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Year 10 Science (See Common Subjects for details of Year 10 Science combinations)

Psychology: Human Behaviour

Semester Elective Unit


There are no prerequisites for this course.

Course Description

This course explores a range of in-depth areas of psychological study. Students begin by investigating why Psychology is considered a Science, the key foundations of psychological research and the ethical and safety principles that govern the study. 

Students learn about some of the following areas:

  • Sports Psychology – exploring how athletic performance is affected by motivation, confidence, stress and team work.
  • Forensic Psychology – the reliability of our memories, what can influence eye-witness testimonies and other roles of the forensic psychologist.
  • Positive Psychology – the concept of happiness and how optimism, growth mindset, and mindfulness can influence our pursuit of happiness.
  • Adolescent Brain – how our lifestyle can directly influence how well our brain works by understanding the impact that sleep, diet, exercise and technology have on the brain. 

Essential Questions

  • Why is Psychology considered a Science?
  • How can I tell if someone is telling the truth?
  • Can we really rely on our own memories?
  • Do sports people really need psychologists?
  • Is it possible to improve our level of happiness?
  • How does my brain work and are there things I can do to make it work better?

Areas of Study

There are six possible areas of in-depth study depending on student interest and semester timing.

Introduction to Psychology
An introduction to experimentation in psychology, highlighting the importance of conducting ethical research when working with people.  

Forensic Psychology – The Dark Side
Understanding criminal behaviour — understanding when someone is not telling the truth and criminal profiling are just some of the roles of a forensic psychologist.

Sports Psychology – Motivation and Confidence
Sports Psychology considers ways to improve performance but its applications are not limited to the sporting field. This module also investigates strategies for reducing stress and the importance of team work.

Positive Psychology – The Pursuit of Happiness
The cultural explorations of what makes people happy — optimism and growth mindset and mindfulness.

Adolescent Brains: More than Meets the Eye
Ways to look after and even boost your brain by understanding the impact that sleep, diet, exercise and technology have on your brain.

Digging Deeper
This module allows students to develop an in-depth understanding into one area of psychology, including a guided self-designed practical component.


Task Description
Practical Work

Selection of investigations covering a range of topics.

Self-designed investigation: students design and conduct their own experimental investigation on a topic of interest.

Research Task Students will be required to complete readings from a range of scientific sources and outline their findings in a variety of formats which could include a group presentation, poster or essay.
Tests Two tests comprising a balance of multiple choice, short answer questions and an extended response question.
Semester Examination Students undertake an examination at the conclusion of the course.