This course is designed for teachers of AQA GCSE Psychology and explores teaching approaches on how to achieve Grades 7 to 9, in the light of the first examinations in 2019. Sessions will target the skills needed for the different papers and offer practical advice as to how to implement teaching strategies for student development progressively though the two year linear course.  The day includes workshop sessions, designed to help turn theory into practice, in-depth analysis of past papers, and a Q&A session in order to trouble-shoot explanations for the more challenging content of AQA GCSE Psychology.


  • Increased their understanding of strategies to boost exam performance towards achieving grades 7-9
  • Understood how to support their students construct and develop a sustained line of reasoning essential for grades 7-9 on the new specification
  • Practical ideas to ensure coherent, relevant and logically structured answers for essay questions
  • Enhanced strategies to help their students balance knowledge, skills and understanding across both papers to achieve grades 7-9
DATE & LOCATION Online | Monday 24 January 2022

Online | Tuesday 25 April 2022

  • Teachers of AQA GCSE Psychology
  • Heads of Department
  • Heads of Social Science
IN-SCHOOL You can also book this as an In-School Course
  • A specially prepared folder of 50+ pages full of detailed notes, practical advice and guidance
  • Notes prepared by the educational experts leading the course
  • Expert produced PowerPoint presentations
  • CPD Certificate of attendance

10.00 – 11.15am: Getting ready for 2020 using the first set of GCSE exam feedback

  • Understanding what is required to achieve grades 7-9 with AQA through interpreting and analysing mark schemes to sample student answers
  • Using previous examiners’ reports to explore topics that were answered well and areas for development in order to take on lessons for the next series of exams
  • How to Demonstrate, Apply and Analyse effectively to get the top 7-9 grades by developing critical thinking skills, making judgements and reaching effective conclusions
  • How high ability students can make synoptic assessment to enable them to show an ability in combining their skills, knowledge and understanding with breadth and depth of the subject.

11.15 – 11.30am: Discussion: coffee break

11.00 – 12.30pm: Get your top students to achieve top marks on Paper one

  • Breaking down the exam question by command words as the injunctions used will determine the answer that is required
  • Scoring full marks on the short 1-4-mark questions as its these consistently high scoring on these that often determine the high grades
  • Stimulus response scenarios and how to tackle them to maximise full marks on these now common A02 exam questions
  • Getting your top students to hit the top band every time in the final two 9 markers
  • Explore answers at Grades 7, 8 and 9 – what examiners saw as the key differentiators

12.30 – 1.30pm: Lunch and informal discussion

1.30 – 2.30pm: Get your top students to achieve top marks on Paper Two

  • How to score high marks on the trickier topic’s language, brain and neuropsychology and ensuring correct usage of some complex terminology is used in the way examiners want
  • Scoring full marks on the mathematical questions – get each decimal point right
  • Getting the critical balance between A01; A02 and A03 assessment objectives to ensure the top mark

2.30 – 3.00pm Research Methods – where your top students will excel

  • How to maximise marks on the different research methods questions as these short answer questions have historically been a strength for top end students
  • Enhancing problem solving and calculations skills to help analyse and interpret scientific ideas and evidence for research methods
  • Making links to earlier topics and pushing high ability students to see these synoptic links
  • How to carry out effective practicals to help support understanding of research methods

3.00 – 3.15pm: Discussion: afternoon tea

3.15 – 3.45 Exam techniques: top marks for your top students

  • Differentiating for Grade 7-9 students in a mixed ability psychology class
  • Balancing exam technique and specification requirements whilst fostering a passion for psychology

Ali Abbas

Ali 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. He has taught for nearly 20 years and was a Principal Examiner with 13 years’ experience in writing Psychology exam papers and awarding grades for a major exam board, he was also part of the team that wrote the current A level specification.

View all courses led by Ali Abbas >