Part of the IB subject group 3, Individuals and Societies, Psychology is the systematic study of behaviour and mental processes. Psychology has a variety of research designs and applications, and provides a unique approach to understanding modern society.
Course content available from September 2019
Topics covered through the course
The core of the Psychology course comprises the study of the biological level of analysis, the cognitive level of analysis and the sociocultural level of analysis.
There is also an investigation of research methodology. Students study the Abnormal Psychology and the Psychology of Human Relationships Options.
Activities and assessment
A typical week in IB Psychology would involve a reading assignment and an activity that requires students to engage with the content of the course, for example a discussion forum, a blog post or a worksheet. Where appropriate, students will take part in collaborative activities. These may involve working together on an assignment or peer reviewing assignments. Once a semester students will complete a group project. Lastly students will be assigned IB style assessment tasks once they have mastered the course content of each of the units of study. The Internal Assessment that is assigned involves conducting a psychological experiment and writing a report.
There are two types of assessment in IB Psychology. Formative assessment focuses on student engagement and involvement in the course activities such as the discussion forums and wikis, blog posts and worksheets. These activities are designed to consolidate student understanding of course content.
Advice from our teachers
In order to succeed in Psychology HL, we recommend students set aside six to eight hours a week.
Benefits to students
Taking Psychology HL will enable students to:
- access a rich source of information about factors that influence human behaviour
- develop their understanding of people in general and themselves in particular
- become experienced in a wide range of technical and social tools
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