Sociology A-Level

    Exam Board: AQA

    Introduction

     Sociology is the study of society.  Sociologists are interested in how societies work and the ways in which individuals, groups and institutions are interrelated.  In sociology we look at institutions such as the family, the media, religion and the education systems and ask questions about their structure, in whose interests they operate, and the effect that they have on individuals and on society as a whole.  We are also interested in areas of social concern such as crime, divorce and poverty, and try to explain these issues and how they impact on individuals and society.  Inequality is a key focus of sociology, and sociologists look at how factors such as class, gender, ethnicity and age impact an individual’s life chances.

    Course content

    Education with Theory and Methods

    • Education section explores the role and functions of the education system, difference in education achievement, relationships and processes within schools, significance of educational policies, and methods in context of education.
    • Theory and Methods section explores research process within sociology, relationship between theory and methods, the relationship between sociology and social policy, modernity and post-modernity.

    Topics in Sociology

    • Culture and Identity section explores different concepts of culture, the socialisation process, different concepts of identity, relationship of identity to production, consumption and globalisation.
    • The Media section explores the significance of media in contemporary society, the relationship between ownership and control of the media, media and popular culture, media representations of different social groups.

    Crime and Deviance with Theory and Methods

    • Crime and Deviance section explores the concepts of crime, deviance, social order and social control, distribution of crime and deviance by social groups, globalisation and crime, crime control.
    • Theory and Methods section explores research process within sociology, relationship between theory and methods, the relationship between sociology and social policy, modernity and post-modernity.

    Assessment comprises three exams with a range of short and long answer questions as well as source based questions.  An awareness of the application of sociology to the real world will be required.

    Trips and other costs:

    • Text books for each year are £22 and are available from Polity.
    • Philip Allen run sociologically relevant conferences which we will attend if there is availability.  Tickets normally cost £25 with additional transport costs on top.
    • Other trips may become available and students will be informed of the cost in advance.

    Career and further study:

    A Sociology A level helps to prepare you for the learning experience at university.  It is a highly academic subject that will develop the skills you need for degree level study.  You will learn to work independently, research and extract information that is important and turn this into an argument.  Studying Sociology will provide you with skills required for a range of careers.  Careers that Sociology students have entered into include journalism, psychology, criminology, anthropology, international relations, legal professions and a range of others.