Business & Sociology

Why choose this course? 

  • A robust, relevant business curriculum which is rooted in the real world.
  • Strong focus on key contemporary social issues and international comparisons of social structures and policies.
  • Opportunity to specialise in the areas of particular interest and relevance to your career. 
  • Sociology at Aston is currently ranked Top 20 in the UK in the 2015 Guardian University Guide.
  • Sociology is currently ranked Top 15 in the UK for Employability in the 2015 Complete University Guide. 
  • Sociology achieved 97% Overall Satisfaction in the 2014 National Student Survey.

4 years full-time with integrated placement year

UCAS Code: LN31

Typical offers:
A Levels: ABB-BBB from three subjects.

If your predicted grades are close to those stated in Aston's typical offers and if you are interested in Aston University and the courses we offer we encourage you to apply to us as one of your 5 UCAS choices. In addition to your predicted grades, when making offers we also consider your previous academic performance (eg AS grades, GCSEs), your school/college reference and the commitment and motivation you demonstrate for your chosen course via the personal statement. Applicants and their teachers/advisers are welcome to contact us with individual queries about entry qualifications via lss_ugadmissions@aston.ac.uk.

View our Admissions Policy. 

IB: 33 points
BTEC, Access & other: Students applying with BTEC or Access qualifications are considered on individual basis.

Specific subject requirements: GCSE: Maths & English at grade C or above.

Tuition fees 2014/15: £9,000 for UK/EU students (£1000 for placement year) More on fees

Applicants receiving offers are invited to an open day.

This course is designed to develop your sociological analysis and research skills and a comprehensive understanding of the various functions of management. 

You will develop an informed understanding of the major debates shaping today’s society, and cultivate a wider ‘sociological imagination’ of the contemporary world. You will establish foundations in sociological approaches to gender, ‘race’, class and sexuality. This will feed into higher level courses that deal with more complex issues including the relationship between science and ‘race’, reproductive politics, environmental justice and media power.

You’ll study the theories, principles and underlying concepts of the main functions of management and develop a strong understanding of business models and processes. You’ll examine how strategic decision-making within organisations takes place, and develop the ability to recognise and analyse the economic, technical, financial, social and organisational parameters within which modern managers make decisions.

Your placement year will give you the opportunity to apply your key skills and competencies within a real work-based situation.

Sociology & Business students take 120 credits of modules per year, 60 from business modules and 60 from sociology modules. A 10 credit module comprises approximately 100 learning hours and has up to three contact hours per week.

Year 1

  • Classical Social Theory I (20 credit module)

  • Identities and Inequalities (20 credit module)

  • Research methods (20 credit module)

  • Foundations of Business Analytics (10 credit module)

  • Organisational Behaviour (10 credit module)
  • Principles of Financial Accounting (10 credit module)

  • Economic Environment of Business (10 credit module)

  • IT for Business (10 credit module)

  • Introduction to Marketing Management (10 credit module)

Year 2

You will study two core modules, and select two elective modules (worth 10 credits each).

  • Contemporary Social Theory II (20 credit core module)

  • Research Methods II (20 credit core module)

  • Global Society (Elective module)

  • Embodiment and Feminist Theory (Elective module)

  • Sociology of Racism (Elective module)

  • Media and Society (Elective module)

  • CSI: Crime, Subversion and Injustice (Elective module)

  • Technology and Social Theory (Elective module)

You will study six core modules, which are worth 10 credits each:

  • Business Policy

  • Business Game 

  • Management Accounting

  • Operations Management

  • Business Economics

  • Business, Government and Society

Placement year

At Aston the placement year is an integral part of your course, and contributes to your final grade. Find out more about the Sociology & Business placement year.

Final year

You will study one core module worth 20 credits, and select elective modules worth 40 credits.

