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A Level Sociology provides an exciting opportunity to gain a deeper understanding of the world around you and reflect on social issues that are often relevant to your own experiences. It opens up opportunities for frequent and fascinating discussions, considering questions like: What impact do digital forms of communication have on social relationships? How do sociologists investigate inequality in society? What are the patterns and trends of crime in relation to social class?

Subject content

You will acquire detailed theoretical knowledge and a critical understanding of social processes and changes. You will be able to develop a broad set of essential academic skills that are valued by universities and employers, including the ability to analyse and formulate clear logical arguments and evaluate using a range of theoretical perspectives.

In the first year of study, you will explore the topic of Education. You will be required to examine how the education system has changed over the years, in terms of social policy. You will also investigate how different social groups have varied experiences within the UK education system. Finally, you will look at the effect globalisation and marketisation has had on the education system.

The next topic in year one will be research methods where we will look at the different ways Sociologists examine and analyse data. At the end of this topic, we will look at research methods through an educational context. Finally, for year one, we will look at the topics ‘Culture and identity’ and ‘The media’. Both of these topics take a deeper exploration of the self and explore how factors including gender, age and sexuality help to shape the person you are today.

In the second year of study, the topic of study will be ‘Crime and deviance’. Quite a large topic, we will look at the difference between crime and deviance, why do people commit crimes and even if crime could be a useful thing for our society. Finally, our last topic will be ‘Is Sociology a science?’ Here we will recap research methods and explore deeper research theory.

This course is an award of AQA. Visit the AWA website to view the course specification.

Specific entry requirements

GCSE Grade 5 or above in English, History or another Humanities subject.


This course uses the AQA exam board and is a linear A Level. You will be assessed by examination on all content at the end of your two years of study.

Progression opportunities

The skills acquired whilst studying A Level Sociology are highly relevant and transferable to a wide number of Higher Education courses such as history, geography, English, law, politics, business, philosophy, media studies, journalism, social work, nursing and criminology.

Sociology students often go on to careers in teaching, law, research, politics, the police force and probation services, counselling, events management and business.

Meet the A Level expert

Jack Grimshaw

Jack has a degree in Sociology, along with a PGCE in post 16 education, both from the University of Cardiff.

Jack said: “Studying Sociology at A Level will change the way you view the world. Students in Sociology will explore topics such as Education and Research methods as well as looking at deeper sociological issues such as ‘is Sociology a Science’. Studying Sociology enables you to view the world from a different perspective and it allows you to think about your own identity and how social factors such as gender, sexuality and ethnicity have shaped you into the person you are today.”

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