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Social Sciences

Welcome to our Social Sciences webpage

Within these pages you will find lots of information about the subject and how the department operates.

If you have any queries regarding social sciences please do not hesitate to get in touch with me.

Mrs S Hoskins
Social Sciences

Our Curriculum

Details of our curriculum can be found via these buttons

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All about the Health and Social Care Tech Award (Key Stage 4)

What is Health and Social Care?

As a subject, Health and Social Care (H&SC) combines elements of sociology, biology, nutrition, law, and ethics. Pupils of Health and Social Care will have a work placement alongside their academic studies; such a placement may take place in a nursery, residential home, hospital, or other caring establishment. Others may take a health and social care course as a route to further qualifications hoping that it will lead to employment within the sector.

Depending on their qualification, pupils may start off as care assistants and develop care to become doctors, nurses, social workers, physiotherapists, counsellors, psychotherapists,  or a range of other related occupations.

H&SC is studied in Key stage 4 and 5

Why study this subject?

This is an optional subject at Key Stage 4 and is a practical, work-related course. It introduces you to the employment area of health, social care and early years’ education and provides with an initial insight into what careers and services are available within the sector.

What will I learn?

You will explore how individuals develop physically, emotionally, socially and intellectually over time. Furthermore, you will learn which health and social care services are available and discover why people might need to them. Finally, you will complete a study on an individual and create a health and wellbeing improvement plan for that person.

How will I be assessed?

The course is made up of three units each of which will be assessed on a regular basis mainly through the marking of coursework including homework, presentations and role play for particular units studied. By the end of the course you will have completed:

  • Unit 1: Human Lifespan Development – Coursework unit worth 30% of your overall grade.
  • Unit 2: Health and Social Care Values – Coursework unit worth 30% of your overall grade.
  • Unit 3: Health and Wellbeing – Externally assessed task worth 40% of your overall grade.

Order of delivery

In year 10, students presently study both Unit 1 and Unit 3 concurrently. They will have the opportunity to sit the exam in May. If a resit is required they have a further opportunity to resit the exam in February of Year 11. The content for Unit 2 is delivered in Year 11, together with revision for unit 3 if required.

What qualifications will I get at the end of the course?

The successful completion of the course will lead to a qualification graded Pass, Merit or Distinction which is equivalent to a GCSE 9 - 4 grade.

What can this qualification lead to afterwards?

This qualification along with the skills learnt will enable you to move onto further education, training or employment in many health and social care related professions including childcare, social work, midwifery, working with individuals with disabilities and many more. It teaches a wide range of transferable skills such as research experience, debating and communication skills.

We also offer the Post-16 Progression BTEC National Extended Certificate in Health and Social Care in sixth form, which is a popular and challenging course. This supports applications to a number of degree options at university, including further study in Social Work, Nursing, Psychology, Education Studies and more.

 

A full copy of the BTEC Tech Award in H&SC specification can be found here 

 

If you’re interested in this course, please see Mrs Hoskins for further information

 

All about the Health and Social Care BTEC National Extended Certificate (Key Stage 5)

What is Health and Social Care?

As a subject, Health and Social Care (H&SC) combines elements of sociology, biology, nutrition, law, and ethics. Pupils of Health and Social Care will have a work placement alongside their academic studies; such a placement may take place in a nursery, residential home, hospital, or other caring establishment. Others may take a health and social care course as a route to further qualifications hoping that it will lead to employment within the sector.

Depending on their qualification, pupils may start off as care assistants and develop care to become doctors, nurses, social workers, physiotherapists, counsellors, psychotherapists,  or a range of other related occupations.

Why study this subject?

This is a practical, work-related course for those wishing to work in the health and social care sector. It introduces you to the employment area of health, social care and early years’ education and provides with an initial insight into what careers and services are available within the sector.

If you are an approachable, trustworthy and enthusiastic person, this course may be for you. 

What Will You Study?

All students will study: 

  • Human Lifespan Development  ( year 1 - exam unit)
  • Working in Health and Social Care  (year 2 – exam unit)
  • Meeting individual care and support needs (year 1 course work unit)
  • Physiological Disorders  (year 2 course work unit)

Order of delivery

In year 12, students presently study both Unit 1 and Unit 5 concurrently. They will have the opportunity to sit the unit 1 exam in May. If a resit is required they have a further opportunity to resit the exam in January of Year 13. If at the end of year 12, a students decides not to continue into Year 13, but has completed units 1 and 5, they will be awarded a certificate in Health and Social Care, the equivalent of an AS level.

The content for exam Unit 2 is delivered in Year 13, together with the content to complete course work unit 14. This is a shorter coursework unit and so allows students to also revise for resits if necessary.

Exam Board

Edexcel

Entry Requirements

At least a grade 5 in English Language.

