Sociology and Education (BSc)
Sociology and Education BSc gives students the opportunity to combine study of two exciting social science disciplines.
This degree programme is an opportunity to study both Education and Sociology within an interdisciplinary social sciences context.
Our Education teaching is informed by our research in education and the latest developments in policy and practice, encompassing aspects of culture and identity, childhood and youth, gender and ethnicity, and social justice and inclusion.
Sociology is dedicated to the study of social life as found in groups, institutions and societies. It provides the critical tools for handling the analysis of all aspects of social conduct, from face-to-face interactions to how economic forces shape and are shaped by global society.
This course uses a wide range of approaches to help you learn the methods and ideas needed to develop a deep understanding of the social, historical, political, economic and developmental contexts of education and to make your own contribution to understanding and improving society.
- Although this is not a teaching qualification, it is a chance to study education in ways that go beyond a focus on teaching practice. You will study the wider debates around education, laying the foundation for a wide variety of careers
- modules on offer reflect staff research interests across a range of sociological concerns and approaches, for example education, work and globalisation; urban and everyday life; social media, culture and consumption; health; migration and ethnic relations
- our close links with policy makers, as well as local schools, colleges and other education/training organisations, provide opportunities for you to actively engage with educators and practice
- the opportunity for you to learn in a School that was ranked 3rd in the UK for research quality in sociology and 5th for education in the 2014 Research Excellent Framework (REF).
- the involvement of research-active staff in teaching
- the emphasis on independent learning in a research-led environment
- the variety of modules on offer in a multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary School
- the opportunity to study abroad.
- The option to extend to a four year programme with the option to spend year 3 on a professional placement or studying abroad
|Next intake||September 2018|
|Typical A level offer||BBB. You will not need to achieve these from any specific subjects but please note General Studies will not be accepted. Contextually flagged applications (such as those students leaving care or from areas where there has traditionally been low rates of participation in higher education) may receive an offer at one grade lower.|
|Typical Welsh Baccalaureate offer||The Welsh Baccalaureate Advanced Skills Challenge Certificate Grade B in the core, plus grades BB at A-Level.|
|Typical International Baccalaureate offer||Achieve the IB Diploma with 32 points. Contextually flagged applications (such as those students leaving care or from areas where there has traditionally been low rates of participation in higher education) may receive an offer at one grade lower.|
|Alternative qualifications||Alternative qualifications may be accepted. For further information on entry requirements, see the School of Social Sciences admissions criteria pages.|
|English Language requirements||If you are an overseas applicant and your first language is not English, please visit our English Language requirements page for more information on our accepted qualifications.|
|Other requirements||You will require GCSE English or Welsh Language at grade C or grade 4. Alternatively, IGCSE English First Language or English Second Language will be considered at grade C.
Typical BTEC Extended Diploma offer: DDM
Typical Access to HE Diploma offer: 60 credits overall with a minimum of 45 at level 3 to include a minimum of 15 distinctions and 30 merits.
Typical offers for other qualifications (inc Scottish Highers, Irish Leaving Certificate, Cambridge Pre-U, etc.): Applications from those offering alternative qualifications are welcome.
English Language Requirements for non-UK applicants
Typical IELTS offer:|
Applicants whose first language is not English are required to obtain a minimum overall IELTS score of 6.5 with at least 6.5 in writing, and at least 5.5 in all other sub-sections. Typical TOEFL iBT offer: 90 Typical offers for other qualifications: Pearson Test of English (PTE A) = 62
We are currently working with our students to update and improve the content of this course. The information shown below reflects the current curriculum and is likely to change. The review of the course is expected to be completed by August 2018 and this page will be updated by end of October 2018 to reflect the changes.
This is a three-year, full-time course consisting of 120 credits a year. The final degree classification that you are awarded is based on the grades you achieve in the modules that you take in years two and three.
In year one you will lay the foundations for later specialist study, taking a number of core modules and following a study skills programme designed to help you make the transition to higher education. In years two and three, you will be encouraged to study and learn more independently, giving you the opportunity to read more widely and to develop your own interests. The final year also includes the option to study a 40 credit dissertation.
The modules shown are an example of the typical curriculum and will be reviewed prior to the 2018/19 academic year. The final modules will be published by September 2018. You are advised to check the final module descriptions when they are available to ensure that the programme meets your needs.