  • Final Year Project (20 credit core module)

  • Governance of Economic Development Policy (10 credit elective module)

  • Modern British Governance (10 credit elective module)

  • Risk, Regulation and Financial Crisis (10 credit elective module)

  • Risk, Environment and Society (10 credit elective module)

  • The Sociology of Work, Organisations and Society (10 credit elective module)

  • Racism, Class and Gender (10 credit elective module)

  • Health Matters: Understanding Patterns and Policies (10 credit elective module)

  • Contemporary Social Movements (10 credit elective module)

  • Corporate Power in a Globalised World (10 credit elective module)
  • The Sociology of Sport and Society (10 credit elective module)
  • Sociology of Human Reproduction (10 credit elective module)
  • Sociology of Education (10 credit elective module)
  • Sociology of Religion (10 credit elective module)
  • Tattoos, TV and Trends: Understanding Popular Culture (10 credit elective module)
  • Sociology of Music (10 credit elective module)

You will study two core modules and select elective modules worth 40 credits. 

  • Finance (Core module)

  • Value Based Strategy (Core module)

  • Making Managerial Decisions using Accounting Information  (20 credit elective module)

  • Theories and Practice of Leadership (20 credit elective module)

  • Psychology & Work (20 credit elective module)

  • Consumer Behaviour (10 credit elective module)

  • Advanced Consumer Behaviour (10 credit elective module)

  • International Marketing (20 credit elective module)

  • International Operations (20 credit elective module)

  • Effective Project Delivery (20 credit elective module)

  • Entrepreneurial Management (20 credit elective module)

  • Learning, Training and Development in Organisations (10 credit elective module)

  • Global Working (10 credit elective module)

  • Business Ethics (10 credit elective module)

  • International Business Economics (10 credit elective module)

You will participate in lectures, tutorials, seminars, group and individual project work.  Traditional teaching is supported by a virtual learning environment that is used to host a range of electronic supporting materials.

The course deals with many topical issues, and as a result we try to incorporate current media coverage and public debates into class discussions and to link these to academic research and commentary wherever possible.

There is a much stronger emphasis on reading and on your own private, independent study than at pre-degree level. To help you manage your learning, we set out your work for the year in an online student guide. This includes full details of all modules including week-by-week lecture breakdowns, reading lists and all coursework assignments for the year with the relevant deadlines. The University offers training courses in study skills, and the Library’s Learning Development Centre provides one-to-one instruction, workshops and study guides for academic research and writing.

We use a range of assessment methods and most modules are assessed with a combination of coursework and an end of year examination. Coursework includes essays, research reports, individual and group projects, statistics assignments, class tests and both individual and group presentations.

For further information, see the programme specification (PDF).

The placement year is an opportunity for you to set your studies in context and gain valuable professional experience. It is highly attractive to potential employers and many of our students are offered graduate jobs by their placement employer.

You can choose whether your placement has a business or a sociology focus and your may be in the UK or abroad. Placements taken by Aston students are generally paid, with the average salary being around £16,000.

In recent years our Joint Honours business and sociology degrees at Aston have undertaken placements in a variety of organisations, including:

  • Aston Villa Football Club

  • Behavioural Support Centres

  • British Energy

  • Children’s Society

  • Civil Service

  • Ford

  • Home Office

  • Marks and Spencer

  • NHS

  • People and Planet

  • Pupil referral units

  • Suffolk Youth Offending Service

  • University research and study placements (UK, US, Australia, Finland and Singapore)

You'll receive plenty of help and advice in finding your placement and specialist support and supervision from the University during your placement.

Find out more about placement years at Aston.

Our Sociology & Business graduates go on to pursue a very wide range of career paths. Graduates enter business and commercial careers, caring and social careers, teaching and local government careers and many others. Progression rate to a first job is very high for Aston students and career prospects are good.

Our graduates are in demand from a wide range of employers where a sound understanding of
organisations, management, team work and communication skills are essential. 

Our Sociology & Sociology programme prepares you for many careers in both the public and private sector - for example advertising, management consultancy, caring and social careers, human resources management or teaching. 

