Politics and Sociology BSc (Hons) – 2018 entry

Politics and Sociology is an exciting new course that Surrey now provides. Despite being one of the first students to take the course, I'm finding that it incorporates both subjects well and that the content is coherent and interesting.

What you'll study

At a time of growing inequalities and increasing social and political unrest, it is important to figure out how political institutions can address some of the more deeply rooted problems in society. Our Politics and Sociology programme is well suited to those intrigued by the interactions between social and political trends and wish to understand them.

Programme overview

This programme will provide you with extensive knowledge of the interactions between ideology, policy making, power and social structures. Looking at social policy from the perspective of political institutions, as well as the sociology of political structures, you will engage in a range of debates about the nature and impact of ‘social problems’.

Moreover, the study of policy making in practice provides you with an overview of opportunities and constraints affecting the way that policy is formulated and implemented.

You will split your time equally between politics and sociology, therefore acquiring a sound understanding of both disciplinary traditions and cultures.

Programme structure

The structure of our programmes follows clear educational aims that are tailored to each programme. These are all outlined in the programme specification documents which include further details such as the learning outcomes. Please be aware that these specifications are applicable to the current academic year.

Modules listed are indicative, reflecting the information available at the time of publication. Please note that modules may be subject to teaching availability and/or student demand.

All programmes operate on a 15 credit modular structure over two semesters. All taught modules are semester based and are worth 15 credits, which is indicative of 150 hours of learning, comprised of student contact, private study and assessment. Project and dissertation modules can be either 15, 30, 45 or 60 credits. 

This programme is studied full-time over three or four academic years. Three years without a Professional Training Year and four years with a Professional Training Year. In order to achieve the principal award of BSc (Hons) a student must complete 360 credits, 120 credits at FHEQ levels 4, 5 and 6 respectively. In order to achieve the principal award with a professional training year students must also complete 120 credits at level P. Students are also eligible to exit the programme with the following subsidiary awards: 

  • BSc (Ord) – 300 credits with a minimum of 60 credits at FHEQ level 6
  • Diploma of Higher Education (Dip HE) – 240 credits with a minimum of 120 credits at FHEQ level 5
  • Certificate of Higher Education (Cert HE) – 120 credits at FHEQ level 4 

In order for students to progress they must achieve a minimum average of 40% and have completed all 120 credits at FHEQ levels 4 and 5 and level P.

Year 1 (FHEQ Level 4)

Year 2 (FHEQ Level 5)

Year 3 (FHEQ Level 6)

Teaching

The Department of Politics' excellence in teaching has been recognised with a number of awards and fellowships. The most recent awards include the Vice-Chancellor’s Teaching Excellence Award (Maxine David, 2012) and the Higher Education Academy Nano-Teaching Award (Simon Usherwood, 2012).

The Department has been awarded a number of fellowships through initiatives promoting excellence in Professional Training and enhancing students’ experience through enquiry-rich approaches to develop negotiation-based learning (Simon Usherwood, 2007), to incorporate survey design in teaching political psychology and electoral behaviour (Tereza Capelos, 2008), to develop enquiry-based learning and to establish an enquiry-based learning group (Maxine David and Roberta Guerrina, 2008).

As part of the Teaching with New Technologies (TeNT) scheme – which encourages lecturers to experiment with emerging technology – the Department of Politics has received awards to work with interactive whiteboards (Simon Usherwood, 2007), to use Second Life to collect public opinion data (Tereza Capelos, 2008), to use social networking websites, and to develop a wiki for EU self-study (Roberta Guerrina and Maxine David, 2008).

Finally, we maintain an active involvement with social media as a tool for teaching and learning, and strive to apply innovative teaching methods through interactive learning, direct observation and simulation games.

You will benefit from inclusion in and engagement with research projects that our academic staff are currently undertaking.

Assessment

Modules are assessed individually and credits are awarded for the successful completion of each one. Assessment takes place through a combination of examination and/or coursework, practical examinations and reports.

Contact hours

Contact hours can vary across our modules. Full details of the contact hours for each module are available from the University of Surrey's Module Catalogue. See the programme structure section for more information.

Academic support

You are allocated a personal tutor to guide you through the programme and advise on your option choices and future career, helping you to get the most out of your time at Surrey.

Politics research seminars

The Department of Politics sponsors a regular research seminar series, which meets every two weeks during term-time and brings together academic staff and postgraduate and undergraduate students from the University.

The purpose of the research seminars is to provide a forum for the presentation of cutting-edge research papers and to increase awareness among our students about developments in diverse themes of research in the field today.

We regularly invite high-profile UK and international scholars to present their work, and we encourage discussions with the audience. All members of the University and wider public community are welcome to participate.

Active in outreach

The Department of Politics is engaged in several stimulating outreach projects and opens its doors to students of local schools and colleges.

Regular activities involve:

  • Giving research-related talks to secondary education institutions and neighbouring universities
  • Contributing to the Education Liaison programme
  • Hosting a politics conference for schools
  • AS and A2 revision lectures and a Question Time event, incorporating an essay competition with a prize
  • Organising a Politics Month which includes a number of politics events
  • Launching a survey of British politics and electoral preferences in the wider Surrey community

Global opportunities

We give our students the opportunity to acquire international experience during their degrees by taking advantage of our exchange agreements with overseas universities or by completing a Professional Training placement abroad. In addition to the hugely enjoyable and satisfying experience, time spent abroad adds a distinctive element to your CV. To check where you can go, visit our Global Exchanges pages.

