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Education and Society

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The emphasis of the module will be on developing an understanding of the relationship between education and society.

The social determinants of educational attainment, such as class, gender and ethnicity will be discussed in relation to discourses of inequality and the role of social policy.

The course will explore barriers to educational attainment and examine education in terms of engagement and disengagement; and differential outcomes.

Throughout the course you will consider who benefits from the education system both in a historical context and in contemporary Wales.

This is a 20 credit module on the Pathway to a degree in Social Science. It is also an optional module in the Pathway to a degree in Healthcare.

Learning and teaching

The course will be taught weekly and there will be two Saturday Schools. There are 40 contact hours.

You will also be asked to do reading and research tasks to prepare for class and for your assignments.

The teaching/learning strategy for this module will have an emphasis on 'active learning' for the learner in developing an understanding of the subject matter and its relevance to society.

Coursework and assessment

To award credits we need to have evidence of the knowledge and skills you have gained or improved.

The assessment for this course is: Time will be given in class to prepare to write an 800 word essay (this mark does not count towards the final mark for the module).

This will give you some practice at essay writing before you submit your coursework assignment.

The module will be assessed on an essay of 2000 words, and an in-class test. Each assessment will be worth 50% of the overall mark.

Reading suggestions

You will be a member of the university library and have access to all these texts.

  • Meighan, R. and Siraj-Blatchford, I. (2007) A Sociology of Education (Fifth Edition), London: Continuum. (This contains much of the sociology of education covered in this Module)
  • Ball, S.J. (2008) The education debate: policy and politics in the 21st Century. Bristol: Policy Press. (This is an excellent introduction to understanding education policy, particularly in the compulsory sector, how it is produced and what its effects are)
  • Trowler, P. (2003) Education Policy: a policy sociology approach (Second Edition), London: RoutledgeFalmer. (This is a little dated now but covers a wider range of education policies, particularly in post-compulsory education, than the book by Ball above).

Library and computing facilities

As a student on this course you are entitled to join and use the University’s library and computing facilities. Find out more about using these facilities.


Our aim is access for all. We aim to provide a confidential advice and support service for any student with a long term medical condition, disability or specific learning difficulty. We are able to offer one-to-one advice about disability, pre-enrolment visits, liaison with tutors and co-ordinating lecturers, material in alternative formats, arrangements for accessible courses, assessment arrangements, loan equipment and dyslexia screening.