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AS/A-Level Sociology (AQA)

Sociology is the systematic study of society. It is about critically looking at the world around you to understand some of the problems that face society and how society has changed over time.

Sociology is a subject in which you are expected to take an interest in, and to be critical about, the ways in which government policy impacts on inequalities based on social class, age, gender and ethnicity. In your study of Sociology you will develop your skills of being objective and analytical and critical through extensive research, précis, writing and debate about current issues, so reading the news is vital. A lot of the topics in Sociology are extremely controversial and require you to have an open mind, use objective reasoning and be respectful of others opinions at all times.

Sociology poses many important questions about contemporary life and our role in society.

  • Why do some people commit more crime than others?
  • Why are girls now out-performing boys in school?
  • Will divorce continually to rise?
  • Do children need fathers?
  • Does the media cause violence?
  • Are the police prejudiced?
  • Is society becoming less religious?
  • Does your IQ determine how well you will do in school?

So we are interested in not just what society is but why things happen in society.

There is no coursework: this qualification is entirely exam-based; and the exams are predominantly essay-based.

Units of assessment

AS-level is composed of 3 units: Education, Research Methods, Families and Households. The A-level comprises of 6 units, the first three of which combine these first year topics with 2nd year work on theory and methods, belief systems and crime and deviance. Integral elements of the every unit are different sociological perspectives relating to the significance of conflict and consensus, social structure and social action, and the role of values, and research methods. Core themes of socialisation, culture and identity, social differentiation, power and stratification will be also be applied to all component topics

  • Component 1: Education
  • Component 2: Research Methods
  • Component 3: Families and Households
  • Component 4: Sociology of Belief
  • Component 5: Crime and Deviance
  • Component 6: Theory and Methods

 

Careers in this subject

Sociology is a good connective subject which means that it supports a number of disciplines such as Politics, History, Psychology and Religious Studies/Philosophy. It also supports a number of careers which demand objective problem solving skills, research methods and critical thinking. Like most other humanities subjects, Sociology provides a basis for a variety of careers and is a way of keeping your options open. Some of these careers include lawyer, advocacy, social work, prison officer, police officer

Teacher profiles

Gill Boocock and Nick Tidey have a combined total of more than 60 years of experience teaching Sociology. Gill has also worked as an Assistant Examiner in A level Sociology for over 20 years.

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