Undergraduate students walking up stairs in Portland Building

Sociology BA

University Park Campus, Nottingham, UK

Course overview

Looking to expand your knowledge and gain a deeper understanding of the world we live in? Our BA Sociology degree is the perfect choice for you. You'll get to explore how society works both locally and globally.

Learn about the importance of identity, difference and diversity in society from experienced sociologists who are active researchers in their fields.  

With a wide range of optional modules, you can tailor your degree to your interests and career aspirations. These cover everything from migration, cults, 'fake news’ and the digital society.

Take part in the placements scheme for hands-on experience, putting your knowledge to the test in the real world. You can also gain a global perspective by studying abroad in locations such as the Netherlands, Singapore, or the USA.

Many of our graduates choose careers where they can make a real difference to society. They follow a wide range of pathways including education, welfare, market research and local government.  

The skills you'll gain through this course are not limited to these areas. You'll also have the opportunity to pursue careers in sectors such as journalism, public relations, marketing, and social media.

Indicative modules

Mandatory

Year 1

Identity in Popular Culture

Mandatory

Year 1

Investigating Social Worlds

Mandatory

Year 1

Social Science Uncovered 1

Mandatory

Year 1

Social Science Uncovered 2

Mandatory

Year 1

Society, Health, Tech and Environment

Mandatory

Year 1

Understanding Contemporary Society

Mandatory

Year 2

Classical Sociological Theory

Mandatory

Year 2

Contemporary Sociological Theory

Mandatory

Year 2

Research Design and Practice (Qualitative Methods)

Mandatory

Year 2

Research Design and Practice (Quantitative Methods)

Optional

Year 2

China Beyond the Headlines

Optional

Year 2

Controversy: Experts, Post-Truth and Fake News

Optional

Year 2

Crime Stories: Crime, Justice and the Media

Optional

Year 2

Drugs, Substances and Addiction

Optional

Year 2

Police, Policing and the Police

Optional

Year 2

Prisons and Society

Optional

Year 2

Rehabilitation, Risk and Desistance

Optional

Year 2

Social Inequalities: Causes, Patterns and Change

Optional

Year 2

#Sociology: Identity, Self and Other in a Digital Age

Optional

Year 2

Sustainable International Social Policy

Optional

Year 2

The Body, the Self and Others

Optional

Year 2

Youth Crime and Justice

Mandatory

Year 3

Dissertation

Optional

Year 3

Analysing Public Policy

Optional

Year 3

Contemporary Developments in Welfare Policy

Optional

Year 3

Crimes and Harms of the Powerful

Optional

Year 3

Cults and New Religious Movements: Power, Belief and Conflict

Optional

Year 3

Cyber Crime

Optional

Year 3

Education and Society

Optional

Year 3

Exploring Social and Cultural Life Through Films

Optional

Year 3

Gender, the Family and Social Policy

Optional

Year 3

Migration and Transnationalism

Optional

Year 3

‘Race’, Ethnicity and Colonial Modernity

Optional

Year 3

Southern Criminology: Decolonising the Study of Crime and Justice

Optional

Year 3

Survey Design and Analysis

Optional

Year 3

Victimology

Optional

Year 3

War and State Violence

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About modules

The above is a sample of the typical modules we offer, but is not intended to be construed or relied on as a definitive list of what might be available in any given year. This content was last updated on Monday 29 January 2024.

Our teaching is delivered through several modes including lectures, seminars and workshops. Independent study is an important aspect of learning at university and you will be expected to undertake preparatory reading and/or research before you attend your classes.

Our staff deliver teaching that is essential for you to understand the key ideas and contemporary thinking in your discipline (known as core modules) and teaching that is more specialist and based on their own research expertise (known as optional modules). All students will be required to take specific core modules relevant for their programmes and be given flexibility in the optional modules they choose to fit with their own personal interests. Find out more by watching our optional module videos.

You can also visit our open days on demand to watch pre-recorded lectures and general talks and see some of our lecturers in action.

Teaching methods

  • Lectures
  • Seminars
  • Tutorials
  • Masterclasses
  • Workshops

You will be assessed through a combination of methods including exams, essays, project work and presentations, as well as a final year dissertation. You will normally receive feedback within three weeks of submission to enable you to improve for next time.

At the end of each semester, you will meet with your personal tutor to discuss all of the assessments and help you identify areas for improvement.

Assessment methods

  • Coursework
  • Essays
  • Examinations
  • Presentations
  • Dissertation

A typical 20-credit module on the first year of the BA Sociology will involve a weekly two-hour lecture and one-hour seminar, independent reading, seminar preparation and assessment activities. You will study six 20-credit modules in the first year.

Your personal tutor will oversee your academic and personal development, and will offer support with your studies and welfare. There are also regular careers talks and events on enhancing your CV.

Our graduates are valued by employers for their ability to:

  • develop an argument and justify it with evidence
  • write coherently and succinctly with a clear structure
  • complete work on time and to the specification required
  • think critically and challenge accepted ideas
  • select, collect and analyse relevant materials in order to carry out independent research
  • present their work verbally and in writing
  • work as a team to achieve goals

In addition to the subject-specific knowledge that you will build throughout this course, you will develop key transferable skills that are in high-demand by employers.

Graduate destinations

Many of our graduates choose careers where they can make a real difference to society. They follow a wide range of pathways including criminal justice, healthcare, welfare and education. The breadth of skills you'll acquire on your degree will also enable you to pursue a career in numerous sectors including journalism, PR, marketing and IT.

Recent graduates are now working with the Youth Justice Board, Ministry of Justice and other governmental departments.

Average starting salary and career progression

85.70% of undergraduates from the Faculty of Social Sciences secured graduate level employment or further study within 15 months of graduation. The average annual starting salary for these graduates was £29,197.

HESA Graduate Outcomes (2017-2021 cohorts). The Graduate Outcomes % is calculated using The Guardian University Guide methodology. The average annual salary is based on graduates working full-time within the UK.

Studying for a degree at the University of Nottingham will provide you with the type of skills and experiences that will prove invaluable in any career, whichever direction you decide to take.

Throughout your time with us, our Careers and Employability Service can work with you to improve your employability skills even further; assisting with job or course applications, searching for appropriate work experience placements and hosting events to bring you closer to a wide range of prospective employers.

Have a look at our careers page for an overview of all the employability support and opportunities that we provide to current students.

The University of Nottingham is consistently named as one of the most targeted universities by Britain’s leading graduate employers (Ranked in the top ten in The Graduate Market in 2013-2020, High Fliers Research).

Trent Building in sunshine  June 2nd 2020 by Lisa Gilligan-Lee

One of my favourite things about the course is the support we get from tutors and academics. I speak from the heart when I say that every single one of them gives their job their all and goes above and beyond for their students. Never have I received so much academic support and confidence instilled in me consistently from the staff members that I turn to for help.

Raffaela Giacobbe

BA Sociology

Course data