Sociology - A Level only

Exam Board: AQA

Introduction to the Course

Sociology is the study of society. This subject provides a thought provoking analysis of how social groups and individuals relate to each other and how society is organised. The course aims to develop the ability to evaluate and think critically. A commitment to the subject and the willingness to participate in class discussions is essential.

Entry Requirements

Standard entry requirements and at least a Grade 6 in English language or English Literature

Course Content

Topics in Sociology: Families and Households. This unit will introduce you to how the family fits into society particularly in relation to state policies

  • the economy. You will also study how changes in society have influenced changes in the family leading to an increase in diversity of family forms. Roles & relationships will also be explored between adults & adults & children. An understanding of the wider trends in marriage, divorce, cohabitation, illegitimacy, fertility rates, births, deaths & life expectancy will also be gained to broaden the debate on how the family in changing in contemporary society & on a global scale.

Unit 2: Education with Theory and Methods.

This unit provides you with the opportunity to explore the role & purpose of the education system in contemporary society. The impact of state policies will be explored to see political views on education. Reasons for different educational achievements between social groups will be explored in depth studying the influence of both home background & the school environment. Your analytical

  • evaluative skills will then be used to assess the usefulness of a research method to a particular area of the education unit you have studied.

Unit 3: Topics in Sociology: Beliefs in Society

This unit provides you with an opportunity to explore ideology, science & religion, including both Christian and non-Christian religious traditions. The relationship between social change and social stability, & religious beliefs, practices & organisations. To further your understanding of religious organisations, including cults, sects, denominations, churches & New Age movements, & their relationship to religious & spiritual belief & practice. We will debate the significance of religion

  • religiosity in the contemporary world, including the nature & extent of secularisation in a global context, & globalisation & the spread of religions.

Unit 4: Theory and Methods and Crime and Deviance. This unit provides you with the opportunity to explore the role of crime, deviance, social order & social control in the contemporary world from the local to a global context. Patterns & distribution of types of crime, offenders & victims will be explored as well as theories on how to prevent & punish behaviour that threatens the order of society. New areas of green crime & state crime have taken this topic to an international level & there is also a focus on the challenges that sociologists face when trying to study criminal & deviant behaviour. The paper is synoptic in that it requires you to take a sociological theory & assess its usefulness in understanding society – in essence taking examples from family, education, beliefs as well as crime & deviance. We also need to tackle the wider debates whether sociology can & should be a science, value-free or influence decision making in politics.


A2 Level: 3 examination papers

  • Education with Theory and Methods 2 hours 33.3% of final Grade.
  • Crime and Deviance with Theory and Methods 2 hours 33.3% of final Grade.
  • Topics 2 hours (Families and Beliefs) 33.3% of finalGrade.

Future Career Progression

Sociology complements most other Social Science or Humanities subjects. It could also be combined successfully with a science subject where it would offer a contrasting view of methodology. Sociology can be studied at university as single or joint honours & graduates enter a range of careers in the public services as well as in the private sector. Sociology A Level is also a popular option for entry to many professional careers including; teaching, social work, human resources, the legal profession, nursing & the police.

Download Course Expectations (PDF).