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Transferable skills in Sociology

The key competencies the department focuses on is for students to be able to express their
ideas well in written and spoken form and to apply concepts and ideas to different contexts.
The department seeks to develop student ability to critically read and analyse written texts as
well as numerical data and graphs. Teamwork, peer-evaluation and self-evaluation as well as
intercultural competencies are also considered important. Furthermore, the department seeks
to instil a sense of discovery in students, as well as equip them with the research skills to
explore contemporary society and put theoretical concepts into practice.
Needless to say, certain skills such as academic writing skills are developed throughout the
four years of a sociology degree. The following offers a rough guide as to when various
transferable skills are introduced in the department, dividing them into generic skills and
more specific ones.
Junior Freshman:
Generic: Time management; managing ones own learning; active listening and learning;
academic writing skills; introduction to critical analytical skills; introduction to reading
academic texts
Professional: Developing a sociological imagination; learning the role of theory and
Senior Freshman:
Generic: Teamwork in seminar preparation and preparing a group project; oral
communication and public speaking skills: presentation and facilitation in tutorials; reading
skills: summarising and evaluating academic articles.
Professional: Critically assessing and using simple social statistics (in media and research
reports) in arguments; reviewing research literature; developing own research ideas; basic
qualitative research skills (interviewing, observation, transcription, coding, analysis); utilising
evidence from media in project reports.
Junior Sophister:
Generic: Reading and critiquing difficult texts; developing academic writing skills;
complex problem solving; critically assessing media representation of social events.;
development of presentation and debating skills; practical implementation of participation
in seminar facilitation and presentations.
Professional: Writing research proposals; understanding the practice of social research;
systems analysis and systems evaluation; relating theoretical understanding of sociological
issues to real-life situations; data management and analysis; computing skills (SPSS, Excel,
some Word processing); understanding numeric data and producing reports from raw data.
Senior Sophister:
Generic: Developing competencies and confidence in various forms of writing, online
discussions, and facilitating seminar discussions; developing policy and academic research
analytical skills; developing reflective skills through self-evaluation of assessments.
Professional: Advanced research skills: how to write a literature review, design and conduct
a research project; critical reflexive skills: understanding the limitations of study and design;
assessing theoretical arguments using empirical evidence.
Department of Sociology, last updated 10 th October 2012