Whilst Sociology is not classed as a Russell Group facilitating subject, it does provide a great starting point for a wide range of social science areas; from Economics, Psychology, and Politics to Criminology and Philosophy.
At University of Birmingham School students have the option to study Sociology at A level. Sociology is the study of society, social interactions, and importantly social inequalities.
A level Sociology investigates some of today’s most challenging social issues by critically analysing how sexism, racism, and classism may be engrained into the structure of society. Importantly, Sociology explores the implications this has for individuals and constantly encourages students to question the knowledge that they so often take for granted. Whether studying the role of the family, education, media, crime or government policy, students will gain a deeper understanding of the key issues that affect society, whilst also developing the critical thinking skills required to analyse and interpret information in the world around them.
In the first year of studying A level Sociology, students will critically analyse the role of the family and the education system in society. Students will focus on the purpose of these social institutions and the policies behind them, the inequalities that perspire within them, and analyse the debates created amongst competing theoretical perspectives. To understand the importance of research, students will study the research methods used by Sociologists.
During the second year of studying A level Sociology, students will study crime and deviance and will be able to answer questions such as: Why do people commit crime? Why are certain social groups overrepresented in the prison population? Does the criminal justice system work? As well as this, students will study the mass media and will develop their ability to critically analyse dominant messages in society. The fundamental arguments of theories and policy will also be built upon.
Sociology fosters critical thinking and encourages students to think outside of the box as well as enabling student to articulate their writing. A-level Sociology students may go on to study a variety of degrees such as Sociology, Social policy, Social work, Politics and International Relationships, however Sociology can also complement a number of other subjects and degrees.