What qualification will I get at the end of this course?

The BTEC Extended Certificate is equivalent to 1 A-Level  

What Next after Health and Social Care BTEC?

Studying Health and Social Care will enable you to progress into Higher Education to pursue many different careers.  

 

The Extended Certificate combined with other relevant subjects supports progression into careers such as:

  • Social work 
  • Counselling 
  • Speech and Language Therapist 
  • Physiotherapy 
  • Occupational Therapy 
  • Paramedic Practice 
  • Radiographer 
  • Podiatrist 
  • Nursing (adult, child, mental health) 
  • Midwifery 

 

Alternatively, you may choose to progress into a related apprenticeship or training position or study another subject at a degree level. 

 

A full copy of the BTEC Tech Award in H&SC specification can be found here

 

If you’re interested in this course, please see Mrs Hoskins for further information

 

All about A level Psychology

What's A Level Psychology about?

Psychology is the ‘scientific study of the mind and behaviour’, and the A Level offers an introduction to six ‘core’ areas of the discipline.

Social Psychology focuses on the social interactions people have with each other. We function fully as people in the company of, and with the help of, others.  Amongst other issues, this course explains why we conform and why we are likely to obey authority figures.

Cognitive Psychology looks at how we perceive and interpret the world around us. Cognitive psychologists are interested in ‘thinking’ and are therefore concerned with internal mental processes, and how those processes are involved in the development of behaviours such as perception and intelligence. One of the most important topics is memory.

Developmental Psychology considers how people develop and change from before they are born, throughout their lives. At A Level, the focus is on the development of an infant’s attachment to a primary care giver, and the problems that occur when this does not happen.


Psychologists interested in Psychopathology study the causes of mental disorders, such as OCD, Phobias and Schizophrenia. If we can understand what causes these disorders, then we can hopefully develop ways of treating them, so psychopathologists are also interested in therapies.

Biological Psychology looks at the role of evolutionary forces and genetics in behaviour. It investigates how the nervous system and hormones work, how the brain functions, and how changes in these can affect behaviour.

 

The AQA specification includes option topics. You (or rather Mrs Hoskins) choose 3 options to look at in detail:

  • Gender
  • Schizophrenia
  • Forensic psychology

 

Finally, to find things out Psychologists use a variety of Research Methods and A level Psychology deals with how experiments are designed and analysed.

What sort of work is involved?

A Level Psychology involves studying a wide range of topics, so there is a lot of information to absorb, and importantly, you will need to learn how to apply this knowledge. Because the topics Psychologists study are complex, it is common to find different explanations of psychological phenomena, such as the nature of intelligence. An important skill you will learn is how to evaluate conflicting theories about the topics you cover, and the studies that support, or challenge, them. Discussions about research findings will allow you to develop this skill and engaging in practical psychological research will help you to improve your knowledge of the methods psychologists use.

What background do I need?

You don't need any prior knowledge of Psychology in order to start the A level course, but you do need a solid complement of GCSEs: with at least a 5 in English and maths at GCSE.

An A Level Psychology course complements a range of other A levels, including the sciences (e.g. Biology) and the social sciences (e.g. Sociology).

Where can it lead?

A degree in Psychology does not require you to have studied Psychology A Level. However, many courses ask for a science subject, of which Psychology is one. A Level Psychology will provide you with the skills required of an undergraduate - an inquiring mind and the ability to use scientific research findings to support and challenge various claims about why people behave the way that they do.

 

Order of delivery

The order of teaching for A level psychology has been designed to enable students the gain knowledge and understanding of the subject from the starting point of having no experience of studying psychology. Students start with learning what the study of psychology is and how it has evolved, before learning psychological approaches linking all the topics within the A Level specification. The content is then broadly delivered in the order of the content of the papers, allowing students to have full knowledge of AS content at the end of year 12, before studying the A level additional content in year 13. Research methods accounts for approximately one third of the content and is taught as a stand-alone lesson for one hour per week, running concurrently with all the other psychology units.

 

Assessment

A Level Psychology is a linear subject, assessed at the end of two years of study. uses three examinations to assess you. Each of these exams comprises a number of short questions, essay questions and scenarios to which you are required to apply your knowledge.

Paper 1: Introductory Topics in Psychology (Social Influence, Memory, Attachment, and Psychopathology).

Paper 2: Psychology in Context (Approaches in Psychology, Research Methods and Biopsychology).

Paper 3: Issues and Options in Psychology (Section A is a compulsory section on Issues and Debates in Psychology. Sections B, C, D each contain questions on the in-depth option topics you've studied.

 

A full copy of the AQA A level specification for psychology can be found here

 

If you’re interested in this course, please see Mrs Hoskins for further information

All about A level Sociology

What's A level Sociology about?

