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BAEcon Economics and Social Statistics / Course details

Year of entry: 2021

Course unit details:
Contemporary Social Thought

Unit code SOCY10432
Credit rating 20
Unit level Level 1
Teaching period(s) Semester 2
Offered by Sociology
Available as a free choice unit? Yes


Displacing Vulgar Marxism: The Frankfurt School / Functionalism and Talcott Parsons / RAT and G.H. Mead's Symbolic Interactionism / Feminism / Foucault / Postmodernism / Habermas / Bourdieu.


This course aims to introduce students to a range of some of the most important modern social theorists, and to encourage them to explore some of the key debates and issues which the work of these theorists has raised. It prepares them for some of the theoretical frameworks they will encounter later on in their degree and, at the same time, affords them an opportunity to see how the theories discussed in sociological thought have been extended and developed.

Learning outcomes

Students who have completed the course should be able to write competently about a number of the key theorists/issues of modern social theory, and should have a solid grasp of some of the key debates that structure contemporary social thought. They should be adequately prepared for engaging with the substantive theoretical content of whatever sociology courses they pursue later in their degree.

Teaching and learning methods

Weekly lectures
Fortnightly tutorials

Assessment methods

  • 1 non-assessed assignment (essay plan) - 5 mark deduction for non-submission
  • 1 assessed coursework essay, 1500 words; 50% of mark
  • 1 traditional format or online open book exam (1 hr / 1 answer, 1500 words as guidance if online); 50% of mark. 

Feedback methods

All sociology courses include both formative feedback – which lets you know how you’re getting on and what you could do to improve – and summative feedback – which gives you a mark for your assessed work.

Recommended reading

I Craib (1992) Modern Social Theory

Study hours

Scheduled activity hours
Assessment written exam 2
Lectures 20
Tutorials 10
Independent study hours
Independent study 168

Teaching staff

Staff member Role
Elisa Pieri Unit coordinator

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