In one of the most culturally diverse and socially complex cities in the world, you'll be introduced to ideas on globalisation, social inequality, identity, and ethnicity and race. As you prepare for social and public policy careers in the private, public or voluntary sectors, you'll learn skills to address multidisciplinary concerns relevant to a variety of public issues and have opportunities to take up a work placement and to study in other European countries. By the end of the course you'll be qualified to apply sociological perspectives, concepts and research methods to the most challenging social issues facing us today.
In the most recent Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education (DLHE) survey, 100% of all 2017 graduates from this course were in work or further study within six months.
This course received a 90% overall student satisfaction rate in the 2018 National Student Survey.
The Sociology BSc (Hons) degree is equipped with practical and transferable skills for research in the real world. You'll develop a systematic understanding of the key aspects of sociology, including a coherent and detailed understanding of specific areas.
You'll learn the most up-to-date techniques to devise and sustain arguments and to solve problems, consider current research, or equivalent advanced scholarship, and recognise the uncertainty, ambiguity and limits of its knowledge.
Making use of scholarly reviews and primary sources, you'll critically evaluate arguments, assumptions, abstract concepts and data, and examine how to communicate information, ideas, problems and solutions to both specialist and non-specialist audiences. Exercising initiative and personal responsibility, you'll develop skills for decision-making in complex and unpredictable contexts.
By examining global inequalities in the twenty-first century and our work and working lives, you'll explore what is meant by the sociological imagination and also have the option to study homelessness and housing policy, gender and sexuality or to take up a sociology and social policy work placement.
The sociology placement, available to students entering their third year, is usually undertaken over the summer period, between years one and two.
The emphasis of this course is very much on the applied and practical nature of sociology and sociological research and a variety of teaching and learning methods are used to deliver a course that is both stimulating and relevant.
While developing the social experience, interests and understanding that stems from experiencing a diversity of educational, ethnic and social backgrounds, you'll receive the training, skills and understanding of specialist areas of study that are required to pursue a social and public policy-related career in national or local government, or the voluntary sector, or to apply the social research techniques you have learned to a wide range of private sector jobs.
You're assessed via essays, individual and group research projects, a media practice project and a final dissertation.
In addition to the University's standard entry requirements, you should have:
If you do not have traditional qualifications or cannot meet the entry requirements for this undergraduate degree, you may still be able to gain entry by completing the Social Work Extended degree.
Applications are welcome from mature students who have passed appropriate Access or other preparatory courses or have appropriate work experience.
All applicants must be able to demonstrate proficiency in the English language. Applicants who require a Tier 4 student visa may need to provide a Secure English Language Test (SELT) such as Academic IELTS. For more information about English qualifications please see our English language requirements.
These requirements may be varied in individual cases. Applications are welcome from mature students who have passed appropriate Access or other preparatory courses or have appropriate work experience.
The modules listed below are for the academic year 2018/19 and represent the course modules at this time. Modules and module details (including, but not limited to, location and time) are subject to change over time.
Year 1 modules include:
To explain the development and functioning of different models of social policy in the West and to explore key themes and issues in social policy in the UK over recent decades, mapping the ascendance of the neoliberal model and the decline of the classic welfare state.
This module provides the foundation for an explicit, clear focus on social research throughout Sociology and related degrees in addition to supporting students to acquire understanding of and skills in academic literacy. The methodological principles and perspectives for effective social research are explained and also illustrated through exploration of research case studies. It will additionally provide experience in using the vast array of text, visual and statistical primary documentary sources and their interpretation for research. Research as process will be examined including main research approaches, the formulation and development of research questions and social, ethical and political contexts of research practice.
Analyse the social construction of a social problem
- Collate information on the location and scale of a social problem
- Reflect upon sociological interpretations of a particular social problem
- Outline policy responses to a particular social problem
This module will provide students with an introduction to the discipline of Sociology and some of the basic skills of identifying, applying and evaluating sociological approaches, concepts and debates to everyday situations (LO1; LO2). It will also provide an introduction to constructing sociological arguments, thinking critically and assessing sociological evidence (LO3; LO4).
