1st Edition

Learning to Teach Psychology in the Secondary School A Companion to School Experience

Edited By Deborah Gajic, Jock McGinty Copyright 2023
    214 Pages 13 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    214 Pages 13 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    Learning to Teach Psychology in the Secondary School offers a comprehensive and accessible introduction to the teaching and learning of psychology. Written for trainee teachers and those new to teaching psychology, it will help you to develop your subject knowledge and gain a deeper understanding of the purpose and potential of psychology within the secondary curriculum as well as support the practical skills needed to plan, teach, and evaluate stimulating and creative lessons.

    Drawing on theory and the latest research, the text demonstrates how key pedagogical issues link to classroom practice and encourages you to reflect on your own learning and practice to maximise student learning. Written by experts in the field and featuring useful resources, summaries of key points and a range of tasks enabling you to put learning into practice in the classroom, the chapters cover:

    • Using psychology to teach psychology
    • Teaching specific areas of psychology
    • Ethics in psychology teaching
    • Teaching research methods
    • Teaching the skills of evaluation, analysis and application in psychology
    • Assessment and feedback
    • Inclusion
    • Using technology
    • Career progression and professional development

    This exciting new addition to the market leading Learning to Teach in the Secondary School series is essential reading for all those who aspire to become an inspirational and engaging psychology teacher.


    1. Becoming a psychology teacher Deborah Gajic and Jock McGinty
    2. 1.1 Characteristics and skills of a psychology teacher

      1.2 Characteristics and requirements of psychology as a subject

      1.3 The role of psychology in schools

      1.4 Why students choose psychology

      1.5 Understanding the psychology curriculum

      1.6 Where to find support

      1.7 Summary and Key Points

    3. Using psychology to teach psychology – Jock McGinty
    4. 2.1 Threshold concepts

      2.2 Cognitive load theory

      2.3 Spaced or distributed practice

      2.4 Retrieval practice

      2.5 Elaboration

      2.6 Dual coding

      2.7 Summary and Key Points

    5. Teaching areas of psychology – Deborah Gajic
    6. 3.1 Cognitive area

      3.2 Social area

      3.3 Developmental area

      3.4 Individual differences area

      3.5 Biological area

      3.6 Summary and Key Points

    7. Teaching research methods – Deborah Gajic and Andy McCarthy
    8. 4.1 Experimental research methods

      4.2 Non-experimental research methods

      4.3 Inferential statistics

      4.4 Summary and Key Points

    9. Ethics in psychology teaching – Jonathan Firth
      1. The practice of teaching research ethics in psychology
      2. BPS guidelines
      3. ATP application of BPS guidelines in schools and colleges
      4. Suggested teaching activities
      5. Summary and Key Points


    10. Teaching skills of evaluation and analysis in psychology – Jock McGinty

      1. What makes a critical thinker?
      2. What is critical thinking?
      3. Barriers to critical thinking
      4. Skills required for critical thinking
      5. Creating a framework for critical thinking and evaluation
      6. Assessment objectives for evaluations
      7. Providing students with critical thinking and evaluation tasks
      8. Assessing critical thinking and evaluation
      9. Summary and Key Points

    12. Teaching skills of application – Lin Norton
      1. Problem based learning: an overview
      2. Text-based vignettes
      3. Constructing a text-based vignette
      4. Using text-based vignettes
      5. Summary and Key Points

    13. Developing psychologically literate students – Clare Deavall
      1. Why is psychological literacy important?
      2. Students as science practitioners
      3. Peer mentoring and peer-assessed learning
      4. Innovative assessment
      5. Developing employability skills
      6. Work volunteering
      7. Summary and Key Points

    14. Learning to assess psychology and give students meaningful feedback – Min Duchenski-Jassal
      1. Formative and summative assessment
      2. Feedback
      3. Student responses to feedback
      4. Marking better, not more – encouraging self-regulating learners
      5. Summary and Key Points

    15. Inclusion in teaching psychology – Lucinda Powell
      1. Inclusion for all – creating an inclusive environment
      2. Supporting special educational needs and disability (SEND)
      3. Making psychology accessible to all
      4. Ethics
      5. Summary and Key Points

    16. Using technology in psychology teaching – Matt Jarvis
      1. Delivering education in changing contexts
      2. Keeping an eye on principles of effective learning and teaching
      3. Legal constraints on digital education
      4. Digital platforms
      5. Summary and Key Points

    17. Future directions and professional development - Min Duchenski-Jassal & Jonathan Firth

      1. The scope of a career plan in psychology
      2. Planning
      3. Summary and Key Points

    19. Reflections and future directions Deborah Gajic & Jock McGinty
      1. The importance of reflection
      2. Indicators of success
      3. Maintain vitality in your teaching
      4. The rewards of being a psychology teacher
      5. Broaden your horizon
      6. Summary and Key Points


    Deborah Gajic has over 25 years of experience in teaching Psychology and was a former Head of Psychology at an outstanding school in the Midlands. She is a Chartered Psychologist (CPsychol) and an Associate Fellow of the British Psychological Society (AFBPsS). She now works as an independent educational consultant.

    Jock McGinty is Head of Psychology at Watford Grammar School for Boys. He has taught Psychology for over 20 years and is a senior A-level examiner and CPD presenter. He is a Chartered Psychologist (CPsychol) and a past Chair of the Association for the Teaching of Psychology. He is currently Vice-President of the European Federation of Psychology Teachers’ Associations.