Applied Psychology


BTEC Level 3 National Extended Certificate

Exam Board


Entry Requirements

A minimum of 5 in English, Maths and Science.

Why study this course?

Studying for an Applied Psychology qualification will give you an insight into the workings of the mind, brain and behaviour whilst developing skills for employability and higher education study.

The course will provide you with opportunities to develop communication and problem solving skills, and give you experiences of working both in and outside of the classroom setting, and in group, and independent, learning situations.

Applied Psychology is particularly suitable for students who are confident with learning content for exams but like to also support their learning with coursework type tasks.

What will I study?

You will study four units across two years including:

Psychological approaches

Learners will explore four key approaches in Psychology – social, cognitive, learning and biological – and apply these approaches to gender, aggression and business.

This unit will be assessed through one written examination of 72 marks. The examination will be 1 hour 30 minutes in length.

Conducting research

You will develop knowledge, understanding and skills in the scientific process and in psychological research methodology through your own psychological research project.

In this unit you will: 

  • Understand research methods and their importance in psychological inquiry 
  • Plan research to investigate psychological questions
  • Carry out a pilot study to explore current issues in psychology
  • Review implications of research into psychological inquiry

This unit is internally assessed using research investigation assignments.

Health Psychology

You will explore psychological approaches, theories and studies related to lifestyle choices, unhealthy behaviours and behavioural change. This will be applied to stress and addiction theories and treatments.

This unit will be assessed through one written examination of 70 marks. The examination will be 2 hours in length.

One optional unit

This will support your progression to more specialist applied psychology courses in higher education and to link with relevant occupational areas, such as:

  • Applied sport psychology
  • Psychopathology and treatment 
  • Criminal and forensic psychology 
  • Principles of children’s psychological development 

This unit is internally assessed using a written assignment.


During the course, you have one opportunity to re-sit a failed exam in the next exam season.

Where can it lead?

The content of this qualification has been developed to ensure that it supports progression to higher education. The qualification provides the knowledge, understanding and skills that will prepare you for further study or training. 

When combined with other relevant qualifications, you could progress onto degree courses such as Occupational Health, Child Psychology and Sport Psychology.

Studying Applied Psychology can prepare you for a range of rewarding careers including:

Clinical Psychologist, Educational Psychologist, Forensic Psychologist, Health Psychologist, Occupational Psychologist, Psychiatric nurse, Counsellor, Childcare worker, Child Psychologist, Social worker, Law, Teaching, Human resources, Police officer, Business, marketing and advertising, plus many more.


Mrs K Ward

Course Leader

Miss B Chambers

Miss B Gagen

Mrs S Green

Course Materials

  • Please speak to your teacher for more information.
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