BA (Hons) Sociology

This thought-provoking Sociology degree covers everything from death and religious belief to social media use and digital surveillance.

Course detail

Start Date

September

Duration

2 or 3 years full-time (depending on whether students join the programme in Year 2 or Year 3)

Award Title

BA (Hons)

UCAS Code

L3L0

Sociology

Why study Abertay's BA (Hons) in Sociology?

Sociology involves thinking critically about the world around you to develop an understanding of how people engage and interact in groups, institutions and societies. This thought-provoking degree covers everything from death and religious belief to social media use and digital surveillance.

Please note: This course is advanced entry only to Year 2 or Year 3 depending on your previous qualifications.

This Sociology degree is designed to give you an understanding of how individuals shape and are shaped by the social contexts they inhabit. It’s a challenging but rewarding programme designed to equip you with the aptitudes and capabilities that public and private sector employers demand, including:

  • How to analyse complex issues
  • How to engage in critical thinking
  • How to communicate to a variety of audiences
  • How to develop innovative solutions to real-world challenges

Are you analytical, curious and ready to question your own assumptions about the world? Are you keen to hone your communication skills, learn how to articulate an argument and shape your own career direction? Then Sociology is the course for you.

This course scored an incredible 90% for Overall Student Satisfation in the 2020 National Student Survey. And Abertay ranked in the top three Scottish Universities for Student Satisfaction.

Welcome to Sociology at Abertay.

Online Open Days 2021

An Online Open Day is a great way to help you decide what and where you want to study.

Join us virtually on Wed 29 Sep or Sat 30 Oct to chat to lecturers and students, see the facilities for the course(s) you're interested in, and get a flavour of our city-centre campus.

BOOK YOUR PLACE

An Abertay Student on a yellow coloured background

Your Journey Starts Here

Studying sociology will keep you at the forefront of the key political issues and social debates defining the 21st century, from social mobility and multiculturalism to human rights and climate change.

Teaching on the course is informed by our strong staff research profile, and includes substantive areas such as crime, technology, gender and sexuality, race and ethnicity, the media, and the environment.

You’ll also receive a strong grounding in sociological theory and research methods, along with training in specialist data-analysis software. In the final year of the course, we also offer you a community-based work placement module.

Student on Lion Street, Dundee

About Your Modules

All modules shown are indicative and reflect course content for the current academic year. Modules are reviewed annually and may be subject to change. If you receive an offer to study with us we will send you a Programme document  that sets out exactly which modules you can expect to take as part of your Abertay University degree programme. Please see Terms and Conditions for more information.

Modules

Year 2 Core Modules

You must study and pass all three core modules

Brief description

Introduction to the work of three key social theorists of the 19th and early 20th centuries, Karl Marx, Max Weber and Emile Durkheim. Their work is used to critically illustrate the nature of capitalist modernity and the foundations of contemporary sociological theory and practice.

Module content:

  • Karl Marx: Capitalism, Workers` Movement and The Communist Manifesto (1848); Dialectics, Fetishism and the Purpose of Critique; Value, Labour, Money; Capital, Surplus Value and Exploitation; Primitive Accumulation, the Logic of Separation and the Question of Crisis; Class Struggle, Revolution and Communism.
  • Max Weber: Introduction: contextual overview and biography; The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism; Conception of sociology and methodology; Bureaucratisation and rationalisation; Class, status and party; Political sociology: power, legitimacy and the state.
  • Emile Durkheim: Introduction: contextual overview and biography; The Rules of Sociological Method; Suicide; The Division of Labour in Society; Morality and Religion; Crime, Deviance and the Law.

Brief description

Media discourses of criminal activity and the state. 

Module content:

  • Crimes of the Powerful: The state as criminal actor.
  • Media, Crime and Power: Investigative Journalism, Corruption and the Political Process.
  • State Corporate Corruption.
  • The Nation State and Violence.
  • Terrorism and Counter Terrorism in the Global War on Terror.
  • Crimes Against Humanity.
  • Transnational Organised Crime.
  • The Geopolitical War on Drugs.
  • Urban Legends, Conspiracy theories and other Stigmatised Knowledge.

Brief description

The way in which people's lives are inter-twined with the digital revolution from a sociological perspective.

Module content: 

  • Everyday digital life: The sociological significance of the incorporation of digital technology within everyday practices. Examples include: shopping and consumption, education, and games and entertainment.
  • The digital self: This aspect of the module considers the use and impact of digital technology on the ways in which online identities are fashioned, primarily through the use of social media.
  • Contemporary issues: This aspect of the module considers controversial and/or contemporary issues such as: the (ab)use of 'big data', bots and the Turing Test, higher education and the 'University of Google', trust and reputation online, data-mapped selves.

Year 2 Option Modules

You must study and pass one pair of option modules for either Criminology or Psychology

Criminological Theories I - The Positive Criminal

Brief description

Introduction to a range of theoretical approaches that explain crime, deviance and criminal behaviour. The particular focus is on the construction of the positive criminal. 

Module content: 

  • Classical criminology: Crime as free will. Social Contact, Beccaria and Bentham. 
  • Biological positivism: Explores the work of Lombroso and the Italian School of Criminology and  the continued attraction of biological explanations of Criminality. 
  • Anomie and crime: Durkheim, Merton and Anomie. 
  • Social disorganisation theory: Chicago School, particularly the work of Clifford Shaw. 
  • Differential association and differential organisation: Sutherlands critique of Social Disorganisation.
  • Juvenile delinquency and subcultural explanations of criminality: Examine both the American and British research on Subcultures and Crime. 
  • Matza and the critique of positivism.

Criminological Theories II - Crime, Power and Social Change

Brief description

The emergence and development of key criminological perspectives of continuing relevance for the understanding of crime and processes of criminalisation. 

Module content: 

  • Challenging criminological positivism: Labelling perspectives, Marxism and crisis, The New Criminology / Radical Criminology. 
  • Theorising and managing crime and criminality: Left realism, Right realism, Control theories, Situational crime prevention. 
  • Innovation in criminological theory: Feminist criminology, Critical criminology / Green Criminology, Cultural criminology.

Cognitive and Social Perspectives in Psychology

Brief description

Introduction to the cognitive and social aspects of the British Psychological Society (BPS) core curriculum. Cognitive psychology encompasses much of what are considered ‘mental processes’. These processes range from relatively low-level processes of perception to higher level things like memory and decision making. Social psychology is the study of how we process information about others, and the biases that influence this processing.

Module content:

  • Conceptual and historical perspectives in cognition: Origins of research in cognition, and cognitive neuropsychology. Understanding how cognitive processes operate in different brain areas.
  • Neural architectures: Neurones, receptive fields and vision. How does the brain connect the world outside with our thoughts and experiences?
  • Perception and recognition: The recognition of objects and faces.
  • Attention: Is cognition a limited resource to be allocated carefully or do we attend to everything?
  • Learning and memory: What circumstances determine how we learn new information? How is this information stored in our brains and how do we access this information while reasoning?
  • Decision making and problem solving: How do we choose responses; how do we solve problems?
  • Conceptual and historical issues in social psychology: Defining social cognition and social behaviour. Understanding classic and contemporary approaches, and the social processing biases they reveal.
  • Pro- and anti-social behaviour: Exploring the influence of social learning on aggression and the social factors that influence helping behaviour.
  • Attitudes and social influences: Understanding attitudes and the attitude-behaviour link, routes to attitude change. Conformity and obedience.
  • Social identity, stereotypes and prejudice: Exploring the impact of social identity on perception and behaviour. Stereotypes, prejudice and discrimination.

 

Essential Research Methods and Analysis for Psychology

Develop further the knowledge and skills required to design, conduct, analyse and report quantitative and qualitative psychological research in American Psychological Association (APA) format.

