BA Politics and Sociology
This Information is for 2017 entry only - to see the information for 2016 entry please see this page
In this Section:
This course allows you to examine the complexity of society and learn about the social, cultural and political processes that shape human experience.
You’ll study the organisation and structure of society and consider the changing nature of human action, as well as the political theories that structure our political systems and the social forces that shape political life. Using examples from around the world, you’ll gain a firm grounding in the institutions and practices of modern political systems while exploring social values and the impact of social divisions.
Drawing on expertise in both the School of Politics and International Studies and the School of Sociology and Social Policy, you’ll shape your degree to suit your own interests and career ambitions. A wide range of optional modules reflecting our diverse research interests will allow you to focus on topics from gender and violence to US foreign policy, class division to the sociology of health.
Year 1 introduces you to key concepts and debates within both subjects, providing a broad foundation for the rest of your studies. You’ll examine different political systems from around the world and study key political thinkers and ideas. At the same time you’ll learn about major concepts and traditions in sociology as well as the processes that have shaped modern societies. A choice of optional module will equip you with important research skills.
Core modules in Year 2 will build on your understanding of research techniques in the social sciences, and examine key sociological themes like social integration, power and the relationship between the individual and society. In addition, you’ll choose one of two political theory modules to build your knowledge of important debates in the subject. Optional modules in each subject will then give you a wide range of choice - you could focus on the political systems of different countries as well as development studies, crime, international relations, drug policy or security studies.
The research and analytical skills you develop throughout the course will prepare you to complete your dissertation in your final year. This independent project allows you to focus on a sociological topic in depth while working alongside your academic supervisor. Around this, you’ll select final year modules ranging from sex work to political psychology, disability studies to elections or the philosophy of human rights.
These are typical modules/components studied and may change from time to time. Read more in our Terms and conditions.
- Comparative Politics 20 credits
- Freedom, Power and Resistance: An Introduction to Political Ideas 20 credits
- Sociology of Modern Societies 20 credits
- Formations of Modernity 20 credits
- Understanding and Researching the City 20 credits
- Understanding and Researching Contemporary Society 20 credits
- Sociology and Social Policy Research Methods 20 credits
- Central Problems in Sociology 20 credits
- Revolution and Reaction: Political Problems in the 20th Century OR Justice, Community and Conflict 20 credits
- The Conservative Party from Churchill to Cameron 20 credits
- State and Politics in Africa 20 credits
- Theories of International Relations 20 credits
- The Sociology of Gender 20 credits
- Racism, ethnicity, migration and decolonial studies 20 credits
- Urban Disorders, Social Divisions and Social Control 20 credits
- Dissertation 40 credits
- The Politics of national identity in the UK 20 credits
- Israel: Politics and Society 20 credits
- Political Psychology: on Authority and Obedience 20 credits
- Postcolonialism and Critical Muslim Studies 20 credits
- Class in Everyday Life 20 credits
- Sex Work: Theory, Policy and Politics 20 credits
Broadening your academic horizons
At Leeds we want you to benefit from the depth and breadth of the University's expertise, to prepare you for success in an ever-changing and challenging world. This course gives you the opportunity to broaden your learning by studying discovery modules. Find out more on the Broadening webpages.
Learning and teaching
We use a range of teaching and learning methods to help you gain diverse skills. These will include seminars and workshops where you can discuss in more depth the topics set out in traditional lectures. We emphasise the importance of participation, presentation skills and group work.
The teaching structure varies depending on your level of study – for example, in Year 1 you might expect to have six or seven lectures and three or four seminars per week. However, independent study is also a vital element of the course, as it allows you to develop your research and critical skills while preparing for taught sessions.
You’ll also have a personal tutor – one of our academics – who will be on hand to offer you guidance and support on academic issues, such as module choices, as well as career and personal matters.
Modules will use a variety of assessment methods. As well as traditional exams, you could also be asked to complete projects based on essays and case studies, policy briefs, group presentations, work logs, research briefs, project proposals or development agency reviews. In your final year you’ll also submit a 12,000 word dissertation.
Our graduates secure employment with some of the biggest UK companies in human resources, communications management, broadcasting and advertising. They are also ideally equipped to work in the public and third sector including in the civil service, teaching, youth work, fostering/children’s services, probation services, social work, prison service, housing and homelessness prevention.
Graduates from this programme are well prepared for postgraduate study across a range of disciplines. Our recent graduates have gone on to study sociology, social Policy, teacher training, journalism, occupational therapy, human resources, marketing, town planning, social work, criminal justice studies and social research.
We encourage you to prepare for your career from day one. Thats one of the reasons Leeds graduates are so sought after by employers.
Leeds for Life is our unique approach to helping you make the most of University by supporting your academic and personal development. Find out more at the Leeds for Life website.
The Careers Centre and staff in your faculty provide a range of help and advice to help you plan your career and make well-informed decisions along the way, even after you graduate. Find out more at the Careers website.
On this course you have the opportunity to apply to spend time abroad, usually as an extra academic year. The University has partnerships with more than 400 universities worldwide and popular destinations for our students include Europe, the USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, Hong Kong, South Africa and Latin America.
Find out more at the Study Abroad website.
Practical work experience can help you decide on your career and improve your employability. On this course you have the option to apply to take a placement year module with organisations across the public, private and voluntary sectors in the UK, or overseas.
Find out more about work experience on the Careers website.