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6th Form Curriculum Guide - Year 12 Sociology
Term 1Introductory lessons and research methods
Students will begin by studying some of the main sociological theories to get an introductory knowledge which will help them throughout the rest of their sociological studies. These will include: functionalism, Marxism, feminism and the New Right. Students will then begin studying the first key topic ‘Research Methods’. They will study how sociologists research key issues in sociology including methods such as questionnaires, interviews, observations, experiments and the use of official statistics. Students will also study some classic pieces of sociological research which have used these methods.
Assessment: Students will be assessed with 4 assessments. One short answers test on the introduction to sociology theories, one essay set for homework on Questionnaires and two timed 10 mark questions. Key Words and Terms
 
Term 2Education
Students will begin this term with a full research methods assessment in timed conditions. This will involve two 10 mark questions and one 20 mark essay question. Students will then begin to study the second key topic ‘Education’. This will begin by considering the role and purpose of education in society, by considering different sociological views on this issue. This will be followed by an examination of gender differences in educational achievement and subject choice and considering the reasons for these differences. Students will then consider the impact that education has on gender identity. Students will then move on to class differences in educational achievement, and why those from poorer backgrounds do less well in education. Students will examine sociological reasons for this including material and cultural deprivation, labelling, setting/streaming and pupil subcultures.
Assessment: Students will be assessed by weekly timed assessments. Some will be short (up to 10 marks) while others will be longer and involve a full paper reflecting the real exam of 50 marks. Key Words and Terms
 
Term 3Education and Families and Households
Students will continue studying education by assessing ethnic differences in educational achievement and school experience. This will involve considering why some ethnic groups do better than others and possible sociological reasons for this including institutional racism, labelling and home factors. Students will then study the last section of the education unit which is about educational policy. Students will learn about the history of the education system and policy changes with a focus on 1988 onwards. Students will consider different political parties and their interests in relation to educational policy as well as more contemporary educational issues and changes. Students will then begin to study the third key unit of ‘Families and Households’. Students will consider the role of the family and the functionalist and Marxist perspectives on this issue.
Assessment: Once again students will be assessed by weekly timed assessments. Some will be short (up to 10 marks) while others will be longer, reflecting the real exam. There will be a large timed assessments involving research methods and education worth 70 marks. Key Words and Terms
 
Term 4Family and Households
Students will complete their learning on the role of the family by studying the feminist and personal life perspectives. Learning will then be focused on ‘Couples’. This involves looking at debate of the division of domestic tasks in the household between men and women and whether this is now equal or not. Students will also look at the issue of power and domestic violence in the household. Students will then begin to study the topic of ‘Childhood’. This will involve considering different historical and cultural views on how ‘Childhood’ should be defined and experienced. This will lead into a debate on whether childhood has improved over the last 100 years.
Assessment: Students will continue to be assessed weekly by complete some 10 mark questions and some full exam style papers worth 40 marks. Key Words and Terms
 
Term 5Families and Households 2
Students will begin by looking at the topic of ‘Changing family patterns’. This involves looking at trends in marriage, divorce, singlehood, childbearing, and same sex relationships. We will assess the sociological reasons put forward for these changes including changes in law and social attitudes.Students will then study ‘Demography’, looking at changes in the UK population. They will consider the effects of an ageing population, reasons for changes in birth and death rates and the effects of migration and globalisation on our population. Learning will then focus on the topic of ‘family diversity’; looking at how the family shape and size has changes in the last 100 years or so. The key debate is whether the nuclear family of mother, father and two children is still the most dominant or other family types such as lone parents or same sex families are more prominent. Finally, students will examine social policy in relation to families and households.
Assessment: Weekly assessments will continue encompassing three full 40 mark timed assessments to reflect the real exam. Key Words and Terms
 
Term 6Methods in Context (education) and Sociological Theory
Students will begin with some revision lessons to build up to a final assessment for family and research methods worth 60 marks. Learning will then focus on the final aspect of year 1 which is ‘Methods in Context’. This involves looking back at students learning of research methods in term 1 and refreshing knowledge from education and terms 2 and 3. Students will learn to apply the research methodologies to studying educational issues. They will develop the skill of application by considering the strengths and weaknesses of each method in relation to studying education. Students will then begin to learn some of the second year content in time permits. They will study the theories of Feminism and Marxism in great depth in terms of how they interpret society as a whole.
Assessment: Students will continue to have weekly assessments but will work towards a final end of year assessment which will determines students’ suitability for second year study. This will encompass full exam papers on Research methods, Education, Families and Households and Methods in Context. Key Words and Terms
 

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