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Sociology GCSE (Short Course) at Bishop Douglass School

Course description

Sociology is an interesting subject that requires a wide range of reading and good essay skills.

Sociology is the study of societies and cultures and how individuals and groups react and interact within them. In this respect it means that it offers insights into our complex and ever changing social world.

You will be required to read and analyse texts and data sources, to describe and explain different points of view using evidence from research to support.

Course content

Studying Society

  • Describe the research process
  • Describe the different research methods used by sociologists
  • Distinguish between primary and secondary sources of data and to describe the use, value and limitations of each
  • Make elementary deductions from diagrams, charts, graphs and tables of statistics as well as numerical, written and other visual material
  • Understand the significance of evidence in sociological discussions
  • Plan a simple research project, having regard to the ethical issues which might arise in the course of the research process

Families and Households

  • Know the difference between ‘family’ and ‘household’ and discuss different family types
  • Examine changing patterns of marriage, divorce, cohabitation, migration and single person households
  • Changing relationships between parents and children and factors influencing these e.g. contraception
  • Changing patterns of ageing and fertility in the UK
  • Sociological explanations of the role of the family in society
  • Issues in the family e.g. domestic violence, arranged marriages


  • Understand different sociological explanations of the role of the education system
  • Explain different patterns of achievement for different social groups based on class, gender and ethnicity and the various influences on these e.g. labelling
  • Examine debates about faith schools, testing, special needs, and alternative forms of educational provision
  • Study changes in educational laws and policies in the UK including the Tripartite system, comprehensivisation and marketization.


AQA Examination Board

Unit 1

This is an hour and a half paper. You will answer short mark questions and essay style questions on the following areas:

  1. Studying Society
  2. Education
  3. Familes and Households

Future opportunities

If you wish to explore the wide and complex issues that confront our society and are looking for a career in government and politics; police, law, medicine, social work, public services, advertising, personnel and other people orientated areas, then the study of Sociology would be invaluable.

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact Bishop Douglass School directly.

Last updated date: 07 November 2016
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