How do sociologists do social research? What methods do sociologists employ in conducting social research? This elective specialism allows students to develop a broad range of practical research skills and a strong methodological understanding in relation to the core research traditions within sociological research.
Students will gain experience in developing social research projects; research design and process; the development and application of quantitative and qualitative research methods and instruments, and the potential for the combination of quantitative and qualitative methods. Modules in this specialism address the practicalities of undertaking data gathering and field work, questions of ethics; the analysis of quantitative and qualitative data; writing reports; and presenting research findings.
This combination of understanding and skills is further pursued through project work.
Structure by Year
You will follow the BA Sociology degree, including the specified core degrees, and your choice of optional modules for each year up to 120 CATS in total. The list below shows the number of CATS (credits towards your degree) which are optional for each year, as part of your BA Sociology degree. To claim your specialism you will complete 90CATS worth of modules (including a 30CATS dissertation) in your relevant specialist area.
1st Year modules
- History of Sociological Thought (CORE)
- Class and Capitalism in a Neoliberal World (CORE)
- Introduction to Quantitative Methods (CORE)
- Researching Society and Culture (CORE)
- 60CATS of Optional modules
2nd Year modules
- Core module in Quantitative Methods (CORE)
- Core module in Qualitative Methods (CORE)
- 90CATS of Optional modules
3rd Year modules
Optional modules for the Specialism in Research Methods
To claim your specialism in Research Methods you will choose 90CATS worth of modules (including a 30CATS dissertation) in this specialist area. The options currently available for the Research Methods specialism for the 2017/18 year are listed below and are indicative of the type of module list which will be available in future years.
- Media, Audiences and Social Change (15CATS)
- Introduction to Quantitative Methods for the Social Sciences II (15CATS)
- Understanding Social Inequalities: Issues and Methods (15CATS)
- Ethnography and the Anthropological Tradition (15CATS)
- Multivariate Secondary Analysis of Data (15CATS)
What is a specialism?
You will be able to choose an elective specialisms and this elective can be added to your final degree title. You select these once you are already here and studying by following a pathway of optional modules and completing a dissertation in the relevant area. Selections of specialisms are confirmed at the beginning of your third year, so you can try a number of topics before choosing this route.The electives can be chosen to concentrate on an area of particular interest or with a view to preparing for postgraduate study or entry to a particular field of employment. You will be taking a minimum of four modules related to the specialism and your dissertation project will explore research in the relevant specialism.