Psychology as a High School Elective

During the high school years, much of the talk is about electives. What are they? How will we fulfill them? As part of our high school years our oldest daughter chose psychology as one of her high school electives.

Psychology as a High School Elective from Starts At Eight

When it came to planning our high school years we decided to include electives that were either something of interest, or something that would be a good college stepping stone.

For help with Planning Your High School Electives and a FREE Printable packet click here.

Plan Your High School Electives: Free Printable Pack from Starts At Eight

You can also check out more of our high school electives and what we are using to fulfill them here: High School Electives – A More In-depth Look at Our Choices

Psychology as a High School Elective

Psychology as a High School Elective Options from Starts At Eight

Why Psychology as a High School Elective?

A couple of factors went in to choosing psychology as a high school elective for our daughter.

The first being that our daughter was considering a profession in the medical field as a possible future course.  Psychology is usually an early prerequisite for a medical course of study in college. Therefore it made sense for her to take psychology in high school.

The second factor that led to our choice of psychology as a high school elective has to do with the fact that it is offered as a CLEP Exam. This means she could take psychology as a high school course for high school credit, then she could study specifically to take the CLEP Exam which will most often be the equivalent of 3 college credit hours,

Psychology Resources

1. Introduction to Psychology from a Christian Perspective from 7 Sisters Homeschool

This high school level course offers 15 chapters including topics such as The Brain and How it Works, Genetics, the History of Psychology, Sleep & Dreams, Abnormal Psychology and more. This was our original course of choice but we ended up going with the JumpCourse option listed below due to our daughter’s affinity for video based learning.

2. Understanding Psychology

This is a college textbook. While there were newer editions we chose this one because it was cheaper. Our purpose in a college psychology textbook was to use it for creating flashcards to study for the Psychology CLEP Exam.

3. JumpCourse Introduction to Psychology

Earn Psychology 101 College Credits! 

“This course introduces your student to the study of the human mind, behavior, thoughts, and emotions. Conclusion of this course will give you the confidence to sit and pass your CLEP Exam for college credit.”

We are using this as our psychology course for high school. The video based, iterative style of the JumpCourses is a great fit for the way our teen daughter learns. The lessons are clear and concise offering video lessons, interactive review, and quizzes.

4. Heads Up Psychology

Heads Up Psychology from DK Publishing explores the big ideas from all areas of psychology including psychoanalysis, intelligence, and mental disorders simply explained for teen readers. {Many thanks to DK Publishing for giving me a copy of this book to review. Please read my full Disclosure Policy for more details.}

Heads Up Psychology

What I love about so many of the DK Publishing books, and Heads Up Psychology is no exception, is that they do a great job of meeting their target audience. In this case, teens are the target audience so it is written in a manner that speaks to them by using real life examples, interesting yet not childish imagery, and clear, concise definitions to allow for understanding without overwhelming.

Instead of reading like a textbook, this book reads for fun. It starts right out in the Table of Contents where they use everyday terminology like “What makes me TICK?” and “Where do I FIT IN?” to meet teens right where they are. This travels all the way through the book to the very end where a concise list of psychologists, and a glossary of terms in plain English can be found.

The Psychology Book (Big Ideas Simply Explained) is another DK Book that clearly and simply explains more than one hundred groundbreaking ideas of the great scientists and thinkers who contributed to the development of psychological thought. (A bonus with this one is that it comes in Kindle format and is currently $1.99!)

Psychology for College Credit

As I have said before, a big factor in choosing psychology as a high school elective was the fact that we could also earn college credit doing it! We are working to reach this goal by taking a full year of psychology for high school, and then adding on some more in-depth study in preparation for the Psychology CLEP Exam.

After completing JumpCourse Psychology, our daughter will use the college textbook Understanding Psychology to create a set of comprehensive notecards. Studying these notecards, along with using the CLEP® Introductory Psychology Book + Online (CLEP Test Preparation) is how she will specifically prepare for and take the CLEP Exam for college credit.