Sociology

Mrs A. Donaghy

Sociology is concerned with the study of society and the key institutions that affect our lives. It seeks explanations for human behaviour and beliefs. If you have ever wondered why some people get better GCSE grades than others, why people commit crime or how families have changed over the last 100 years, Sociology is the subject for you. The study of Sociology encourages intellectual skills and attitudes that can be very useful in many areas of education and life. The subject lends itself to discussion and debate and encourages students to relate their studies to contemporary events. Those who are interested in current affairs, keen to understand how society works and are interested in theoretical approaches to study would benefit from this course. Much of the examination content is essay based, so strength in narrative writing is beneficial for this course.

Key Stage 4

Understanding the Study of Society
Examination board: WJEC

What will I study?

This unit forms 100% of the content of the Short Course and 50% of the content of the Full Course GCSE Sociology.

Unit One: Understanding Social Processes

Year One

The key thematic concepts of the compulsory core will be applied to the specific option choices selected by the centre.

Learners must demonstrate knowledge and understanding of social structures and social differentiation in contemporary society. They should apply this knowledge to an understanding of social processes, including socialisation, culture and identity, social control, social interaction and social change.

Summary of Specification: Year One

Compulsory Core

Understanding the interrelationships between individuals, groups, institutions and society.
Sociological debates and theories with reference to people and society.
Understanding the study of society

In addition to the compulsory unit students will also have the opportunity to study one of the following topics:

  • Families
  • Education
  • Mass Media
  • Sport and Leisure

Details of topic area can be found on the following link – http://www.wjec.co.uk/uploads/publications/16165.pdf?language_id=1

 

Unit Two: Understanding Social Structures

Year two

This unit forms 50% of the content of the Full Course GCSE Sociology.

Learners must demonstrate knowledge and understanding of social structures and social differentiation in contemporary society.

The key thematic concepts of the compulsory core will be applied to the specific option choices selected by the centre.

Summary of Specification: Year Two

Compulsory Core

Understanding the interrelationships between individuals, groups, institutions and society.
Sociological debates and theories with reference to people and society.
Understanding the study of society

How will I be assessed?

Internally assessment

Students will be continuously assessed throughout the year. Students will be set a range assessment opportunities will be provided;

  • PowerPoint presentations
  • Investigations
  • Examination past paper questions
  • Independent learning

External assessment

Assessment for GCSE Sociology is untiered, i.e. both units cater for the full range of ability and allow access to grades A*-G for the subject award.

The scheme of assessment will consist of:

Unit 1 Written Examination Paper – 50% of the final mark

Understanding Social Processes (90 minutes)

This will consist of one multipart compulsory question testing the core knowledge and understandings and a choice of extended essay questions assessing the options within this unit of study.

Unit 2 Written Examination Paper – 50% of the final mark

Understanding Social Structures (90 minutes)

This will consist of one multipart compulsory question testing the core knowledge and understandings and a choice of extended essay questions assessing the options within this unit of study.

A-level Sociology offers students the opportunity to develop the essential knowledge and understanding of central aspects of sociological thought and methods. It is designed to encourage students to demonstrate the application of a range of skills and consider the integration of sociological themes:

  • socialisation, culture and identity
  • social differentiation, power and stratification.

The specification provides a smooth transition from GCSE Sociology, although this is not a requirement for studying AS or A-level Sociology. The specification also lays an appropriate foundation for further study of Sociology and related subjects in higher education.

What will I study?

AS Level topics: summary A2 level topics: summary
Education with theory and methods

Topic 1

The role and function of the education system and relationship to the economy.

Topic 2

Relationships and processes within schools.

Topic 3

Differential educational achievement of social groups by class, gender and ethnicity.

Topic 4

Significance of education policies.

Topic 5

Application of sociological research methods to the study of education.

Topics in sociology

Family and household

Foundation

Introducing the family: what is the family and a household? Different forms of the family and marriage.

Topic 1

The relationship of the family to the social structure and social change, with particular reference to the economy and to state policies.

Topic 2

Changing patterns of marriage, cohabitation, separation, divorce, child-bearing and the life course, including the sociology of personal life, and the diversity of contemporary family and household structures.

Topic 3

Gender roles, domestic labour and power relationships within the family in contemporary society.

Topic 4

The nature of childhood, and changes in status of children in the family and society.

Topic 5

Demographic trends in the United Kingdom since 1900:births, deaths rates, family size, life expectancy, ageing population, and migration and globalisation

Crime and deviance with theory and methods

Topic 1

crime, deviance, social order and social control

Topic 2

the social distribution of crime and deviance by ethnicity, gender and social class, including recent

patterns and trends in crime

Topic 3

globalisation and crime in contemporary society; the media and crime; green crime; human rights

and state crimes

Topic 4

crime control, surveillance, prevention and punishment, victims, and the role of the criminal justicesystem and other agencies.

Topics in sociology

The media

Topic 1

The new media and their significance for an understanding of the role of the media in contemporary society

Topic 2

The relationship between ownership and control of the media

Topic 3

The media, globalisation and popular culture

Topic 4

The processes of selection and presentation of the content of the news

Topic 5

Media representations of age, social class, ethnicity, gender, sexuality and disability

Topic 6

The relationship between the media, their content and presentation, and audiences.

How will I be assessed?

Pupils will sit a public examination at the end of year two.

Components
Paper 1: Education with Theory and Methods 2hours
Paper 2: Topics in Sociology 2hours
Paper 3: Crime and Deviance with Theory and Methods 2 hours

Alongside external assessment students will continued to be assessed throughout the year. Topic tests will be set accordingly and pupils and students are encouraged to answer past paper questions in order to prepare for the final examination.

Useful Links

http://www.aqa.org.uk/subjects/sociology/as-and-a-level/sociology-7191-7192

http://www.s-cool.co.uk/a-level/sociology

https://revisionworld.com/a2-level-level-revision/sociology-level-revision

https://revisesociology.com/good-sociology-sites/