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Politics and Sociology (BSc Econ)

  • LL32

3 years (full-time) / n/a (part-time) / n/a (distance / e-Learning)

Combining Politics with Sociology enables you to acquire a broad understanding of society with a particular focus on politics. Our courses are taught by experts with an international reputation for their work. By the end of the course you will be studying at the cutting edge of the discipline, learning about new ideas and methods from the very people who are developing them.

In your first year you concentrate on core modules. In your second and final year you choose from among a wide range of option modules.

Politics is central to our everyday lives. It is about who gets what, when, where, how and why. It is about people and power and involves drama and events of great significance for everyone's lives. Just think of the electoral struggle between Left and Right, the power play of the Cold War, and the great enterprise of European integration. Studying for a politics degree means investigating why politics works as it does. You explore how parliaments and governments function and evaluate political ideas such as power, freedom, democracy, conflict, legitimacy and accountability.

Sociology cultivates in students the ‘sociological imagination’ necessary to understand how individual actions and beliefs shape, and are shaped by, the social conditions of their existence, and how to apply this imagination to a wide spectrum of old and new phenomena. In the School of Social Sciences, our expertise includes migration and ethnicity, urban life, the study of sexuality, health and the body, the construction and reconstruction of identities, the rise of consumer culture, and the profound transformations in social, cultural and private life which the processes of economic and technological globalisation have delivered.

Politics and Sociology

Key Facts

UCAS Code LL32
Duration 3 years
How to apply
Typical places available Politics and International Relations admits around 100 students every year to its undergraduate degree programmes.
The School of Social Sciences admits around 300 students every year to its undergraduate degree programmes.
Typical applications received Politics and International Relations- 545
The School of Social Sciences - 1500
Scholarships & Bursaries
Typical A-level offer ABB excluding General Studies
Admissions Tutors Dr Jonathan Kirkup (Politics)

Rachel Swann (Sociology)

Tel Number Politics: 029 2087 5406
Sociology: 029 2087 5122
Email address Politics:
School website Politics:

The first year is an introductory year. It is the results of the second and final years of study that determine your degree classification. The degree is made up of compulsory modules as well as optional modules, allowing you to tailor it to reflect your specific interests. A particular feature is the option of writing a dissertation in your final year. This is highly regarded by employers because it indicates that you can do original research.

Year 1

You start by studying core Politics and Sociology modules:

A further module is chosen from among other Politics modules (see below) or modules from other subjects, such as French, History or English.

Years 2 and 3

In Years 2 and 3 you choose half your modules (in terms of credits) from Politics and half from Sociology. Please note that the lists of modules below are indicative only and that module availability may vary from year to year.

Lectures provide a broad structure for each subject, introduce key concepts, and convey relevant up-to-date information. These are outlined in course syllabi.

Seminars provide an opportunity to ask questions and discuss key ideas in a small group environment. Their purpose is to assist you to integrate the information and ideas you receive from lectures and readings and to explore issues critically and in depth. Set questions and readings form the basis for discussion by directing your attention to relevant aspects of the subject matter and to various types of sources of information. Giving presentations develops your capacity to gather, organise and synthesise relevant information and ideas and to communicate these in a logical and concise manner. Tutor-led and student-led discussion hones logical skills and gives you practice in applying different concepts, theories and methods to the subject-matter at hand. It also exposes you to different interpretations of political ideas and events. Group problem-solving helps to develop collaborative skills.

Your scheduled contact hours will be supplemented by the opportunity for individual meetings with academic staff, by supportive academic progress meetings with your Personal Tutor and by the opportunity to attend research seminars and careers activities.

Essays and examinations are used not only for assessment purposes but also as a means of developing your capacities to gather, organise, evaluate and deploy relevant information and ideas from a variety of sources in reasoned arguments. Prior advice and written feedback (for essays) are used to help you understand what is required.


The optional final-year dissertation provides you with the opportunity to investigate a specific topic of interest to you in depth and so develop your capacity to undertake research and communicate its findings, qualities increasingly prized by employers.

Pastoral care

You will be allocated a personal tutor for the entire period you are at the University. Personal tutors are members of the academic staff who are available to students seeking advice, guidance and help.

Typical A-level Offer ABB, excluding General Studies
Typical WBQ Offer Welsh Baccalaureate Advanced Diploma with a Grade A in the Core and grades BB at A-level
Typical Int Bacc Offer 32 points overall, to include 6,6,6 at higher level and English at subsidiary level 6
Other Applications from those offering alternative qualifications are welcome. Please see detailed admissions and selection criteria for more information.

A list of commonly accepted alternative entry qualifications and admissions and selection criteria for this degree programme can be read here.

For employers this degree means that you have an excellent understanding of social processes in general and politics and government in particular that will be of use whether you work in government or in the private or voluntary sectors. Business firms are interested in recruiting Politics graduates due to the fact that they inevitably have frequent dealings with government. A combined Politics and Sociology degree also demonstrates that you possess highly developed intellectual and communications skills.

This prepares you for careers in a wide range of fields. These include journalism, broadcasting, local government, management, publishing, law, accountancy, education, the voluntary sector, policy research and consultancy, the civil service, social care professions, youth and community work, human resource management; social science, and market and policy research. Among the employers of recent graduates are political parties, local government, private companies and non-governmental organisations. Many graduates go on to Masters degrees.

Next intake: September each year

More information

Politics and International Relations

School of Social Sciences