Subject: Sociology

Qualification: AQA Sociology GCSE

Who is the course for? This is an optional course for pupils who have a strong interest in studying society including education, families, crime and deviance, mass media, power and social inequality.

What will I learn? *Studying Society *Education *Families *Crime and Deviance * Mass Media *Power *Social Inequality.

You will learn to develop your own opinions and express yourself clearly, see both sides of an argument and back them up with sociological theory and research and come to a logical conclusion.

How will I be assessed?

GCSE Sociology (Full Course) 4192

Unit 1: Studying Society; Education; Families (41901)

Written Paper – 1 hour 30 minutes.

90 marks – 50% three compulsory topic areas

Topic 1 – Candidates answer all questions.

Topic 2 and 3 – Candidates answer six compulsory questions and one question from a choice of two.

Unit 2: Crime and Deviance; Mass Media; Power; Social Inequality (41902)

Written Paper - 1 hour 30 mins

90 marks - 50%

Candidates choose three topic areas from four options. For each topic area chosen candidates answer six compulsory questions and one question from a choice of two.

How can I progress with this qualification?


Good English ability needed to express your opinions clearly in writing and see both sides of an argument.

HWGS Sixth Form / College:

Good for progression into A level subjects – particularly Sociology and other Social Sciences, Humanities and English. Helps development of opinions and ability to analyse and evaluate.

The future:

Sociology is a respected GCSE and GCE which enables students to move into specialisms in social science subjects including Sociology, Psychology and Law and many others. It closes no doors.

Subject: Sociology A Level

Specification No: 7192

Minimum Entry Requirements:

Usual requirements for entry into 6th form – 5 A to C GCSE grades.

B grade in English language is required.

Information about the course

Awarding Body: AQA

Qualification: A level

Subject: Sociology

Who is the course for?

This course is for students who have an interest in studying the individual and society.  It is an appropriate course for those who wish to broaden their horizons and develop skills that will be applicable and useful across the range of Arts and Sciences. 

Studying sociology will not change your life but it will change the way you look at life, at people, at society, both in this country and worldwide. It will help you develop your opinions and your ability to see both sides of an argument and to back up your points with facts, research studies and evidence. Sociology does attempts to take an objective look at the social world and avoid personal and moral preferences, values and prejudices that lie behind much journalism and TV output and political positioning.

Sociology is for students with a questioning mind who do not take everything on face value and who are able to make points logically in an attempt to be scientific and objective.

Information about the units of study:

Subject content

Compulsory content

4.1 Education with Theory and Methods

4.1.1 Education

4.1.2 Methods in Context

4.1.3 Theory and Methods

4.3 Crime and Deviance with Theory and Method

4.3 Crime and Deviance with Theory and Methods

4.3.1 Crime and Deviance

4.3.2 Theory and Methods


4.2 Topics in Sociology

Option 1

4.2.1 Culture and Identity

4.2.2 Families and Households (option chosen)

4.2.3 Health

4.2.4 Work, Poverty and Welfare

Option 2

4.2.5 Beliefs in Society

4.2.6 Global Development

4.2.7 The Media (option chosen)

4.2.8 Stratification and Differentiation

How you will be assessed?

This is a 2 year course with exams at the end of the second year.


Paper 1: Education with Theory and Methods

What's assessed?

Compulsory content 4.1.1, 4.1.2, 4.1.3


2 hour written exam

80 marks

 33.3% of A-level


Education: short answer and extended writing, 50 marks

Methods in Context: extended writing, 20 marks

Theory and Methods: extended writing, 10 marks

Paper 2: Topics in Sociology

What's assessed?

Section A: one from option 1: 4.2.1, 4.2.2, 4.2.3 or 4.2.4

Section B: one from option 2: 4.2.5, 4.2.6, 4.2.7 or 4.2.8


 2 hour written exam

    80 marks

    33.3% of A-level


Section A: extended writing, 40 marks

Section B: extended writing, 40 marks

Paper 3: Crime and Deviance with Theory and Methods

What's assessed?

Compulsory content 4.3.1, 4.3.2


2 hour written exam

80 marks

33.3% of A-level


Crime and Deviance: short answer and extended writing, 50 marks

Theory and Methods: extended writing, 30 marks

What will you learn?

Education with theory and method

Crime and Deviance with theory and method

Families and households

The media

You will learn about the impact of social groups including whole societies and international and global groups. Examples of areas you will consider include the relationship of the family to the social structure, domestic labour and power relationships, the nature of childhood, demographic trends, the role and purpose of education, differential educational achievement of social groups by social class, gender and ethnicity in contemporary society, relationships and processes in schools (with particular reference to teacher / pupil relationships, educational policies, application of sociological research to the study of education. 

You will also find out about different theories of crime, deviance, social order and social control with analysis of the social distribution of crime by age, ethnicity, gender, locality and social class.  Crime control, prevention and punishment 

All the following must be an integral part of the study of each topic area:

Sociological theories, perspectives and methods the design of the research used to obtain the data under consideration, including its strengths and limitations. Attention must be given to drawing out the links between topic areas studied.

Core themes

Students must study the following two core themes:

socialisation, culture and identity  social differentiation, power and stratification.

These themes are to be interpreted broadly as threads running through many areas of social life and should not therefore be regarded as discrete topics.

In addition, students must understand the significance of conflict and consensus, social structure and social action, and the role of values

How you will learn?

Teacher-led classroom teaching including lectures and Power Point presentations

Individual tasks / group-work / problem solving

Homework / past exam questions / research / essays

Personal study through the internet and published materials / independent learning in     preparation for university education.

Preparation for the course (July and August study)

What would be useful for the students to research over the summer break?

Research Families and Households – types of family, sociological views on family diversity, social class and family diversity, family life cycle, ethnic differences in family patterns, growth of single parent families, critical and positive views on single parent families.

Produce a 2 page report on the reasons for the growth of single parent families in Britain.

Outline the key starting topics for your subject:

Families and Households


List the resources that will be useful (e.g. websites, books, journals etc.)

Most sociology text books cover these topics.

See old AQA AS Sociology and A2 sociology textbook (published by Nelson Thornes)

Also old Sociology AS and AA2 in focus (published by CP)

And the weighty book Sociology Themes and Perspectives – Haralambos and Holborn (published by Collins)

See also Student Support Materials for AQASociology on Families and Households and on Education. (published by Collins).

Many other sociology textbooks are available.

There are new Sociology A level textbooks available from Autumn 2015

Attach the work that needs to be completed before the start of the course in September

Produce a 2 page report on the reasons for the growth of single parent families in Britain.

Compulsory requirements of the course

Is work experience a requirement of the course? No

Are residential trips a requirement of the course? No

Are there any other requirements that are a MUST in completing the course?

2 year course with 3 final exams.

It is important to have the ability to evaluate and analyse information from a variety of sources and the ability to write essays with good sentence construction, good use of paragraphs, arguments for and against, including evidence, sociological research, relevant sociological theory, conclusion etc.