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Sociology

BA (Hons)

Key facts

UCAS code

L301

Start dates

September 2021 / September 2022

Location

Headington

Course length

Full time: 3 years

Part time: up to 6 years

UCAS Tariff Points

104

Overview

Human societies are experiencing untold change and uncertainty. And now more than ever, our world needs people with the skills, knowledge and determination to understand new challenges - like:

  • how does childcare affect women?
  • does tech like TikTok change our behaviour?
  • has social distancing impacted our relationships?

When you study Sociology, you’ll explore the impact of human behaviour and human values on society. You’ll explore pressing social issues, like gender, ethnicity and race, social class and inequality.

You might explore health inequalities, looking at factors like race or social class. You might examine how economic insecurity affects young people today. Or you could analyse how factors like climate change or political oppression drive migration.

You’ll be joining a close-knit department where you’ll get to know your course mates and tutors well. And you’ll gain sought-after career skills, to prepare you for employment.

 

Joint honours options

You can also study this course as part of a joint honours degree. This course can be joined with:

How to apply

Wherever possible we make our conditional offers using the UCAS Tariff. The combination of A-level grades listed here would be just one way of achieving the UCAS Tariff points for this course.

For more information about how we are supporting applicants impacted by Covid-19, please see our information for applicants page.

Standard offer

UCAS Tariff Points: 104

A Level: BCC

IB Points: 29

BTEC: DMM

Contextual offer

UCAS Tariff Points: 88

A Level: CCD

IB Points: 27

BTEC: MMM

Further offer details

For combined honours, normally the offer will lie between the offers quoted for each subject.

Applications are also welcomed for consideration from applicants with European qualifications, international qualifications or recognised foundation courses. For advice on eligibility please contact Admissions: admissions@brookes.ac.uk

Entry requirements

Specific entry requirements

Please also see the University's general entry requirements.

English language requirements

Please see the University's standard English language requirements.

International qualifications and equivalences

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English requirements for visas

If you need a student visa to enter the UK you will need to meet the UK Visas and Immigration minimum language requirements as well as the University's requirements. Find out more about English language requirements.

Pathways courses for international and EU students

If you do not meet the entry requirements for this degree, or if you would like more preparation before you start, you can take an international foundation course. Once you enrol, you will have a guaranteed pathway to this degree if you pass your foundation course with the required grades.

If you only need to meet the language requirements, you can take our pre-sessional English course. You will develop key language and study skills for academic success and you will not need to take an external language test to progress to your degree.

Terms and Conditions of Enrolment

When you accept our offer, you agree to the Terms and Conditions of Enrolment. You should therefore read those conditions before accepting the offer.

Credit transfer

Many of our courses consider applications for entry part-way through the course for students who have credit from previous learning or relevant professional experience.

Find out more about transferring to Brookes. If you'd like to talk through your options, please contact our Admissions team.

Application process

Full time Home (UK) applicants

Apply through UCAS

Part time Home (UK) applicants

Apply direct to the University

International applicants

Apply direct to the University

Full time applicants can also apply through UCAS

Tuition fees

Please see the fees note
Home (UK) full time
£9,250

Home (UK) part time
£1,155 per single module

International / EU full time
£14,500

Home (UK) full time
£9,250 (subject to OfS confirmation)

Home (UK) part time
£1,155 per single module (subject to OfS confirmation)

International / EU full time
£14,600

Questions about fees?

Contact Student Finance on:

Tuition fees

2021 / 22
Home (UK) full time
£9,250

Home (UK) part time
£1,155 per single module

International / EU full time
£14,500

2022 / 23
Home (UK) full time
£9,250 (subject to OfS confirmation)

Home (UK) part time
£1,155 per single module (subject to OfS confirmation)

International / EU full time
£14,600

Questions about fees?

Contact Student Finance on:

+44 (0)1865 483088

financefees@brookes.ac.uk

Please note tuition fees for Home students may increase in subsequent years both for new and continuing students in line with an inflationary amount determined by government. Tuition fees for International students may increase in subsequent years both for new and continuing students.

Oxford Brookes University intends to maintain its fees for new and returning Home students at the maximum permitted level.

Financial support and scholarships

For general sources of financial support, see our Fees and funding pages.

Additional costs

Please be aware that some courses will involve some additional costs that are not covered by your fees. Specific additional costs for this course, if any, are detailed below.

We do not expect students to purchase any compulsory course books, as they are all available in the library. If students wish to purchase additional books to supplement their reading, this is at their own discretion.

