Skip to main content

AS/A2 Sociology

Teacher in charge of Subject

Overview

Sociology is the study of how society works and how we experience life. Sociology tries to understand patterns of inequality and conflict which are features in nearly all societies. You get to look at real-world issues such as education, crime, changes in family relationships and gender roles.

Do you enjoy subjects that allow you to discuss and debate topical and controversial issues?

Are you naturally inquisitive about the everyday world in which you live?

Then sociology is for you.

  1. Course Title

    AS/A Sociology

  2. Exam Board and Specification No.

    AQA (2190)

What do I need to have studied/have knowledge of?

There is no prior leaning required for this course, but you must have achieved a grade B in English and history, geography or religious studies to be considered.

What will I learn on this course?

At AS you will look at:

Families and Households
How has family structure become more diverse?  What impact does this have on wider society?  What does the government do to support families?  How are families changing in terms of patterns of marriage, cohabitation, separation, divorce, childbearing and the life course?  Are gender roles still important in the modern world? When does childhood end?

Education
What is the role of education in wider society?  Some sociologists argue that we are learning more than just history and geography at school; we are learning to be good workers, obedient citizens and respectful of authority.   Who might this benefit?  Why do girls do better than boys throughout school and university but earn less than ten years after graduating? Should independent schools be allowed or do they damage society?

Sociological Methods
Sociologists have to do research and provide evidence for the claims they make.  We look at how sociologists do this and the usefulness of different methods in sociological research. For instance, how would one go about researching gangs in Glasgow?

At A Level you will look at:

Beliefs in Society

  • ideology, science and religion, including both Christian and non-Christian religious traditions
  • the relationship between social change and social stability, and religious beliefs, practices and organisations
  • religious organisations, including cults, sects, denominations, churches and New Age movements, and their relationship to religious and spiritual belief and practice
  • the relationship between different social groups and religious/spiritual organisations and movements, beliefs and practices
  • the significance of religion and religiosity in the contemporary world, including the nature and extent of secularisation in a global context, and globalisation and the spread of religions.

Crime and Deviance

  • crime, deviance, social order and social control
  • the social distribution of crime and deviance by ethnicity, gender and social class, including recent patterns and trends in crime
  • globalisation and crime in contemporary society; the media and crime; green crime; human rights and state crimes
  • crime control, surveillance, prevention and punishment, victims, and the role of the criminal justice system and other agencies.

What key skills will I develop?

A-level Sociology offers students the opportunity to develop the essential knowledge and understanding of central aspects of sociological thought and methods.  It is designed to encourage students to demonstrate the application of a range of skills and consider the integration of sociological themes:

  • socialisation, culture and identity
  • social differentiation, power and stratification.

By taking sociology, you will become a much more informed, questioning and critical citizen of society. Furthermore, you will gain a completely different way of thinking about the world around you, and here is a promise; you will never look at the world in the same way again.

You will learn valuable skills, working independently, as well as in a team, to find and extract information, how to conduct research, interpret statistics, analyse information and write in an evaluative way.

How will I be assessed?

Paper 1: Education with Theory and Methods: 2 hour written exam

Paper 2: Topics in Sociology: 2 hour written exam
Section A Families and Households
Section B Beliefs in Society

Paper 3: Crime and Deviance with Theory and Methods: 2 hour written exam

What could this course lead to?

Sociology is very popular nationally as an A Level subject, with many students achieving excellent outcomes.  It is now firmly embedded as a noteworthy A Level subject, with all universities seeing it as an excellent foundation for many degrees.  Sociology can lead to any jobs involving people, and can set you up for many careers including Law, business management, journalism, development, social work, medicine and teaching.

Additional events, trips or enrichment activities

We will have guest speakers, research opportunities and a trip to London.

Are there any additional costs for this course?

You will want to have your own copy of the course text book (approx. £25.00).  You will also have the opportunity to take part in trips and visits, these are optional, but we believe they will enrich your enjoyment understanding of Sociology.  Costs may vary but would normally be around £30.00 (funding can be found in cases of hardship).

You may also want to purchase study guides and extended reading materials.

Who do I contact if I have any further questions?

Mrs O’Brien – cobrien@commonweal.co.uk