You will take a six compulsory 20 credit modules in Year One to make up the full 120 credits needed to complete year one. These are designed to introduce you to the key ideas and research in your chosen degree subjects and to teach you the skills needed to succeed at university.
In the first year, you will have a more intensive personal tutor programme to help you to make the transition to higher education.
Year One Modules:
- Becoming a Social Scientist – 20 credits
- Education and Society – 20 credits
- Introduction To Social Science Research – 20 credits
- Key Ideas in Social Science – 20 credits
- Sociology, Society and Social Change – 20 credits
- Understanding and Solving Educational Problems – 20 credits
|Module title||Module code||Credits|
|Understanding and Solving Educational Problems||SI0273||20 credits|
|An Introduction to Education||SI0279||20 credits|
|Introduction to Social Science Research||SI0280||20 credits|
|Key Ideas in Social Science||SI0281||20 credits|
|Introduction to Sociology||SI0291||20 credits|
|Developing Scholarship through the Social Sciences||SI0292||20 credits|
You will take five core modules and have the option of choosing another one module from across the disciplines in the School, including a credit-bearing placement module.
Students must take:
- Social Research Methods – 20 credits
- Social Theory – 20 credits
- Sociology of Education – 20 credits
- What Happens in Schools: Assessing Policy in Practice – 20 credits
- Contemporary Inequalities – 20 credits
Students must take 20 credits from this group:
- Discourse and Interaction Analysis – 20 credits
- Knowing the Social World – Online and Offline Surveys – 20 credits
- Secondary Data Analysis – 20 credits
- Evaluating Social Practice, Policy and Innovation – 20 credits
- Researching Culture – 20 credits
- Ethnography and Everyday Life – 20 credits
- Interviews and Focus Groups – 20 credits
|Module title||Module code||Credits|
|Contemporary Inequalities||SI0288||20 credits|
|Social Research Methods||SI0297||20 credits|
|Sociology of Education||SI0298||20 credits|
|What Happens in Schools: Assessing Policy in Practice||SI0299||20 credits|
|Social Theory||SI0300||20 credits|
|Module title||Module code||Credits|
|Secondary Data Analysis||SI0293||20 credits|
|Evaluating Social Practice, Policy and Innovation||SI0294||20 credits|
|Researching Culture||SI0295||20 credits|
|Focus Groups and Interviews||SI0296||20 credits|
|Knowing the Social World ? Online and Offline Surveys||SI0303||20 credits|
|Ethnography and Everyday Life||SI0309||20 credits|
In year three, you will have the option of undertaking a dissertation project, designing, conducting and writing up a small-scale research project supervised by a member of academic staff. You may also study a mix of core and/or optional modules depending on if you opt for the dissertation.
Students must take 60 credits (80 if NOT doing a dissertation) and may take up to 120 credits from:
- Contemporary Issues in Early Childhood Education: practice and research – 20 credits
- Radical Education – 20 credits
- Work and Skills in the 21st Century: an international perspective – 20 credits
- Comparative and International Education Policy – 20 credits
- Sociology on the Move – 20 credits
- The Sociology of Stigma – 20 credits
- Live Theory – 20 credits
Students may take up to 60 credits from:
- Dissertation - 40 credits
- Society and Genetics – 20 credits
- Unequal Chances: educational inequality, social mobility and family life – 20 credits
- Religion and Society: Politics, Identity, Education – 20 credits
- CRUSH – 20 credits
- Engaging in a Healthy Society: Research and explanation on environments and human health – 20 credits
- Cymdeithas Gyfoes yng Nghymru/Contemporary Society in Wales – 20 credits
- Digital Society: Theory, Methods and Data – 20 credits
|Module title||Module code||Credits|
|Conflict and Change in Educational Policy||SI0151||20 credits|
|Globalisation and Social Change||SI0158||20 credits|
|New Frontiers in Sociology||SI0163||20 credits|
|Power, Culture and Identity||SI0164||20 credits|
|Power, Politics and Policy||SI0206||20 credits|
|Issues in Social and Cultural Psychology||SI0209||20 credits|
|Equality and Diversity in Education and Work||SI0220||20 credits|
|Identity and Individual Differences||SI0232||20 credits|
|Reflections on Teaching and Learning Practice, Theory and Experience||SI0241||20 credits|
|Experiments in Knowing||SI0245||20 credits|
|International and Comparative Social and Public Policy||SI0247||20 credits|
|Digital Society: Theory, Method and Data||SI0248||20 credits|
|Sociology of Health, Illness and Medicine||SI0250||20 credits|
|Science, Risk and Resistance in a Global Age||SI0264||20 credits|
|Analysing Social Change||SI0266||20 credits|
How will I be taught?
