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Module Details for Introduction to Sociology SOU11012/SOU11014 (Part 2 HT)

Module Code


Module Name

Introduction to Sociology

Module Short Title

ECTS weighting


Semester/term taught

Hilary Term

Contact Hours


Learning Outcomes

  • To explain the main contemporary sociological theories and concepts that have been developed in recent decades;
  • To use sociological theories and concepts to identify and understand the main social changes since the 1950s;
  • To use examples of quantitative and qualitative empirical research by testing the validity of sociological theories;
  • To identify and apply sociological theories to real world social phenomena, particularly within industrialised countries in the European context;
  • To understand how evidence can be used to differentiate between better and worse explanations in social science


Module Learning Aims

  • To provide a general introduction to the development of sociology since the 1950s;
  • To explain the specific insight that sociological analysis provides on human behaviour;
  • To give examples of the explanatory forms offered by sociologists;
  • To show illustrative examples of quantitative and qualitative sociological research that support or challenge existing sociological theories or concepts.

Module Content

The module addresses the theories, concepts and research that have dominated the discipline of Sociology from the 1960/70s to the present. The module provides a sociological understanding of the key social, demographic and economic transformations that have occurred in industrialised countries in recent decades, by covering the dramatic changes in demographic structures, attitudes and values; the gender revolution; the changing occupational and class structure; the globalization and digitalization of the economy; the increasing ethnic diversity of societies; the emergence of new socio-political attitudes; or changes in urban spaces and community life. Week by week, students will examine the forms and consequences of specific major sociological phenomena of recent times by using sociological theories applied to “real-world” empirical data.

Recommended Reading List
  • Macionis J. and Plummer, K. (2012) Sociology: A Global Introduction, Harlow: Pearson Education/Prentice Hall Europe.

Assessment Details

1500 word essay (100%)