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Sociology - AS/A2 at St Thomas More School & Sixth Form College

Course description

This GCE Sociology course has been designed so that you will acquire the essential knowledge  and understanding of central aspects of sociological thought  and methods, together with the application of a range of skills. It has also been designed to allow the integration of sociological themes, such as socialisation, culture and identity, and social differentiation, power and stratification.

Course content

Students taking this course will develop a critical knowledge and understanding of society today focusing on Families and Households, Education, Religion and Crime and Deviance. Students will also examine the strengths and weaknesses of research methods in Sociology.

Entry requirements

A minimum grade C at GCSE level in both English and Mathematics or their equivalents(also see Further Information below)


SCLY1:  40% of AS – Sociology of Families and Households

The Relationship of the family to the social structure and social change.  Changing patterns of marriage, cohabitation, separation, divorce, child-bearing and the life-course. The nature and extent of changes within the family and changes of the status of children in the family.  Demographic trends in the UK since 1900.

SCLY2: 60% of AS – Sociology of Education and Research methods.   The role and purpose of education. Relationships and processes within schools. The significance of educational policies.  The application of sociological research methods to the study of education. Quantitative and qualitative methods of research.  Sources of data and the strengths and limitation of these sources. The distinction between primary and secondary data. The relationship between positivism, interpretivism and sociological methods.

SCLY3: 20% of A Level – Sociology of religion. Beliefs in society. Different theories and ideologies of religion. The relationship between religious beliefs and social change. Religious organisations and their movements, beliefs and practices and the significance of religion and religiosity in the contemporary world.

SCLY4: 30% of overall A Level – Sociology of crime and deviance. Different theories of crime, deviance, social order and social control. The social distribution of crime and deviance by age, ethnicity, gender, locality and social class. Globalisation and crime in contemporary society. Crime control, prevention and punishment, victims and the role of the criminal justice system. The sociological study of suicide. The connections between sociological theory and methods of crime and deviance.

A2 made up:  50% AS

                      20% SCLY 3

                      30% SCLY 4

Financial information

There are no costs involved with this course other than those incurred with any trip that may be organised as part of the course,

Future opportunities

As part of a wider programme, this course provides a good basis for progression to a whole range of university subjects including sociology related degrees. Sociology will support a career in a range of areas including human resources, social work and education.

Further information

The specification from AQA examination board provides a smooth transition from GCSE sociology, although this is not a prerequisite for studying AS/A Level Sociology. Candidates who have Grade C in English Language or similar attainment at Key Stage 4 will find that those skills will suitably equip them for the study of this specification. However, no prior learning is necessary for candidates to undertake a course of study based on this specification and those candidates returning to study, as part of their lifelong learning, will need no previous attainment in this subject.

The specification lays an appropriate foundation for further study of Sociology and related subjects in higher education. In addition, it provides a worthwhile course for candidates of various ages and from diverse backgrounds in terms of general education and lifelong learning. Equally, material studied would be useful for candidates intending to pursue careers in the field of Social Sciences.

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact St Thomas More School & Sixth Form College directly.

Last updated date: 10 September 2014
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Key information

  • Start date: Next September
  • Duration: AS - 1 year and A2 - 1 year
  • Course code: 1191/2191