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Subject Description

Sociology is a popular course which involves the study of human society and the behaviour of people within society. Sociologists try to understand how society works and what makes us act in particular ways.We go to school; we go to work; we have an obsession with material goods such as iPhones and we generally all have the same ideas about how we should behave.  Yet, we are not all born with this similar way of thinking.  How can millions of unique individuals live together in harmony and show similar patterns of behaviour?  Sociology as a subject seeks to explain the reason for this.  It also provides reasons as to why this apparent social order sometimes breaks down.  Whilst studying Sociology at Thomas Whitham Sixth Form you will study society and social life through a number of different topics answering questions such as; How does society influence criminality?  For whose benefit are you choosing to come to Sixth Form:  Why does Tom Cruise follow Scientology rather than another faith?  Why do 1 in 3 marriages end in divorce?

Future Destinations:

As well as gaining knowledge of the subject you will also develop your essay writing skills and an ability to think critically which is a transferable skill valued by all universities.  After studying this course you could be considering careers in the Police, Journalism, Teaching, Law, Marketing, Management, Social Services or even be advising the Government on a number of social issues.  Students will be taught by experienced teachers who are also senior examiners.


A Level

Exam Board:


Entry Requirements:

You do not need to have studied Sociology at GCSE to take it at Advanced Level but you will need a minimum of a grade 4 in GCSE English to cope with the written demands of the course.

Extra Curricular Activities

‘Behind Bars’ Conference (Ex-offenders talk)

Residential visit to Krakow, Poland (Auschwitz concentration camps)

End of year celebration with Psychology department

Content and Assessment Breakdown:

Topic One

Family and Households 

This unit looks at the issue of families and households in society including sociological perspectives of the family, changing patterns within family life, gender roles and the issue of childhood.

Topic Two


In the education topic we look at issues concerned with education in society including different sociological perspectives on education, differential educational achievement of different social groups and the importance of educational policies.

Topic Three

Beliefs in Society 

This unit looks at the sociological importance of beliefs in society in contemporary society.  Issues here include sociological perspectives of functions of religion, different religious organisations, secularisation, the relationship between different social groups and beliefs and practices and different theories of ideology, science and religion, including both Christian and non-Christian religious traditions.

Topic Four

Crime and Deviance 

This unit is the synoptic unit where prior learning from all units studied is required.  This unit looks at a number of issues concerned with crime and deviance in society today including different sociological perspectives on why people may commit crime, the levels of crime in different social groups and the importance of the media and government policies on our understanding of crime.

Topic Five

Sociological Theory

This unit analyses and evaluates different sociological perspectives and theories in more detail and looks more deeply at the importance of sociological research methods.

Topic Six

Research Methods


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