Psychology and Sociology BSc (Hons) Southend Campus

A key feature of this course is the application of sociological and psychological theories into practical contexts. Students learn core research skills to support their understanding and application of theory. This enables graduates to be fully prepared for progression to a wide range of careers in the sector and postgraduate study.

The course covers three key interrelated social science disciplines - psychology, sociology and research methods. The programme explores topics such as mental health, social psychology, crime and deviance, culture and difference, local and global cultures, abnormal psychology, health psychology and the sociology of health and illness.

The disciplines are run concurrently throughout the three years, from foundation level to application, and each carries equal weighting.

Why should I do this course? 
  • the course provides students with the understanding of how the individual behaves and is motivated, whilst developing the sociological understanding of how society is structured and operates
  • the team is delivered by specialists with employment history in each of the core domains
  • students progress to excellent graduate destinations
What's covered? 

Field trips

There are several field trips as part of the programme including:

  • Science Museum - mental health exhibition
  • Anna Freud Centre - at the forefront of research in child psychoanalysis
  • Museum of Immigration and Diversity
  • plays in London with a psychological angle

Contact hours

13 hours per week, comprising:

  • four x three hour lectures
  • one hour tutorial

The contact hours include a combination of taught and practical sessions, in addition to workshops and debates.

Employability days

As part of the programme we devote valuable time to boosting your chances of securing the career you deserve, including:

  • British Sign Language training
  • visual impairment awareness training
  • CV writing and interview techniques
How will my work be assessed? 

Students are assessed through a variety of methods including essays, reports, research projects, reflective journals, seminars responding to pre-set reading, timed Assessments and examinations. The first year of study is a qualifying year and does not count towards the final degree classification.

What can I do after this? 

You can undertake a conversion award which will provide an opportunity to become eligible for the Graduate Basis for Chartered Membership (GBC) of The British Psychological Society. By gaining the GBC, you will be eligible to apply for a place on a society-accredited postgraduate training programme and, in time, progress to gaining Chartered Membership (CPsychol) of the Society. There are currently 65 institutions that offer the conversion course, including the University of Essex.

Additional further study options include:

  • MSc Sociology
  • MA Social Work
  • MSc Social Research Methods
  • MSc Social Policy

You could also progress to a PGCE teaching qualification.

Graduate destinations

Our graduates have taken up careers including:

  • working within mental health services in a hospital
  • a case-worker in a women’s refuge
  • a manager for a housing charity
  • a family conferencing case-worker
  • a Connexions adviser
  • a disability rights consultant
  • a mental health worker
  • clinical psychologist

In addition, many graduates have taken up teaching careers in the primary, secondary and post-compulsory sectors, while others have gone on to further study at Masters and PhD level.

Year one

In this first year of the programme you will be introduced to the four main subject strands:


Introduction to sociology

Introduction to psychology

Social research methods

Introduction to critical thinking

Developing the effective learner

As part of the first year you will develop various skills and experiences related to the three main strands, synthesising them with basic competencies, language and concepts. You will also be encouraged to take responsibility for your own learning and to assimilate and engage with the culture of higher education.

Areas of study: Include the history of psychology and sociology and critical thinking, as well as methods and analyses for social research.

Year 2

You will develop the ability to apply basic competencies, language and concepts of the programme and address the subject areas in more depth. There will be an increased emphasis on independent research and the application of the analytical skills acquired in the previous year, together with the development of both qualitative and quantitative research methods.


Social psychology

Research methods

Culture and difference

Critical thought

Social structures and social inequalities

Areas of study: Include the history and the application of social psychology, application of own research to a proposal in prepartion for year 3 dissertation, cross-cultural factors in society incluidng race gender, enthicity and sexuality

Year 3

Whilst studying a range of specialist modules across the various disciplinary strands, the main thrust of the final year is your dissertation, a substantial piece of academic writing. Preparation for this module has several component parts culminating in the production of your own research project.



