What is Sociology?

Sociology is a subject that allows you to understand human social relationships and institutions. It covers diverse subjects through the themes of socialisation, culture and identity.

Sociology is extremely topical and will suit those who take an interest in the world around them. We follow the AQA specification, a course that fosters the development of critical and reflective thinking with a respect for social diversity. Students are encouraged to develop their own sociological awareness through active engagement with the contemporary social world.

You’ll study how people behave in social situations and analyse the causes and effects at work beneath society as a whole. As you learn, you’ll build up your knowledge and understanding of sociological thought and methods.

Sociology is an academically rigorous subject, combining theoretical perspectives and real world problems. You will need to enjoy reading and writing, should have a keen interest in society and social issues and should be prepared to question common sense understanding.

You will learn to compare different ways of understanding society so should be open to different arguments.

Course content:

Over the two years, you’ll study the following:

  • Families and Households
  • Education and Research Methods
  • Crime and Deviance.
  • Theory and Methods
  • Beliefs in Society


You will sit three 2 hour examinations at the end of the two year course. The assessment objectives are as follows:

AO1: Knowledge and understanding

AO2: Application

AO3: Evaluation and Analysis

Career progression: 

Students may progress into a range of occupations such as medicine, policing, teaching and social work. Due to study of research methods, Market research is also a possible career option. For more information on careers with Sociology visit


  • Ken Brown, Sociology for AQA 5th edition.  1st year A Level
  • Ken Brown, Sociology for AQA volume 2. 2nd year A Level
  • Mr Steve Chapman. Revise AQA A level Sociology Revision Guide and Workbook

Extended reading:

  • Sociology Review (students will soon be able to access this via school)
  • Sudhir Venkatesh, “Gang Leader for a Day” (Crime and Punishment)
  • Coleman. J, “Foundations of Social Theory.” (Theory and Methods)
  • Jenks. C, “Childhood” (Families and Households)

For more information contact the subject leader:
Zoe Bullamore


Content updated September 2018