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Sociology A-Level at St John Payne Catholic School

Course description

What is Sociology?

One of the simplest and most common definitions of Sociology is ‘the study of people in social groups’. People are social beings, not just individuals with their own separate lives and in Sociology we will look at how our lives are shaped by society.

What skills are required?

Sociology, although fascinating, is also a challenging subject and students considering this subject should be comfortable reading, researching and writing essays. Students will also be rewarded highly for their ability to challenge, criticise, and evaluate rather than just accept different explanations.

Core Themes

Students must study the following two core themes:

  1. Socialisation, culture and identity.
  2. Social differentiation, power and stratification.

The themes should be understood and applied to particular substantive areas of sociology. These themes are to be interpreted broadly as threads running through many areas of social life and should not therefore be regarded as discrete topics.

In addition, students must understand the significance of conflict and consensus, social structure and social action, and the role of values.

The central focus of study in this specification should be on UK society today, with consideration given to comparative dimensions where relevant, including the siting of UK society within its globalised context.

Course content

AS Sociology

Subject Content:

  • Education
  • Methods in Context
  • Research Method plus the Families and Households option

Assessment is two examination papers of 1 hour and 30 minutes each.

A Level Sociology

Subject Content

  • Education with Theory and Methods
  • Crime and Deviance with Theory and Methods
  • Families and Households
  • Beliefs in Society

Assessment is by three, 2 hour examination papers.

Please Note – Year 13 students can continue to A level only if they achieve a minimum grade C at AS level.

Homework: This will be set each week and should take about 5 hours. Background reading is a necessary part of the course. A text book will be provided but students are encouraged to purchase additional texts and to use the internet.

Entry requirements

Please note the minimum requirement to study AS levels at our Sixth Form is a GCSE points score of 42 points from your best 8 GCSE results. We award 8 points for an A* grade, 7 points for a grade A, 6 points for a grade B, 5 points for a grade C, 4 points for a grade D, 3 points for a grade E, 2 points for a grade F and 1 point for a grade G.

Subject Specific

English C

Future opportunities

Relating to courses at University or future employment, this subject combines well with Psychology, History, English, Law, Philosophy, Ethics and Geography.

Possible career choices linking to this subject include:-

Education, Health & Social Care, Politics, Police & Criminology, Human Geography, Nursing

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact St John Payne Catholic School directly.

Last updated date: 24 June 2015

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