A Level Sociology
We all live in society. But how many of us understand its functions?
Ms Kimber (Teacher of Psychology & Sociology)
Exam Board: AQA
8 or more GCSEs at grades A*–C including a minimum grade B in English Language, Maths and Science (preferably Biology).
Sociology is the study of societies and the way that they shape people’s behaviour, beliefs and identity. Sociology enables us to make sense of the rapidly changing world that we live in. As a Sociology student, you’ll learn about the world around you and the challenges faced by people in society. You’ll develop skills in problem-solving, evaluating evidence, forming reasoned arguments, thinking creatively, and considering different viewpoints. Add to this the experience you’ll get working in a team and using your initiative, and you have a whole host of invaluable skills that can be transferred to lots of different industries.
- Criminal justice, policing & law (for example, probation officer, paralegal)
- Media & creative industries (for example, quantitative research executive, media planner, documentary researcher)
- Education (for example, teacher, youth group worker)
- Social research (for example, government research officer, third sector research manager)
- Health and welfare services (for example, educational social worker, family support worker, palliative care assistant)
- Charity sector (for example, fundraising manager, adoption services manager, team support worker).
Entry & Training
It is worth noting that studying Psychology as a first degree is not a guarantee of further training; Clinical Psychologists need to complete a three year postgraduate Doctorate in order to qualify and only 15% of applicants are placed annually. There are plenty of different options when it comes to degrees in either Psychology or Sociology, even before you start looking at combined degrees with a huge range of social sciences. There are also allied degrees such as Criminology and Social Work.
The universities that are at the forefront of a History degree are a similar list to many of the other social sciences:
- Oxford (P)
- UCL (P)
- St Andrew’s (P)
- Buckingham (P)
- York (P)
- Southampton (P)
- Warwick (S)
- Durham (S)
- Queen’s Belfast (S)
- Northampton (S)
- Leeds (S)
- Manchester (S)
There are plenty of alternative routes into jobs which might link you back to a passion for psychology or sociology, including apprenticeships, although they might not be immediately obvious and it’s often requires applicants to be able to think laterally. For example, the NHS has a number of apprenticeships and direct entry support roles that might provide a good route into a mental health or social care environment.