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KS5 Sociology

Exam Board: AQA
Course Code: 7192

Sociology AQA Specification

Year 12

Introduction to Sociological themes and perspectives.
We begin the course by introducing two core themes that run through the whole of the  A level Sociology course:

  • Socialisation culture and identity

  • Social differentiation, power and stratification

We also introduce the main sociological perspectives that attempt to explain the various aspects of society and the human behaviour within it.

  • Functionalism

  • Marxism

  • Feminisms

  • Social Action approaches

  • Theories of late and post modernity

In this unit we investigate:

  • differential educational achievement of social groups by social class, gender and ethnicity in contemporary society.

  •  relationships and processes within schools, with particular reference to teacher/pupil relationships, pupil identities and subcultures, the hidden curriculum, and the organisation of teaching and learning

  • the role and functions of the education system, including its relationship to the economy and to class structure

  • the significance of educational policies, including policies of selection, marketisation and privatisation, and policies to achieve greater equality of opportunity or outcome, for an understanding of the structure, role, impact and experience of and access to education; the impact of globalisation on educational policy.

Families and Households
In this unit we learn:

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

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

  • demographic trends in the United Kingdom since 1900: birth rates, death rates, family size, life expectancy, ageing population, and migration and globalisation.

  • changing patterns of marriage, cohabitation, separation, divorce, childbearing and the life course, including the sociology of personal life, and the diversity of contemporary family and household structures

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

Research methods
We finish the first year learning how Sociologists collect and analyse data about society and human behaviour. We cover:

  • quantitative and qualitative methods of research; research design

  • sources of data, including questionnaires, interviews, participant and non-participant observation, experiments, documents and official statistics

  • the distinction between primary and secondary data, and between quantitative and qualitative data

  • the relationship between positivism, interpretivism and sociological methods; the nature of ‘social facts’

  • the theoretical, practical and ethical considerations influencing choice of topic, choice of method(s) and the conduct of research


Year 13

Global Development
In this unit we consider human interaction on a global scale. We look at:

  • development, underdevelopment and global inequality

  • globalisation and its influence on the cultural, political and economic relationships between societies

  • the role of transnational corporations, non-governmental organisations and international agencies in local and global strategies for development

  • development in relation to aid and trade, industrialisation, urbanisation, the environment, and war and conflict

  • employment, education, health, demographic change and gender as aspects of development.

Crime and Deviance
In this unit we investigate how and why people break social norms and society’s response. We consider:  

  • crime, deviance, social order and social control

  • the social distribution of crime and deviance by ethnicity, gender and social class, including recent patterns and trends in crime

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

  • crime control, surveillance, prevention and punishment, victims, and the role of the criminal justice system and other agencies.

Advanced Theory and Method.
This unit is synoptic. It pulls together and develops key ideas relating to the main methodological and theoretical perspectives that underpin Sociological thought. We look at:

  • debates about subjectivity, objectivity and value freedom

  • the nature of science and the extent to which Sociology can be regarded as scientific

  • the relationship between theory and methods

  • consensus, conflict, structural and social action theories

  • the concepts of modernity and post-modernity in relation to sociological theory

  • the relationship between Sociology and social policy.


Useful resources

Past exam questions and mark schemes

Tutor 2U Sociology - For topic videos and Revision blasts

The Sociology Guy

Links to Sociology revision podcasts


Shortcuts TV. - Sociology related films

Cult of Sociology