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
LJMU offers a range of degree programmes aimed at encouraging our students to be curious, and have open minds when it comes to learning about alternate viewpoints. Our programmes provide opportunities for core training in sociological methods and theory, as well as offering unique pathways that reflect the diversity of this discipline. 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, development, societal differences and pathways), and the sociology of crime and deviance.
Civic engagement and citizenship
Our applied approach is also reflected in our partnerships with a range of private, public, and third-sector organisations. Civic engagement and citizenship help to inform our curriculum, providing challenging and exciting opportunities for learning outside of the classroom. We regard the city, not just our university building, as our classroom. The department also runs regular field trips, with students taking part in walking lectures where they are able to talk to the real people involved with the issues they are learning about.
Sociology at LJMU provides an internationalised curriculum. The International Field Work module at level six gives students the opportunity to experience field research in an overseas context. This is funded by the department and allows students to become actively involved in project work that exposes them to unfamiliar social and cultural environments. The international fieldwork element recognises the importance of broadening students’ learning experiences in a globalised world. The presentation link below 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".
The Department of Sociology at LJMU prides itself on a committed and supportive approach to learning and teaching, which uses a combination of established and innovative methods. From lectures, seminars, tutorials, and workshops - to research projects, fieldwork blogs, online discussions, poster presentations, and reviews - all of these approaches are designed to equip students with the tools they need to become citizens of the world. Both knowledge and transferable skills are at the heart of our 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 collective goals. The study of these subjects also develops some of the essential skills needed for the 21st-century workplace in a globalised world - including confidence, employability, and citizenship.
Excellence in research
Our department is also recognised internationally for the conceptually driven empirical research we carry out. Our strong areas of research expertise include sociological theory, cultural sociology, and international development. The department also has a thriving community of postgraduate researchers.
Social life & experiences
The Department of Sociology often facilitates social events for students. Past activities have included film showings, visiting speaker events, theatre outings, and seasonal balls. Students are also encouraged to join the Sociological Society, as this provides an opportunity to socialise with peers and interact with the wider sociological academic community.