Abnormal psychology*

Local and global cultures*

Crime and deviance*

Contemporary issues in society

Investigative psychology*

Sociology of health and illness*

Areas of study: Independent research opportunities within the dissertartion module, crime and deviance or the sociology of health and illness, cultural politics, local and global culture.

*Please note that year 3 offers an opportunity to study optional units that may change as required.

Entry requirements 

You will need a minimum of 160 UCAS points from one or more of the following:

  • at least two A-levels
  • BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma/Diploma/Subsidiary Diploma/Certificate [QCF]
  • BTEC National Award/Certificate/Diploma [NQF]
  • Access to Higher Education Diploma
  • International Baccalaureate
  • AQA Baccalaureate
  • Progression Diploma
  • Advanced Diploma

You will also need GCSE English and Maths at grade C (old specification) or Grade 4 (new specification) or above OR a Level 2 equivalent such as functional skills.

To find out how many points your qualifications are awarded, view the UCAS Tariff tables.

Candidates without formal qualifications may apply and will need to demonstrate the ability to study at a higher level through interview, the submission of an exceptional entry portfolio and/or a written assessment.

Exceptional Entry

Applications from mature students who do not possess the entry requirements as listed above, but who possess related professional experience or professional qualifications, are welcome to apply. You will need to demonstrate by interview, exceptional entry portfolio (this is likely to include evidence of paid or unpaid work experience) and/or written assessment that you are suitable for the course. In the first instance we suggest you contact [email protected] to discuss your application.

Open Event - Higher Education

Saturday, 08 October 2016
Saturday, 26 November 2016
Saturday, 03 December 2016
Saturday, 22 April 2017

The Forum

As a higher education student at South Essex College you will get exclusive access to The Forum Southend-on-Sea, a £27 million ultra-modern library and learning zone located opposite our Southend Campus.

Therefore we are holding our higher education open events at The Forum so that you can see for yourself the fantastic new building and learning facilities you will have access to if you choose to study with us.

Southend Campus (Luker Road)
Monday, September 19, 2016
Full time
3 years
Higher Education
Course code
Fees are per academic year for home and EU students
Southend Campus (Luker Road)
Luker Road

The latest

My story Reece Lovell
Interior Design BA (Hons)

Reece Lovell
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My name is Reece Lovell, I’m 20 years old, I studied a BA (Hons) in Interior Design at South Essex College, and this is my story.

I am very pleased that I went to South Essex College, the tutors were brilliant and everything about it was just perfect. My experience of studying at the College was great, the people on the course were very helpful, the tutors and facilities were great, there was an endless supply of resources and the workshops were amazing. We were a small group so I got more one-on-one time with the tutors and benefitted by getting more experience and knowledge from them.

I left the College and had a two-week break before I got my first full-time job in interior design. I am now a junior interior designer at G1 Architecture where I help to design the interiors of five-star hotels all over the world.

The College prepared me for the workplace by showing me all the different techniques I needed to use and gave me the skills I needed to jump right in the deep end when I started my first full-time professional role.

I did about four year’s work experience whilst I was studying, so rather than having a part-time job in a bar or retail like other students, I thought that I would take the opportunity while I didn’t have any bills to pay to work for free and get the skills I needed to be able to go into a full-time proper paid job.

Our company mostly take on hospitality projects in hotels in Africa and the Middle East, but we also take on a few residential, bars, restaurants and office space projects.

I will get the chance to travel working here; there may be an opportunity to work in Dubai for up to 16 months and at the moment I am working on projects based in Africa so I could go there and meet the clients on site and participate in meetings.

My ambition is to continue working here until I gain enough knowledge to work completely independently for myself on a freelance basis and eventually have a team working for me.

I would tell people who were thinking of doing a degree at South Essex College to go for it, it was probably the most helpful thing I have done, especially with the tutors I had,  who were extremely helpful and pushed me as far as I could possibly be pushed to be the best I could be.

Key facts

  • Social Work/Studies
  • Undergraduate Qualification
  • BSc Social Studies
  • Health, Care and Science

Awarded by

University Of Essex