In the School of Social Sciences you will learn from scholars who are shaping the future of their fields. Our courses reflect both the core ideas of their disciplines and contemporary debates, theories and research.
Teaching methods include a mixture of lectures, seminars, independent study and self-directed learning that draw use of on-line resources, individual work and group tasks. Lectures generally provide an overview of the relevant topic, introducing key concepts or research, and highlighting contemporary issues or debates. An increasing number of lectures are now recorded. In contrast to lectures, seminars give you the opportunity to discuss particular readings, research or topics in detail. This allows you to consolidate your understanding and get feedback on your individual learning. Seminars also enable you to hone your communication, presentation and collaborative skills as you take part in group discussions and other tasks.
As social science develops in response to the social world, so our curriculum also changes. Our students play an important role in these developments, with the Student-Staff Panel being consulted about major changes and all students completing module evaluations and an annual student survey.
How will I be supported?
A personal tutor will guide you for the duration of your studies. The tutors are available to discuss progress and provide advice and guidance on your academic studies. The Student Hub, located in the Glamorgan Building, is also open every day and can provide advice on how to access university services.
All modules within the course make use of Cardiff University’s Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) Blackboard, on which you will find course materials, links to related materials and information relating to assessment tasks including, for example, assessment criteria, links to past papers, and guidelines for submitting assessments.
Additional module-specific support is provided by seminar tutors, lecturers and/or module convenors; support for the dissertation is provided by a supervisor who will meet with you regularly.
How will I be assessed?
All modules are assessed by at least two different assessment tasks. Typical assessment formats include individual and group assignments, coursework, presentations and exams. We take care to ensure that all degree schemes include a range of different assessment types and that deadlines are spread throughout the academic year.
Feedback is provided on assessments and other learning in order to provide students with the opportunity to reflect on their current or recent level of attainment. It can be provided individually or to groups. It can take many forms. It is responsive to the developmental expectations of our programmes and disciplines.
The range of feedback includes one-to-one individual feedback; generic feedback; peer feedback; informal feedback; self-evaluation to submit along with the assessment.
Academic staff and peers can use a variety of methods to deliver these types of feedback: written feedback; annotation of a text; oral feedback; seminar discussion.
Formative feedback is feedback that does not contribute to progression or degree classification decisions. The goal of formative feedback is to improve your understanding and learning before you complete your summative assessment. More specifically, formative feedback helps you to:
- identify your strengths and weaknesses and target areas that need work;
- help staff to support you and address the problems identified with targeted strategies for improvement.
Formative feedback is routinely provided in seminars as seminar work often contributes to the module assessment. In addition, all modules include a specific formative assessment that is designed to help you prepare for the subsequent summative assessment.
Summative feedback is feedback that contributes to progression or degree classification decisions. The goal of summative assessment is to indicate how well you have succeeded in meeting the intended learning outcomes of a Module and will enable you to identify action required (feed forward) in order to improve in future assessments.
All feedback on coursework is provided electronically to ensure it is readily accessible and easy to read. Verbal feedback is provided for presentations but written feedback will also be provided where the presentation makes a significant contribution to the module mark.
Feedback on exams is usually provided as written feedback for the whole class but you are also able to discuss your individual exam paper and the mark it was awarded with the module convenor.
All marks and feedback are made with reference to the module specific marking criteria.
What are the learning outcomes of this course/programme?
The Learning outcomes for this Programme describe what you will be able to do as a result of your study at Cardiff University. They will help you to understand what is expected of you and academic staff will focus on precisely what they want you to achieve within each Module.
Knowledge & Understanding:
Students completing the Programme will demonstrate:
- An understanding of the key ideas, theories and concepts used in education and sociology and their relationship to themes, theories and findings from cognate disciplines.
