3.2 Social structures, social processes and social issues

For each topic area students are asked to critically evaluate and compare and contrast theories or explanations, including the key features of each theory or explanation in the context of a specific topic and area of sociology.

Students are expected to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of key sociological theories by reading and responding to extracts which illustrate the different views of sociologists. They should be able to critically analyse and evaluate how the issues have been interpreted by these sociologists.

For each topic area students are expected to demonstrate an understanding of relevant methods and methodological issues, for example the use of official statistics, qualitative and quantitative approaches and the use of mixed methods.

They will explore and debate contemporary social issues in order to be able to challenge everyday understandings of social phenomena from a sociological perspective. The knowledge, understanding and skills they develop will provide a basis for further study and career choices.