Welcome to the Department of Sociology at Liverpool John Moores University. We are a lively and friendly Department with an outstanding reputation in both research and teaching.
The Department in Sociology at LJMU offers students a unique opportunity to undertake contemporary, critical and sector leading programmes of study.
Sociology at LJMU has been ranked 39th (out of 97) in the Complete University Guide 2019, which is a 50-place upwards leap from previous year. This means that Sociology at LJMU is on 6th place out of all post-1992 universities in the UK. The ranking is based on entry standards, student satisfaction, research quality and graduate prospects.
Sociology at LJMU has thereby been the most upwardly mobile Sociology department in the UK.
Our results in National Student Survey have been consistently excellent: Student satisfaction on the BA (Hons) Sociology has been 97% (2016), 100% (2017), 86% (2018) and 91% (2019), while students on the BA (Hons) Criminology and Sociology judged their satisfaction as 91% (2016), 82% (2017), 86% (2018) and 82% (2019).
Our degree programmes combine a friendly, supportive atmosphere with challenging and stimulating study which build on staff expertise, research strengths and areas of specialism.
Our alumni are engaged in a range of professions across the world.
The Department of Sociology is recognised internationally for its conceptually driven empirical research and its applied approach to sociology.
In the 2014 Research Excellence Framework (REF) exercise, 64% of outputs were judged to be of world leading and international quality. 100% of impact cases were judged to be of world leading and international quality.
Particular areas of research strength are sociological theory, cultural sociology and international development.
The Department has a thriving community of postgraduate researchers.
From my time studying Sociology at LJMU I really have nothing but praise. Throughout the three years I always felt staff made the course very student led. I found student feedback on lectures and assessments was continually encouraged, so changes could be made to make sure all students needs were fulfilled and we were enjoying the course. Most significantly, in your final year, it can be the toughest, but felt I was given nothing but support and encouragement from my lecturers and tutor to aim high and accomplish my goals. They know how stressful it can be over the three years but they are always there to go that extra mile to help. It is all worth it in the end when you see how proud they are of you when you graduate.
You’d be surprised what you get in to from doing a Sociology degree. In my first, second and third years I studied green modules as I am an environmentalist at heart. I started doing a social sciences degree and now I’ve gone on to doing a biological sciences masters.
LJMU is an inclusive environment and I thoroughly enjoyed my time here. I would give the world to come back to LJMU to teach. I remember where I started, which has laid the foundations of my studies.
The staff are what made the degree worthwhile, because they truly care about you and how well you do.... Most interesting was the diversity of the topics we learnt, so I never thought of putting together sociology and the environment for example. Many of the modules were very conceptual and made you think deeply about varied topics. So if you want to study diverse topics and something that will make you think differently, then sociology is for you.
Studying Sociology at LJMU presented interesting and engaging challenges across the three years. The diversity of both the core and option modules provided opportunities to pursue my personal interest areas further, whilst also discovering new ones. Staff offered first class support and were always happy to help. The highlight of the course was the unique opportunity to carry out research in real life and international settings.
The course really helped me look at the world differently and engage in topics deeply. I enjoyed the variety of modules we were able to study. It helped me look at problems and people from a different perspective, and to look at a solutions.
Studying sociology at LJMU has allowed me to explore new issues and themes that were inaccessible at A -Level.This was aided by the wide variety of these modules and research opportunities offered. Some of these modules were centered on sport, religion and identities whilst research opportunities included visits to London and Belgium. The field trips were my main highlights and have inspired me to embark on postgraduate study and consider going into academia to develop my sociological interests.
The trip to Nepal was one of the most educationally and personally enriching experiences of my life. To submerge myself in a culture so different from my own has opened my mind to other possibilities for living and working that can benefit human well-being. For example, I am now certain in my career choice. I am inspired and motivated to help in the development of communities through finding innovative ways to create mutual support, self-reliance and resilience. I made friends and contacts whilst in Nepal that I will continue to engage with and exchange knowledge with in order to benefit our global community.
Distinctive Features of Sociology at LJMU
Core Training and Unique Pathways for Study
We offer varied degree programmes that prepare students to have a curious and open mind, and to research and explore alternate ideas and respect points of view that may be contrary to their own. Our programmes provide opportunities for core training in sociological methods and theory, and offer unique pathways that reflect the diversity of the discipline and student interest. Pathways include the sociology of culture (identity, religion, music and photography), social inequalities (class, gender and sexuality, disability, health), social policy (sociology in action and green issues), global issues (social scales, mobilities, development, societal differences and pathways), and the sociology of crime and deviance.
Civic Engagement and Citizenship
The Department of Sociology at LJMU is known for its applied approach to sociology, which is reflected in the ways it works in partnership with a range of private, public and third-sector organisations. Civic engagement and citizenship informs the curriculum, which provides challenging and exciting opportunities for learning outside of the classroom. We regard the city, and not just the university building, as our classroom. Teaching at various places within the city of Liverpool, and beyond, enables us to bring the books that students read alive. It helps students to make sense of them. So we spend a lot of time running field trips and taking students on walking lectures where they see what they are learning about in real world contexts, as well as talk to real people involved in the issues that we are learning about. This includes funded fieldwork and overnight stay in London at level 5 in the Research Methods module, where students work in groups to practise their interviewing skills and engage with the organisers of voluntary organisations that address poverty and discrimination.
Sociology at LJMU provides an internationalised curriculum. The International Field Work module at level 6 gives students the opportunity to experience research in the field in an overseas context, which is funded by the department and allows them to become actively involved in project work that exposes them to unfamiliar social and cultural environments. The international fieldwork element recognises the importance to broaden students’ learning experiences in a globalised world. The following Prezi provides an insight into the value and impact of international fieldwork experiences, as told by staff and students in sociology: “International Field Work @LJMUSociology T&L2017”.
Sociology at LJMU prides itself on a committed and supportive approach to learning and teaching, which is a combination of both established and innovative methods: from lectures, seminars, tutorials and workshops, to research projects, fieldwork blogs, online discussions, poster presentations, and reviews so as to equip students with the tools needed to become citizens of the world. Both knowledge and transferable skills are at the heart of teaching and learning, which includes a range of investigative and research skills, forms of written and oral communication, organisational skills and working both as individuals and as part of a team to achieve goals. Sociology develops the very best skills needed for the 21st century workplace in a globalised world, including confidence, employability and citizenship.
Excellence in Research
The Department of Sociology is recognised for its conceptually driven empirical research and its applied approach to sociology, and this sociological policy focus is reflected in the ways it works in partnership with a range of private, public and third-sector organisations. The sociological achievements of the Department were reflected in the 2014 Research Excellence Framework (REF) exercise, in which 64% of submitted outputs were judged to be of world leading and international quality. 100% of impact cases were judged to be of world leading and international quality. The Department has a thriving community of postgraduate researchers.
Social Life & Experiences
The Department of Sociology provides plentiful social experiences for students. Membership of the Sociology Society offers opportunities to add value to your degree studies via inclusive opportunities to socialise with your fellow students and to feel part of the sociological academic community. To date, activities have included film showings, visiting speakers, theatre outings and Summer Balls.