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Post 16

Why Study this subject

‘A’ Level Sociology is the study of human behaviour and society.  It is concerned with how society is developing, how changes in society affects us as humans and how this creates social problems or concerns.  The type of person who will enjoy Sociology will be someone who enjoys debate, exploring new ideas and who likes discussion. Sociology is for anyone who is interested in the world around us, for e.g. interested in current affairs and politics.

Head of Department

Mrs K Novaski

Assessment structure

Completely exam based - no Coursework

Students sit 4 exam papers in total

Year 13 - 2 exams

Topic 1 | Acquiring Culture and Families and Households – 15%

Topic 2 | Understanding society, Education and Methods of sociological enquiry – 25%

Year 14 - 2 exams

Topic 3 | Power and Control with Crime and Deviance – 25%

Topic 4 | Social Inequality with applied Research Methods - 35%

All exams are in May/June

Year 13

Topic 1 - Acquiring Culture and Families and Households

This unit focus on the theme of socialisation, identity and culture and is divided into two sections:

Section A:

  • The social construction of culture

  • The process and agencies of socialisation

  • The influence of socialisation on identity

Section B:

  • Family forms

  • The roles and functions of families

  • Demographic trends

Topic 2 - Understanding society, Education and Methods of sociological enquiry

In this module students will examine:

Section A:

  • Knowledge of methodological concepts

  • Primary and secondary approaches to methodological research

Section B:

  • The role and purpose of education

  • Patterns of educational achievement by social groups

  • Social policies and education

Year 14

Topic 3 - Power and Control with Crime and Deviance

This unit focuses on themes of power, differentiation and stratification through the issue of crime.  It consists of one section.  Students will examine:

  • Patterns and reasons for crime

  • The different theories of criminology

Topic 4 - Social Inequality with applied Research Methods

This unit focuses on the processes of research design and on the application of knowledge of methods previously studied.  Students investigate the following;

Section A:

  • Research design

Section B:

  • Theories and explanations for inequality across previous units of study

POST 16 Extra Curricular Activities /Trips/Industry links


Newry Court House in Year 14 as part of their Crime unit.

Employability/job opportunities/further study

Sociology is helpful for a career in:

  • Law

  • Journalism

  • Social work

  • Childcare

  • Youth and community work

  • Prison, probation services

  • Teaching

  • Criminology

  • Public Relations

  • Occupational Therapy

  • Health and Social Welfare

  • Community Development

Other careers where sociology is relevant:

counselling, community work, nursing, medicine, physiotherapy, personnel, administration, sales marketing, occupational administration, sales marketing, social research, advertising, police force, market research, opinion polling, legal work, information management, management consultancy, statistical research, civil service, policy making, town planning.


St Mary's High School, Newry

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