Module content:

  • Methods of research: Main quantitative and qualitative research methods available to psychologists; Use in applied settings; advantages and disadvantages.
  • The experimental method: Variables and levels; hypotheses; design - basic and advanced; control techniques; validity and reliability in experimentation; ethics in experimentation.
  • Data analysis - descriptive statistics: Data types; measures of central tendency; measures of dispersion; normal distribution; graphing data; confidence intervals.
  • Data analysis - inferential statistics: Test selection; parametric and nonparametric 2-sample test of difference; Within and Between one-way ANOVA and Non-parametric ANOVA, effect size; power; correlation; Tests of both internal and external reliability; inter rater reliability.
  • Qualitative methods: Types of qualitative research techniques; questionnaire design, interviewing - types, advantages, disadvantages; analysing interview material.
  • Quantitative methods: Experimental method, two variable tests of difference (parametric and non-parametric), tests of relationships (parametric and non-parametric); multilevel testing (parametric and non-parametric), follow up testing (parametric and non-parametric). Reliability analysis using Cronbach’s alpha, quantitative content analysis, item analysis.
  • Ethics: Creating and conducting ethical research based on BPS Ethical Guidelines.
  • Reporting research: Sections and content of an APA formatted psychology lab report; APA referencing.
  • Information searching: Structured and unstructured search; Search using the Internet and locating electronic journals using the university library system and appropriate data bases.
  • IT skills: Designing a lab report template using Word for Windows; using SPSS for data analysis.

Years 1 and 2 Elective Modules

You must study and pass one elective module of your choosing

Introduction of the concept of smart cities - hard infrastructure, social capital including local skills and community institutions, and digital technologies to fuel sustainable economic development and provide an attractive environment for all.

Module content:

  • Social impacts

There is an overall need for theoretical and methodological plurality in how we assess the impact and value of future cities in terms for individual and societal well−being. Gaps in our understanding relate to the complex ways individuals and groups engage with built and natural settings, the cultural goods and consequent benefits that may arise and the inequalities associated with these cultural benefits.

  • Security

Different types of cyber-attacks that could be launched against a Smart City. Impact of cyber-attacks. Approaches to securing the smart grid and critical infrastructure, i.e. improving cyber resilience.

  • Sustainable urban food production

Includes the long established allotments movement to large-scale projects based on sustainability throughout the food chain. Urban food production includes the long established allotments movement. The demand for urban growing also responds to the densification and intensification of living areas, due to population rise, migration and demographic aging with lower housing and ‘garden’ space standards placing greater importance on collective production.

  • Energy, waste and water

At present, water and wastewater facilities are often the largest and most energy intensive responsibilities owned and operated by local governments, representing up to 35% of municipal energy use. Future cities will need to utilise more sustainable methods of water and wastewater management and renewable energy production.

  • Digital technologies

​Digital technologies will play a major role in creating sustainable and resilient cities offering a vehicle for more inclusive decision−making process and promoting dialog amongst architects, urban planners, the public and technologists.

Develop a range of skills, knowledge and techniques within the natural, technological and social sciences relevant to the study of environmental sustainability and life in the twenty-first century. Understand the critical issues that confront humanity and begin to discern appropriate responses.

Module content:
The challenge of sustainable development
Problems associated with life in the 21st Century and the relationship to scientific provisionalism and uncertainty.

The genesis of sustainable development concept
Developments associated with the Club of Rome are outlined while Limits to Growth and the Tragedy of the Commons.

Evolution of sustainable development
The Reo Summit and Suitability, and Policy Developments thereof.

Scientific inquiry and sustainable development
Controversial issues like climate change, oil peak, and food production and the role of science in helping delimit them as problematic.

Mainstreaming sustainability
Sustainability and Mitigation, Adaptation and Resilience, as individual and social concerns, and their role in transformation.

Communicating sustainability
Human well-being, Environmental Justice, Environmental Policy and the practicalities of Sustainability in Scotland.

Sustainable development in practice
Community Empowerment associated with Land Reform. Energy Production and Food Production in Tayside.

Ethics and sustainability policy
Active citizenship and globalisation.

Innovating locally, transforming globally
Transformations required to embrace Sustainability.

Active relationship for sustainable futures
Thinking globally, acting locally.

How lifestyle can effect physical and mental well-being. This module enables you to reflect on your own lifestyle choices and how to incorporate good health behaviours into your life.

Module content:

  • Sleep and stress
    The impact of sleep and stress on health and performance. Completion of sleep diaries and questionnaires related to sleep patterns and stress.
     
  • Physical activity
    Current physical activity recommendations, components of physical fitness.
     
  • Physical inactivity
    Understanding why people are inactive. The link between physical inactivity, obesity and type 2 diabetes.
     
  • Physical activity and mental well-being
    The effects of physical activity on mental well-being.
     
  • The effect of carbohydrate consumption and exercise on blood glucose
    Measurement and recording of blood glucose in response to the carbohydrate ingestion and exercise.
     
  • Simple health and fitness testing
    Measurement and recording of data. Tests will include blood pressure, strength, endurance and flexibility. Data will be compared with normative values for these tests.

Develop critical thinking skills that form the basis for progression across the academic disciplines of the university. Learn how to recognise, construct, evaluate, criticise and defend different forms of argument.


Module content:
•    Potential 'timeless' debates 
Debates delivered by internal and external experts on: e.g. existence of God; privacy and civil society; private property; money as source of 'evil'; nature/nurture; free speech; pornography; capital punishment; prostitution; animal experimentation; meaning of justice; abortion; affirmative action; just war; trade union power; good life/good political community; human nature; monarchy; value of democracy; meaning of equality; citizenship rights.

•    Potential 'timely' debates
Debates delivered by internal and external experts on: eg, Scottish independence, academic freedom; drug legalisation; drug use in sport; immigration; free health care; war on terror; EU membership; euthanasia; progressive taxation; race and gender discrimination; gay marriage; human rights; politics/sport; global warming; internet censorship; nuclear power; education league tables; nuclear weapons; GM agriculture; religion; cloning; fair trade; value of contemporary culture.

•    Critical thinking seminars
Follow-up discursive discipline specific seminar sessions led by teaching staff on topics covered in formal debates. Learn to identify types of argument presented, evaluate perspectives and to reflect upon their own reasoning processes and value assumptions. The debates and seminars facilitate a foundation for the acquisition of graduate attributes.

•    WEB CT Wiki discussion forum
Work in small groups to write a short 800 word indicative "Thinking Summary" online Wiki of the arguments presented in each debate. These summaries will be constructed by each designated Thinking Group of three students using the Wiki facility on Blackboard which will facilitate further discussion on the moderated WEB CT discussion forum.

The social, managerial, economic, political, and technical challenges and opportunities associated with emerging renewable energy innovation, production, supply and consumption.


Module content:
•    Renewable energy non-technical challenges and opportunities
Social and political challenges and opportunities of renewable energy production supply and consumption. Economic and environmental challenges of renewable energy production supply and consumption. Strategic and managerial challenges of renewable energy production supply and consumption.


•    Renewable energy technological challenges and opportunities
Geotechnical, Geophysical and Hydrographic information; Knowledge of sources of hydrographic information and interpretation of published charts. Forces on structures; Appreciation of the various forces acting on marine structures. Technical limitations and challenges of energy distribution systems and energy storage. Current technological development trend, collaborative innovation in renewable energy.

An understanding of the concepts of tolerance, and the importance of making sound ethical decisions. Develop the qualities, characteristics and skills to meet the aspiration for Abertay graduates to become global and active citizens. 

Module content:
•    Introduction to equality and ethics legislation 

•    Diversity competence and moral/ethical reasoning 
Inclusiveness, equal opportunities, positive action, reasonable adjustment.

•    Attributes for the workplace and for global citizenship.