The growth of the service sector puts Sociology & Business graduates at a  premium – they have insight into motivation and behaviour and know about people, relationships and community dynamics. Our graduates have excellent communication and teamwork skills, are critical and analytic and can design, conduct and analyse and evaluate research. As a manager you will be a problem solver, planner and leader, and this course aims to prepare you for these challenges.

Graduate destinations 

Graduates who have studied a Joint Honours business or sociology course, have a strong track record in finding jobs and have gone on to work in organisations including: 

  • Housing Officer, Wychavon District Council

  • Support Worker, Future Homecare

  • Graduate Management Trainees at a variety of companies including Lloyds Bank, local government, Nestlé, KPMG, PwC and Deloitte  

  • Graduate Buyer, Carillion

  • Theatrical Marketing, Warner Brothers

  • Case Worker, Crown Prosecution Service

  • Trainee Teacher, Castle Vale School

  • PGCE – Primary, Secondary, College Teaching

  • Management Trainee for the NHS

  • Finance Officer, English Heritage

  • Police Constable

  • Marketing Assistants (variety of companies)

  • Financial Analyst, IBM

This course is designed to also give you a range of transferable and practical skills to succeed within your chosen career. We make extensive use of group working and presentations to prepare you for the reality of working life. Such work develops your team working and negotiating skills.

Our placement year gives you the opportunity to gain practical work experience that is invaluable in developing an appreciation of issues which cannot be replicated in the lecture room.

In the Business School, teaching rooms and facilities have also been recently refurbished. All lecture theatres and seminar rooms are fully equipped with the latest teaching aids and extensive use is made of our Virtual Learning Environment to help support your studies. 

The School of Languages and Social Sciences has a dedicated student room, the ‘Cadbury
Room’, with social seating, study stations and meeting tables, WiFi, networked printing and
photocopying facilities.

As a Sociology student you'll have access to a wide range of resources for study and research, including access to thousands of online journals, books and databases; computer labs equipped with SPSS and NVivo data analysis software; and a dedicated learning technologies team that supports student research and creative production.

You are encouraged to borrow from our stock of research equipment, including video and digital voice recorders. You can sign up for workshops which focus on techniques of interviewing, conducting recorded focus groups, analysing audio and visual data, and
producing and editing video and audio media.

Although based in the School of Languages & Social Sciences, this course is taught jointly with staff from Aston Business School.

Dr Chrissie Rogers - Senior Lecturer in Sociology

Chrissie Rogers

“Sociology enables us to understand the personal and private lives of individuals and engage with the messy nature of everyday life. All of this can then be viewed in the context of the public sphere. For example, one of my areas of research is around the impacts of inclusion and exclusion for children and young people and in the UK ‘Every Child Matters’ promotes a meaningful sense of well-being for all children and ‘Education for All’ positions a global inclusive education strategy. These are just two of the policy contexts that address education as a means to promote inclusion and meaningful learning. But do they? Large numbers of pupils are not included, have poor educational experiences and are either marginalised or demonised. Education is failing children and young people. Not least of all because they are disengaged, alienated and excluded from a meaningful learning process. League tabling and competitive schooling is stifling. We need to address these divisions as sociologists. This focus is just one area that within teaching sociology we can really get to the heart of understanding difference and diversity. More broadly, as a sociologist I have written Parenting and Inclusive Education, Critical Approaches to Care (with Susie Weller) as well as working on Intellectual Disability and Social Theory.”

For more information, please contact the Languages & Social Sciences Admissions Office on +44 (0) 121 204 3777 or lss_ugadmissions@aston.ac.uk.

Contact Details

Tel: 0121 204 3777
Email: lss_ugadmissions@aston.ac.uk

Graduate Profile

Graduate Profile

Amy Leighton, Graduate 2013

BSc Sociology and Business

I undertook my first 12 month placement at a creative undergraduate agency, designing marketing campaigns for companies such Morgan Stanley, UBS and Nestle. My Placement Year strengthened my ability to communicate with others effectively and take on vast amounts of responsibility quickly. I now work as a Product Marketing Manager for Atos.


Download the course brochure



Fees and funding

Fees and funding
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Employable Graduates; Exploitable Research