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BA in Sociology with Specialism in Research Methods

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, and considers questions of research 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 120CATS* 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 60CATS worth of modules and a 30CATS dissertation in your relevant specialist area. See the box below for the currently available modules in this specialist area.

(*Example: 30CATS of optional modules - is the equivalent of two term-long modules or one year-long module.)

Please note: these modules are indicative of offerings in 2017/18 and may be subject to change.

1st year modules
2nd year modules
3rd year modules


Optional modules for the Specialism in Research Methods

To claim your specialism in Research Methods you will choose 75CATS worth of modules, (including a 30CATS dissertation), in this specialist area. The options currently available for the 2017/18 year which could be chosen for the Research Methods specialism, are listed below and are indicative of the type of module list which could be available in future years.

First year:

Second year:

Third year:

Further information

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What is a specialism?

You will be able to choose from one of six elective specialisms and this elective specialism can be added to your final degree title.

The elective specialism 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.