- An understanding of the main research methods used within the social sciences and the philosophical issues that inform their application and use in research settings.
- A critical and in-depth understanding of research and theory in selected sub-fields of education and sociology and the relevance of this work to contemporary social debates, issues or problems.
- An understanding of the role empirical evidence plays in the creation and constraint of theory, and how theory guides the collection and interpretation of empirical data.
Students completing the Programme will be able to:
- Critically evaluate existing knowledge, scholarship and research in education and sociology and use this knowledge to reach a balanced judgement about the merits and relevance of competing claims and theoretical perspectives.
- Critically evaluate the use of evidence in social science disciplines and policy debates, drawing on both broad methods training and subject specific knowledge
- Utilise knowledge and skills to understand and explain social phenomena of interest to education and sociology and apply this understanding to new or novel questions.
Professional Practical Skills:
Students completing the Programme will be able to:
- Design and use a range of data collection instruments needed to explore and understand the social world
- Critically evaluate, synthesise and interpret primary and secondary data generated using different methods, using specialist software where necessary
- Work both collaboratively and individually on theoretically informed and empirically-grounded projects that draw on appropriate and relevant research evidence
Students completing the Programme will demonstrate:
- The capacity for problem-solving and originality in thinking by using knowledge and skills to tackle familiar and unfamiliar problems
- Academic and personal skills such as critical thinking, writing, oral presentations, problem solving, group work, time-management, and the use of information technology.
- The ability to communicate complex information in a variety of formats including reports, oral presentations, posters and dissertations
In 2015/16, the ‘Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education’ survey showed that 96% of School of Social Science graduates who were available for work reported they were in employment and/or further study within six months of graduation. Popular employments sectors included: administrative work, education, social work, retail, finance, and other professional sectors.
We encourage our students to think about life beyond University from day one, offering modules and support to give you a competitive advantage on graduating. Turning theory into practical application and providing experience of the working world are important aspects of all our degree schemes and help prepare our graduates for life after higher education.
UK and EU students (2018/19)
The University reserves the right to increase tuition fees in the second and subsequent years of a course as permitted by law or Welsh Government policy. Where applicable we will notify you of any change in tuition fee by the end of June in the academic year before the one in which the fee will increase.
Visit our tuition fee pages for the latest information.
Financial support may be available to individuals who meet certain criteria. For more information visit our funding section. Please note that these sources of financial support are limited and therefore not everyone who meets the criteria are guaranteed to receive the support.
Students from outside the EU (2018/19)
Tuition fees for international students are fixed for the majority of three year undergraduate courses. This means the price you pay in year one will be the same in years two and three. Some courses are exempt, including four and five year programmes and Medical and Dental courses. Visit our tuition fee pages for the latest information.
You should be prepared to invest in some key text books and to cover the costs of basic printing and photocopying. You may also want to buy copies of other books, either because they are particularly important for your course or because you find them particularly interesting.
If you have a laptop computer you will have the option of purchasing software at discounted prices.
Students who choose to study abroad for a semester in their second year will continue to pay tuition fees to Cardiff University and will also need to pay for travel, accommodation and other related costs.
Will I need any specific equipment to study this course/programme?
What the student should provide:
You do not need any specific equipment to study on this programme. Access to a laptop computer would be advantageous as many readings are available electronically and most assessments are prepared using standard word processing software.
What the University will provide:
Networked computers with appropriate file space and all necessary software. Access to essential and background reading for each module plus a wide range of journals and other online resources. All course documents will be available online (via the VLE) and hard copies of essential documents will be provided if requested.
We have a range of residences to suit your needs and budget. Find out more on our accommodation pages.
There are a number of placement or study abroad opportunities associated with this Programme. Students have the option of studying abroad or spending a year on placement in year 3, extending their studies to a four year programme. The application process for spending a year abroad or on placement will take place at the start of your second year of studies. These opportunities may be partly conditional upon achieving certain minimum academic results in other modules.
The School of Social Sciences has a dedicated Employability and Placement Manager who can offer advice on available work placements, internships, work experience and opportunities to enhance your CV and broaden your horizons. Support with job applications and interview techniques is also available.