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Sociology and History (BSc Econ)

Entry year

History and Sociology BScEcon gives students the opportunity to combine study of the fascinating subject of history with the study of wider society and the social processes within it.

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Course overview

Many students find studying a joint honours programme stimulating and rewarding as they are able to observe both similarities and differences between the two subjects. By combining History and Sociology, you will gain a variety of transferable skills and knowledge beneficial for your future.

History at Cardiff enables you to learn about the very different worlds of people in the past and to better understand the present. It gives you an insight into processes of change from the ancient world through to the modern period. You may study the history of societies in diverse parts of the globe, including India, China, Germany, France, Russia, Britain and Wales.

Above all you will learn to 'do history' yourself and acquire the sorts of skills that employers value. You will learn to think independently, assess the strengths and weaknesses of a body of historical evidence for yourself, and present your findings clearly. Our friendly academic staff will be on hand to guide you and provide full and constructive feedback throughout your studies.

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 make your own contribution to understanding and improving society.

As a joint honours student, you will find that often there are complementary issues and perspectives that link subjects, be they critical analysis, historical contexts or recent research

Distinctive features

  • 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.
  • 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.
UCAS codeLV31
Next intakeSeptember 2020
Duration3 years
ModeFull time
Typical places availableThe School of History, Archaeology and Religion typically has 320 places available.
Typical applications receivedThe School of History, Archaeology and Religion typically receives 1800 applications.
  1. School of History, Archaeology and Religion

    John Percival Building

    Colum Drive


    CF10 3EU

  2. School of Social Sciences

    Glamorgan Building

    King Edward VII Avenue


    CF10 3WA

Entry requirements

ABB. Critical Thinking and General Studies will not be accepted.

Extended Project Qualification: Applicants with grade A in the EPQ will typically receive an offer one grade lower than the standard A level offer. Please note that any subject specific requirements must still be met.

The Welsh Baccalaureate Advanced Skills Challenge Certificate will be accepted in lieu of one A-Level (at the grades listed above), excluding any specified subjects.

Achieve the IB Diploma with a minimum of 17 in 3 HL subjects.

Alternative qualifications may be accepted. For further information on entry requirements, see the School of History, Archaeology & Religion and School of Social Sciences admissions criteria pages.


Grade C or grade 4 in GCSE English Language.

IELTS (academic)

At least 6.5 overall with a minimum of 5.5 in each subskill.


At least 90 overall with minimum scores of 17 for writing, 17 for listening, 18 for reading and 20 for speaking.

PTE Academic

At least 62 overall with a minimum of 51 in all communicative skills.

Trinity ISE II/III

II: at least two Distinctions and two Merits.
III: at least a Pass in all components.

Other accepted qualifications

Please visit our English Language requirements page for more information on our other accepted language qualifications.

Tuition fees

UK and EU students (2020/21)

Tuition feeDeposit

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 (2020/21)

Tuition feeDeposit

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.

Additional costs

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.

Course specific equipment

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.

Course structure

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 2020/21 academic year. The final modules will be published by September 2020.

Year one

Year one is a foundation year to give you the skills for advanced study and an overview of the two subjects to inform your later choices. Our personal tutor programme will help you to make the transition to higher education.

You will take 120 credits in total, equally split between 60 credits in History and 60 credits in sociology.

Students must take:

  • History in Practice Part 1: Questions, Frameworks and Audiences  - 20 credits
  • Introduction to Social Science Research – 20 credits
  • Key Ideas in Social Science – 20 credits
  • Sociology, Society and Social Change – 20 credits

Students may take 40 credits from:

  • The Making of the Modern World: 1750-1970 – 20 credits
  • Early Modern England and Wales: 1500-1700 – 20 credits
  • Making Global Histories: Asia and the West – 20 credits
  • Inventing a Nation: Politics, Culture and Heritage – 20 credits
  • Medievel Worlds: AD 500-1500 – 20 credits

Year two

You will again take 60 credits in History and 60 credits in sociology.

Your personal tutor will help you to choose modules that best suit your interests and future career choices.

Students must take:

  • Social Theory – 20 credits
  • Contemporary Inequalities – 20 credits
  • Social Research Methods - 20 credits

Students may take 60 credits from:

  • Approaches to History – 30 credits
  • Exploring Historical Debate – 30 credits
  • The Later Roman Empire, A.D. 284-480 – 30 credits
  • Hersy and Dissent, 1000-1450 – 30 credits
  • Poverty and Relief in Medieval Europe – 30 credits
  • From Dreyfus to the National Front: France, 1898-2012 – 30 credits
  • The British Civil Wars and Revolution, c. 1638-1649 – 30 credits
  • Nations, Empire and Borderlands from 1789-present – 30 credits
  • A Great Leap Forward China Transformed, 1840-present – 30 credits
  • From King Coal to Cool Cymru: Society and Culture in Wales, 1939-2000 – 30 credits
  • Radicalism and the Common People, 1789-1880 -30 credits
  • “An Empire for Liberty”: Race, Space and Power in the United States, 1775-1898 – 30 credits
  • Urban Visions, Rural Dreams: City and Country in Britain and the United States, 1850-2000 – 30 credits
  • India and The Raj, 1857-1947 – 30 credits
  • The Making of “World Religions” in South Asia: Hindus, Sikhs and Muslims from the Fifteenth Century to the Present Day – 30 credits
  • Cultures and Communities in Twentieth Century Britain: from the Beatles to Cool Britannia – 30 credits
  • The Search for an Asian Modern: Japanese History from 1800 to the Post-War Era – 30 credits
  • Martys and Collaborators: Catholicism behind the Iron Curtain – 30 credits
  • Europe, East and West, 1945-1995 – 30 credits
  • The Soviet Century: Russia and the Soviet Union, 1905-1991 – 30 credits
  • Medicine and Modern Society, 1750-1919 – 30 credits

Year three

You will again take 60 credits in History and 60 credits in sociology.

