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Fast Track A Level Sociology

Examining Board: AQA
Next Examination Period: May / June 2019
Exam Specification Code: 7192
Coursework Element: None
Practical Element: None
Course Fee Includes: Online course materials and tutor support. Additional materials available at extra cost.
Standard Option: Sociology A Level

AQA A Levels are available for study anywhere in the world. Examinations must be taken in a registered UK exam centre. It is recommended students check with UK examining centres that the chosen exam is available.

Introduction

Oxford Learning College (OLC) is a seasoned provider of Social Science courses. This A level course is based on the AQA Advanced General Certificate Education; (A-GCE) Specifications for Sociology, which became available from 2015 teaching series for first examination in 2017.

Integral Elements

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.

The themes should be understood and applied to particular substantive areas of Sociology. 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.

sociology A Level

Fast Track A Level Sociology Entry Requirements

Although the Fast Track A Level Sociology programmes build on the course content of GCSE, it is not necessary to have this qualification before undertaking an A-Level. However, in order to meet the demands of the course, it is recommended that candidates have literacy and communication skills equivalent to C or higher at GCSE. Please note that full tutor support is still provided throughout your course duration.

All students must be 16 years of age or above.

Fast Track A Level Sociology Course Duration

1 year.

Study Hours Required

Approximately 350 hours.

Awarding Body

AQA

AQA A Levels are available for study anywhere in the world. Examinations must be taken in a registered UK exam centre. It is recommended students check with UK examining centres that the chosen exam is available.

Examination Information

Students are required to arrange and pay for their examinations and manage the course work element if the subject requires this. Students must check the relevant examination board website for further information and final examination sitting dates for the specification.

All examinations are held during the May / June exam period of every year.

Fast Track A Level Sociology Course Content

The whole ‘A’ level has NINE (9) specific units of study, with their own TMAs. Units of learning are:

Fast Track A Level Sociology Unit 1: Introduction to Sociology & Education (Compulsory Core Unit)

Students will be introduced to the sociological explanations of the following content: the role and functions of the education system, including its relationship to the economy and to class structure; differential educational achievement of social groups by social class, gender and ethnicity in contemporary society. Relationships and processes within schools, with particular reference to teacher/pupil relationships, pupil identities and subcultures, the hidden curriculum, and the organisation of teaching and learning.

The significance of educational policies, including policies of selection, marketisation and privatisation, and policies to achieve greater equality of opportunity or outcome, for an understanding of the structure, role, impact and experience of and access to education; the impact of globalisation on educational policy.

Fast Track A Level Sociology Unit 2:  Research Methods and Theory in, Context (Compulsory Core Unit)

Students will be taught how to examine the following areas: quantitative and qualitative methods of research; research design sources of data, including questionnaires, interviews, participant and non-participant observation, experiments, documents and official statistics. The distinction between: primary and secondary data and; between quantitative and, qualitative data. The relationship between positivism, interpretivism and sociological methods; the nature of ‘social facts; the theoretical, practical and ethical considerations influencing choice of topic, choice of method(s) and the conduct of research: consensus, conflict, structural and social action theories. The concepts of modernity and post-modernity in relation to sociological theory; the nature of science and the extent to which Sociology can be regarded as scientific; the relationship between theory and methods; debates about subjectivity, objectivity and value freedom; the relationship between Sociology and social policy.

Fast Track A Level Sociology Unit 3: Culture and Identity (Option Unit)

Students are expected to be familiar with sociological explanations of the following content: different conceptions of culture, including subculture, mass culture, folk culture, high and low culture, popular culture and global culture; the socialisation process and the role of the agencies of socialisation; the self, identity and difference as both socially caused and socially constructed. The relationship of identity to age, disability, ethnicity, gender, nationality, sexuality and social class; in contemporary society; its identity to production, consumption and globalisation is assumed and enacted.

Fast Track A Level Sociology Unit 4: Family and Household (Option Unit)

Students will become familiar with sociological explanations of the following content: the relationship of the family to the social structure and social change, with particular reference to the economy and to state policies. The changing patterns of: marriage, cohabitation, separation, divorce, childbearing and the life course, including; the sociology of personal life, and the diversity of contemporary family and household structures.  The importance and change in gender roles, domestic labour and power relationships within the family in contemporary society. The nature of childhood, and changes in the status of children in the family and society to include: demographic trends in the United Kingdom since 1900: birth rates, death rates, family size, life expectancy, ageing population, and migration and globalisation.