It is possible to spend your third year on study exchange with one of our European partner universities. These include:

  • Aarhus University
  • University of Copenhagen
  • University of Maastricht
  • Seoul National University
  • North Carolina State University
  • Brock University
  • Swinburne University
  • Monash University

If you choose to study at a European partner you will be eligible for an Erasmus+ grant.

The advantages of participation in the exchange scheme are numerous. They include exposure to a different culture and the challenges of living in a new country, and the opportunity to learn a new language and experience new teaching practices and approaches to political science/international relations.

These challenges and experiences ensure that you emerge from the year abroad with increased self-confidence and widened employment opportunities that derive from your improved language competencies and communication skills.

You will also acquire a fresh perspective on your subject matter that significantly improves performance in your final year.

Learn more about the Erasmus programme.

Careers and Professional Training 

We are very proud of our track record for graduate employability. One of the main reasons for our graduate employability success is our Professional Training placement programme which is one of the largest in the World, with over 2,300 partner organisations in the UK and overseas. To find out more visit our Careers and Professional Training pages.

All our BSc programmes have the option of a Professional Training placement after your second year. You can either take a politics and sociology-related work placement or study politics and sociology overseas, or a combination of the two. In all cases, the placement allows you to apply and develop your understanding, as well as discover new approaches and elements.

The distinguishing feature of our degree programmes is their applied nature. You will be taught how to apply theoretical understandings of politics and international relations to world events and issues. Additionally, we equip students with the skills necessary to find a placement. 

The aim of our Professional Training placement is to provide you with a chance to experience first-hand how politics operates in the ‘real world’, at a voluntary sector organisation, a government or local authority department, an MP or MEP’s office, or an international organisation.

Current and previous providers include:

  • CityYear
  • Citizens’ Advice Bureau
  • Save the Children
  • IPSOS MORI
  • Cape Town Refugee Centre
  • Runnymede Trust
  • The Shadow Defence Secretary's Office
  • A range of political parties (Conservative, Labour and the Socialist Workers Party)

Graduate prospects

Graduates over the last few years entered employment in companies, organisations and public life such as:

  • Houses of Parliament
  • Deloitte
  • Snapdragon Consulting
  • City Year
  • YMCA
  • International Institute for Strategic Studies
  • Surrey County Council

In addition, many of our graduates have gone on to study for Masters degrees in a range of programmes and countries. We are also proud of our record of alumni who have continued education up to doctoral level and become academic scholars in their own right.

2018 Entry requirements

What qualifications do you need?

A-level

ABB

Access to HE Diploma

45 Level 3 credits overall including 30 at Distinction and 15 at Merit

BTEC (QCF Level 3) Extended Diploma

DDD

European Baccalaureate

74 per cent overall

International Baccalaureate

32 overall including 6,5,5 at Higher Level

Science Practical Certificate

Applicants taking the Science Practical Endorsement are required to pass

Scottish Highers

AABBB

Welsh Baccalaureate

Pass overall with ABB from the Advanced Skills Challenge Certificate and two A-levels

Other international qualifications

If you are an international student and you don’t meet the entry requirements to this degree, we offer the International Foundation Year.

Select your country:

Required subjects

English Language and Mathematics at Grade C(4) (or equivalent).

Selection process

Offers are normally made in terms of grades.

Suitable candidates will be invited to an Applicant Day. During the visit to the University the candidate can find out more about the programme and meet staff and students.

English language requirements

6.5 overall with 6.0 in each element

If you are an international student and you are concerned that your English is not to the required standard, you may benefit from the International Foundation Year, run by the Surrey International Study Centre.

Please note that the University of Surrey offers English language programmes and is also an IELTS Test Centre.

See 2017 entry information

Course Options

Qualification Course Length Professional Training UCAS code KIS code
BSc (Hons) 3 years LL23 View KIS data set
BSc (Hons) 4 years LL24 View KIS data set

Tuition fees

View a complete listing of all ongoing fees for our undergraduate programmes.

The University will assess your fee status. If you are unsure whether you are likely to be considered a home, EU or overseas student for fees purposes, the UKCISA website offers more information.

Professional Training placement fees

Programmes marked with a tick in the table above include a Professional Training placement.

A reduced fee is charged for Professional Training placements.

Fees will not have to be paid up front for those eligible students who decide to take up the Government's loan for higher education fees. The Professional Training placement is a key factor in the high employability rates achieved by students with Surrey degrees.

Bursaries and scholarships

We're committed to making sure that we offer support for students who might need it.

Find out more

International students

Experienced staff in our International Student Office are available to help from the moment you consider studying at the University. We offer professional advice on immigration, visa issues, entry qualifications, pre-departure information, employment regulations and international student welfare.

How to apply

Find out how and when to apply to study at Surrey.

More info

Disclaimer

Modules listed are indicative, reflecting the information available at the time of publication. Please note that modules may be subject to teaching availability and/or student demand.

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