Social Sciences at Jesmond Park Academy

Social Sciences

Social science involves the scientific study and understanding of human society and social relationships across the spectrum of human life.  Social scientists are interested in understanding the ways in which both internal and external processes influence and shapes our lives and development.

Social Science Curriculum Philosophy and Intent Statement

Psychology is concerned with the study of the individual, our thoughts, feelings and behaviours, whereas sociology investigates how the society we live in shapes who we are.

We teach students social science because it encourages self-awareness and reflection about their experiences in society.  We feel it is important for students to practice seeing the world through the eyes of others, exploring new concepts and ideas, to ignite their curiosity and both broaden and deepen their knowledge and understanding of why we are the way we are, both as individuals and as a society. 

We value an education in social science to encourage critical thinking skills through debate and discussion, to challenge aspects of everyday life that had previously been taken for granted.  We seek to develop students’ appreciation of the importance of research based enquiry, to inform opinions and theories, through practical tasks, statistical analysis and wider reading.

Studying the social sciences will encourage a deeper understanding of social life, groups and societies to become a more socially aware member of society.  This will be achieved by developing students’ fluency in the ability to express themselves in the language of social sciences.

As passionate social scientists, our aim is to instill an appetite for study that extends beyond the classroom and will be applicable to life experiences and future careers.  As social beings, interaction is a fundamental part of our existence and exploring and understanding the complexity of the biological and environmental influences on behaviour is a vital awareness we would like students to take forward into adult life.



Social Science Curriculum Content Statement

The Social Science curriculum aims to give students underpinning knowledge of theories, concepts, scientific ideas, processes, techniques and procedures in order to understand human society and social relationships. This will be achieved by developing students’ fluency in the ability to express themselves in the language of social sciences. Before the ability to apply and evaluate theories it is important to gain a knowledge and appreciation of different approaches. For example, in the study of gender, explanations include evolutionary and cognitive in Psychology, and in Sociology structural or interpretivist models. The principles of these approaches are then covered in every topic throughout KS4 and KS5 curriculum, each time adding depth and detail.

It is important students understand how knowledge is transferred between topics but also across the social science disciplines at each key stage. For example, understanding key concepts of reliability and validity is an integral part of research methodology which underpins theoretical understanding. The understanding of the terminology is crucial to how to use and apply it correctly. It is important students’ appreciate the importance of research based enquiry, to inform opinions and theories, through practical tasks and wider reading. Independent learning of contemporary issues related to the curriculum area is encouraged within both teaching staff and students to enhance knowledge. Social Science academic association’s and related journals, news media.

Social Sciences at Jesmond Park Academy

Within social science the key skills of application, analysis, interpretation and evaluation are developed and revisited throughout KS4 and KS5. These skills will encourage students to present arguments, make judgements and draw conclusions. Students will also analyse, interpret and evaluate scientific information, ideas and evidence, to develop and refine experimental design and procedures. Subject specific terminology and language is introduced from the start of each course and reinforced and embedded in each topic. This vocabulary is the foundation of all knowledge and understanding, fluency of which allows students to master the key skills and develop their confidence and competence to achieve their potential.

We seek to nurture students through the progressive topics in order to foster their confidence to question, reflect and actively engage with social science themes, within the classroom and beyond. Students will be exposed to differing opinions and theoretical arguments and will be encouraged to deal with socially sensitive and controversial topics through mature informed debate. 


Social Science Curriculum Offer

KS4 - Students study the following course at KS4

  • GCSE Psychology (AQA)

KS5 - Students study the following courses at KS5

  • A level Psychology (AQA)
  • A Level Sociology (AQA)