Welcome to the Sociology Department

Students at Hayfield can opt to study sociology at both GCSE (Years 9-11) and at AS and A level (Years 12 – 13) Sociology is a very popular option in both key stages . The subject is staffed by subject specialists and has a record of excellent examination results.

Part of the Humanities Faculty, Sociology is an exciting and interesting subject and highly relevant to student’s lives. It encourages them to take a questioning approach to evidence and issues and develops a range of analytical and evaluative skills.

Our Department
Mr S. Dutton  (Head of Sociology Department)
Mrs E Conroy

Key Stage 4
Students will follow the new AQA specification (first examination 2019). The course will follow the following topic areas;

  • Sociological basic concepts and the sociological approach – culture/norms/values / roles / status/socialisation / social control/ Sociological theories- Marxism, functionalism and feminism.
  • Sociological research methods – questionnaires/interviews/participant observation/ official statistics and personal documents.
  • Families and households –  types of family / marriage and divorce/ the dark side of family life/ theories of the family/ role relationships in the family
  • Education – the role of education in society / factors influencing educational achievement – class, gender and ethnicity / different forms of education and schooling.
  • Crime and deviance – The difference between crime and deviance / different types of deviance/ the relative nature of crime and deviance / the causes of crime / crime prevention and solutions to crime / the measurement of crime / Crime and class, gender and ethnicity.


Sociology at GCSE asks some awkward questions. The questions below will give a flavour of the type of issues, discussions and debates sociologists are interested in.

  • Why are fewer people choosing to marry and why do almost a half of all marriages end in divorce?
  • Is the family a good thing for everybody?
  • Does the modern man do their fair share in the home?
  • Why are more and more women choosing not to have children?
  • Why do girls outperform boys in the education system?
  • Should private education be abolished?
  • Why do some ethnic groups do better than others in school?
  • Why are most recorded crimes committed by men?
  • Does prison work?
  • Is crime caused by poverty ?

Key Stage 5 – AS and A Level Sociology

The Sociology Department at Hayfield is very well established and has an excellent record of examination success. The students complete the AQA specification (7192)

In Year 12 students complete Year one of the A level ( this also constitutes the AS level if students decide to leave after Year 12). The following topics are studied;

  • Families and households
  • The sociology of education
  • Methods in context
  • Research methods

In year 13 students complete Year 2 of A level . This includes;

  • Sociological theories
  • Crime, deviance and social control.
  • Beliefs in society

Assessment at Key Stage 5 is by three examination papers which test different areas of the specification . There is no coursework  option .


Sociology is a non – vocational subject but an A level in Sociology will allow the student to enhance and develop a wide range of transferable and much sought after skills .  Successful  sociology students need to have excellent skills of analysis and critical evaluation and former students  have entered a wide range of careers after completing their A levels. These include ;

  • The Police Service
  • Social and Probation work
  • The Prison Service
  • Nursing and caring professions
  • Child welfare
  • Teaching
  • Charity organisations
  • The legal profession


For further information about any aspect of courses we offer please contact Mr S Dutton  (Head of Sociology) via the school telephone number 01302 770589 or via email at sdu@thehayfieldschool.co.uk