What is Sociology all about?
Sociology offers students a challenging and stimulating course that is widely recognised and highly respected by universities as well as employers. The course covers a range of relevant subjects with an emphasis on contemporary society, ranging from youth culture to the exploration of inequalities in society. Whilst there is a strong emphasis on many traditional topics in sociology that continue to be relevant, there is also a range of topics which are the latest and most exciting developments in the discipline. The course encourages political and social engagement with contemporary social issues.
First Year Course Content
The first component of this course is titled “Socialisation, culture and identity” where students will gain an understanding of basic concepts and themes in Sociology.
Students will develop this by studying one of three thematic modules:
- Families and relationships
- Youth Subcultures
These options develop skills that enable individuals to focus on their personal identity, roles and responsibilities within society and develop a lifelong interest in social issues.
Students will then be introduced to the second component ’Researching and Understanding Social Inequalities’. This entails a range of methods and sources of data as well as the factors influencing the design of sociological research and the relationship between theory and methods. Students are encouraged to consider the practical, ethical and theoretical issues arising in sociological research and to apply knowledge of research methods to the particular context of social inequalities.
Second Year Course Content
The third component of the two year course ’Debates in Contemporary society’ engages learners in theoretical debates and how these relate to a contemporary global society. The component will develop knowledge and understanding of social processes and social change. It develops links between the topics studied in this component, the nature of sociological thought, contemporary social policy and the core themes.
Contemporary and Global Debates are introduced through a compulsory topic of ‘Globalisation and the Digital Social World’ in Section A, whilst Section B explores them in more depth from a detailed study of one of three options: either Crime and Deviance, Education, or Religion, Belief and Faith.
There are a range of forms of assessment, all exam based.
These range from short answer to longer essay questions. There is no coursework.
Future careers linked to this subject:
A-Level Sociology is very good preparation for university, where strong essay writing skills are very important. Universities recognise that Sociology A Level provides students with a very good foundation in social, political and policy knowledge.
Sociology is regarded as a demanding and rigorous A Level which combines well with any other combination of subjects. Sociology students go on to a wide range of jobs in policing, research, teaching, medicine, politics and civil service as well as taking jobs in the service sector. Graduates of sociology have higher Levels of employment than many other subjects.
Grade 6 in GCSE Sociology and/or Grade 6 in GCSE English
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