The published course and module descriptions were accurate when first published and remain the basis of the course, but the University has had to modify some course and module content in response to government restrictions and social distancing requirements. In the event of changes made to the government advice and social distancing rules by national or local government, the University may need to make further alterations to the published course content. Detailed information on the changes will be sent to every student on confirmation in August to ensure you have all the information before you come to Oxford Brookes.

Learning and assessment

In your first year, you’ll explore core sociological concepts - including:

  • social differences and divisions - like race and sexuality
  • major social theorists - like Karl Marx and Max Weber
  • how societies change 

In your second year, you’ll be able to start exploring your interests. You’ll examine the social processes that affect different genders. You’ll learn about race and racism through the lens of housing, policing, migration and more. And you’ll analyse global social change - and its consequences. We’ll also support you to carry out an optional, self-organised work placement.

In your final year, you’ll explore specialist areas, like:

  • emergent technologies - and their influence on our lives
  • racial identities - and how they’re shaped
  • the sociology of migration.

You’ll be joining a supportive and close-knit department. You’ll get to know your coursemates well. And you’ll be able to get 1:1 support from your tutors when you need it. 

 

Sociology

Study modules

Year 1

Compulsory modules

Introduction to Social Anthropology

In this module, you’ll explore the pressing work of anthropologists, and the key ideas they share. You’ll be taught through lectures by leading social anthropologists in our department.

You’ll take part in select seminars, where you’ll discuss ideas from lectures in richer detail. This will develop your critical thinking skills, ready for work. We encourage you to read and prepare for these sessions. We’ll also help you plan the best essays for exams, unlocking your potential and enhancing your chances of success. 

We encourage you to read some ethnography - the study of peoples and their cultures. This will help put your learning in a specific context, and enhance your knowledge of the module.

 

Social Differences and Divisions

Race, class, gender and sexuality - how do these things affect us and our social relations today? In this module, you’ll explore the factors which divide human societies, and how sociologists make sense of the world. 

You’ll explore the connections between individuals, groups and social institutions. You’ll dive into pressing debates. And you’ll engage with core areas of social analysis, such as:

  • gender relations
  • class divisions
  • race/ethnicity
  • sexuality

You'll explore the urgent issues facing society, including diversity and inequality. You’ll understand social context and processes. And you’ll develop a strong awareness of our world today.

 

Foundations of Social Theory

In this module, you’ll explore the key themes of social theory. You’ll investigate the works of  influential sociological theorists, including Karl Marx, Emile Durkheim and Max Weber. And you'll investigate how their work has shaped sociology and its different traditions.

You'll immerse yourself in current debates, developments and approaches to social theory. And you'll explore how these affect our social relations today.

 

Researching the Social World

In this module, you’ll gain invaluable skills for work, as you learn how to carry out effective research. You’ll learn

  • how to research the world around you
  • the ethics of social research
  • strengths and weaknesses of different research methods
  • methodological issues of data collection, analysis and distribution. 

You’ll enhance your imagination and knowledge as a researcher, and gain skills in:

  • critical thinking
  • organisation 
  • understanding research articles
  • literature searches

You’ll gain a strong knowledge of research design, and how to engage with published research. These core skills in research and analysis will ensure you succeed in your degree, and future career.

 

Contemporary Societies: Structure and Change

In this module, you’ll investigate the changing face of society. You’ll explore how markets and welfare states have transformed over time. You’ll discover how states, economies and societies interact with each other. And you’ll dig into key questions on politics and power, exploring different political systems. 

We’ll explore pressing global topics, including

  • international migration patterns
  • the formation of ethnic minorities
  • religion in modern society
  • the challenges of climate change

You’ll explore a wide range of social issues, taking place all over the world. And you’ll develop a strong understanding of how these issues impact individuals and groups.

 

Introduction to Politics

Why do we vote the way we do? What affects our actions, and our political decisions? In this module, we’ll investigate politics through human behaviour. You’ll explore political culture, and how we participate in a democratic society. We’ll also look at how humans are socialised to hold various political views. You’ll gain a key insight into how ideas and ideologies affect our behaviour individually and as a group.

Optional modules

Introduction to Japanese Society and Culture

In this module, you'll use anthropological perspectives to make an in-depth investigation of contemporary life in Japan. You'll cover factors and topics that affect Japanese everyday life such as:

  • child rearing 
  • education and early socialization
  • households, marriage and kinship
  • work and employment
  • gender and sexuality
  • religion and ritual
  • immigration and diversity 
  • Japanese popular culture 
  • and the globalization of Japanese culture. 

