Exam Board: AQA

Entrance requirements:  5+ in English Language or Literature

Course Description:


Year 12:


In Year 12 you will study two topics –Education, Methods in Context’, and ‘Research methods, Families and Households’.  This will then be assessed at the end of the year with two 1.5h exams.

Year 13:

In Year 13, you will deepen your understanding of sociology by studying ‘Crime and Deviance with Theory and Methods’, additionally you will study “Beliefs in Society” (The role of religion in society).  At the end of the Year13, you will sit three (x2 hour) examinations – assessing your progress in your understanding of content and sociological skills, from both Year 12 and Year 13.

 Why Study This Course:

 ‘A’ Level Sociology involves the critical study of people’s behaviour – usually in groups. Sociologists assume human behaviour is learned through the process of socialisation.  So-called “common-sense” or “natural or biological” explanations of human behaviour are seen as inadequate and reductionist. Sociologist make up for these gaps in understanding human behaviour. During year 12 & 13 you will look at these theories, issues and debates:

  • Enlightenment philosophers: Marx, Hobbes, Comte, Durkheim, Weber

  • Interactionist (Phenomenology, Ethnomethodology, Personal Life Perspectives) theories

  • Feminism: Radical, Liberal, Marxist, Black/ Difference Feminism.

  • Marxism (Structuralism)

  • Functionalism (Structuralism)

You will then apply these sociological theories to debates like these:

  • Why is it that women still take responsibility for housework and childcare?

  • Why do families break up? Statistics, International trends.

  • What is the real purpose of education? Who benefits most from education?

  • Do girls really do better in education?

  • Why do we have crime?

  • Who really commits most crime?

By looking at these issues, Sociology contributes to a better understanding of the world in which we live.

Subject suitability for degree or future career:


Sociology can be studied in conjunction with many subject combinations and particularly with Humanities – English/History/Philosophy and Ethics, Psychology & the sciences.  It requires the development of analytical, critical and evaluative skills – all highly regarded by universities and the professions such as Accountancy and Law.  In the past, students who have studied Sociology have gone on to study Business, Criminology, Management, Marketing and Research, Social Policy, Social Work, Sociology, Medicine and Dentistry.

Contact: Mrs R Agnihotri