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Sociology at St Mary's Catholic High School

Course description

Sociology is the study of social institutions in society and how people behave within them. We examine the purposes of education, the changing nature of the family and whether the criminal justice system works. This AS and A2 course puts ‘everyday’ life into context and encourages you to consider the sociology of situations that
you before took for granted. You may not have studied Sociology before as not all schools offer it but if you have an enquiring mind about why certain values and attitudes in society prevail then we might be the course for you.

Some of the issues we look at in lessons include:
•  Should everyone be equal?
•  Why does inequality exist?
•  Why are some groups in society more likely to commit crime?
•  Why do some students achieve more than others at school?

Course content

At St. Mary’s Sociology is taught by experienced and enthusiastic members of staff and the course tackles four topics overall:
AS: Education and Research Methods and Family and Households
A2: Sociology of Beliefs, and Crime and Deviance with Theory, Media or Sociology of Benefit

Teaching and learning experiences vary from practical research tasks to student conferences.

Sociology is an interesting but challenging subject. Common sense is not enough - organisation and a good grasp of English is a must.

Entry requirements

For AS study you will need a minimum of 4 GCSEs at grade B with a minimum of one other GCSE grade C or above.  You must have GCSE Maths and English at a grade C or above.  We would expect you to have at least a GCSE  grade B in the subject you wish to study or a closely related discipline.


Sociology is 100% examination. AS is assessed by one 1 hour and one 2 hour exam. A2 is similar in that two exams are sat, however the second examination draws all knowledge from the course into one.

Financial information

St. Mary’s Sixth Form has a bursary scheme that supports students, who meet eligibility criteria, with the cost of attending college.

The bursary scheme is made up of 2 parts - a payment of £1,200 to a small group of the most vulnerable and a discretionary fund for schools to distribute. The most vulnerable are classified as:

• young people in care;

• care leavers;                         

• young people in receipt of Income Support;

• disabled young people in receipt of Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) who are also in receipt of Disability Living Allowance (DLA).

The discretionary element can be accessed via an application form and students should contact the Sixth Form office for further details. The College will consider every request for financial assistance and will endeavour to target the fund to help those students in greatest need

Future opportunities

Sociology does not limit your career choices. In fact by choosing Sociology you are choosing to study a wide range of social institutions such as the education system, the police, health service and the media. The choices are as wide reaching as prison officers, sport therapy, teaching, counsellors and MPs. In fact, anything that involves the understanding of other people. Sociology can also be studied with a combination of other subjects too.

How to apply

You can apply for this course through UCAS Progress. Add this course to your favourites so you can start making an application.

Last updated date: 20 May 2014
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Key information

  • Start date: Next September
  • Duration: 2 years