•    Reflective practice 
Application of models of reflective practice.

•    Contemporary issues

Learn how to adjust language to suit context. Analyse a range of linguistic issues, including “proper English”, how language can be used to create moral panics, and the ethics of communication.

Module content:

•    “Good English”
The role of standardisation, dialect and idiolect − how we choose language to reflect our identities and our role in a speech or discourse community.

Language and influence
How the media constructs narratives to persuade or inform the audience (and how to tell the difference).

Creating a narrative across genres
The conventions, freedoms and limitations of different forms; using these forms in new ways.

Narrative changes over time
How authors reinvent old stories to reflect current concerns.

Technical writing
The use and manipulation of data; hearing the author's voice; critiquing "bad science".

The ethics of communication
 (Electronic) media and ownership, attribution and theft.

“Personal” digital safety to make computer security fun, practical and eye-opening.  Learn the base knowledge that will continue to be relevant to future generations of devices.

Module content:
•    Current state of computer security
An overview including legal aspects.

•    Cyber-attacks, vulnerabilities and threats
Malware, Network attacks (denial of service, packet sniffing etc.), bots and rootkits. How the bad guys can obtain your password.

•    Information leakage
Recovery and forensics recovering deleted or corrupted files. What your browser knows about you. Web browser forensics.

•    Securing networks, accounts and devices
Defence against malware, honeypots, Secure protocols, intrusion detection, Password security, Mobile device security.

•    Human aspects of cyber security 
The Psychology of Hackers, Social Engineering, identity theft, Usability vs security.

•    Breaking the code
An introduction to cryptography, Encryption and Decryption, public and private keys, the key exchange problem.

•    History of cryptography 
The Caesar cipher, polyalphabetic ciphers, the Playfair cipher, the role of Enigma and the Bletchley Park cryptographers in WWII.

•    Computers and Crypto Diffie-Hellman and RSA encryption
Phil Zimmerman and “Pretty Good Protection". Quantum Cryptography – Provably unbreakable information hiding. Mathematical Underpinnings – Large prime numbers and why they matter.

•    Steganography
 A picture's worth a thousand words when you're hiding the wood in the trees.

•    The law, society and cryptography 
Why you can be imprisoned for forgetting your password. The Civil Liberties Arguments for and against strong-crypto. International perspectives on information hiding, information freedom, the right to privacy and the conflicts between these. Are unbreakable cyphers an unqualified “good thing”?

Develop perspectives on the key challenges faced by humankind such as environmental change, pollution, food security, energy provision, conflicts, terrorism, emerging diseases, and changing demographics. Understand the overwhelming complexity of the problems and the need for interdisciplinary approaches to create solutions.

Module content:

  • Interdisciplinary research
    Introductory lectures will discuss the definitions, methods, benefits, challenges, and drawbacks of disciplinary and interdisciplinary approaches and the role of public policy influencing research
     
  • Global challenges
    Challenges from different disciplines. Examples include: Climate Change: causes and impact; Serious Games: science and application of visualization and games; Global Security: valuing ecosystems: balancing policy, economics and environment; Contemporary Challenges to Healthy Living; Food Security: global threats and local needs; Energy Poverty: space travel.

Design an activity to communicate and present scientific principles to primary school children. Learn about working as a group and how to communicate complex ideas.

Module content:
Developing a science communication activity
Target audience, sources of information to identify suitable activities (CfE documentation etc.), health and safety, issues around working with specific groups, accessibility, ethics, costing and sustainability.

The landscape of engagement and current practice
Types of public engagement activities, target audiences, funding, role of learned societies, universities and other bodies. Public engagement in Dundee and Tayside.

Work in a team to develop game design concepts for serious applications. Gain the knowledge, processes and techniques of game design and study examples of serious games developed to benefit society.

Module content:
•    Overview of Games
A brief history of games, game art and gamification.

•    Games for change
Understanding how games can benefit society.

•    Game mechanics
Deconstructing core components of popular game genres.

•    Gameplay constructs
What is gameplay and how is this broken down and communicated within the game design.

•    The game design process
Conceptualisation, iteration, phases of workflow.

•    Game design theory and practice
Identifying the elements within effective design and how they are implemented.

•    Documenting the design interactive
Oriented design, technical design, capturing requirements.

•    Business models
Exploring methods that can be used to generate revenue within the game design.

Develop the knowledge and awareness required to make good career decisions and the skills and confidence to successfully navigate each stage of the recruitment process for graduate jobs.

Module content:

  • Developing self-awareness
    Profiling of personal strengths, values and priorities in relation to career choice.
     
  • Developing opportunity awareness
    Generating career ideas based on your personal profile; Exploring the range of graduate opportunities within job sectors of interest; Reviewing occupations that are directly related to your own subject discipline.
     
  • Developing a career action plan
    Matching your personal profile with best fit opportunities in the job market; Creating a timeline of actions to improve your prospects of meeting your aim.
  • Developing job seeking skills
    Sourcing suitable job opportunities - both advertised and unadvertised; Creating a professional image online; Identifying the skills and qualities employers look for in graduates; Learning how to produce targeted applications for specific job roles; Practising the presentation of your strengths and motivations in face to face selection activities.

Learn about natural disaster such as landslides and flooding, structural disasters such as the Tay Rail Bridge and the system of critical infrastructure (such as road, rail, air and shipping transport networks, power grid, gas and water networks, health system) that constitute the backbone of modern societies.

Module content:
•    Overview of the scope and the content of concept of critical infrastructure failure during natural disasters and resilience against such failures
The consequences of geophysical, hydrological and meteorological disasters on critical infrastructure and critical infrastructure protection capabilities against natural disasters. Interdependencies of critical infrastructures during large disasters, presents a brief review of current research being done in this field, and presents a methodology to address interdependencies.


•    The identification of the vulnerabilities of the critical systems
The critical systems upon which modern society, economy, and polity depend. The identification of the vulnerabilities of these systems threats that might exploit these vulnerabilities. The effort to develop techniques to mitigate these vulnerabilities through improved design.


•     Flooding in Scotland
General overview of fluvial, pluvial and coastal flooding, the structural, economic and societal impact and responses to flooding. Resources will include historical examples, current policies and information (including SEPA flood maps). Case study (with virtual/actual field visit?) the Perth Floods of 1990 and 1993 and the Perth flood defence scheme*


•    Landslide origins, types and mitigations
General overview what landslides are, why they happen and what can be done to prevent them.


•    Structural failure
An example such as why the Tay Bridge failed and what it meant for the Forth Rail Bridge.


•    Reports and investigations
The role of reports in accident and disaster investigations in creating informative reports; case studies of accidents, disasters, learning from history, learning from case studies, learning from common law

Introduction to the skills and knowledge needed to launch a small business successfully. This module will define and help you acquire the personal and professional skills needed to develop a professional career and/or to succeed as entrepreneurs in Small and Medium sized Enterprises (SMEs).

Module content:

  • Understanding entrepreneurship.
     
  • Generating successful business ideas.
     
  • Environmental scanning.
     
  • Developing a credible business plan that includes evaluating business ideas.
     
  • Presenting the business idea.

An understanding of some of the processes involved in food production. Discuss common misconceptions and ideas which present the food and nutritional industries in a bad light.


Module content:
•    Student led investigations
Student led investigations of the different sectors within the food and drink industry including: prebiotics – and the controversy surrounding the term; if barbequing is a healthy cooking method; and exposing the celebrity chef - common Myths about cooking.


•    Consumerism
Does the food industry listen to us? Understanding consumer and sensory science to better understand why you buy the products you buy.  How food/public health is reported by the media? The French paradox / Mediterranean diet.


•    Future of food
Ethical food production and the future of foods, and what’s waste got to do with it?


