaning it claims all behaviour is caused by behaviours outside of our control. This a weakness of the approach because it means we have no free will. This has implications on society, especially on our legal system since it provides offenders an excuse for their behaviour and nobody is responsible for their actions, which is clearly not the view we have of ourselves. This being said, determinism is a strength because it is consistent with the scientific approach, it allows us to identify which factors are causing our behaviour and therefore lead to practical treatments which benefit society, such as behaviour modification for offenders.

Can you see the difference in detail?

Just make sure you revise constantly through the course. This is more important at A2 than AS because of the sheer volume of stuff you need to know, last minute revision will get you nowhere.

Good luck!

A* in A-Level psychology
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qwerty123A
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(Original post by CleverGirl383)
There's nothing too difficult about A2. It's just more content than AS, so if you were struggling with workload, you'll struggle even more and find yourself spending hours learning material. However, you do go over some topics you've already done like approaches/research methods just in more detail, so it's not necessarily new content that you are learning. This being said, A2 psychology places much more of an emphasis on analysis and evaluation rather than simply recalling the material so this is a skill you need to master. A2 psychology is also synoptic, meaning you'll have to draw on your knowledge from different areas of psychology to illustrate your ideas. The A2 mark scheme is much harder than AS, you have to write much more material to be worthy of a mark and to score the highest marks in the top bands, you need extremely detailed and thoughtful analytical points, for example:

At AS, it would be sufficient to write this for full marks when writing about determinism:

The biological approach is deterministic, meaning it claims all behaviour is caused by behaviours outside of our control. This a weakness of the approach because it means we have no free will.

At A2, for full marks:

The biological approach is deterministic, meaning it claims all behaviour is caused by behaviours outside of our control. This a weakness of the approach because it means we have no free will. This has implications on society, especially on our legal system since it provides offenders an excuse for their behaviour and nobody is responsible for their actions, which is clearly not the view we have of ourselves. This being said, determinism is a strength because it is consistent with the scientific approach, it allows us to identify which factors are causing our behaviour and therefore lead to practical treatments which benefit society, such as behaviour modification for offenders.

Can you see the difference in detail?

Just make sure you revise constantly through the course. This is more important at A2 than AS because of the sheer volume of stuff you need to know, last minute revision will get you nowhere.

Good luck!

A* in A-Level psychology
This has helped a lot, thanks!
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GM11
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Got an A* in AQA A Psychology last year and going to study PBS at Cambridge next year.

I found A2 much more difficult than AS, not going to lie. I think unit 3 is an absolute joke of an exam, it doesn't test your knowledge at all, it tests your memory as basically you have to memorise like 40 essays and 2000 theories and theorist's names and evidence. As long as you write top mark essays in class and practice writing them in 30 mins in the right detail (like the above post said) you'll get full marks (like me). Just remember to be extremely concise because there is no time to write irrelevant/extra information.

Unit 4 was a much better exam in my eyes. The research methods is almost identical to AS research methods however much more in depth plus a few extra parts like stats tests and scientific method. Make sure you learn this throughout the year and then, I promise you, you won't even need to revise it when it comes to May/June.

The topics are so interesting it's just a shame the exam format is ****. Much preferred AS exam layout.

Good luck!
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spiritless98
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I did AS psychology Aqa and got an A in it, but A2 is all over the place
My teachers are so disorganised and it's just a pain


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meganfahy
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(Original post by GM11)
Got an A* in AQA A Psychology last year and going to study PBS at Cambridge next year.

I found A2 much more difficult than AS, not going to lie. I think unit 3 is an absolute joke of an exam, it doesn't test your knowledge at all, it tests your memory as basically you have to memorise like 40 essays and 2000 theories and theorist's names and evidence. As long as you write top mark essays in class and practice writing them in 30 mins in the right detail (like the above post said) you'll get full marks (like me). Just remember to be extremely concise because there is no time to write irrelevant/extra information.

Unit 4 was a much better exam in my eyes. The research methods is almost identical to AS research methods however much more in depth plus a few extra parts like stats tests and scientific method. Make sure you learn this throughout the year and then, I promise you, you won't even need to revise it when it comes to May/June.

The topics are so interesting it's just a shame the exam format is ****. Much preferred AS exam layout.

Good luck!
I'm hoping to study PBS at Cambridge too! What subjects did you study and what grades did you get at A2 if you don't mind saying?

Thanks!
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GM11
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(Original post by meganfahy)
I'm hoping to study PBS at Cambridge too! What subjects did you study and what grades did you get at A2 if you don't mind saying?

Thanks!
Psychology A*
English Language A*
Geography A

but I'm learning AS Maths and Biology in my gap year as I feel these will come in handy
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meganfahy
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(Original post by GM11)
Psychology A*
English Language A*
Geography A

but I'm learning AS Maths and Biology in my gap year as I feel these will come in handy
So did they know you were doing maths and biology in your gap year or did they give you the offer anyway? What did you get at AS too if you don't mind saying? Thank you :-)
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GM11
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(Original post by meganfahy;[url="tel:59841473")
59841473[/url]]So did they know you were doing maths and biology in your gap year or did they give you the offer anyway? What did you get at AS too if you don't mind saying? Thank you :-)
No, they gave me an offer anyway. Maths and biology are only 'recommended' not 'essential'

I got 4 A's at AS (dropped business). I think this is the main reason I got an offer (along with the fact I got full UMS in Psychology). My friend who got AABB didn't get an offer for PBS from Cam despite her doing maths and biology.
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meganfahy
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(Original post by GM11)
No, they gave me an offer anyway. Maths and biology are only 'recommended' not 'essential'

I got 4 A's at AS (dropped business). I think this is the main reason I got an offer (along with the fact I got full UMS in Psychology). My friend who got AABB didn't get an offer for PBS from Cam despite her doing maths and biology.
Ah you did amazing! That's really helpful thank you! Hope you have a good time at Cambridge :-)
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