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Accredited Level 3 Psychology Diploma


This Level 3 Course in Psychology is designed to provide an introduction to those students who are interested in human behaviour and would like to understand more about the topic or indeed are considering studying the subject at a higher level in the future. Psychology is the ‘science of mind and behaviour’ and attempts to explain behaviour in terms of scientific thinking and rational explanation. You may wish to study human behaviour because you wish to gain some understanding of people which will help you in your everyday life, employment or consider Psychology as an area for further study for the future. Psychology is a diverse topic and is particularly useful for those who are considering working or further study in the Caring and Social Work settings.

On completion of the Course students may wish to consider taking a formal entry qualification in Psychology as part of a Graduate programme.

The College will provide you with the resources necessary to complete the course and will also provide you with tutor support. Tutors have all been specially selected for their knowledge and understanding of your particular area of study and have experience in Distance Learning support. The Course will combine theoretical knowledge of Psychology and practical applications of the subject in order to build a coherent understanding of the subject area.

Assignments which will be marked online by a course tutor. The assignments will develop theoretical knowledge and understanding gained from studying the relevant study Modules (and indeed further reading). Students are encouraged to develop self reflection and understanding during their Course of study which will assist them when considering a career or further study in Psychology. An important aspect of Psychology is the study of Research Skills and Analysis of Data and this is embedded within all modules.

The Course duration is one year and students study at home at their own pace using our virtual learning environment. The course offers flexible delivery so that the more time you can allocate to your studies the sooner you can complete the Course. Upon enrolment you will be provided with all the necessary materials to complete the Course and you are free to study as often as you wish. Progression from Level 3 can assist in career development, continued professional development, personal development and provision of basis for further study. On successful completion of this Course you become eligible for Level 5 study at Oxford Distance Learning and can discuss this with student services at any point during the progression of your Course.

There are ten modules of study within the course and two assignments totalling approximately 3000 words. Students are required to pass both assignments and this will determine the award of the Level 3 Diploma in Psychology. Assignments must be written by the student themselves and work that has been copied and pasted into the assignment will not be accepted as all work has to be screened for Plagiarism. The completed assignments will be marked online by a course tutor and feedback on performance will be provided. Tutor support will be provided throughout your Course of study and you are encouraged to make contact with your Tutor at the earliest possible opportunity as this will assist you develop your understanding and knowledge of the topic.

The College will provide you with the resources necessary to complete the course and you are also encouraged to read around the topics you are studying in further detail as this will help you decide whether or not your chosen course of study is the right topic for you to develop in the future.

AS AQA Level Psychology 7181

Accredited Level 3 Psychology Diploma Entry Requirement

Entry to this Accredited Level 3 Psychology Diploma requires that potential students have gained GCSE/IGCSE or equivalent qualifications and have, good English oral, reading and writing skills.

Advice on enrolment and guidance of prior learning (APL) can be obtained through out contact centre. The course is a rolling programme and can be started at any point in the year. Successful students can go on to Higher Education, including remaining as students at OLC to complete courses in our portfolio of higher awards.

All students must be aged 16 or over.


The coursework is assessed through continuous assessment with no formal exit examinations.

Study Hours

Approximately: 200 hours of personal study time for the entire course is recommended. All of which is supported by the OLC Course Tutor, who we greatly encourage students to access support from throughout their course.

Quality Assurance

This course has been developed by the College’s professional team of tutors to meet the needs of sector based employers and employees. It is also part of the College’s validated level three Diplomas’, recognised internationally, as verified and moderated Centre for Interactive Education (CIE Global). Further details of our accreditations are provided on our website.

Accredited Level 3 Psychology Diploma Course Length

1 Year.

Awarding Body

CIE Global

Accredited Level 3 Psychology Diploma Course Content

Accredited Level 3 Psychology Diploma Module 1 – Carl Gustav Jung

We begin our course of study with a look at the antecedents of Psychology from Philosophy. Jung was not a philosopher in his early years and began his working life by working in a mental hospital and was faced at an early age with trying to solve the problems of complex human behaviour. He developed his work initially with the help of Sigmund Freud but the relationship broke down and Jung developed Analytical Psychology in his own right. In this module we examine issues such as the importance of archetypes, dream analysis and the mid life crisis.

