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Example Answer for Question 10 Paper 2: AS Psychology, June 2017 (AQA)

AS, A Level

Section B - Psychopathology

Question 10: Explain [4 Marks] - OCD

Suggested Answer: Compulsions are a behavioural characteristic of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) which have two main properties:  Firstly, compulsions are repetitive in nature, and secondly, compulsions are used to manage or reduce anxietyBob is demonstrating compulsive behaviour with his repetitive checking of the doors and plug sockets. Furthermore, Bob is clearly performing this behaviour to reduce anxiety as the extract suggests that he feels overwhelmed if he doesn’t complete these rituals.

Obsessive thoughts are the main cognitive characteristic of OCD. For sufferers of OCD, these thoughts are intrusive and occur over and over again. Furthermore, the thoughts are often inappropriate and frightening which means that sufferers do not want to share these thoughts. Bob is experiencing obsessive thoughts because he is concerned that his family will be in danger if he does not continually check the doors and plugs. 

Please Note: These answers have been produced without the knowledge of the mark scheme and merely reflect my attempt at producing a model answer on the day of the exam. These answers are not endorsed or approved by AQA.

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