•    Debunking myths
Debunking food myths, more science than science fiction in our food today, like the science behind getting sauce out of a bottle and what to drink – Whisky or Beer?


•    Facts from fiction
Finding facts from fiction, investigating the three-second rule – should I eat things that have fallen on the floor? What’s so super about super-foods? Fat or sugar: Which is worse?

Learn how we approach and understand mental health, from historic, social, therapeutic, and individual perspectives. Explore questions such as ‘what is madness?’, ‘how does society position people with mental illness?’, and ‘how do we best respond to challenges to our mental health?’

Module content:

  • Historical and cultural perspective on mental illness
    How do we ‘think’ about mental health, and mental ill health?
     
  • Diagnosis and the anti-psychiatry movement
    Who holds the power to decide what is normal in terms of psychological well-being and behaviour?
     
  • Gender, culture and mental health
    How gendered cultural expectations and representations influence how we respond to mental health issues.
     
  • Media representations
    The impact of film and literature on attitudes and understandings of mental health.
     
  • Resilience, treatment and recovery
    Common mental health problems in the UK, treatment and management, and frameworks for enhancing well-being and resilience.

An introduction to the wide range of disciplines in forensic investigation. Learn how crimes are investigated from the moment of reporting through to the presentation of the evidence in court. A hypothetical case study provides an over-arching framework in which to explore the critical aspects of forensic investigations. It involves not only physical and electronic evidence, but also statements from witnesses, suspects and victims which requires cross discipline collaboration of professionals.

Module content:
Crime scene investigation
How a crime scene is examined in the context of incomplete contextual information and to avoid loss or contamination of evidence and the maximising of the value of evidential material.

Media involvement
Positive and negative effects of the media/public interest in the crime.

Forensic biology
Examination and evidential value of body fluids, DNA, hairs and fibres.

Forensic chemistry
Analysis for drugs, toxicological analysis, firearms, explosives, and trace evidence.

Digital sources
Evidence from CCT, mobile phones, computer hardware, on−line behaviour.

Forensic reasoning and practice
An introduction to forensic problem solving, thinking styles, case assessment and interpretation.

Psychology of witnesses and suspects
False confessions, offender profiling, effects and avoidance of cognitive bias in forensic science through process design.

Year 3 Core Modules

You must study and pass all four core modules

Brief description

The arguments of leading schools of social theory. Develop your analytical capacities by discussing and further elaborating some of the main developments in social thought over the past half century.

Module content:

  • Norbert Elias and the Civilising Process: The Civilising Process in Context; The State and the De-Civilising Process.
  • The Frankfurt School and Critical Theory: Traditional and Critical Theory; Walter Benjamin: `Theses on the Philosophy of History’.
  • Relational Sociology of Pierre Bourdieu: `The Real is Relational’: Habitus, Doxa, Field and Capital; Bourdieu and the Field of Culture.
  • Foucault: History, Power, Knowledge; Discipline and Punish.
  • Postmodernism: Postmodernism & Postmodernity; Habermas: Rejecting Postmodernism and Reconstructing Modernity.

Brief description

The history of race and racism in 19th, 20th and 21st century Britain, from the 'Scramble for Africa' through the postwar/post-colonial period to the present. Examine the various forces, processes and discourses through which race, ethnicity and the racialised subject have been constructed, shaped and changed. Also examine theoretical approaches to and debates about race and ethnicity, racism, race relations and anti-racism, and how these have developed in response to both historical developments and social-political activism.

Module content: 

  • The concept and construction of race and ethnicity: The concept and construction of race and ethnicity, and the production of racial knowledge from the colonial period to the present.
  • Race, ethnicity and nation: The (re)construction and relationship between race, ethnicity and nation in Britain in light of postwar/ post-colonial immigration and the end of empire.
  • Race, ethnicity and identity: The politics, construction and expression of racial and ethnic identities in post-colonial Britain in response to colonialism, migration, discrimination and racism.
  • Race and class: The relationship between race and class as sites of social-political identification, power, inequality, political struggle and analysis, as well as debates over which is the most effective framework for analysis and activism.
  • Race and gender: The relationship between race and gender as sites of social-political identification, power, inequality, political struggle and analysis, as well as debates over which is the most effective framework for analysis and activism.
  • Race, crime, civil unrest and political protest: The relationship (within analysis and representation) between race, the law, crime, civil unrest and political protest against socioeconomic conditions, policing and state policy.
  • Anti-racism, race relations and multiculturalism: The history and development of anti-racist and race relations discourses, activism, strategies and legislation, how they have attempted to combat forms of racism, discrimination and inequality, and debates surrounding them.
  • Race, ethnicity and the politics of popular culture: Popular culture (e.g. music, film or television) in terms of postcolonial cultural politics, multiculturalism, representation, identity and political activism.

Brief description

To provide students with a sociological understanding of gender and gender relations.

Module content: 

  • History of gender and sexuality: Trace the development of the making of modern gender and sexuality.
  • The social construction of gender and sexuality: Critique of gender and sexuality essentialism, the construction of modern gender relations and categories of sexuality.
  • Masculinity: Hegemonic masculinity, the universal man and the masculine other.
  • Gender and Sexuality in the modern world.

Brief description

The importance of empirical research to the social sciences. Learn to identify and use appropriate data collection tools, apply analysis techniques to data generated and reflect upon their meaning, relevance and ethical implications.

Module content:

  • Principles of quantitative research: The elements of statistical data, how quantitative data is collected, structured and presented, how inferences and conclusions can be drawn through the application of basic statistical tests and how SPSS software can facilitate the organisation and analysis of quantitative data.
  • Qualitative data collection skills: An overview of qualitative data-collection methods, how such techniques are applicable in an array of different ways to different research contexts and how you should reflect upon yourself as an active participant in these kinds of research endeavours.
  • Approaches to qualitative data analysis: Engage in the analysis of data produced using qualitative data collection techniques. The main emphasis here will be on thematic coding and how qualitative researchers use sociological knowledge to inductive derive systematic meaning from the data they generate. The use of NVivo computer software in qualitative data analysis.
  • Research ethics and ethical issues: Research ethics and ethical issues in terms of research subject matter, the application of data collection methods, how research can impact in different ways upon research participants and wider society, as well as the formal ethical guidelines and requirements that govern sociological research.

Year 3 Option Modules

You must study and pass two option modules of your choosing, one from Group A and one from Group B.

Brief description

The processes of framing and production of the mass mediation of propaganda. Analyse the propaganda text as socio-cultural narratives rooted in the political histories of nation states. Give critical reflection to propaganda effects on target populations, audiences and consumers.

Module content:

  • The historical emergence of modern propaganda forms: The historical development of propaganda forms, rhetorics, tropes and ideology.
  • The analysis of propaganda: Frameworks and models for analysing and researching propaganda including textual analysis, semiotics, historical archaeology.
  • Propaganda and mass media: Mass media as means of the organisation, production and circulation of propaganda, focussing on the propaganda techniques of the Third Reich.
  • Propaganda, narrative and myth: Structural analysis of narrative and myth/ideological systems and their representation as propaganda.
  • Public relations and propaganda: This section of the module considers what the Public Relations guru, Edward Bernays, referred to as propaganda for peace. Illustrative topics covered include: the individual as the target of the mass media, the rise of public relations, consumerism, the engineering of consent, psychoanalysis and the manipulation desires, generating opinions in the media, focus groups and lifestyles, the rise of the brand, visual culture and product aesthetics.

Brief description

Criminological and sociological perspectives on drug governance and addiction

Module content:

  • Historical, political and social contexts of drugs consumption and governance: Historical contexts in the growth of drug consumption and its governance. State and criminal justice drugs policy in the UK. 12 step and other recovery movements.
  • Theorising addiction: Freedom, compulsion and willpower. Neuropharmacology (and its critics) the social construction of addiction. Sociological approaches.
  • Case studies: Heroin and opioids. Smoking and anti-smoking. Alcohol.

