Key Stage 5

Why study this course?

Sociology is the study of human society and group behaviour. We investigate how key parts of society work and their ‘true’ purpose. Society is complex, and we can’t study all of it, so we study what sociologists believe are some of the most important parts; families and education (Y12), crime and religion (Y13).

Although we interact with these areas on an almost daily basis, the sociological explanations of their function will be entirely new to you.

If you want to learn how human behaviour is affected by society, then study sociology.

 

What will I study?

Year 12

AS qualification no longer offered

 

Year 13

Paper 1: Education and Theory and Research Methods

 

Education:

The role and functions of the education system, including its relationship to the economy and to class structure.

Differential educational achievement of social groups by social class, gender and ethnicity in contemporary society.

Relationships and processes within schools, with particular reference to teacher/pupil relationships, pupil identities and subcultures, the hidden curriculum, and the organisation of teaching and learning.

The significance of educational policies, including policies of selection, marketisation and privatisation, and policies to achieve greater equality of opportunity or outcome, for an understanding of the structure, role, impact and experience of and access to education; the impact of globalisation on educational policy.

 

Theory:

The concepts of modernity and post-modernity in relation to sociological theory.

The nature of science and the extent to which Sociology can be regarded as scientific.

The relationship between theory and methods. Debates about subjectivity, objectivity and value freedom.

The relationship between Sociology and social policy.

 

Research Methods:

Quantitative and qualitative methods of research; research design.

Sources of data, including questionnaires, interviews, participant and non-participant observation, experiments, documents and official statistics.

The distinction between primary and secondary data, and between quantitative and qualitative data.

The relationship between positivism, interpretivism and sociological methods; the nature of ‘social facts’.

The theoretical, practical and ethical considerations influencing choice of topic, choice of method(s) and the conduct of research.

 

Paper 2: Families and Households and Beliefs in Society

 

Families and Households:

The relationship of the family to the social structure and social change, with particular reference to the economy and to state policies.

Changing patterns of marriage, cohabitation, separation, divorce, childbearing and the life course, including the sociology of personal life, and the diversity of contemporary family and household structures.

Gender roles, domestic labour and power relationships within the family in contemporary society.

The nature of childhood, and changes in the status of children in the family and society.

Demographic trends in the United Kingdom since 1900: birth rates, death rates, family size, life expectancy, ageing population, and migration and globalisation.

 

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.

 

Paper 3: Crime and Deviance and Theory and Research Methods.

 

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.

 

Theory:

The concepts of modernity and post-modernity in relation to sociological theory.

The nature of science and the extent to which Sociology can be regarded as scientific.

The relationship between theory and methods. Debates about subjectivity, objectivity and value freedom.

The relationship between Sociology and social policy.

 

Research Methods:

Quantitative and qualitative methods of research; research design.

Sources of data, including questionnaires, interviews, participant and non-participant observation, experiments, documents and official statistics.

The distinction between primary and secondary data, and between quantitative and qualitative data.

The relationship between positivism, interpretivism and sociological methods; the nature of ‘social facts’.

The theoretical, practical and ethical considerations influencing the choice of topic, choice of method(s) and the conduct of research.

 

How will I be assessed?

Y13 (A level — 2 years)

All final exams sat in Y13

Paper 1 – 2hrs

Education and Theory and Research Methods.

Paper 2 – 2hrs

Families and Households and Beliefs in Society.

Paper 3 – 2hrs

Crime and Deviance and Theory and Research Methods.

 

Where can it lead?

Sociology can lead to a career in law, criminology, education or the police force. Sociology is often seen as an academic route into caring professions, such as healthcare or social work. Sociology is considered a ‘fourth science’ by some universities.

Staff List

Mr S Gaynor

Head of Faculty

sgaynor@wickersley.net

  • Mrs E Luchessi
  • Mr S Gaynor
Exam Board

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Past Papers
Revision Sites

Please ask a member of staff for revision resources.

Useful Links
Option Blocks