Sociology BSc(Hons) 2017-18This course also available for 2018-19 entry
About the course
Sociology is the study of the social world in which we live, including social inequalities and differences, social relationships and social identities. It is a highly rewarding and exciting subject to study.
You'll explore a range of techniques for investigating the social world, including how to design a research project, conduct interviews, focus groups and questionnaires, and how to analyse and write up the data you generate.
By choosing to study Sociology, you'll be supported to prepare yourself for a future career in management, the civil service, local government, voluntary agencies, social work, research and education.
Why study Sociology at Huddersfield?
In your second year, you'll have the opportunity to undertake a work placement. This will help to increase your future employability prospects and give you the chance to make useful contacts in industry.
In the 2015 National Student Survey, sociology studies at Huddersfield received a 100% satisfaction score.
By studying this course, you'll become eligible for student membership of the British Sociological Association (BSA).
100% of graduates from this course go on to work and/or further study within six months of graduating.
On this course, you'll have the opportunity to explore aspects of everyday life, as well as the fringes of human existence. You'll look at important sociological questions relating to how societies operate including the operations of power, interpersonal relationships, constructions of identity, identity politics, health and wellbeing. In particular we explore the intersections between different social groups including those based on gender, ethnicity, culture, disability, sexuality and age.
With option modules in your second and third years, you'll be able to lead your studies and select areas that interest you.
Throughout your three years, you'll be supported to develop a range of analytical tools beneficial to your future career prospects.
Read on for details of each core and option module.
Exploring the Social Sciences
This module guides you through the process of exploring social science subjects at university and develops your ability to be a successful student. You’ll have the opportunity to strengthen your academic study skills, as well as your knowledge of research approaches and methods, using subject-specific topics and case studies. You’ll explore ways to assess your learning needs, set learning goals, develop learning action plans and produce effective academic assignments. You’ll also be introduced to the philosophies, methods and ethics of social research processes. Assessment on this module is through coursework.
Introduction to Sociology - Society and Culture
You'll explore the founding concepts and origins of sociology in the 19th and early 20th Century, and be introduced to key perspectives and approaches within humanist and scientific traditions. You'll also examine different approaches to culture and cultural texts, before going on to study themes within contemporary culture such as cultural identity, the body and consumption, and the self. Assessment on this module will be through coursework, which may be based on the sociological element of the module and on the cultural studies aspect. The coursework will include essays and an annotated bibliography.
Human Rights in Contemporary Society
You'll examine the history of human rights and consider the debates which exist in contemporary society. You'll be introduced to a number of issues including genocide, the death penalty, freedom of expression, immigration, the rights of women and children, assisted suicide and abortion. Key documents including the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, European Convention on Human Rights and the Human Rights Act will also be discussed. You'll be assessed through coursework involving the analysis of six contemporary media articles in relation to issues of human rights.
Policy and Society
This module will introduce you to the study of social policy and social welfare. You will explore theoretical, analytical and conceptual frameworks, and apply them to relevant contemporary case studies and social issues such as the experiences of different marginalised communities in relation to welfare and policy. You will be assessed through coursework involving a written assignment (worth 50% of module marks) and a group presentation (worth 50% of module marks), during which you will have the opportunity to develop your team working and communication skills.
You'll be supported to develop an understanding of contemporary sociological theories and concepts and how these are used to inform knowledge concerning the ‘individual-society’ relationship, and also social and cultural identities. You'll have the chance to explore sociological debates concerning structure and agency, realism and social constructionism. You'll also examine a number of social theories, including social interactionism, structuration theory, post-structuralism, feminism, queer theory and theories of intersectionality. A range of social and cultural identities will be explored within the module, such as race and ethnicity, social class, sexuality, religion, age, gender, work, the body and disability. Your learning will be assessed through coursework.
Exploring Work and Careers
You’ll have the opportunity to plan and complete a practical work based experience related to your course. This will give you the chance to apply your theoretical subject knowledge to a professional setting, helping to develop your employability skills in preparation for your future career. You’ll be assessed on your reflection upon the skills you have developed through coursework.
Choose two options from a list which may include-
Health; Identity and Social Change
You'll examine a range of health related topics in contemporary society in the context of culture, society and policy. Drawing on a range of perspectives, you'll investigate health and identity, weight, media, risk, power relations within medical encounters and emerging new directions in health and medicine. This module is assessed through two pieces of coursework, including a critical written response relating to a contemporary health issue (worth 30% of module marks) and an essay or case study on a health related topic of your choice (worth 70% of module marks).
US Politics and Society
You'll be supported to develop an understanding about the way in which the American political system has evolved with an emphasis on developments since the presidency of Franklin Delano Roosevelt. You'll also look at a number of key issues in contemporary American society such as the political role of the media, American criminal justice and the effect of being the world’s only superpower. Your understanding of these issues will be assessed through coursework, involving a written assignment (worth 50% of module marks)and an exam (worth 50% of module marks).
