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What is Sociology?

Have you ever wondered what causes outbreaks of public violence such as the London riots? Have you ever asked yourself why children from wealthier backgrounds significantly outperform those from poorer backgrounds in the education system? Have you ever wondered why there are so few women in British prisons, and in general why women commit less crime than men?

All three of these issues are topics covered in the A Level Sociology course and as you might imagine, they are issues that provoke much debate and disagreement! If you are interested in the wider debates and arguments that the above issues raise, such as how your social class, ethnicity and gender can have a significant impact on your chances of success in our society, then Sociology may be the subject for you.

Sociology at Newman is an extremely inclusive subject, taught in a friendly and inspirational environment in a manner that facilitates success. We encourage you to express your opinions (on all societal issues) in a mature and understanding way, and we hope that after studying sociology you will leave with a well-informed appreciation of how different social groups exist side by side in our increasingly multi-cultural society.

What Will You Study?

During the first year you will look at Education with Methods in Context. Considering things such as why do girls significantly outperform boys in the education system? Why are certain ethnic groups over-achieving whilst others underachieve? What practical, ethical and theoretical problems may arise when sociologists conduct research into education?

You will also study Families and Households with research methods. This discusses if it is it right to talk of a ‘traditional’ nuclear family anymore? What the reasons are behind recent trends in marriage, divorce and cohabitation?  What does it mean to be a ‘child’ in Britain today and how has this changed over the years?

What Next?

Many of our students go on to study sociology or criminology at some of the UK’s top universities including Durham, York, Lancaster and Leeds. Sociology is also seen as a subject that will boost student applications to a variety of higher education courses.

Sociology will open a range of avenues in numerous employment areas. Many students go on to legal professions, the civil service, local government, teaching, the police, social work and social research amongst others.

Exam Board


Entry Requirements

At least two B’s and three C’s at GCSE, including at least a grade C (5) in English Language.

Course Type

A Level


Exam: 100%

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