Your personal tutor will help you to choose modules to best suit a particular pathway with you future career choices in mind.

Students must take at least 20 credits from:

  • Sociology on the Move – 20 credits
  • The Sociology of Stigma – 20 credits
  • Live Theory – 20 credits

Students may take 20 and up to 40 credits from:

  • Society and Genetics – 20 credits
  • Unequal Chances – 20 credits
  • Religion and Society – 20 credits
  • CRUSH – 20 credits
  • Engaging in a Healthy Society – 20 credits
  • Cymdeithas Gyfoes yng Nghymru – 20 credits
  • Digital Society – 20 credits
  • Dissertation – 40 credits

Students may also take up to 60 credits from:

The University is committed to providing a wide range of module options where possible, but please be aware that whilst every effort is made to offer choice this may be limited in certain circumstances. This is due to the fact that some modules have limited numbers of places available, which are allocated on a first-come, first-served basis, while others have minimum student numbers required before they will run, to ensure that an appropriate quality of education can be delivered; some modules require students to have already taken particular subjects, and others are core or required on the programme you are taking. Modules may also be limited due to timetable clashes, and although the University works to minimise disruption to choice, we advise you to seek advice from the relevant School on the module choices available.

Learning and assessment

How will I be taught?

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.

Year 1

Scheduled learning and teaching activities


Guided independent study




Year 2

Scheduled learning and teaching activities


Guided independent study




Year 3

Scheduled learning and teaching activities


Guided independent study




How will I be supported?

Personal tutors in each School 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.

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. 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 students regularly.

The University offers a range of services including the Careers Service, the Counselling Service, the Disability and Dyslexia Service, the Student Support Service, and excellent libraries and resource centres.


We’ll provide you with frequent feedback on your work. This comes in a variety of formats including oral feedback during tutorials, personalised feedback on written work, feedback lectures, generic written feedback and feedback on tutorial performance

Coursework will be marked and you will receive written feedback. You will be given general feedback in relation to examinations following the May/June examination period and you will be able to discuss your overall performance with your personal tutor as part of the monitored student self-assessment scheme.


How will I be assessed?

Assessment methods vary from module to module but, across the degree scheme as a whole, you can expect a mixture of exams, coursework, essays, practical work, presentations, and individual and group projects

You’ll also have the opportunity to undertake assessments that don’t count towards your final grade but give you an opportunity to assess your progress and to get feedback on your work.

Assessment methods (2017/18 data)

Year 1

Written exams


Practical exams




Year 2

Written exams


Practical exams




Year 3

Written exams


Practical exams




What skills will I practise and develop?

Knowledge & Understanding:

On successful completion of the Programme you will be able to demonstrate:

  • A knowledge of contemporary theory and research in both History and Sociology
  • 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
  • An understanding of interpreting and presenting relevant numerical information, for example as part of a research project;
  • An understanding of recognising, recording and communicating skills and knowledge to achieve personal/career goals;

Intellectual Skills:

On successful completion of the Programme you will be able to:

  • Critically evaluate existing knowledge, scholarship and research in sociology and/or history 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 sociology and/or history and apply this understanding to new or novel questions.

Professional Practical Skills:

On successful completion of the Programme you 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

Transferable/Key Skills:

On successful completion of the Programme you will be able to demonstrate:

  • The ability to effectively communicate information and ideas, both orally and in writing, at a level which demonstrates accurate and clear use of the English language
  • The ability to prepare and give an oral presentation and provide clear and accurate supporting materials in an appropriate format.
  • The ability to take responsibility for structuring, managing and reporting, orally and/or in writing, a small research project
  • The ability to contribute constructively and reliably to a group task
  • The ability to effectively manage time and conduct self-directed study in the context of a structured timetable, prescribed learning activities and task deadlines
  • The ability to reflect on your own learning, identify gaps in your knowledge and plan strategies for closing those gaps
  • The ability to make use of both oral and written feedback, including feedback obtained through tutor assessment, self assessment and peer assessment
  • The ability to use subject specific electronic sources and Virtual Learning Environments
  • The ability to use electronic methods for research and demonstrate general competency in IT skills when preparing and presenting written material


Careers and placements

Career prospects


In 2015/16, 96% of the School’s graduates who were available for work reported they were in employment and/or further study within six months of graduating. Turning theory into practical application and providing experience of the working world are important facets of preparing our graduates for life outside of education.

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.


In 2015/16, 94% of the School’s graduates who were available for work reported they were in employment and/or further study within six months of graduating.

We organise interactive workshops with the Careers Service to help students identify their skills and attributes. History graduates find work in a wide range of related and non-related professional employment. Some choose to undertake postgraduate study at Cardiff or elsewhere, and some have become internationally reputed historians.


Both the School of Social Sciences and the School of History, Archaeology and Religion have dedicated placements staff 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.


Next Undergraduate Open Day

Spring 2020




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How to apply