Culture and Society
In this module you’ll study the relationship between culture and society and consider how culture is presented in social theory. Through written coursework (an annotated bibliography and a case study) you’ll have the opportunity to explore the ways in which culture is evidenced within contemporary society.
Also choose one option from a list which may include-
Gender Sexuality and Crime
You'll look at gender and sexuality and explore the significance of these categories in relation to crime, deviance and regulation. You'll explore a range of topics from children and crime, deviant women, men, masculinity and crime, and sexual/domestic violence. You'll also watch videos, documentaries and news broadcasts and analyse how these construct and represent gender and crime. The module is assessed through coursework involving an essay and a seen exam.
Ethnicity and Nationalism
You'll be introduced to the dominant theories of ethnicity and nationalism, applying various concepts to a range of countries across the world. This will be assessed through an independent research project which is linked to two pieces of coursework where you'll critically explore how race, ethnicity, religion and multiculturalism influence citizenship and national identity. You'll demonstrate engagement with the key concepts for the module through two pieces of coursework. In the first (worth 25% of module marks) you'll produce a critical literature review and in the second (worth 75% of module marks) you'll explore issues of ethnicity and nationalism in a case study of your own choice.
Competing Perspectives on Development
This module introduces key concepts and theoretical debates in development studies, your understanding of which will be assessed by an exam (worth 50% of module marks). You'll be supported to develop the skill to analyse material conditions in the developing world and to evaluate the impact of development strategies in selected countries. Understanding patterns of global inequality is a key objective of the module and you'll explore these in relation to issues such as the impact of globalisation, trade policies and foreign aid. You'll also examine the implications of the development process for people living in different parts of the world, which will be assessed through coursework (worth 50% of module marks).
Final Year Project for the Social Sciences
You'll research a topic of your choice in depth, giving you the opportunity to develop your own research interests. Drawing on the area you have chosen to study, you'll engage with issues of project design and research methods. You'll be assessed through two pieces of coursework. Firstly through an oral presentation (worth 10% of module marks) you'll discuss your project proposal. You'll then produce a dissertation (worth 90% of module marks) about your research topic. You’ll receive individual support from a dedicated staff member in supervision sessions, which will include providing feedback on up to 25% of the final draft of the project (if submitted by an agreed date)
Choose two options from a list which may include-
The Body and Society
This module gives you the opportunity to look at the body in historic and contemporary society and challenge the idea that how we perceive the body is ‘natural’. You'll be introduced to a range of perspectives within which you'll investigate how the body is gendered, classified, judged, regulated, inscribed and ‘read’. You'll also look at how the body can be seen as a ‘project to be worked on’ and explore the relationship between self identity and the body. This module is assessed through coursework on a topic of your choice, involving a presentation of your ideas (worth 20% of module marks) and an essay (worth 80% of module marks).
Race; Ethnicity and Difference
In this module you'll consider contemporary British society in relation to issues of race, ethnicity and difference. You'll explore the extent to which race and ethnicity continue to shape contemporary society, in relation to education, health, employment, government policies and popular culture such as films and music. The module is assessed through written coursework on topics such as multiculturalism, race and sport, and the representation of racialised groups.
Representing the Social: Culture and Society
In this module you'll consider that the way we see the world is strongly influenced by social representations, in terms of ideas and images created by the media and broader society that make claims to truth and engender power relations in society. Through written coursework you'll explore the ways in which a contemporary social issue is represented in images and ideas today. This will take a multidisciplinary approach, examining how social representations, ideas and images are created and the implications they have both for the individual and society.
Also choose two options from a list which may include-
Conflict Resolution and Terrorism
Through this module you'll be supported to develop a critical understanding of the ways in which terrorism has been defined. You'll demonstrate this understanding through coursework, involving a written assignment. Debates about legitimacy and political violence will be applied to a number of case studies, allowing you to explore the motivations of different groups who have used violence as a political strategy. This will be assessed through an exam.
Film and Cinema
This module is a great choice if you have an interest or maybe even a passion for film, and want to explore the ways in which cultural, economic, sociological, and political issues have been represented from the 1960s to the present day. You'll watch specific films and then have a combination of lectures and workshops focused on each one to guide your learning. The module is assessed via coursework, starting with a short review (worth 10% of module marks), progressing to a scene analysis (worth 15% of module marks) and finishing with a written case study (worth 75% of module marks).
Humanity 2.0: Living and Participating in the Digital Age
This module will allow you to explore the impact that the digital age has had on society and the possibilities it holds for greater enhancement. It invites you to reflect upon your assumptions about the use of technology in society, and what barriers exist to full citizenship participation within society. You will be assessed in two ways. Firstly you will create a multimedia presentation as coursework to reflect upon the nature of technology in society, and secondly you will write a 3,000 word essay analysing how the citizen should operate within the digital age.