 

Politics in Comparative Perspective

In this module, you’ll investigate politics - and the struggle for power - across the nations. You’ll gain a clear introduction to how and why political systems differ in our world today. You’ll examine case studies from a wide range of states, and gain a strong insight into how different regimes function – from the democratic to the totalitarian.

Introduction to International Relations ll: Themes and Issues

In this module, you’ll explore the leading issues of current world politics.

In Part 1, you’ll investigate the key figures, structures and processes in world politics. You’ll look at some core themes, including:

  • international states 
  • multinational societies
  • worldwide political economy
  • international organisations and institutions 
  • figures with worldwide, multinational impact.

You’ll also analyse concepts such as:

  • anarchy
  • order
  • sovereignty 
  • conflict and cooperation among states, and non-state figures.

In Part 2, you’ll investigate the chronic issues of world politics, including:

  • gender
  • migration 
  • human rights
  • humanitarian intervention
  • energy resources and the environment 
  • development, inequality and poverty. 

We’ll explore how different nations manage these issues and what this tells us about international governance. 

Understanding Culture

What do we mean when we talk about ‘culture’? How do human ideas, customs and behaviours become a way of life? In this module, we’ll investigate the key theories and concepts of culture. You’ll gain invaluable critical skills as you reflect on different aspects of culture. And you’ll explore the impact of modern culture on individuals and society today. 

You’ll explore cultural artefacts and activities. And you’ll look at how culture relates to identity, power and representation.

This module is the foundation of the culture pathway through the Communication, Media and Culture programme. This will be fantastic preparation for many of your level 5 modules.

 

Year 2

Compulsory modules

Social Research Methods

You’ll gain crucial skills for employment, as you develop your knowledge of social research. You’ll build on your understanding from the module ‘Researching the Social World’. And develop skills in 

  • designing and delivering questionnaires and interviews
  • sample recruitment
  • data entry
  • analysis and interpretation
  • presenting research findings

This will give you fantastic competitive skills for the workplace.

 

Gender and Society

In this module, you’ll look at gender and its central role in society. You’ll explore the social processes that affect the lives and roles of men and women in society. We’ll consider the centrality of gender in everyday life, and how society reflects and reproduces gender relations.

'Race', Ethnicity and Inequality

Why do we exclude some ethnic groups from society? In this module, we’ll explore race, ethnicity and racism through:

  • employment
  • education
  • housing
  • migration
  • policing
  • the impact of anti-discrimination legisilation. 

You’ll engage with pressing debates on race, ethnicity and racism. You’ll explore the experiences of minority ethnic groups and you’ll explore the factors which exclude them from mainstream society. We’ll focus on the UK, but also consider ethnic minorities in other cultures. We’ll highlight the complexities of social constructions of race and other social inequalities

 

Global Sociology

In this module, you’ll explore worldwide social change and what causes it. You’ll consider the consequences of global social change in different nations in terms of politics, economics and culture.  You will also engage with competing explanations of global change and debate its impact and significance.

Sociology of Work

In this module, you’ll dive into the key issues of work, and its relationship with society. You’ll explore theories for understanding work, employment and the labour market. And you’ll gain valuable critical skills as you consider how to define work, and its activities. You’ll explore:

  • production, technologies and skills in the workplace
  • power and conflict in the labour market
  • the changing face of work and employment 
  • social inequality, such as gender, ethnicity and social class

You also examine different types of work, and how they impact the lives of individuals. 

 

Culture and Everyday Life

In this module, you’ll dig into different aspects of culture. You’ll gain key critical skills as you analyse:

  • matters of taste
  • cultural classification
  • media
  • fashion
  • subcultures
  • bodily culture
  • food practices.

You’ll explore the significance of these issues to:

  • globalisation
  • group formation
  • resistance and inclusion

We’ll also use examples from British popular culture, to discuss the theories and concepts you’ve covered in lectures. 

 

Optional modules

Anthropology of India

In this module, you’ll get to grips with India, and its cultural customs and habits. You’ll dive into key economic and political issues in India. You’ll look at how Indian and non-Indian anthropologists seek to understand the diversity of the country. And you’ll follow India’s social, political and economic change - from colonialism to postcolonialism, and then to free-market capitalism. And you’ll gain key insight into how India has been represented and imagined over time.

