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VCE INDUCTION PACKAGE

PSYCHOLOGY UNITS 1 & 2


2015

PSYCHOLOGY
UNIT 1-2

TEXT BOOK:

Psychology for the VCE Student 1 & 2 (6th edition) Grivas and Carter

1. SUMMARY OF COURSE

UNIT 1: INTRODUCTION TO PSYCHOLOGY


AREA OF STUDY 1: WHAT IS PSYCHOLOGY?
Since its philosophical beginnings, Psychology has been driven by questions such as Who am I? and Why do i
behave the way I do?, What is the relationship between the mind and the brain? and Why do I perceive things the
way I do? In this Area of Study, students will explore and analyse various classic and contemporary theories that
have contributed to the development of Psychology, explore the various specialised fields of study in Psychology as
well as investigating visual perception and consider how Psychologist explore the study of the mind and the body
from biological, behavioural, cognitive and socio-cultural perspectives.
In order to successfully achieve Outcome 1, students must demonstrate knowledge of the following:

Scope of Psychology including specialised career fields and fields of application and their contribution to
understanding behaviour

Classic and contemporary theories that have contributed to the development of Psychology from its
philosophical beginnings to an empirical science, including the relationship between Psychology and
Psychiatry

Differences between contemporary Psychological research methods and non-scientific approaches to


investigating and exploring human behaviour

Major perspectives (biological, behavioural, cognitive and socio-cultural) that govern how Psychologists
approach research into human behaviour

Application of psychological perspectives to explain visual perception: characteristics of visual perception


and the visual process in detecting and interpreting stimuli, the effect of Psychological factors on perceptual
set and distortions of visual perceptions by illusions

Research methods and ethics associated with the study of Psychology

AREA OF STUDY 2: LIFESPAN PSYCHOLOGY


This Area of Study explores Psychological development of an individual from infancy to old age which includes the
complex interaction of heredity and environment. It focuses on the interaction between biological, cognitive and
socio-cultural influences and learned behaviours that contribute to an individuals Psychological development and
mental wellbeing. Various classic and contemporary studies will be considered to understand the changes that take
place in an individuals lifespan.
In order to successfully achieve Outcome 2, students must demonstrate knowledge of the following:

Stages of lifespan: infancy, childhood, adolescence, early adulthood, middle age and old age

Interaction between heredity and environmental factors nature vs nurture

Classic and contemporary theories of development: perceptual (Eleanor Gibson), emotional (John Bowlby
and Mary Ainsworth), cognitive (Jean Piaget), Psycho-social (Erik Erikson) and moral development (Lawrence
Kohlberg)

Nature and incidence of mental illness

Cognitive and Psychosocial changes in the very old, successful ageing according to Paul Balter

Research methods and ethics associated with the study of lifespan

UNIT 2: SELF AND OTHERS


This Area of Study explores how peoples attitudes and behaviours affect the way they view themselves and in turn
how this affects the way they relate to others. It will explore factors that influence these, as well as, explanations of
aggression, altruism, power and peer pressure. This unit will also look at individual differences in personality and
intelligence and differences in perspectives between individuals, groups and cultures.
AREA OF STUDY 1: INTERPERSONAL AND GROUP BEHAVIOUR
In order to successfully achieve Outcome 1, students must demonstrate knowledge of the following:

Classic and contemporary theories of attitudes, including the Tri-component model

Relationships between attitudes, prejudice and discrimination and factors that influence and reduce
prejudice

Understand social and cultural groupings, stigma, stereotypes and prejudice: gender, race and age

Social influences on the individual such as effects of status and power, obedience and conformity (studies by
Zimbardo, Asch and Milgram)

Ways in which a group may influence each other to change e.g. per pressure, risk-taking behaviour

Pro-social and anti-social behaviour- factors that influence these

Banduras Social learning theory e.g Bobo doll study

Explanations of aggression ethological, biological, psychodynamic and social learning perspectives

AREA OF STUDY 2: Intelligence and Personality

Intelligence and factors that influence this such as genetics and environment

Classic and contemporary approaches to describing intelligence

Strengths and limitations of scientific methodologies in measuring intelligence e.g. IQ,, Stanford-Binet
test, Wechslers intelligence scales

Personality and factors that influence this

Classic and contemporary theories of personality e.g. Psychodynamic, trait and humanistic theories

Research methods

EXERCISES TO GET STARTED


1. Read pages 3-6 and do Learning Activity 1.1. Your responses will be discussed as a class.
2. Do Learning Activity 1.2 (if you dont have an A3 size paper, use a double page spread of your workbook).
3. On your completed graphical poster (from step 2), add annotations that define Psychology, Behaviour,
Mental Processes, Cognition and Behaviour.
4. Read pages 7-8 and on an unused page from your workbook, develop a Venn diagram (see below) that
compares the similarities and differences between the professions of Psychology and Psychiatry.
Psychology

Psychiatry
Similarities

5. Read pages 9-14 and do Learning Activities 1.5 and 1.7.

Course Overview
AREA OF STUDY 1: Introduction to Psychology
Unit 1

Assessment Task

Marks

Outcome 1a

Test on chapters 1 & 2.

40

Introduction to Psychology
and relevant theories.
Outcome 1b

Poster Presentation of a
research study that has
contributed to the
understanding of visual
perception.

30

Outcome 2

Empirical Research ActivityPiagets developmental


theory of cognitive abilities.

50

AREA OF STUDY 2: Self and others


Unit 2

Assessment Task

Marks

Outcome 1

ERA on attitudes

50

Outcome 2a

Poster flow chart on prosocial behaviour and ethics

50

Outcome 2b

Test on Chapters 11 and 12:


Intelligence & Personality

40

GENERAL STUDY AND PREPARATION ADVICE


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Ask lots of questions!


Complete homework and class work on time dont fall behind!
Catch up on missed work when absent this is your responsibility!
Read and view set chapters multiple times throughout the year and use post-it notes to mark any
important sections
Take note of the advice your teacher gives you and act on it they know what they are talking
about!
Create a study timetable and stick to it
Form study groups with friends their ideas may help you
Make the most of every opportunity