Brief description

Like all other nations, Scotland is seen as possessing a distinctive culture and civil society but unlike others, it has not had state apparatus to serve this culture and civics. Explore this contradiction while at the same time, analytically engage with current attempts to deal with it - the development of Devolution. 

Module content: 

  • Nationalism and national identity in Scotland: Current theoretical developments in relation to understanding nationalism and their play in helping understand political change in Scotland.
  • Scotland as icon.
  • Egalitarianism and the civic tradition.
  • Modernity and industrialisation: Scotland of the 20th century.
  • The politics of national identity.
  • Tourism and heritage.
  • Class in Scotland.
  • Is there room for Britishness.
  • Scotland in the media.
  • Self-reflective practice.

Brief description

Introduction to the study of surveillance and cybercrime using a perspective that sees technologies as socially constructed. An analysis of the ways in which surveillance, cybercrime and cybersecurity can be seen as socio-technical assemblages.

Module content: 

  • Concepts on the social study of technology: such as (a) Social Construction of Technology (b) Technological Determinism (c) Actor-Network Theory.
  • Case studies in surveillance: such as (a) Automation of surveillance (b) Algorithmic Surveillance (c) Dataveillance.
  • Case studies in cybercrime and security: such as: (a) malware software (b) security policies and mechanisms (c) Encryption (d) the Dark Web (e) manipulation of trust and reputation.

Year 4 Core Modules

You must study and pass all three core modules

Brief description

Conduct and present a simple research investigation into a sociological topic of your choice. Devise and conduct a piece of independent research, write a 10000 word dissertation and publicly present your research findings.

Module content:

  • Research design: Selecting the appropriate method for a specified topic and conducting actual research - with guidance from project supervisor.
  • Reviewing literature: Collecting evidence within relevant field of research and its application to the field of study.
  • Analysing and interpreting data: Collecting, dealing with and understanding data; turning data into words and/or numbers - with guidance from project supervisor.
  • Presenting findings: Making research findings ‘public’; writing-up your project - with guidance from project supervisor.

Brief description

The question of power in modern societies - the key theme which lies at the heart of political sociology. The module is divided into four inter- connected sections: sociological and political theories of power; social configurations of power; alternative visions of power relations; and social movements and the contestation of power.

Module content:

  • Lectures: The lecture programme is divided into four key sections: Sociological and political theories of power; States, citizenship, rights and the law; Alternative visions of power relations - utopia and dystopia; Contesting power - social movements and political protest.
  • Tutorials: Students will be required to read set literature each week and to bring notes and points of contention from lectures to tutorials for discussion.

Brief description

Culture has become the watchword of our age. Builds on earlier study of the sociology of culture to inform a critique of the relationship between culture, crisis and civilisation.

Module content:

  • Civilisation and crisis: The relationship between the concepts of crisis and civilisation.
  • Civilisation, civil society and the enlightenment: The role of the concepts of civilisation and civil society in political change and the emergence of the public sphere in Europe and America.
  • Culture and the critique of civilisation: The role of the aesthetic as a special lens for the critique of modernity and morality.
  • Sociology of culture: The role of classical sociology in the crisis of and disenchantment with European civilisation and nationalism.
  • Relational sociology and culture: A sociology of cultural relations turns attention to issues of power, process, symbolic and physical violence, and the roles of nationalism, economy and the state.

Year 4 Option Modules

You must study and pass two option modules of your choosing, one from Group A and one from Group B, OR the Community Links (SOC410) module.

Brief description

Key economic and social processes from a critical sociological perspective.

Module content:

  • Work: Work in classical and contemporary social theory, work or labour, the ontology of labour, abstract and concrete labour, intellectual and manual labour, the accumulation of labour and the degradation of women, unemployment and the refusal of work.
  • Class: The sociological approaches to class from Adam Smith to Max Weber; class and the stratification of British society; class as a critical concept; class, social constitution and the logic of separation.
  • Global economy: Globalisation and critical political economy, Fordism and Post-Fordism, the rise and fall of Keynesianism, Neo-liberalism, the politics of money and the expansion of credit, global capital and crisis.

Brief description

Understand the language of crime through conversation analysis, discourse analysis and Wittgensteinian arguments about the public nature of language use, such as insults and bullying. Consider philosophical issues, contemporary studies, debates and critiques in relation to crime and other issues.

Module content:

  • Conversation analysis: The roots of conversation analysis in ethnomethodology and the study of social order at the local level. The nature of the conversation analytic approach is examined alongside in terms of classic and contemporary studies. Studies examined include topics such as police interrogations, counsel and witness courtroom interaction, sexual consent and refusals.
  • Discourse analysis: The different approaches to discourse analysis: from conversation analytic to critical approaches. The nature of these are explored through contemporary studies including topics such as: criminal speech acts such as conspiracy, threats, solicitation, swearing and offensive language; police talk about trauma; youth crime in the media; constructing the legitimacy of whistleblowers; phishing emails; the reporting of intimate partner violence.
  • Wittgenstein and Ordinary Language Philosophy: The resurgence of interest in Wittgenstein's approach to language use. The focus is on the reference to language games and includes consideration of topics such as the law and vagueness; the problem of abusive language, the conceptual instability of consent.

Brief description

Analysis of the socio-ideological discourses contained in popular cultural narratives that deal with crime, justice, punishment and morality.

Module content:

  • Morbid fascination: The social world, crime and culture.
  • Popular culture and ideologies of crime: The criminal body to the social body in accounts of crime.
  • The emergence of the detective: Modernity and the rise of the detective, from the science of deduction to the hard-boiled tradition and beyond.
  • Crime and the city: The construction of the city as criminogenic; surveillance and danger.
  • Punishment, order and justice: Law versus order, retribution and justice.
  • Moral orders: The criminal as an ambivalent.

Brief description

The significance of human rights in the world today. Gain a grounding in human rights from a social theoretical perspective, including current debates and trends in human rights.

Module content:

  • History and theory of human rights: Classical origins in Greece and Rome. Classical liberal thought. The French and American Revolutions. Marx. Critical Social Theory. Postcolonialism.
  • Human rights in transition: Human rights in armed conflict. Responsibility to protect. Refugees and asylum seekers. Genocide and torture, The International Criminal Court.

Brief description

Changing attitudes to death, dying and killing. Examine the connections between power and the right to take or preserve life and how death and killing are represented and legitimated in various contexts.

Module content:

  • The death-denial thesis: Changing ideas of death and dying from pre-modernity to postmodernity Death denial and ambivalence. The sequestration of death. The 'revival' of death.
  • Social, political and legal constructions of death: State crime and deviance, militarism.
  • Death and representation: Conflict, commemoration and public memorialising. Death and popular culture, representations of war and death in news.
  • Death and power: The social mechanisms of oppression, consent and legitimation that determine when, how and why people kill and die; Terror Genocide.
  • Bioethics and politics: The sanctity of life versus the quality of life. The politics of 'ethical' decisions about life and death. Capital punishment.

Brief description

An opportunity to take up a volunteer/work placement in a public or voluntary sector organisation throughout your fourth year.

Module content:

  • Student defined content: The learning will be shaped by the organisation in which you are placed and the role you are assigned.
  • Work experience: Gain valuable employability skills.
  • Job-seeking skills: Guidance on producing professional CVs.

How the Course Works

Learning and Assessment 

You’ll learn through a combination of teaching modes, including lectures, tutorials, seminars, workshops, online discussion forums, video screenings, guest speaker presentations, directed and private study, and student-focussed group work.

You’ll be assessed through a number of methods, including supervised examinations, essays, reports, portfolios, presentations, project work, class and online tests, reflective analyses, and a final year dissertation.

