In this unit, students familiarise themselves with key societal issues such as ethnicity, culture, norms and values. A lot of attention is given to British values/customs and comparisons with other national or cultural groups.
Y10 and Y12 - Families:
This unit primarily examines how families have changed over time – with key focus on British society and laws that have impacted such changes. Sociological perspectives on the role of the family are examined (both consensus and conflict views) and reasons for changes are discussed in relation to official statistics. Attention is also given to family diversity – including new or emerging family patterns and ethnic diversity.
Expectations regarding appropriate language and behaviour are made clear: no racist, sexist or homophobic comments or expressions are to be used.
References to British issues, laws and social policies and global comparisons are frequently made.
Y10: Studying Society – students understand the concepts of social order and agents of social control, developing their knowledge and understanding of good and bad behaviour can attract formal and informal punishment and reward.
This unit focuses on why crime and deviance occurs and contrasting sociological explanations on what causes it. Contemporary debates regarding who is more likely to be involved in crime are covered – with particular reference to age, gender, class and ethnicity. The course also looks at crime reduction strategies and attitudes towards punishment and effectiveness.
Y13 Beliefs in Society:
The nature and function of religion are examined, in addition to understanding pro and anti-secularisation arguments/debates. The study is focused on western societies, and particular attention is given to Britain when examining who is more/less likely to be religious (relating to issues around age, class, ethnicity and gender) Controversial issues such as religious fundamentalism and extremism, cultural defence, migration and conflict are also covered.
Students understand how different religious/ethnic groups have different family practices. Study of related demographic trends and statistics.
Y13 Beliefs in Society:
Students have the opportunity to deepen their understanding of other cultures and faiths through this topic and to also understanding demographic trends.
Documentaries shown, including references to cults and religious extremism.
Discussions on issues such as religious dress as freedom of expression.
Students asked to consider their own religious views and compare to others.
Y11 - Social Inequality:
This unit focuses on inequalities in British society – with particular attention given to social class, ethnicity, gender and age discrimination. Key laws and social policies aimed at preventing discrimination are covered, as are statistics concerning social mobility and the distribution of wealth and income among social groups. This unit also examines different political and sociological perspectives on how democratic or meritocratic British society is. Evidence used is contemporary and from reliable sources of official statistics.
Debates concerning British political parties and their views of social issues
Range of sociological perspectives (including feminism and black feminism) are used to interpret sociological arguments.
Emphasis on studying social policy and its role in solving social problems such as poverty and discrimination.
In studying the legal system, education system and political system, GCSE and A Level students are given good grounding in understanding both British values and diversity. Every unit studied considers the concepts of class, age, gender, religion and ethnicity and these are discussed frequently in class in a respectful manner. References to contemporary British examples and issues are naturally referred to on a regular basis.