Sociology is the study of society - how people interact in groups. A level Sociology examines social behaviour from a variety of perspectives: how it originates and then develops, and the ways people are organised into groups according to distinctions such as class, gender and race. A level Sociology also looks at the institutions and forces which shape and are shaped by groups within a society, such as the media, religion and education.

 

A level Sociology focuses on contemporary society, providing an awareness of the importance of social structure and actions in explaining social forces and issues. Some questions A level Sociology covers include:

  • Why do boys underachieve in the education system?
  • Why are black people five time more likely to be stopped and searched?
  • Why are women more religious when religion oppresses them?

 

A level Sociology helps you to develop knowledge and understanding of the essential sociological theories and methods (such as Functionalism, Marxism and Feminism) with which sociologists make sense of the diversity of societies, and of the forces which have and will continue to shape social change.

 

Sociology will help you to think about society in a new and critical light, questioning the status quo and developing a sophisticated understanding of the real issues that affect the society we live in. It is an excellent subject for showing you how society works and for making you aware of the range of conditions that individuals within society experience. Students often comment that they didn't realise how varied the human experience can be and how powerfully group identity shapes a person's future.

 

We study A level Sociology offered by the AQA exam board as it provides an interesting range of option topics teachers can choose from. We study Families and Households and Beliefs in Society.

 

All the exam boards cover core areas of Sociology, which include:

  • Knowledge and understanding of contemporary social issues and changes
  • Understanding and evaluating key sociological theories and perspectives
  • Understanding and evaluating the methods of sociological research
  • Developing students' interest in the social, political and economic issues that affect society

 

What sort of work is involved?

Through studying A level Sociology you will learn to think critically and independently about society and the diversity which its citizens experience. You will also develop an informed understanding of our rapidly changing world, as well as your place within it.

Sociology is an essay-based subject, so it involves a lot of reading and writing, strengthening your ability to develop an argument both in class and on paper. The subject requires you to debate issues for which there are several different but well-accepted explanations, and to become critical of different viewpoints. By analysing the strengths and limitations of all perspectives studied, you learn not to take things for granted, or to accept assertions at face value!

 

What background do I need?

  • GCSE Sociology is not required to study the subject at A level. However, you do need to have a GCSE at least at grade 5 in English, as this would help prepare you for the essay writing on the course.
  • You need to appreciate the importance of analysis and  balance in tackling conflicting points of view.
  • You should be interested in reading the news on a daily basis to be able to relate the topics learnt in class to the outside world.
  • Above all you need an outward-looking perspective on the world, and you should be prepared to 'walk in another person's shoes'.

 

Where can it lead?

Sociology provides an excellent starting point for any social science degree from Economics, Psychology, and Politics to Criminology and Philosophy. You do not need to have an A level in Sociology to take Sociology at university, though it helps.

 

Sociology A level complements a wide range of other A level subjects, though don't forget that the top universities expect you to be taking a 'challenging' combination of A levels, which means that you might be at a disadvantage if you do not include at least one 'challenging' subject in your programme, or if you also take A levels with a similar outlook (so perhaps best not to combine Sociology with Psychology and Politics A levels unless that's really essential to you).

 

However, many students choose degrees which combine Sociology with Psychology as the two subjects complement one another. While Sociology studies the influences society has upon individual behaviour, Psychology examines the impact of the individual mind.

 

Another popular combined degree is the study of Sociology with Criminology. While Sociology covers the study of crime, Criminology goes into greater depth thereby making the two subjects an ideal combination.

 

A degree in Sociology can lead to many career options including teaching, advertising, research, marketing and business. Sociology is an academic subject teaching you transferable skills so really it’s up to you which area of work you choose to go into afterwards.

 

Order of delivery

The order of teaching for A level Sociology has been designed to enable students the gain knowledge and understanding of the subject from the starting point of having no experience of studying sociology. Students start with learning what the study of sociology is, before applying the basic concepts and knowledge to the topics withing the A Level specification. The content is then broadly delivered in the order of the content of the papers, allowing students to have full knowledge of AS content at the end of year 12, before studying the A level additional content in year 13.

 

Assessment

A level Sociology is a linear qualification, which means exams take place at the end of two years. It is assessed through examinations in which consist mostly of essay-based questions, plus several structured questions.

The three A level exams each count for a third of the final mark:

  • Paper 1:a two-hour exam on Education in Society, with associated sociological theory and methods
  • Paper 2:a two-hour exam on two option topics (see earlier)
  • Paper 3:a two-hour exam on Crime and Deviance, with associated sociological theory and methods

 

A full copy of the AQA A level specification for sociology can be found here

If you’re interested in this course, please see Mrs Hoskins for further information.

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