We will always try to deliver your course as described on this web page. However, sometimes we may have to make changes as set out below.
We review all optional modules each year and change them to reflect the expertise of our staff, current trends in research and as a result of student feedback. We will always ensure that you have a range of options to choose from and we will let students know in good time the options available for them to choose for the following year.
We will only change core modules for a course if it is necessary for us to do so, for example to maintain course accreditation. We will let you know about any such changes as soon as possible, usually before you begin the relevant academic year.
Sometimes we have to make changes to other aspects of a course or how it is delivered. We only make these changes if they are for reasons outside of our control, or where they are for our students’ benefit. Again, we will let you know about any such changes as soon as possible, usually before the relevant academic year. Our regulations set out our procedure which we will follow when we need to make any such changes.
When you enrol as a student of the University, your study and time with us will be governed by a framework of regulations, policies and procedures, which form the basis of your agreement with us. These include regulations regarding the assessment of your course, academic integrity, your conduct (including attendance) and disciplinary procedure, fees and finance and compliance with visa requirements (where relevant). It is important that you familiarise yourself with these as you will be asked to agree to abide by them when you join us as a student. You will find a guide to the key terms here, where you will also find links to the full text of each of the regulations, policies and procedures referred to.
The Higher Education Funding Council for England is the principal regulator for the University.
The course includes a compulsory 30 hour work placement in your second year.
Previous placement providers have included schools, colleges, charities, law firms, community organisations and commercial businesses.
100% of graduates from this course go on to work and/or further study within six months of graduating.
Previous Huddersfield Sociology graduates have gone on to roles relating to education, human resources, media, communications, consulting, research, marketing, business development, operations, community and social services in organisations including the NHS, Google, Thomson Reuters, GSK, HSBC, Lloyds Banking Group, the University of Leeds, Sheffield Hallam University, ASDA, Sainsbury's, Leeds City Council and Vista .*
Professional links and accreditations
By studying this course, you will become eligible for student membership of the British Sociological Association (BSA).
Teaching and assessment
You will be taught through seminars, group work, practical experience, lectures, workshops, Blackboard and Work placement.
Assessment will include coursework, practice/ competency based learning and examination.
15.7% of the study time on this course is spent in lectures, seminars, tutorials etc.
Your module specification/course handbook will provide full details of the assessment criteria applying to your course.
Feedback (usually written) is normally provided on all coursework submissions within three term time weeks – unless the submission was made towards the end of the session in which case feedback would be available on request after the formal publication of results. Feedback on exam performance/final coursework is available on request after the publication of results.
Huddersfield is the UK's only university where 100% of the permanent teaching staff are fellows of the Higher Education Academy.*
*Permanent staff, after probation: some recently appointed colleagues will only obtain recognition in the months after their arrival in Huddersfield, once they have started teaching.
How much will it cost me?
The full-time undergraduate tuition fee for 17/18 entry is £9250.
Tuition fees will cover the cost of your study at the University as well as charges for registration, tuition, supervision and examinations. For more information about funding, fees and finance for UK/EU students, including what your tuition fee covers, please see Fees and Finance. Please note that tuition fees for subsequent years of study may rise in line with inflation (RPI-X).
If you are an international student coming to study at the University of Huddersfield, please visit the International Fees and Finance pages for full details of tuition fees and support available.
Please email the Student Finance or call 01484 472210 for more information about fees and finance.
Progression to a postgraduate course is dependent on successful completion of your undergraduate studies, there may also be minimum qualification requirements such as a first class or higher second (2.1) degree.Please check the course details to confirm this.
This programme is suitable for those wishing to progress on to postgraduate research in the social sciences. The sociology team offer supervision in their specialist areas that can lead to a Master's by Research or a PhD.
If you are an international student (including EU) you can check if you meet our entry requirements (both academic and English language) by visiting our country pages.
If you do not meet the entry requirements you can consider completing a degree preparation programme (if you are from a country outside of the EU) at the University's International Study Centre (ISC) or you can call the ISC on +44 (0) 1273 339333 to discuss your options. You can also complete the online application form or to ask a question please fill in the enquiry form and talk to one of our multi-lingual Student Enrolment Advisers.
If your English language is not at the required level (IELTS 6.0 overall), we have a range of Pre-Sessional English programmes that you can enrol on before starting your degree programme. You will not need to take an IELTS test after completing one of our Pre-Sessional English programmes.
How to apply
We hope you're interested in what you've seen and want to apply to join us. Please take a look at the information on what to do next.
Research plays an important role in informing all our teaching and learning activities. Through research our staff remain up-to-date with the latest developments in their field, which means you develop knowledge and skills that are current and highly relevant to industry. For more information, see the Research section of our website.