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A level

What attracts people to join religious sects and cults? How do we explain the recent rise in violent knife and gun crime in the UK? What are the causes of changes in the family such as the rise of lone parenthood and what are the implications for society? Sociology is concerned with social behaviour and asks questions about why society works the way it does and why people behave in the way they do.

You will have frequent opportunities for discussion enabling you to relate your own experiences and opinions to relevant sociological ideas and evidence. As you work on individual, small group and whole class tasks you will develop a range of transferable skills, including the ability to analyse and evaluate arguments and present information logically.

Studying sociology makes you look at the world in new ways and question your taken for granted assumptions. You will never be the same again! 

Course Content

Sociology is concerned with social behaviour and attempts to answer questions about why people behave the way they do. For example, why do girls outperform boys in the education system? Why is there still poverty in the 21st century? What explains the growth in violent street crime in the past few years?

Sociology forces you to look at the world in new ways by placing yourself in the shoes of others.

Year 1

You will look at the role and purpose of education; the significance of educational policies, teacher-pupil relationships; and home background the educational achievement of different social groups. You will investigate different sociological views on the role of the family, the changing experience of childhood and relationships between couples. You will also learn about the way in which sociologists study society, and the methods they use to do this.

Year 2

You will study the causes of crime and why some groups are more likely to break the norms of society than others. It’s not only individuals but powerful groups and governments who commit crime. You will examine green and state crime, media representations of and influences on crime as well as its control and punishment. You will study the social role of religion in society and religion in a global context including explanations for the rise of religious fundamentalism and extremism, the debate about whether the world is becoming more secular, and the rise of new religious movements including cults and sects.


  • 100% Exam
  • Exam Board: AQA

Special Features

In the past we have organized trips to Liverpool and Manchester, staying in university accommodation and visiting a range of places of sociological interest in both cities that have relevance to the syllabus.

We take students to conferences, and visiting speakers come in to college. These have included a Crime Conference in which ex-prisoners talked about their offending and experience of the criminal justice system.

This year we’ve continued making links with the wider world despite COVID, for example hearing from a former Sociology university student about both her research into the political sociology of music and her work for an anti-knife crime charity.

Entry Requirements

  • At least 7 GCSEs at Grade 4 including GCSE Maths.
  • Grade 5 in GCSE English.
  • Grade 5 in GCSE Sociology if taken.

Please note; you may be required to pay course costs towards your study on this course. Please click here for a full list of 2021/2022 course costs. 

After Long Road

The study of Sociology at A level can lead to a range of further studies and careers including law, police work, journalism, teaching, marketing, the health care professions, personnel work, social work and probation work.

Some of the degree courses being taken by students who recently completed their studies are…

  • Sociology at Warwick,
  • Sociology at Newcastle,
  • Rehabilitation Science at Keele,
  • Society, Culture and Media at the University of East Anglia
  • Social Work at Leeds.
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