A Foundation Year is for you if you have the ability to study for a degree, but don’t have the necessary formal qualifications to enter directly on to the Honours degree programme.
It provides you with a firm grounding in the skills and knowledge you need and introduces you to the subject of sociology, enabling you to achieve your full honours degree in four years. You will be assessed by a mix of methods, which will provide a firm grounding for further study.
Everybody has their own ideas about society, but how do we gain an accurate picture of what is really happening? Studying Sociology at Derby will help you analyse and understand the dramatic and diverse changes affecting our lives today.
You'll look at key approaches to social dynamics, politics, and culture, consider how the modern world has developed and where it’s going, and explore how we can bring about change for the better.
Challenge your perceptions
You'll choose fascinating topics which encourage you to think critically and ethically. You’ll find yourself discussing a broad range of social trends, including controversies around social inequality, race and ethnicity, politics, the nature of evil, and the cult of celebrity.
Enjoyable and engaging
The course is structured around four avenues - crime and justice; culture and belief; politics and social justice; and young people and education - which you can combine to match your own interests.
We have designed the first year of the degree to make the experience of studying Sociology enjoyable for all applicants. Those moving up from 'A' level Sociology, as well as those bringing other skills, knowledge and experiences will find something fresh and engaging on offer.
By the end of your studies, you'll have developed practical research skills, the ability to analyse arguments and the confidence to justify your own opinions.
Well prepared for the world of work
We’ll help you to acquire the knowledge, skills and experience to excel in your chosen career. You’ll take a compulsory second year work placement module where you can gain experience with an employer of your choice. This will not only broaden your practical know-how but also equip you with skills in CV writing, interview techniques and reflective thinking. There’s also the option to take an additional placement in your third year.
Build your research skills
We offer exciting opportunities for you to put your knowledge to practical use. You'll undertake ‘real world’ research through your independent studies module, exploring sociological themes in which you have developed a particular interest. We give you a thorough grounding in research methods, fieldwork and data collection which will serve you well in your future career.
Our focus is international in scope, so you’ll consider the key sociological questions facing global populations. There is the chance to study Sociology abroad for one semester as part of our Erasmus partnership with Charles University in Prague. You’ll not only explore sociological issues from an international perspective in the lively Czech capital but also gain an impressive addition to your CV. Experience overseas showcases your resourcefulness, confidence and willingness to embrace new opportunities.
We make use of fieldtrips across a number of modules. These will help you gain insights into how institutions and organisations work ‘on the ground’. They will also assist you to develop observational research skills you may wish to use in your own projects.
Our Religion and Society module, for instance, features speakers from each of the major faiths and visits places of worship. We also have an active Sociology Student Society that organises social activities and events.
In your third year you will take a work placement module, which enables you to put your growing knowledge of sociology into practice in the workplace. It’s the ideal opportunity to develop your employability skills and make vital contacts for your future career. A similar option can be taken in your third year.
Expertise to inspire you
You'll be taught by experienced teachers who are specialists in their field and whose research is opening up debates about some of the most pressing issues facing society today.
Our staff are in demand for their expertise, regularly publishing journal articles and delivering conference papers in the UK and overseas.
Please note that our modules are subject to change - we review the content of our courses regularly, making changes where necessary to improve your experience and graduate prospects.
Teaching and learning
You’ll learn through lectures, seminars, multimedia presentations, online collaboration, guest speakers and class debates. In addition to our scene-setting core modules, the choice of optional modules means you can focus on issues that match your intellectual interests and career aspirations.
During your foundation year you will be assessed mainly by coursework, and with some in-class tests.
For the rest of your degree you will be assessed through essays case studies, project work, group work presentations and online discussions - a broad range of methods allowing you to demonstrate your individual strengths and abilities.
Supporting you all the way
We pride ourselves on being approachable and supportive. You'll have a personal tutor to help and advise you throughout your degree - providing an exceptional level of support, which has been commended by external examiners.
Who will you meet
Our staff specialise in a wide range of modern social issues including economic inequalities, religion, the family, culture, gender, media, crime, politics, ethnicity, terrorism, childhood, health, social policy, extremism and alternative beliefs.
Our teaching team includes:
September 2019 typical entry requirements
|UCAS points||72 (up to 16 from AS-levels)|
|Specific requirements at A-level||N/A|
|Specific requirements at GCSE|
GCSE Maths and English are preferred, however if you don't have these qualifications you will be able to undertake Maths and English at L2 as part of your course of study.
|IELTS||6.0 (with 5.5 in each skills area)|
|Interview / Audition||N/A|
Alternative entry qualifications:
- BTEC - MPP
- Pass Access to HE Diploma 60 credits: 45 at Level 3 and 15 at Level 2.
We usually consider an A-level in General Studies as a supplementary qualification. A good application/performance will be taken into account if you do not meet the criteria/offer conditions.
Our entry requirements for this course should be read together with the University's general entry requirements, which details subjects we accept, alternative qualifications and what we're looking for at Derby.
Skills for success
Sociology offers a broad range of skills and insights, so it’s no surprise to find our graduates enjoying career success across diverse sectors. The analytical ability and research skills you develop on this course can be applied in many different job roles. 100% of Sociology graduates are in work or further study six months after graduating *Destination of Leavers Survey 15/16.
A broad career choice
Our graduates have used their degree to become teachers, lecturers, social workers, probation officers, civil servants, social researchers, counsellors, charity workers and community officers. They have also found work in retail management, marketing, public relations, banking, welfare advice, accountancy and systems analysis. A growing number of our graduates secure competitively funded places on postgraduate courses too, especially in the fields of social work and teaching.
Ensuring you’re ‘work-ready’
Our Careers and Employment Service will provide you with support from day one of your course to ensure you leave Derby as a ‘work-ready’ graduate - industry aware, motivated and enterprising. Throughout your studies, you’ll also benefit from our Personal Development Planning (PDP) scheme which enables you to reflect on your learning and develop your career ambitions. The support continues once you’ve completed your course too: you are entitled to further help and guidance from the Careers and Employment Service for up to three years after leaving the University
If you need any more information from us, eg on courses, accommodation, applying, car parking, fees or funding, please contact us and we will do everything we can to help you.Contact us
† Additional information about your studies
Download programme specification
Like most universities, we operate extended teaching hours at the University of Derby, so contact time with your lecturers and tutors could be anytime between 9am and 9pm. Your timetable will usually be available on the website 24 hours after enrolment on to your course.
Additional costs and optional extras
We’re committed to providing you with an outstanding learning experience. Our expert teaching, state-of-the-art facilities and great employability prepare you for your future career. As part of our commitment to you we aim to keep any additional study costs to a minimum. However, there are occasions where students may incur some additional costs.
Included in your fees
- Stage appropriate study skills textbook each year
- Occasional field trips around Derby. International field trip in year 3 - Berlin planned for this year
Mandatory costs not included in your fees
- Travel to mandatory 2nd year placement - organised by the student, mostly in the local area. Cost not expected to exceed £5.
Optional costs not included in your fees
- Students recommended to purchase textbook 'Making Sense of Society'. Latest edition £33.47 from Amazon.
- Travel to optional 3rd year placement - organised by the student, mostly in the local area. Cost not expected to exceed £5.
Please note: Our courses are refreshed and updated on a regular basis. If you are thinking about transferring onto this course (into the second year for example), you should contact the programme leader for the relevant course information as modules may vary from those shown on this page.