In your final year, you’ll also complete a research project under the dedicated supervision of a member of academic staff.

Around a third of the course is assessed through examination, although the precise proportion will be dependent on your module choices.

Entry Requirements

Please note: All students must have passes in English and Maths – English National 5 at grade C or equivalent and Maths or Lifeskill Maths National 4 at P or equivalent or National 5 numerate subjects such as Chemistry, Biology or Physics at grade C accepted in lieu of Maths.

Below are the literate subjects we accept for entry on this course:

One of the following: Business Management; Classical Studies; Economics; English; ESOL; Geography; History; Media Studies; Modern Studies; Philosophy; Politics; Psychology; Religious, Moral and Philosophical Studies; Sociology

If there is a subject that does not appear, please contact our Admissions Office (admissions@abertay.ac.uk) who will be able to confirm whether or not it would be considered for entry.

Please visit our Entry from College pages for suitable College courses.

Republic of Ireland applicants, click on the UK tabs and scroll down to find your Entry Requirements.

See information about studying and applying to Abertay for International students.

Qualification TypeGrade RequirementsEssential Subjects
Advanced HigherABBSociology or Modern Studies or History
A-LevelABBSociology or Politics or History
HNC/HNDOur Entry from College pages list approved HNC/HND courses
QualificationGrade RequirementsEssential Subjects
HNDOur Entry from College pages list approved HND courses

We accept a wide range of qualifications from applicants from across the world. Please select your country from the searchable list below to view different qualification entry requirements. If you have different qualifications to those listed, please contact us using the form below.

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Academic Requirements

Applicants will typically be required to achieve BCC at A-Level, to include any essential subject(s).

Applicants will typically be required to pass the International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma with an overall score of 29 points, to include any essential subject(s) at S5 or H4.

English language: English B at S5 or H4 is accepted. For English A, no grade is specified. For alternative English language qualifications, please see below.

Applicants will typically require a High School GPA of 3.0, plus one of the following:

  • SAT (I) score of 1150
  • 3 AP Tests at grades 433
  • 3 SAT Subject Tests at 600
  • ACT Composite score of 26

A combination of AP/SAT II tests may be used, provided they are in different subjects.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Caribbean Advanced Proficiency Examination (CAPE) with 6 units as follows: 1 unit at II, 3 units at III, 2 units at IV, to include any essential subject(s) at III.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the European Baccalaureate with an overall grade of 73%, to include any essential subject(s) at grade 7.

English language: English Language 1 at grade 6 or English Language 2 at grade 7 are accepted. For alternative English language qualifications, please see below.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Diplomë e Maturës Shtetëore with an overall grade of 8.0, to include any essential subject(s).

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Baccalauréat Technique / Commercial with an overall grade of 15, to include any essential subject(s).

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Baccalauréat de l'Enseignement Secondaire with an overall grade of 15, to include any essential subject(s).

Applicants with national school qualilfications will typically be required to pass the first year of a university degree in a relevant subject with an average grade of 13/20, to include any essential subject(s).

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Trayecto Técnico Profesional with an overall grade of 7.0, to include any essential subject(s).

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Título de Técnico Superior/Universitario with an overall grade of 7.0, to include any essential subject(s).

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Araratian Baccalaureate at Extended Level with grades BBC, to include any essential subjects.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Certificate of Secondary General Education wih an average of 13 and the first year of a university degree in a relevant subject with an average grade of 66%, to include any essential subject(s).

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Year 12 Certificate plus ATAR rank of 80 or Overall Position of 9, to include any essential subject(s) at Year 12 with grade B, grade 3 or Sound Achievement.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Reifeprüfung/Maturazeugnis with an overall grade of 2.5, to include any essential subject(s) at grade 2.

English language: English at grade 2 in the Reifeprüfung/Maturazeugnis is accepted. For alternative English language qualifications, please see below.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Tam Orta Tahsil Hazzinda Aggestat with an average of 4, and the first year of a university degree in a relevant subject with an average grade of 68%, to include any essential subject(s).

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Shahadat Al-Thanawaya Al-Aama/General Secondary Education Certificate with an average of 60%, and the first year of a university degree or post-secondary diploma in a relevant subject with an average grade of 70% or 2.75 (on the 4 point scale), to include any essential subject(s).

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Intermediate/Higher Secondary School Certificate at an average of 2.5, and the first year of a university degree in a relevant subject with an average grade of 55% or B-, to include any essential subject(s) at 60% or grade B.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Certificate of General Secondary Education at an average of 6, and the first year of a university degree in a relevant subject with an average grade of 6.5, to include any essential subject(s).

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Certificate d'Enseignement Secondaire Supérieur with an overall average of 65%, to include any essential subject(s) at 65%.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Diploma van secundair onderwijs with an overall average of 65%, to include any essential subject(s) at 65%.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Abschlusszeugnis der Oberstufe des Sekundarunterrichts with an overall average of 65%, to include any essential subject(s) at 65%.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Diploma de Bachiller at 64%, and the first year of a university degree in a relevant subject with an average grade of 65%, to include any essential subject(s) at 70%.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the General Certificate of Secondary Education at an average of 4.5, and the first year of a university degree in a relevant subject with an average grade of 70%, to include any essential subject(s).

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Certificado de Conculsão de Segundo Grau with an average score of 8.2, to include any essential subject(s) at grade 8.0.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Certificado de Conclusão de Ensino Médio with an average score of 8.2, to include any essential subject(s) at grade 8.0.

Applicants will typically be required to pass Brunei A Levels in 3 subjects at grades BCC, to include any essential subject(s).

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Diploma za Sredno Obrazonvanie with an average score of 4.75, to include any essential subject(s) at grade 5.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Diploma of Upper Secondary Education at average of C, and the first year of a university degree in a relevant subject with an average grade of 67%, to include any essential subject(s) at 65%.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Baccalaureat or Baccalaureat Technique at an overall grade of 13, to include any essential subject(s) at grade 12.

Applicants will typically be required to complete the Secondary School Diploma or Diplôme d'Études Collégiales with five grade 12 subjects at an average of 70%, to include any essential subject(s) at 65%.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Licencia de Education at an average of 4.5, and the first year of a university degree in a relevant subject with an average grade of 5.0, to include any essential subject(s) at grade 5.

Applicants will typically be required to complete Senior Middle/High School Certificate/Diploma at an average of 77%, to include any essential subject(s) at 77%; and pass GAOKAO with 550 points (based on the 750 points scheme).

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Bachiller Academico at an average of 3.25, and the first year of a university degree or Tecnico Universitario in a relevant subject with an average grade of 3.5, to include any essential subject(s) at grade 3.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Svjedodžba o Maturi with an overall grade of 3.6, to include any essential subject(s) at grade 3.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Apolytírio Lykeíou with an overall grade of 17.5, to include any essential subject(s) at grade 17.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Vysvědčení o maturitní zkoušce with an overall grade of 2.2, to include any essential subject(s) at grade 2.

Applicants will typically be required to complete the Studentereksamen (STX), including 3 Level A subjects an overall grade of 7, to include any essential subject(s) at grade 7.

English language: Studentereksamen English Level A or B at grade 7 is accepted. For alternative English language qualifications, please see below.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Título de Bachiller at an average of 7.0, and the first year of a university degree in a relevant subject with an average grade of 14 / 65%, to include any essential subject(s) at 60%.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Gumaasiumi lõputunnistus with an average score of 3.6, to include any essential subject(s) at grade 4; and pass 3 state examinations at a minimum of 60% (or 2 states examinations plus C1 Advanced English CAE or IELTS).

English language: 75% in the English state examination is accepted, or C1 Advanced English CAE or IELTS (overall score 6.0 with no band lower than 5.5). For alternative English language qualifications, please see below.

