Issues and Debates

: Section E of paper 2 will have two questions totaling 20 marks, so most likely an 8 marker and a 12 marker.You will be asked questions that relate to the issues and debates in psychology which occur across every topic area, social, cognitive, biological an learning and the questions are likely to allow you to select information form more than one topic area. I have provided generic information on each issue and debate on the paper 3 area of this website and every topic has its own issues and debates page with topic-specific information. This page currently serves to provide some practice question for this area of Paper 1.

Ethical issues in research (animal and human)

Practical issues in the design and implementation of research.

Reductionism in the explanation of behaviour:

Comparisons of ways of explaining behaviour using different themes.

Psychology as a science

Cultural and gender issues in psychological research.

The role of both nature and nurture in psychology.

An understanding of how psychological understanding has developed over time.

The use of psychology in social control.

The use of psychological knowledge in society

Issues related to socially-sensitive research.

Assessment Questions:

Evaluate the issue of reductionism in relation to the use of biological and learning theories in explaining human behaviour (12)

Assess the scientific status of the classic studies of Sherif et al. (1954, 1961) and Baddeley (1966b). (12)

Ed and Najeeb are researching the effects of individual tutorials on student wellbeing. Ed wants to carry out a laboratory experiment and collect quantitative data, whereas Najeeb feels they should use interviews to collect qualitative data. Evaluate the use of quantitative and qualitative data when conducting research into psychological issues. You must make reference to the context in your answer. (12)

‘Taking recreational drugs is purely a choice and to stop using drugs is easy.’ To what extent do the learning and biological approaches agree with the above statement? (12)

Assess ethical issues in social and biological research  (12)

You will have learnt about two classic studies in the cognitive and learning topics in psychology; compare these classic studies with regard to practical issues in the design and implementation of the research (12)

To what extent are explanations of behaviour provided by social and cognitive psychologists considered to be reductionist? (12)

To what extent has psychology helped our understanding of human behaviour within society? (12)

Compare uses of psychological knowledge in society provided by the social and learning explanations in psychology (12)

Evaluate the issues related to conducting socially sensitive research within social and biological psychology. (8)