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Sixth Form - Sociology A Level (ALV1) at Barnsley College

Course description

A Level Sociology provides an exciting opportunity to gain a deeper understanding of the world around you and reflect on social issues that are often relevant to your own experiences. It opens up opportunities for frequent and fascinating discussions, considering questions like: what impact do digital forms of communication have on social relationships? How do sociologists investigate inequality in society? And what are the patterns and trends of crime in relation to social class?



Course content

You will acquire detailed theoretical knowledge and a critical understanding of social processes and changes. You will be able to develop a broad set of essential academic skills that are valued by universities and employers, including the ability to analyse and formulate clear logical arguments and evaluate using a range of theoretical perspectives.

In the first year you will study Culture and Identity and the sociology of Education. You will explore how culture has traditionally shaped our identity and how in a globalised world we increasingly construct our own identities through consumer choices. You will then deepen your sociological understanding through in-depth study of the role of education in society and how inequalities of class, gender and ethnicity affect educational achievement. You will also learn how to carry out sociological research and how to apply those skills to the context of education.

In the second year you will deepen your theoretical understanding of sociology and research skills, alongside the study of Crime and Deviance and Beliefs in Society. This will engage you in debates about which social groups commit more crime and why, as well as ways of tackling the problem of crime in society. You will then explore the role of religion in society and how it contributes to social change. This will include the debate between science and religion and the changing levels of participation in religious practice in modern society.</p>

Learning methods

You will engage in group work, write essays, give presentations and develop creative approaches to explaining your theoretical understanding to your peers.

Entry requirements

We generally ask for an Attainment 8 score of 5.5 or above (including a 5 or above in English and maths). However, we will discuss entry requirements with you at interview so please come and talk to us!

Specific entry requirements

GCSE Grade 5 or above in English, History or another Humanities subject.



This course uses the AQA exam board and is a linear A Level. You will be assessed by examination on all content at the end of your two years of study.


Financial information

You won’t have to pay tuition or exams fees* to study A Levels with us if you are aged 16 to 18 on 31 August 2017, if you are 19 or older and looking to study your first full Level 3 qualification or if you receive certain benefits. To find out more about tuition fees, call our Information Team on +44 (0)1226 216 123.

We know being a student can be an expensive time so we offer a range of options to help all our students, from our Learner Support Fund to the Earn 2 Learn scheme.

Financial support

If your total annual household income is less than £35,000 you could be eligible for financial support through our Learner Support Fund for travel (up to £700), If your household income is below £20,000 you could be eligible for food, trips, printing, equipment and childcare. You don’t have to pay this money back.

You can pick up a Learner Support Fund application form from Student Services on the ground floor at the Old Mill Lane campus.

Guaranteed bursaries

If you are aged between 16 and 18 and currently living on your own, in care or leaving care, you could be eligible for a non-repayable bursary of up to £1,200 per year.*

Earn to Learn

If you are aged 16 to 18 and not eligible for any other financial support you could get involved with our Earn 2 Learn scheme. This provides excellent work experience opportunities within college with departments including Marketing, Administration and Catering, and you will be ‘paid’ via a range of rewards including help with the cost of travel, trips and equipment or high street vouchers.


You can get FREE meals at college if your household income is less than £20,000 (16-18s) or £15,000 (19+). Speak to Student Services to find out more on +44 (0)1226 216 267

FREE bus services!

We realise that getting to and from college might not be very easy for everyone so we have funded three free return bus services for our students. They go to and from the Old Mill Lane campus which is just a few minutes’ walk from our Sixth Form college campus.

Shelley > Old Mill Lane campus

Stocksbridge via Penistone > Old Mill Lane campus

Rotherham via Ecclesfield and Chapeltown > Old Mill Lane campus

These bus routes are completely free for our students and operate on a first come, first served basis. Each route operates to ensure students get to college before lessons start and a return service is provided after lessons finish. Please contact Student Services for details of pick-up points and times or go to: student-support/free-bus-service

*Terms and conditions apply16 +44 (0)1226 216 123

Future opportunities


The skills acquired whilst studying A Level Sociology are highly relevant and transferable to a wide number of degree courses such as History, Geography, English, Law, Politics, Business, Philosophy, Media Studies, Journalism, Social Work, Nursing and Criminology.

Sociology students often go on to careers in teaching, law, research, politics, police and probation services, counselling, events management and business.

Further information

Additional Learning Support (ALS)

We want every student to get the best out of their time with us. If you need any extra help, our ALS team can provide you with a range of support. The team work with students who have:



Autism or Asperger Syndrome


Learning difficulties/disabilities

Emotional or mental health support needs

Sensory impairment

Physical difficulties

Medical conditions

Temporary disabilities

If you would like to find out more about the support ALS can offer then please contact the team.

+44 (0)1226 216 769

Health and Wellbeing

Making sure you lead a healthy lifestyle will help you do your best in your studies. We offer confidential advice and a range of health services, including:

Contraception and sexual health advice

Full STI screening

Access to psychological therapies to deal with stress, depression and anxiety (IAPT)


Referrals to Barnsley Stop Smoking Service

Qualified Health Trainer


Advice around drug and alcohol issues

You can contact an adviser on: +44 (0)1226 216 233

Information Unit

We have a dedicated team available to provide information on all of our courses and to help you to make the right choices about your future. The team are based at the Old Mill Lane site.

Drop in: Monday – Thursday 9.00am – 5.00pm

Friday 9.00am – 4.30pm

Tel: +44 (0)1226 216 123


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: 28 May 2019
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