Fast Track A Level Sociology Unit 5: Health (Option Unit)

Students will learn and become familiar with sociological explanations of the following content: the social construction of health, illness, disability and the body, and models of health and illness. The unequal social distribution of health chances in the United Kingdom by social class, gender, ethnicity and region. The inequalities in the provision of, and access to, health care in contemporary society, with particular insight about the nature and social distribution of mental illness. Finally, be able to consider the role of medicine, the health professions and the globalised health industry.

Fast Track A Level Sociology Unit 6: Work, Poverty and Welfare (Option Unit)

Students are expected to be familiar with sociological explanations of the following content: the nature, existence and persistence of poverty in contemporary society; the distribution of poverty, wealth and income between different social groups; responses and solutions to poverty by the state and by private, voluntary and, informal welfare providers in contemporary society. How organisation and, control of the labour process, including: amongst other features, the division of labour, the role of technology, skill and de-skilling The significance of work and worklessness for people’s lives and life chances, including the effects of globalisation.

Fast Track A Level Sociology Unit 7: Crime, Deviance & Theory and Methods (Compulsory Core Unit)

This unit is one of importance across the spectrum of sociology. Students are expected to be able to: foster a critical awareness of contemporary social processes and change, and draw together the knowledge, understanding and skills learnt in different aspects of the course In doing so, and using the topic of Crime and Deviance, students will become familiar with sociological explanations of the following content: crime, deviance, social order and social control; the social distribution of crime and deviance by ethnicity, gender and social class, including recent patterns and trends in crime; globalisation and crime in contemporary society; the media and crime; green crime; human rights and state crimes; crime control, surveillance, prevention and punishment, victims, and the role of the criminal justice system and other agencies.

Having understood the wider context of the thematic concepts of crime and deviance, and the subjects covered in other units, student will build on the following earlier research theory study areas: quantitative and qualitative methods of research; research design; sources of data, including questionnaires, interviews, participant and non-participant observation, experiments, documents and official statistics; the distinction between primary and secondary data, and between quantitative and qualitative data; the relationship between positivism, interpretivism and sociological methods; the nature of ‘social facts’; the theoretical, practical and ethical considerations influencing choice of topic, choice of method(s) and the conduct of research consensus, conflict, structural and social action theories; the concepts of modernity and post-modernity in relation to sociological theory; the nature of science and the extent to which Sociology can be regarded as scientific; the relationship between theory and methods; debates about subjectivity, objectivity and value freedom; the relationship between Sociology and social policy.

Fast Track A Level Sociology Unit 8: The Media (Option Unit)

Students will become familiar with sociological explanations of the following content: the new media and their significance for an understanding of the role of the media in contemporary society; the relationship between ownership and control of the media; the media, globalisation and popular culture; the processes of selection and presentation of the content of the news; media representations of age, social class, ethnicity, gender, sexuality and disability; the relationship between the media, their content and presentation, and audiences.

Fast Track A Level Sociology Unit 9:  Stratification and Differentiation (Option Unit)

Students will become familiar with sociological explanations of the following content: stratification and differentiation by social class, gender, ethnicity and age; dimensions of inequality: class, status and power; differences in life-chances by social class, gender, ethnicity, age and disability; the problems of defining and measuring social class; occupation, gender and social class; changes in structures of inequality, including globalisation and the transnational capitalist class, and the implications of these changes; the nature, extent and significance of patterns of social mobility.

 

Further Reading

Although the course programme is ‘self contained’ the student may wish to obtain further materials in regards to learning. The following materials are in the main useful, but not essential to guide learning: –

Textbooks

Andrew Northedge – The Good Study Guide Open University

All of the above can also be obtained in an electronic format.

Assessment

Awarding Body Syllabus

The course does not as standard have any ‘course work’ element and is therefore, has an end loaded final assessment by a THREE (3) papers across the four syllabus units of learning, that amount to 6 hours in total examination time.

To ensure that the three Assessment Objectives (AOs) are clearly placed and assessed prior to the final examination, the TMA’s are weighted in accordance with these AO statements below:

AO1: Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of:

– Sociological theories, concepts and evidence

– Sociological research methods

AO2: Apply sociological theories, concepts, evidence and research methods to a range of issues

AO3: Analyse and evaluate sociological theories, concepts, evidence and research methods in order to:

– Present arguments

– Make judgements

– Draw conclusions

 

Progression

Our Fast Track A Level Sociology programmes are eligible for UCAS points, making them a great choice for students aiming to progress to University. UCAS points are awarded according to the grade earned, please see below for details.

A levels are also widely recognised by employers and are useful for students looking to progress their careers or meet requirements for promotion.

UCAS Points Table

A* = 56
A = 48
B = 40
C = 32
D = 24
E = 16

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