Applicants will typically be required to complete the Studentsprogv at an overall grade of 7, to include any essential subject(s) at Level A grade 7.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Ylioppilastutkinto/Studentexamen at an overall grade 4.5, to include any essential subject(s) at grade 5.

English language: Advanced English at grade 5 within the Ylioppilastutkinto/Studentexamen is accepted. For alternative English language qualifications, please see below.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Baccalauréat Général/Professionnel/Technologique at an overall grade 12.5, to include any essential subject(s) at grade 13.

English language. English at grade 14 in the Baccalauréat Général/Professionnel/Technologique is accepted. For alternative English language qualifications, please see below.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Option Internationale du Baccalauréat at an overall grade 11.5, to include any essential subject(s) at grade 13.

English language. English at grade 13 in the Option Internationale du Baccalauréat is accepted. For alternative English language qualifications, please see below.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the NECO in at least five subjects at an average of B/C, and the first year of a university degree in a relevant subject with an average grade of 60%/2.70, to include any essential subject(s) at 60%/2.70.

English language: English at C6 or higher in the NECO is accepted. For alternative English language qualifications, please see below.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the WAEC in at least five subjects at an average of B/C, and the first year of a university degree in a relevant subject with an average grade of 60%/2.70, to include any essential subject(s) at 60%/2.70.

English language: English at C6 or higher in the WAEC is accepted. For alternative English language qualifications, please see below.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Sashualo Skolis Atestati (Secondary School Certificate) at an average grade of 7, and the first year of a university degree in a relevant subject with an average grade of 70%, to include any essential subject(s).

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Shualo Specialuri Sastsavleblis Diplomi (Special School Leaving Diploma) at an average grade of 7, and the first year of a university degree in a relevant subject with an average grade of 70%, to include any essential subject(s).

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Abitur with an overall grade of 2.2, to include any essential subject(s) at grade 11.

English language: Abitur English at grade 10 is accepted. For alternative English language qualifications, please see below.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the NECO in at least five subjects at an average of B/C, and the first year of a university degree in a relevant subject with an average grade of B/55%, to include any essential subject(s) at grade B/55%.

English language: English at C6 or higher in the NECO is accepted. For alternative English language qualifications, please see below.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the WAEC in at least five subjects at an average of B/C, and the first year of a university degree in a relevant subject with an average grade of B/55%, to include any essential subject(s) at grade B/55%.

English language: English at C6 or higher in the WAEC is accepted. For alternative English language qualifications, please see below.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Greek Apolytirion of Geniko Lykeio at grade 17.5 and 3 Pan-Hellenic exams at an average of 16.5, to include any essential subject(s) at grade 17.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Hong Kong HKDSE at 3333 in 4 core subjects, with elective subjects at 433 (for 3 electives) or 44 (for 2 electives), to include any essential subject(s) at 3.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Érettségi Bizonyítvány at an overall grade 4.2, with 2 higher subjects at grade 4, to include any essential subject(s).

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Stúdentspróf at an overall grade 6.5, to include any essential subject(s) at grade 6.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Indian Senior School (Year 12) exam at an average of 65%, to include any essential subject(s) at 65%.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Sekolah Menengah Kejuruan/Madrasah Aliyah (SMK / MA) at 78%, to include any essential subject(s).

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Post School Qualification Diploma 1 at 2.5, to include any essential subject(s).

Applicants from Ireland should check the UK Year 1 Entry tab for entry requirements with Irish Highers.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Te'udat Bagrut or Bagrut with at least 2 subjects at level 5 and 1 subject at level 4 at an average of 65%, to include any essential subject(s) at Level 5 with 65%.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Diploma di Esame di Stato at 75%, to include any essential subject(s) at grade 8 (on the 10 point scale) or grade 16 (on the 20 point scale).

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Upper Secondary School Leaving Certificate at grade 3.75, to include any essential subject(s) at grade 4.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Certificate of Completed Secondary Education at an average of 3, and the first year of a university degree in a relevant subject with an average grade of 75% / 2.67, to include any essential subject(s).

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE) at an average of B, and the first year of a university degree in a relevant subject with an average grade of 55%, to include any essential subject(s) at 55%.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Certificate of Complete General Secondary Education at an average of 3, and the first year of a university degree in a relevant subject with an average grade of 3.6, to include any essential subject(s).

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Atestas par vispārējo vidējo izglītību with an average score of 7.5, to include 3 state exams at a minimum of 75%, to include any essential subject(s) at 70%.

English language: 80% in the English state exam is accepted. For alternative English language qualifications, please see below.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Baccalauréat Libanais or Baccalauréat II with 14, to include any essential subject(s) at grade 12.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Brandos Atestatas with an average score of 7.5 with a minimum of 75% in 3 state exams, to include any essential subject(s) at grade 8.

English language: 80% in the English state exam is accepted. For alternative English language qualifications, please see below.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Diplôme de Fin d'Études Secondaires at an overall grade of 44, to include any essential subject(s) at grade 44.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Certificate of Higher Secondary Education with 73%, to include any essential subject(s) at 73%.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Ensino Secundário Complementar with grade 2.8, to include any essential subject(s) at grade 3.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Cambridge Overseas Higher School Certificate (COHSC) with grades BCC, to include any essential subject(s) at grade C.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Malawian School Certificate of Education at grade 5, and the first year of a university degree in a relevant subject with an average of 65%, to include any essential subject(s).

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Sijil Tinggi Persekolahan Malaysia (STPM) with a minimum of 3 subjects at BBC or 2.67 GPA, to include any essential subject(s) at grade B/3.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Unified Examination Certificate (UEC) with 4 subjects at 75% / A2 B5 B5 B5, to include any essential subject(s) at grade 75%/B5.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Matriculation Certificate Examination with grades BB at Advanced level and BCCC at Intermediate level, to include any essential subject(s) at Advanced level grade C.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Diplomă de Bacalaureat with an overall grade of 7.0, to include any essential subject(s) at grade 7.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Certificate of Secondary Education at 70%, and the first year of a university degree in a relevant subject with an average of 75%, to include any essential subject(s).

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Higher Secondary Education Certificate (HSC) with 68%, to include any essential subject(s) at 65%.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Voorbereidend Wetenschappelijk Onderwijs (VWO) with an overall score of 7.0, to include any essential subject(s) at grade 7.

English language: English at grade 8 in HAVO is accepted. For alternative English language qualifications, please see below.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the NECO in at least five subjects at an average of B/C, and the first year of a university degree in a relevant subject with an average grade of 3.0 or 55%, to include any essential subject(s) at grade 3.0 or 55%.

English language: English at C6 or higher in the NECO is accepted. For alternative English language qualifications, please see below.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the WAEC in at least five subjects at an average of B/C, and the first year of a university degree in a relevant subject with an average grade of 3.0/55%, to include any essential subject(s) at grade 3.0/55%.

English language: English at C6 or higher in the WAEC is accepted. For alternative English language qualifications, please see below.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Secondary School Leaving Diploma/Matura with an overall grade of 3.75, to include any essential subject(s) at grade 3.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Vitnemål for Vidergaende Opplaering with an overall average of 3.8, to include any essential subject(s) at grade 4.

English language: English at grade 4 in the Vitnemål for Vidergaende Opplaering is accepted. For alternative English language qualifications, please see below.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Higher Secondary School Certificate at an average of 60%, and the first year of a university degree in a relevant subject with an average grade of 64%/3.0, to include any essential subject(s) at 68%.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Matura with an average score of 65%, to include 3 Advanced subjects at a minimum of 50%, to include any essential subject(s) at Advanced level with a score of 70%.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Diploma/Certificado Nível Secundário de Educação with an overall grade of 15, to include any essential subject(s) at grade 16.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Qatar Senior School Certificate (Shahadat Al-Thanawaya Al-Aama) at an average of 60%, and the first year of a university degree in a relevant subject with an average grade of 2.5/75%, to include any essential subject(s) at 2.5/75%.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Diplomă de Bacalaureat with an overall grade of 7.5, to include any essential subject(s) at grade 8.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Attestat o Srednem Obrzovanii (Certificate of Secondary Education) at an average of 4, and the first year of a university degree in a relevant subject with an average grade of 3.7, to include any essential subject(s).

