Clearing 2022

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BAEcon Economics

Year of entry: 2022

Course unit details:
Self and Society

Course unit fact file
Unit code SOCY20402
Credit rating 20
Unit level Level 2
Teaching period(s) Semester 2
Offered by Sociology
Available as a free choice unit? Yes


This course explores how sociology approaches the study of the self. Studying the self sociologically means understanding the self as always in relationship with society. This is because we develop our sense of self in interaction with and in relation to the world around us. During the course, we examine the different ways in which sociologists have conceptualised this relationship between self and society. The lectures cover a variety of aspects of the self such as how we present a self in interaction with other people, how inequalities are lived and experienced, the self as embodied, and how developments in information and communication technologies (ICTs) are shaping the self.


This course unit aims to:¿

- Introduce students to sociological approaches to the study of self.¿

- Provide students with a theoretical understanding of the links between self and society.

¿- Provide students with conceptual tools for studying individuals in society.

Learning outcomes

On completion of this unit successful students will:¿

- have knowledge of the interconnections between self and society

¿- have an appreciation of why and how the individual is important to the study of society

¿- have conceptual understanding of how 'the social' can be studied through 'the individual'.

Teaching and learning methods

Weekly 2 hour lecture +
Weekly 1 hour tutorial.

Assessment methods

Method Weight
Written exam 50%
Written assignment (inc essay) 50%

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.


2,000 word essay
2 hour examination

Recommended reading

Adams, Matthew (2007) Self and Social Change, London: Sage.¿Burkitt, Ian (2008) Social Selves: Theories of Self and Society (2nd ed), London: Sage.¿Elliott, Anthony (2014) Concepts of the Self, (3rd edition) Cambridge: Polity Press.

Elliott, Anthony (2016) Identity Troubles: An Introduction, London: Routledge.

Lawler, Steph (2014) Identity: Sociological Perspectives (2nd edn), Cambridge: Polity.

Jenkins, Richard (2008) Social Identity (3rd ed), London: Routledge.

May, V. (2013) Connecting Self to Society: Belonging in a Changing World, Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.

Study hours

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

Teaching staff

Staff member Role
Vanessa May Unit coordinator

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