My name is Annalise Abraham and I’m Head of Psychology at Reigate College. Before you enrol in our department at the beginning of the academic year, we’d like you to complete a series of tasks over the coming months.
Studying Psychology will be new for many of you, so we’re really keen you get fully prepared for the A Level course. Please work your way through the below tasks, and when we meet in September we can discuss together what you’ve learnt.
All of the tasks should be completed by Choices Day on 25 August. Please take your time to research each one properly, and above all enjoy them!
The tasks will be released here in three phases:
Explore your Subject – 4 May
You should complete this section of tasks by 1 June.
Learning about Learning
One of the topics we investigate in Psychology is the topic of learning. We look at a variety of famous theories of learning, including Pavlov’s theory of classical conditioning. This theory is often used when training animals.
Play the Pavlov’s dog game to see if it’s possible to train a dog to salivate on command.
Please write a paragraph summarising what you’ve learnt.
Knowing your Correlations
Psychology is a science, and requires the use of some mathematical skills. One of those skills is conducting correlational research and analysing the data. As you will already know, correlation looks for a link between two variables. When you study A Level Psychology, you will conduct a correlational practical project so you will need these skills.
Refresh your knowledge of positive, negative and null correlations here:
Psychologists are constantly trying to understand their fellow human beings. One of the topics studied is how good people are at reading the emotions of others. Do you think you can tell a real smile from a fake smile? Take the online test below and carry out some research into what affects people’s ability to read the emotions of others.
Make a list of some of the key factors in being able to read people’s emotions.
I hope you’ve enjoyed this introduction into some of the areas we’ll be exploring further on the A Level course. Please ensure you come back to this page on 1 June for the next set of activities.
Get Going – 1 June
You should aim to
complete this section of tasks by 1 July.
Exploring Correlations some more
previous activity, we started looking at the use of correlations in Psychology.
I’d like you to build on that activity by doing a small correlational study of
TASK 1: Choose a sample of between five and ten people.
(Generally speaking, the bigger the sample the better!)
You need to
get two pieces of numerical data from each person:
You can see
that it’s easy to get a numerical value for age – it’s just the number of years
they’ve been alive for. However, it’s slightly more difficult to measure
self-confidence. The easiest way for us to do this is to have your participants
rate their self-confidence on a scale from 1 – 10 where 1 is not at all
confident, and 10 is extremely confident.
TASK 2: Once you’ve collected this information, please
print off the below worksheet so you can start analysing your data:
don’t have access to a printer, please copy out and complete the table and
graph on a piece of paper.)
your raw data into the table provided. Then, plot your data into a
scattergraph. From this, you should be able to identify whether you have:
negative correlation, or
TASK 3: If you’d like to, please have a go at the
Extension Task on the worksheet, where you calculate a statistical test to see
if your results are statistically significant. The following website will help
you if you get stuck:
first year of Psychology A Level, one of your practical projects will be a
correlational study so this exercise will be good practice and preparation for the
I hope you
enjoy doing it.
Aim High – 1 July
From 1 July
Once you’ve taken part in the College’s first ever Virtual Introductory Day on 30 June, you will be asked to complete a more formal Aim High task (posted here) that it is mandatory for all new students to complete before Choices Day on 25 August.