Approx Cost:
$50 - $100 depending on trips
Technology Requirements:
A laptop is essential for this course
Entry Recommendations:

The ability to cope with all aspects of human behaviour in a classroom environment, as well as the academic demands of Psychology, is expected. Students will have successfully studied either NCEA Level 1 or Level 2 Psychology.  For those choosing to study Psychology for the first time at NCEA Level 3, this should be discussed with the Teacher in Charge.

Course Outline:

Psychology is the study of the mind and behaviour. Research in psychology seeks to understand and explain how people think, act and feel. Psychologist strive to learn more about the many factors that can impact thought and behaviour, ranging from biological influences and social pressures.

 Psychology at LHS looks to enhance understanding about what psychology is, and what it is not. The course design has been developed to look at how psychology is used in society while also looking at ourselves in terms of what we know about the world and our place in it. It aides and encourages self-reflection. Students who understand experiences outside their own social and cultural context develop a conscience more suited to the multicultural world in which we live.

 Topics include:

  1. Religion – why are we religious? Have we evolved to be religious or is there something in our cognition that drives the need to have a sense of religious belonging? How does our brain respond to religious practice? Note that we do not discuss whether or not God is real.

  2. Aggression – why is it important for those working within the field of forensic psychology to have an understanding of theories relating to aggression? You will choose whether to look at the context of youth offending, gang crimes, football hooliganism – you can decide your own to research. Ultimately, why are some people aggressive? Why do they commit crimes and others don’t? Can they be controlled or rehabilitated.

  3. Neuroplasticity – the ability of the brain to modify its connections and rewire itself. This is important when considering some aspects of mental health, trauma and age. You will carry out research, ensuring that you follow appropriate ethical guidelines.

  4. Free will or determinism – which is it? Or is it both?




4 NCEA achievement standards will be on offer internally, totalling 19 credits.  This is a UE approved subject. 

Where Does It Lead:

Psychology provides a strong foundation for other career areas such as mental health, education, training, marketing, leadership, management, business, law and politics.