Applicants will typically be required to pass the General Secondary Education Certificate (Tawjihiyah) with an average of 60%, and either the post-secondary diploma or first year of a university degree in a relevant subject with an average grade of 3.5/75%, to include any essential subject(s) at 75%.

Applicants will typically be required to pass Singapore GCE A-Levels with grades BCC, to include any essential subject(s).

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Vysvedčenie o maturitnej skúške at grade 2.2, to include any essential subject(s) at grade 2.

English language: English at B2 level at grade 2 in the Vysvedčenie o maturitnej skúške is accepted. For alternative English language qualifications, please see below.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Maturitetno spričevalo at grade 3.8, to include any essential subject(s) at grade 4.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the National Senior Certificate (with Matriculation Endorsement) with 4 subjects at 6555, to include any essential subject(s).

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Título de Bachiller with an average score of 7.2, to include any essential subject(s) at grade 7.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Sudan School Certificate with an average of 60%/C, and the first year of a university degree in a relevant subject with an average grade of 70%/B, to include any essential subject(s).

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Avgangsbetyg/Slutbetyg fran Gymnasieskola with an average score of 16.5, to include any essential subject(s) at level 5 grade B.

English language: English Level 5 at grade B or English Level 6 at grade C in the Avgangsbetyg/Slutbetyg fran Gymnasieskola is accepted. For alternative English language qualifications, please see below.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Certificat de Maturité with an overall grade of 4.6, to include any essential subject(s) at grade 5.

Applicants will typically be required to pass Maturitätszeugnis with an overall grade of 4.6, to include any essential subject(s) at grade 5.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Attestato Di Maturità with an overall grade of 4.6, to include any essential subject(s) at grade 5.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Certificate of Complete General Secondary Education at an average of 3, and the first year of a university degree in a relevant subject with an average grade of 3.6, to include any essential subject(s).

Applicants will typically be required to complete the Certificate of Secondary Education/Maw 6 with an average of 75%/3.3, to include any essential subject(s) at grade 3; or complete the first year of a university degree in a relevant subject with an average of 2.5, to include any essential subject(s) at 2.5.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the High School Diploma at an average of 55%, and the first year of a university degree in a relevant subject with an average grade of 3.2 (on the 5 point scale) or 60 (on the 100 point scale), to include any essential subject(s).

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Certificate of Secondary Education at an average of 3, and the first year of a university degree in a relevant subject with an average grade of 3.7, to include any essential subject(s).

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Certificate of Complete General Secondary Education, and the first year of a university degree in a relevant subject with an average grade of 70% / 2.6 (on the 4 point scale) / 4.2 (on the 5 point scale), to include any essential subject(s).

Applicants will typically be required to pass the General Secondary Education Certificate Examination at 65%, and the first year of a university degree in a relevant subject with an average grade of 2.3, to include any essential subject(s) at grade 2.3.

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Diploma of Academic Lyceum at an average of 3, and the first year of a university degree in a relevant subject with an average grade of 65%, to include any essential subject(s).

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Título de Técnico Superior Universitario, and the first year of a university degree in a relevant subject with an average grade of 55% / 6.3 (on the 10 point scale) / 13 (on the 20 point scale), to include any essential subject(s).

Applicants will typically be required to pass the Zimbabwe General Certificate of Education at Advanced Level with grades BCC, to include any essential subject(s).


English Language Requirements

All courses at Abertay University are taught in English. If your first language is not English, you will need to demonstrate that you meet our English language requirements. Accepted English language qualifications include:

IELTS - overall score of 6.0 with no band lower than 5.5

TOEFL - overall score of 78 (individual elements: L-17, R-18, S-20, W-17)

Cambridge FCE/CAE/CPE - overall score of 169 on Cambridge Grading Scale

International Baccalaureate - English B at S5 or H4, English A no specific grade required

European Baccalaureate - English Language 1 at grade 6 or English Language 2 at grade 7

You do not need to prove your knowledge of English language if you are a national of certain countries. Please see English Language Requirements for the full list of accepted qualifications and further details.

 

If your academic qualifications aren't listed above, or if you have any further questions, please contact our international team using the form below. There is also lots of useful information for international applicants on how to apply, visa information, and studying in Scotland on our international pages.


Contact our International Team

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Not sure if you're eligible for entry?

If you have the potential and motivation to study at university, regardless of your background or personal circumstances, we welcome your application.

We understand some people have faced extra challenges before applying to university, which is why we consider the background in which your academic grades have been achieved when making an offer.

If you expect to receive passes in three Scottish Highers (grades A-C) and have either ...

  • been in care
  • participated in a targeted aspiration-raising programme such as LIFT OFF, LEAPS, FOCUS West, or Aspire North
  • no family background of going to university
  • attended a school or lived in an area where not many people go to university

... we encourage you to submit an application.

Fees and funding

The course fees you'll pay and the funding available to you depends on factors such as your nationality, location, personal circumstances and the course you are studying. 

More information

Find out about grants, bursaries, tuition fee loans, maintenance loans and living costs in our undergraduate fees and funding section.

 

Scholarships

We offer a range of scholarships to help support your studies with us.

As well as Abertay scholarships for English, Welsh, Northern Irish and international students, there are a range of corporate and philanthropic scholarships available. Some are course specific, many are not. There are some listed below or you can visit the Undergraduate scholarship pages.

View all

Abertay International Scholarship

This is an award of up to £12,000 for prospective international undergraduate students.

Abertay rUK Scholarship

This is a £4000 award for prospective undergraduate students applying from England, Wales or Northern Ireland.

The Robert Reid Bursary

Two £1,000 awards for students who have overcome challenges to attend university.

Career Opportunities

Our sociology degree provides you with the knowledge and skills required for a variety of careers, particularly those characterised by working and managing people and groups.

Whether it’s working in collaborative groups, assessing evidence, writing reports, acquiring skills in qualitative and quantitative research or completing project work, your studies will contribute towards your employability. Our work placement module enhances this advantage.

Classroom environment - group of students sitting listening

Occupations

After graduation, students typically find employment in areas such as government, social research, marketing, social work, youth and community work, human resource management, public relations, journalism, policing, teaching and the probation service.

Your sociology degree will equip you to succeed in completing professional qualifications such as town planning, primary/secondary teaching and social work. In addition, this degree provides a strong foundation for further academic study at Masters and PhD level.

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Industry Links

Abertay’s teaching staff incorporate a number of external speakers within their modules. These speakers are drawn from the media, business, the criminal justice system, the voluntary sector and local community groups.

The Community Links module offers you the opportunity to participate in a work placement in your final year. In the past, after graduation, some students have progressed to full-time employment with their work-placement organisations.

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Get inspired

Meet some of our graduates and find out what they've gone on to do.

A photo of David Proctor in a shirt

David Proctor

David realised journalism was the right pathway for him during his time at university.

Find out more

Graduate headshot against a white background

Catherine Law

Catherine has attained a Fulbright scholarship to study in the University of South Florida.

Find out more

A photo of Evie Dalrymple smiling

Evie Dalrymple

Evie works as a Prison Psychologist at the Scottish Prison Service.

Find out more

Unistats

Unistats collates comparable information in areas students have identified as important in making decisions about what and where to study. The core information it contains is called the Unistats dataset (formerly the Key Information Set (KIS)).