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Achieving Grades 7 to 9 in AQA GCSE Psychology

Course Code:


This course, updated for Spring 2023 is focused on meeting the demands of the higher-level marking bands across all components. It examines the characteristics of work produced by students working at the highest levels and provides a range of teaching approaches and materials designed to ensure students achieve 7-9 in AQA GCSE Psychology.


  • Gain an informed understanding of what is required to achieve grades 7-9
  • Understand the assessment demands of the AQA GCSE Psychology specification
  • Develop practical strategies for meeting the requirements of the higher bands across all components
  • Explore exemplar materials to identify characteristics of outstanding work
  • Increase confidence in preparing candidates to achieve Grades 7-9
  • Consider Examiner’s Reports from previous exam sessions


Focused deep dive on the demands of the GCSE specification

10.00 – 11.00am
  • Identifying the strengths and weaknesses of our own teaching practice
  • Examine the assessment demands of all components including the use of assessment objectives as a framework for assessment
  • Consider the most effective models for delivery of the course to ensure effective assessment practice across 2 years and in all components
  • Exploring the Examiner’s Reports from previous exam sessions -what students need to do to ensure that they achieve the highest grades



11.00 – 11.15am

Strategies to stretch top end students

11.15 – 12.30pm
  • Review characteristics of Grade 7-9 GCSE Psychology students
  • What the highest achieving students can do
  • What does a grade 7-9 student do differently to other students?
  • What are the main reasons why a student may fail to gain a 7-9 grading?
  • What is the best pedagogical culture to have in your Psychology department to help to achieve success
  • An approach to extended writing that aims for 6/6 or 9/ 9



12.30 – 1.30pm

Strategies to Achieve Grades 7 – 9 in Paper 1

1.30 – 2.30pm
  • Exploring practical activities for teaching movement analysis with able students
  • Examining strong exemplar responses
  • Typical questions that may come up in Paper 1
  • Structuring your essay – What examiners are looking for
  • New and innovative ways to help the higher ability students to scaffold their extended answers



2.30 – 2.45pm

Achieving in Paper 2: stretching and challenging able students for a top grade

2.45 – 3.45pm
  • What is excellent – unpicking the descriptors for a top band performance
  • Teaching techniques that challenge and push the most able students
  • What does a top band Paper 2 performance look like?
  • It’s the little things that count – focusing on the detail
  • Creative methods and approaches which engage higher ability students
  • Tried and tested methods





London | Thursday 21 March 2024

Please select your preferred date

London | Thursday 16 November 2023
London | Thursday 21 March 2024

This course, tailored to suit, can be delivered in your school. Discuss this further with our CPD team on 01625 532974 or click below to make an enquiry.


Ali Abbas is a regular speaker at Educational Conferences and has been providing INSET to schools and colleges nationally, and now internationally since 2003 and was a key speaker at the Visible Learning World Conference, Edinburgh 2019 and the Aspire Psychology Conference, Dubai 2019. Ali is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Educational Assessors (FCIEA) and is a published author at A level and GCSE Psychology.


  • Heads of Psychology
  • Teachers of Psychology
  • Teachers aiming to boost the higher achievers


  • A specially prepared folder of detailed notes, practical advice and guidance
  • Notes prepared by the educational experts leading the course
  • Expert produced PowerPoint presentations
  • CPD Certificate of attendance

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