Accredited Level 3 Psychology Diploma Module 2 – The Psychoanalytic Approach

The birth of the Psychoanalytic movement is discussed through the work of Sigmund Freud whose important focus was the study of the unconscious mind and in making the ‘unconscious become conscious’ using psychoanalytic techniques. The influence that Freud has had on modern day therapy and child rearing will be examined.

Accredited Level 3 Psychology Diploma Module 3 – B. F. Skinner and Behaviourism

The work of BF Skinner and J B Watson will be examined. It was Watson who rejected the study of the unconscious mind because of the limitations it placed upon measurement. Skinner and Watson believed that Psychology should be scientific and it is their influence that led to much of the modern day experimentation in Psychology. Behaviourism has been used effectively in schools and prisons to change behaviour and students will learn the basic ideas behind these techniques.

Accredited Level 3 Psychology Diploma Module 4 – Carl Rogers and Humanistic Psychology

In this module we examine issues of ‘personal growth and human fulfilment’ which emerged as part of the Humanistic Movement in the 1960’s as the emphasis of developing human potential was important in at this time. You will examine issues such as why Humanists believe that personal growth is important. You will consider whether personal growth is suitable or indeed appropriate for everyone. Theories of whole life development will also focus upon the work of Erickson and Levinson (who wrote about mid life) and whether this is an important stage of development will be examined

Accredited Level 3 Psychology Diploma Module 5 – The Cognitive Approaches

The Cognitive approach to Psychology developed during the 1970’s as it became apparent that Psychology could not discount mental processes because there were problems involved with measuring them (as Skinner and Watson) had believed. Theories of cognition were developed during this time and this enabled Psychologists to develop theories that examined issues such as how classroom learning could be enhanced and potential realised through compensatory programmes. The work of Vygotsky and Piaget will be both examined and students will be able to link both theories to modern learning in schools.

Accredited Level 3 Psychology Diploma Module 6 – Cognitive Therapy

As ideas on mental processes developed so did new therapies and ways of treating conditions such as depression. We examine the work of Albert Ellis and therapies such as ‘rational emotional therapy’ which helps people develop rational thought and to recognise irrational thought processes. Theories such as Seligman’s ‘learned helplessness’ theory are also examined and we contrast modern day Cognitive Behavioural Therapy with previous therapies such as Psychoanalysis.

Accredited Level 3 Psychology Diploma Module 7 – Social Construction and the Self

The self develops through our social world and Mead termed this ‘the looking glass self’. We consider self development throughout the life span and the tensions that can arise when social constructions of the self are accepted are discussed.

Accredited Level 3 Psychology Diploma Module 8 – Piaget and Vygotsky

In this module we examine the work of Piaget and Vygotsky on mental processes in greater depth and consider how some problems are resolved by children at different ages. We examine stage theories of cognition and look at experiments that challenge stage theorists and offer different explanations to the ideas expressed by the major theories.

Accredited Level 3 Psychology Diploma Module 9 – Cognition and Therapy

This Module focuses on the important role that cognition plays in therapy in the modern day and we discuss the implications of the costs of therapy and the introduction of brief therapy. Issues such as cost effectiveness and also whether brief therapy is as effective as conventional therapies will be addressed.

Accredited Level 3 Psychology Diploma Module 10 – Social Constructionism

The British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher famously coined the term ‘there is no such thing as society’ but clearly this overlooks issues such as gender development, biological determinism and issues that impact upon our social identity. This Unit develops ideas discussed in Module 7 on social constructions of reality and students will be encouraged to consider issues such as the development of personal identity across different situations, cultures and contexts.


This Accredited Level 3 Psychology Diploma can be used to gain entry to a Level 4 Diploma or higher.

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