Intermediate 1
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Intermediate 1

You usually take these courses if you:

  • have finished Standard Grade Foundation (or Access 3) level; or
  • want to take an alternative to Standard Grade General level; or
  • want to take up a new subject at school or college.

Generally, three national units (blocks of work that usually take 40 hours to finish) plus 40 hours flexible time make up these courses.


Psychology: Intermediate 1

Why Psychology?

Psychology attempts to investigate human behaviour in a variety of ways. This introductory course is designed to provide you with a basic understanding of psychological theories, concepts, research studies, research methods and applications in a range of key areas of psychology. You will also learn about the historical context of psychology. It is a suitable course for adult returners aiming to proceed to Higher Psychology.

There are six key areas of study.

  • Developmental psychology (the social and mental development of children).
  • Cognitive psychology (how people develop learning and thinking processes, like remembering and problem-solving).
  • Physiological psychology (how people's thoughts, feelings, and actions are affected by biology).
  • Social psychology (how people's thoughts, feelings, and actions are affected by others).
  • Psychology of individual differences.
  • Research methods.

Entry to the course:

At the discretion of the school/college but you would normally be expected to have achieved one of the following:

  • Standard Grade in a social science subject at Foundation level or relevant Access 3 units  and
  • Standard Grade English at Foundation level.

 Course Outline

The course is made up of three compulsory units (each 40 hours) and another 40 hours of flexible time.

Psychology: Understanding the Individual

In this unit you are introduced to three of the six key areas:

  • developmental psychology - by studying the development of the self-concept
  • cognitive psychology - by studying cognition and learning
  • physiological psychology - by studying motivation.

You will study two topics - self-concept and learning theories - from the above key areas.

Psychology: Investigating Behaviour

In this unit you are introduced to basic research methods and practical research skills (one of the six key areas). You will plan and carry out research using different methods and report your findings in a research portfolio.

Psychology: The Individual in the Social Context

In this unit you are introduced to two key areas:

  • psychology of individual differences - by studying personality
  • social psychology - by studying the following topics:
  • group processes
  • non-verbal communication
  • altruism.

Core Skills

  • Int 1 (SCQF 4) Problem Solving


This course is assessed by a combination of internal assessment by the teacher /lecturer and an external examination set and marked by the SQA.



Successful completion of this course may lead to:

Intermediate 2

  • Psychology

 Education; Training (VQ); Employment in

  • Arts, Social Science & Religion
  • Social, Caring & Advisory Services