Anthropology of Ritual

What are rituals, and why do we perform them? In this module, you’ll explore the key role of rituals in society. You’ll look at various human communities as you consider the origins of ritual, and its different definitions. You’ll gain valuable critical skills as you explore key anthropological concepts, including:

  • rites of passage
  • liminality
  • anti-structure
  • communities

We often stereotype ritual as exotic, and about religion. However, you’ll enrich your perspective as you explore ritual in non-religious contexts. You’ll look at ritual within:

  • politics and power relations
  • social identities
  • social traditions

Cities: Geographies of the Urban Experience

In this module, you’ll examine the human relationships and layouts of the world’s great cities - from the nineteenth century to today. You’ll gain valuable critical skills as you analyse the trends likely to shape such cities in the future. And you’ll consider people and place as inseparable, exploring the relationship between human societies and the physical cities they live in.

State and Society: Europe and the United States

How do nations and states come about? In this module, you’ll explore European societies, and their foundations - social and political. You’ll examine the processes of nation and state-building. And you’ll get to grips with the relationship between state, market and society. 

You’ll explore European approaches to citizenship and capitalism. You’ll consider the future of Europe. And you’ll use a historical, comparative perspective to evaluate how Europe might respond to current social and political challenges.

 

The Social World of Childhood

Do you remember how you felt as a child? In this module, we’ll explore the world of children, and how our ideas about childhood have changed through time. You’ll consider the impact of different models of socialisation on children. And you’ll explore the factors - cultural, structural and experimental - which develop a child’s identity.  We’ll make strong use of life and history material.

Work Based Learning

In this module, you’ll have the chance to carry out a work placement closely linked to your Sociology course.

You’ll have help from your module leader to find a placement that meets your needs, and which will support your learning. With a carefully chosen placement, you’ll build on the skills and knowledge you’ve already gained in Year 1, and you’ll also gain vital skills for the workplace, like time management, communication and team-working.

During and after your placement, you’ll:

  • create a placement portfolio, including a learning journal
  • craft a CV showing your experience
  • produce a policy brief or policy analysis paper.

Year 3

Compulsory modules

Sociology Dissertation

This module gives you the chance to do independent research on a topic that fascinates you. You’ll have the support of expert tutors. We encourage you to make use of the research skills you’ve gained from your research method modules, but it’s not a formal requirement for you to carry out primary data collection.

Optional modules

Democratic Challenges in Russia and the EU

In this module, you’ll develop key critical skills as you explore the democratic challenges facing Russia and the EU. Both are currently facing enormous social, political and economic transformation.You’ll gain a strong grounding in the key issues of diverse, multi-ethnic states and multinational organizations. You’ll look at core themes, such as:

  • the role of the media,
  • the role of civil society and political institutions
  • in identity, and the formation of states. 

In this module, you can choose to study Russia or the EU. You’ll take either Democratic Challenges in Contemporary Russia: State and Society, or Democratic Challenges in the European Union: Integration and Disintegration, depending on staff and student availability. 

 

Ethics, Power and World Politics

What should world leaders do? How much power should countries give each other? And how should states and individuals behave towards each other? In this module, you’ll get to grips with the key questions in world politics. You’ll explore: 

  • how we determine rights and duties 
  • how we both enable and restrict dominance

in relation to world politics. You’ll choose one of three topics on international ethics and power - human rights, migration and immigration, or postcolonial perspectives.

 

Racialised Identities in Super-Diverse Societies

What shapes our racial identities? How do they play out in everyday life, alongside gender, class and age?

In this module, you’ll gain a strong understanding of identities and differences in current western societies. You’ll explore postcolonial theories of Self and Otherness. And you’ll gain key analytical skills, as you investigate the relevance of these theories to diverse societies today.

 

Sociology of Health and Illness

How do we view health and illness in society today? In this module, you’ll dig into key debates on health and illness, focusing on theoretical perspectives and real-life experiences. You’ll gain key analytical skills as you engage with ethical debates around decision making in health and illness.

As you investigate health and illness, you’ll use both lay perspectives and medical knowledge to inform your understanding. You’ll also consider:

  • concepts of lifestyle and risk
  • the centrality of the body in modern debates
  • the medicalisation of everyday life, death and dying. 

You’ll learn how our understanding of health and illness is affected by:

  • circumstances
  • gendered experiences
  • social class
  • culture
  • race
  • age.

Sociology of Youth and Young Adulthood

In this module, you’ll explore the sociology of youth and young adulthood. You’ll learn about how young people’s experiences of youth are affected by social and economic factors, like housing or austerity measures. You’ll understand theoretical perspectives that will help you develop a critical understanding of youth and young adulthood. 

You’ll look at topics like: 

  • sexual and romantic relationships in young adulthood 
  • work, changing employment opportunities and insecure futures
  • passages to adulthood: ethnic and racial diversity in the transition to adulthood
  • Youth im/mobilities: ‘waithood’, delayed adulthood and migration    
  • Youth activism. 

