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2024/25 Undergraduate Module Catalogue

SLSP1201 Making Sense of Society: Reading Social Theory

20 creditsClass Size: 300

Module manager: Dr Benjamin Hirst

Taught: Semester 2 (Jan to Jun) View Timetable

Year running 2024/25

This module is mutually exclusive with

SLSP1200Sociology of Modern Societies

Module replaces

SLSP1200 Sociology of Modern Societies

This module is approved as a discovery module

Module summary

This module will introduce students to core concepts and theoretical approaches in sociology. Whilst many of us already know a great deal about society because we are an important part of it, in this module students are provided with the perspectives and the concepts needed to develop that understanding into a powerful critical tool.


The module will:

Develop understanding of the main theoretical perspectives relating to the formation and history of societies

Support students to develop the skills and knowledge necessary to contribute to informed debate about the formation of sociology and sociological accounts of societies

Develop skills in evaluating the strengths and weaknesses of the various theories and perspectives on these issues

Develop skills in sociological thinking and analysis

Learning outcomes
On completion of the module, students will be able to:

1. Understand key approaches within sociology and social theory

2. Identify strengths and limitations of different theoretical approaches

3. Develop confidence in reading sociology and social theory

4. Discuss theories confidently in verbal and written formats

5. Be attentive to the social contexts in which theories are formed

6. Develop skills in applying concepts to understand social life


In this module, we introduce students to a wide range of approaches to understanding the social world developed over the course of sociology’s history. We consider how sociologists conceptualise the world we inhabit, and in doing so, explore the contexts in which theories are formed and the problems they are designed to address. The module focuses on developing the crucial skill of reading sociological texts and students are encouraged to develop a critical perspective, with this skill positioned as a foundational building block in the development of the sociological imagination. The module asks the question ‘how does sociological thinking and the sociological imagination need to be reimagined to deal with the challenges of our age?’

Teaching methods

Delivery typeNumberLength hoursStudent hours
On-line Learning111.0011.00
Group learning111.0011.00
Private study hours167.00
Total Contact hours33.00
Total hours (100hr per 10 credits)200.00

Opportunities for Formative Feedback

Students will receive formative feedback during tutorial discussions and at tutor’s open-door hours.

Methods of assessment

Assessment typeNotes% of formal assessment
Total percentage (Assessment Coursework)100.00

Normally resits will be assessed by the same methodology as the first attempt, unless otherwise stated

Reading list

The reading list is available from the Library website

Last updated: 10/06/2024 16:14:08


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