Year 2 modules include:
We live in an increasingly unequal world. This module examines the growth in inequalities globally. It also examines some of the key economic and political causes of growing world inequality. In particular, the module critically examines neo-liberal globalisation.
The principal focus of this module is for students to build on prior understanding and learning, exploring philosophical accounts of scientific explanation and the theory and practice of sociological research through the use of work-related interactive methods. The module provides work experience for students by developing research for a real world organisation (employer). Students will learn about doing research methods by conducting research for an employer. The employer will contribute to setting out small-scale research aims and objectives; being available to assess student proposals and bids or assess the analysis/ final presentation. The first part of this module examines the theory and philosophical accounts of research methodology, as well as introducing students to the practical skills of doing interviews, transcribing them, and analysing qualitative data (LO2; LO3). The second part of the module concentrates on quantitative methods, and requires students to design research for the requirements of an employer involved in both the aims and outcomes (assessment) of the research. The module provides work-related understanding and application of research methods by involving employer requirements and needs (LO1; LO4).
This module introduces students to some of the key sociological approaches used to explore and explain the sociological notion of ‘self’. This will involve an examination of a range of major 20th century sociological thinkers on the nature of the social construction of self - eg. Mead, Goffman - and it’s constrains - e.g. Parsons, Merton and Dahrendorf. The intention is to use some of the major sociological theorists and apply their insights into current concerns with the ‘project’ of self and identity. That is, to examine how much choice we have in becoming who we are.
To introduce students to sociological understanding and methodology of observing and explaining the everyday life: its routines, rhythms and those aspects of social life that we consider familiar and known.
1. Consider the various relationships between media, technology and crime
2. Develop an understanding of the role of the media in shaping perceptions of crime
and criminal justice, with a particular emphasis on marginalised groups
3. Develop an awareness and familiarity with the emerging forms of deviant
behaviour facilitated by contemporary technologies and/or the media
4. Provide an overview of the way technologies interact with crime and the criminal
5. Develop summarising and analytical skills
This module explores theories and conceptions of racism and ethnicity, and the practices of racism in contemporary societies. The historical roots of racism will be examined and its contemporary forms studied comparatively. Racism is specifically explored within the context of social and political conflicts.
• To analyse critically key concepts including racism and ethnicity themselves in order to develop an awareness of their contested nature.
• To look at these issues as worldwide problems and in a sociological context that explores the meanings ascribed to these terms, their historical origins and key examples of societies where these issues have been or still are important in shaping the social orders in which people live.
• To consider the impact of racism on specific communities and groups, including national, religious and ethnic groups.
• To examine the links between class, gender and ethnic differences.
The module aims to:
1. Familiarise students with the theoretical perspectives that have shaped criminological thought on violence by young people
2. Encourage students to develop a critical overview of young people’s engagement in violent crime
3. Develop students’ ability to research, analyse and communicate critical and informed arguments relating to the theory, policy and practice underpinning youth involvement in violent crime.
A1. To provide students with a historical, theoretical and comparative understanding of the diverse forms of youth culture and youth social organisation;
A2. To explore the social origins of youth gangs and street violence;
A3. To consider the key developments in political mobilisation of young people;
A4. To investigate the concepts and nature of social control in relation to youth;
A5. To develop confidence in use of appropriate learning, analytical and discursive skills when dealing with current youth issues.
Year 3 modules include:
This module will provide students with an opportunity to engage with contemporary thinkers and debates in social theory. They will be required to critically examine the ideas of contemporary social theorists and explore the application of their ideas to an ever-changing world (LO1; LO2). The module will explore what it means to be human and examine how different perspectives on this impact upon a range of issues, from state policies to the development of artificial intelligence. Overall, the aim of the module is to develop the students’ capacity to utilise theoretical ideas taken from philosophy and sociological theory by applying them to the social world (LO3; LO4).
A1. The students will use theoretical and empirical knowledge, research and analytical skills gained in their programme of study to investigate their chosen topic and formulate a dissertation.
A2. The students will produce an original investigation/examination of a relevant sociological topic.
A3. The students will learn how to apply their knowledge of research methods, design and analysis to a specific research project.