Theorising Society

In this module, you’ll get to grips with the central problems of social theory. You’ll develop key analytical skills, as you analyse the pressing debates and concepts in classical and modern sociological theory. 

We’ll consider key concepts and theories, socially and intellectually. And you’ll explore the relevance of these theories to everyday life. 

 

The Sociology of Migration

Why do people move across the world? In this module, you’ll use real examples to examine migration, and its key concepts. You’ll explore political and economic issues, as well as climate change, to understand why millions of people move across nations. You’ll analyse the consequences of migration on migrants’ countries of origin, and the places they move to.

You’ll focus mainly on migrants who move countries for work. You’ll look at the role of states in regulating labour migration, and other factors in the movement of people. You’ll gain critical knowledge of land-based and sea-based migrants, and the factors that drive migration. And you’ll understand international migration in terms of development, economic and cultural factors. You’ll also look at the rights of migrants in migration policy.

 

The Sociology of Technology

You'll start with an investigation of the classic texts from Critical Theory and Science and Technology Studies. You'll then consider the wider cultural and political implications of new digital technologies. 

You'll engage with classical and contemporary sociological analyses of technology. You'll look at the new technologies that influence our daily lives and behaviours. You'll explore how these new technologies impact us as social beings.

 

Gendering Intimate Relationships

In this module, we’ll investigate intimacy today. We’ll explore:

  • gender
  • identities
  • relationships
  • family lives.

Social changes have transformed our intimate relationships and arrangements in the home. However, tensions and contradictions still affect gender roles, and what we see as ‘appropriate’. In this module, you’ll gain key knowledge of the complexity and diversity of intimacy today. 

 

Independent Study

This module gives you a great chance to do self-directed study on a topic in Sociology that fascinates you. You’ll have guidance from a tutor, but the direction you take is up to you. Your study could involve fieldwork investigations, or analysis of fieldwork investigations. If you’d like to gain work experience linked to the topic you’re interested in, you could try a work placement. Or you could carry out independent, library-based research.

Whatever kind of study you choose, you’ll gain excellent project management skills from planning and setting goals to working independently and managing your time.

Please note: As our courses are reviewed regularly as part of our quality assurance framework, the modules you can choose from may vary from that shown here. The structure of the course may also mean some modules are not available to you.

Learning and teaching

You’ll learn through a mix of group discussion, independent research and hands-on practical work. 

You’ll participate in:

  • lectures
  • small seminars
  • tutorials
  • practicals

Your learning will be led by expert researchers and practitioners, some of whom have international standing. For example, you’ll learn directly from Professor Tina Miller, who is a regular on TV and radio, and part of the BBC Expert Women initiative. All your learning will be directly informed by the latest developments in Sociology. 

 

 

Assessment

Assessment methods used on this course

You’ll be assessed by both coursework and exams. And you’ll experience a range of different assessment types - to help you showcase your best work. These could include:

  • portfolios
  • field projects
  • group work
  • essays
  • presentations
  • statistical analysis
  • in-class tests.

Study Abroad

You may be able to go on a European or international study exchange while you are at Oxford Brookes. Although we will help as much as we can with your plans, ultimately you are responsible for organising and funding this study abroad.

After you graduate

Career prospects

You’ll graduate with specialist knowledge on the key issues facing our world today. And you’ll develop professional skills in areas like interviewing, data collection and analysis.

You’ll also develop sought-after transferable skills. You’ll be a strong communicator, with sound written and verbal skills. You’ll be able to effectively collaborate and influence in groups. And you’ll know how to manage a project from start to finish.

Graduates from this course have progressed to a wide range of professional careers in areas like:

  • international development
  • healthcare
  • marketing
  • project management
  • education and child development.

Further study

Many Sociology graduates also go on to postgraduate courses in a variety of areas of specialisation. The University careers centre can provide information and advice as you plan your future career path.

Student profiles

Our Staff

Dr Roderick Galam

Read more about Roderick

Professor Tina Miller

Tina's research and teaching interests include motherhood and fatherhood transitions, constructions of gender and identities, masculinities, reproductive health, narratives, qualitative research methods and ethics and she regularly publishes in these areas.

Read more about Tina

Free language courses

Free language courses are available to full-time undergraduate and postgraduate students on many of our courses, and can be taken as a credit on some courses.

Information from Discover Uni

Full-time study

Part-time study

Programme Changes: On rare occasions we may need to make changes to our course programmes after they have been published on the website.

For more information, please visit our Changes to programmes page.