I know these predictions for the depression topic are late so apologies. To clarify these predictions are for retake students of the old specification who are studying PSYA4 (unit 4) and learning the depression topic. This does not apply to the new linear specification for which I know a lot of students have been requesting the paper 2 A level predictions.
About the new A level paper 2 predictions for those requesting them: Time is currently the biggest issue and as of right now I’m struggling but in case I do release them be sure to follow me on Facebook and YouTube to keep up to date if they do come out. Also im glad to hear the Unit 1 predictions worked out quite well – I’m glad I was able to help you guys have a little edge going into them. If you found them helpful it would be great to have you follow me on my YouTube channel just so we can stay in touch.
So depression is one of the psychopathology topics you can learn in PSYA4 – its actually quite easy I think (all the psychopathology ones are) and there are only a set number of possible essays that you can be asked. When I say “easy”, its because if you managed to survive the horror show of unit 3 (PSYA3) and learn your essays for your chosen topics there, this will be a walk in the park in comparison. If you are retaking this exam paper you are probably aware that this is your last chance to sit this exam. If you are unfortunate enough not to get the grade you need for university from this exam then you will need to retake the whole psychology course with the new linear A level specification as no more exams will be available after this point. To make sure you go in as best prepared as possible, be sure to check out my depression ebook on the right that covers all the possible essay questions. This ebook is an instant download and gives you model A* grade essays you can adapt to use for yourself. This makes learning the content much easier as everything is split nicely between theory and evaluation for you to source from when creating your own work.
The depression topic has a possible 6 topics you can get questions on however only 5 of them can be full essays. The possible questions you can get are as follows:
- The clinical characteristics of depression
- Issues surrounding the classification and diagnosis of depression (including reliability and validity)
- Biological explanations of depression
- Psychological explanations of depression
- Biological therapies for depression
- Psychological therapies for depression
Important to know is you can get questions that can be asked as plurals which means it is asking for MORE than one explanation or treatment. For example if you get a question that asks “discuss biological explanations of depression..” notice how there is an S at the end of the word “explanations”. This means it wants more than one. If you can write only one explanation or treatment it will usually state this clearly i.e. “give one or more explanations”. It is important you know this as if you write only one you can’t score more than half the marks at most.
- Issues surrounding the classification and diagnosis of depression including reliability and validity – This is the most overdue question based on my predictions table last appearing in January 2013. Therefore make sure you go in well prepared for it as probability would say it is most likely.
- Biological explanations of depression – This is the second most overdue question based on my predictions table. It last appeared in June 2013 so again be well versed in two explanations going into the exam.
- Psychological therapies for depression – This is the third most likely in my eyes last appearing in June 2014.
Outside chance – Biological therapies for depression. This appeared recently in June 2015 when there were two versions of this exam sat due to one exam paper being stolen and replacements not reaching the schools in time. So some schools sat the original stolen paper (known as PSYA4) while other schools sat the replacement paper (which was known as PSYA4R). This royally screwed up my predictions last year for some students as we didnt know which set of data to rely on. Some students did well while others didn’t and it’s something that may be an issue here as again we’re assuming we can use both sets of data in my table above.
If we choose to ignore PSYA4R then the question I would say is my most likely third choice essay is Biological therapies for depression. This is because it appeared in PSYA4R however prior to this it has never made an appearance going as far back as June 2011. I just wanted to be open about this as its important you learn them all but this is something that needs to be on your radar going into the exam, just to be transparent.