The module introduces students to the key concepts and theories relating to the social construction of gender and sexuality and their application to a range of social sectors and issues in the UK and abroad. The ways in which gender and sexuality are both constitutive of the social and are constituted through social structures, institutions and interactions are explored, as are the ways in which theories of gender and sexuality have informed the sociological study of the family, work, health, education, crime, the welfare state and politics, media and the body.
• To introduce and critically analyse key concepts in the sociological study of gender and sexuality;
• To introduce a range of theoretical approaches to understanding the operation of gender and sexuality at the levels of social structures, social relations and social identities;
• To consider the impact of gender and sexuality across a range of social sectors and social issues;
• To consider the links and intersections between gender, sexuality and other forms of social identity and difference, including class, race, ethnicity, etc.
• To consider the social and political sources of the persistence of discrimination and inequalities on the basis of gender and sexual orientation.
The module examines the history of housing policy in the UK, focussing in particular on the shift to neo-liberal housing policies from the 1980s. Key contemporary housing issues and the key causes of the current ‘housing crisis’ in London and the UK are examined.
• To develop an understanding of the international human rights framework and consider debates and theories challenging this framework (including a critical assessment of the concept and implementation of the universality of human rights).
• To evaluate various international conventions on the protection of human rights, including the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
• To examine violations of human rights in the light of various social and political contexts across the world and gain an understanding of how human rights applies in specific contexts; how such violations impact societies, communities and individuals; and how individuals and organisations work for justice in such harrowing circumstances.
This module builds on earlier studies of social problems, social inclusion and exclusion, and education policy. We will reflect further on the meaning of social inclusion and exclusion in society, and the specific meaning of the terms in education in relation to the world of education and students with special educational needs. The study of the role of education and schooling in relation to achieving inclusion in both arenas is the focus of this module.
This module will provide students with an opportunity to engage with contemporary debates on the relationship between social science and religion. Students will be required to critically examine the ideas of the classic and contemporary social scientists on religion and explore the application of their ideas to an ever-changing world. Overall, the aim of the module is to develop the students’ capacity to utilise social scientific concepts and perspectives in their analyses of religion in contemporary society. The disciplinary focus of the module will, initially, be the sociology of religion. The application of a range of social scientific approach will also be introduced - historical, political, economic and social psychological approaches.
The module aims to give students the opportunity to:
1. Apply their prior learning in an appropriate work environment
2. Relate specific knowledge and skills – theoretical, methodological, analytical – as appropriate to real-life situations in the work environment
3. Undertake work based activities relevant to their academic subject area and level
4. Show awareness of and delineate the culture, structure and changing services delivery of a working environment
5. Enhance their professional and personal development by developing new capabilities and skills
"The positive benefit of undertaking this course is that it developed qualities that I can use in the workplace. It also provided me with the tools to be able to research issue. More importantly, the knowledge that I gained has made me a more effective communicator."
National Student Survey (NSS)
Successful completion of this course offers improved career opportunities in social research and the public services, as well as a multitude of private sector jobs. Previous graduates have secured roles in human resources, prison services, medical research and events management.
A sociology degree is also a strong foundation for future postgraduate study in social work, social policy or early years teaching.
Please note, in addition to the tuition fee there may be additional costs for things like equipment, materials, printing, textbooks, trips or professional body fees.
Additionally, there may be other activities that are not formally part of your course and not required to complete your course, but which you may find helpful (for example, optional field trips). The costs of these are additional to your tuition fee and the fees set out above and will be notified when the activity is being arranged.
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If you're a UK/EU applicant applying for full-time study you must apply via UCAS unless otherwise specified.
UK/EU applicants for part-time study should apply direct to the University.
Non-EU applicants for full-time study may choose to apply via UCAS or apply direct to the University. Non-EU applicants looking to study part-time should apply direct to the University. If you require a Tier 4 (General) student visa, please be aware that you will not be able to study as a part-time student at undergraduate level.
The University and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS) accepts applications for full-time courses starting in September from one year before the start of the course. Our UCAS institution code is L68.
If you will be applying direct to the University you are advised to apply as early as possible as we will only be able to consider your application if there are places available on the course.
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