In general terms, sociology is the study of societies, how they shape human behaviour and vice versa.
Some Sociologists consider the way society controls the behaviour of individuals while some emphasis how the small scale interaction between each person creates society. Either way, Sociology provides students with the tools to understand the world they live in and, more importantly, their own actions.
This course is suitable for students who:
All assessments (range of multiple choice, short and extended response questions) are through examinations at the end of Year 11, there is no coursework.
Throughout Years 10 and 11, Sociology students study the following units and topics:
Paper 1: The Sociology of Families and Education (50% of the GCSE)
1. Family: the first part is the study of families, how they work, what their function is and how they are changing. Some of the issues which students learn about here are: why there are so many different types of family: families in different cultures and sociological theories of families.
2. Education: Students learn about patterns of achievements, i.e. why some pupils do better than others in education, the role or purpose of education and how different pupils experience education.
3. Sociological Theory and Research Methods: This involves learning about the different research methods such as: questionnaires, interviews and observations. These are used in order to study human behaviour and different issues in society. Also exploring the origins of sociological theory such as Marxism and Feminism.
Paper 2: The Sociology of Crime and Deviance and Social Stratification (50% of the GCSE)
1. Crime and Deviance: Student’s learn about the sociological explanations of why people commit crime: who commits the most and the debate about how effective different types of punishments are.
2. Social Stratification: This involves covering the main themes such as class, age, gender and ethnicity.
Students will also have the opportunity to carry out some of their own research on a topic that they have already studied.
Specific careers include:
There are many other careers in which Sociology is useful. These include: