Politics and Sociology

BA, 3-4 years

This is for you if... you are interested in the way that society is organised and how the political world either reinforces or challenges the prevailing social order.

Course Description

Politics and Sociology are intrinsically linked as politics and policies often seek to address social issues. Over the course of your degree you will explore these links and be challenged to look at the world through new political and sociological perspective. You will also gain an understanding of the key aspects of political systems, both here in the UK and further afield.

The first year of your degree ensures that you get a thorough understanding of the main areas of both politics and sociology. In your second and third years you will have more flexibility to shape the course of your degree through the huge variety of option modules that you will be able to choose from. These option modules reflect the research interests of academic staff, exposing students to the latest thinking. All members of the department are engaged in cutting-edge research because we believe that good teaching flourishes in an intellectual environment informed by original research.

Politics and International Relations at Leicester is a thriving and dynamic, yet friendly, place. Politics has been taught at Leicester since the 1940s and we have always been at the cutting edge of British political science.

The development of transferable skills is a key feature of teaching here at Leicester. Our courses are designed to improve your skills in written communications, oral presentation, working as part of a team, independent learning, problem solving and information technology.

Key Facts
Typical offer
UCAS code
Start date
September 2017
Politics and International Relations, Sociology

Admissions enquiries
+44 (0)116 252 5281

Course enquiries
+44 (0)116 252 2702

Politics and International Relations website

View Key Information Sets

Why Leicester?

Politics Review, the leading magazine for students of Politics, has been associated with Politics at Leicester for over 25 years.

Our student Politics and International Relations Society organises a series of events, including visiting speakers, socials and an annual Summer Ball.

Our research strengths in Politics include: political participation; political parties in Europe; ethics and war; environmental politics; Euroscepticism, and US social policy.

Notable figures who have given talks at Leicester in recent years include MPs, members of the House of Lords, MEPs, members of the US Congress, officials working in UK and EU institutions, diplomats and senior personnel from the armed forces.

Course Structure

Year 1

Year 1

During your first year you will split your time equally between Politics and Sociology to ensure that you get a solid grounding in both subjects.

Core modules

Option modules

Choose one option module from:

  • Comparative European Politics
  • Political Concepts
  • Power in the World Economy

Modules shown represent choices available to current students. The range of modules available and the content of any individual module may change in future years.

Year 2

Year 2

In your second year, you will have the flexibility to choose the majority of your own modules so that you can delve deeper into the areas of Politics and Sociology that interest you the most.

Core modules

  • Using Numbers in Social Research
  • Live Sociology

Option modules

Choose three option modules from:

  • Political Ideas
  • Political Parties in Contemporary Britain
  • Sex and Gender in Global Politics
  • Latin American Politics
  • European Union Politics
  • Political Analysis (if you intend to write your dissertation on a politics topic you must take this module)
  • The Making of Contemporary US Foreign Policy
  • Governing Societies in Conflict
  • Politics and Power in Africa
  • Contemporary Political Philosophy: Theories of Justice

Plus a further one option module from:

Modules shown represent choices available to current students. The range of modules available and the content of any individual module may change in future years.

Year Abroad (optional)

Year Abroad (optional)

If you want to, you can spend your third year studying abroad at one of our partner institutions (eligibility is dependent on your academic performance in Years 1 and 2). Alternatively, you can opt to continue studying at the University and complete your degree in three years.

Studying abroad is not just for people who are interested in travelling and meeting new people. It is about acquiring life skills that are becoming increasingly significant for a wide range of jobs in our modern globalised society. Whether you go on to work in the private sector, the state sector, a non-governmental organisation, or become self-employed you will find the experience invaluable. Find out more from our International Office.

Please note that a year spent abroad still incurs a tuition fee, but this is much lower than for a normal year at Leicester. See our Fees and Funding section for details.

Politics and International Relations at Leicester has links with several European universities, administered through the European Erasmus scheme. If you attend one of these, you may be eligible for an Erasmus grant if you comply with European Commission rules and regulations. If you are eligible for a loan from Student Finance you can apply for a travel grant from them. During your second year at Leicester you will receive appropriate language training.

  • For the latest information on the future of the Erasmus scheme at UK universities please see our Brexit microsite 

We have links with the following universities:

Modules shown represent choices available to current students. The range of modules available and the content of any individual module may change in future years.

Final Year

Final Year

In your final year, the only core module you will take is the dissertation. The option modules that you take are up to you. You'll be able to choose from a wide range of modules in politics and sociology. Half of your time will be spent studying politics and the other half sociology.

Option modules

Choose four option modules from:

Plus your dissertation

Modules shown represent choices available to current students. The range of modules available and the content of any individual module may change in future years.

Major/Minor Degrees

Major/Minor options allow you to create your own degree. You can concentrate on one subject as your Major (75% of your course) while broadening your knowledge with a Minor subject (25% of your course).

Why not complement your Major with a subject that you enjoyed before, or which has vocational elements that can boost your career prospects? Alternatively, you may want to try something completely new that you’ve always been interested in, like a language.

Find out more

Teaching and Assessment


You will normally be taught through lectures and small group seminars. We use the latest teaching resources, such as the Blackboard virtual learning environment where students can access support materials for all our modules. As well as traditional lectures and seminars, you will work in small groups, take part in debates and simulation exercises, and undertake a research project of your choice in your final year.


You will be assessed through both written exam and assessed essay.

You will have regular meetings with your personal tutor to discuss progress in your studies. Your personal tutor will also provide a sympathetic ear for all matters of personal concern, whether they be academic, financial, housing, career or social issues.

Entry Requirements

  • A/AS Levels : BBB. Two AS-levels considered in place of one A-level. General Studies accepted.
  • EPQ with A-levels: BBC + EPQ at grade B. Two AS-levels considered in place of one A-level. General Studies accepted.
  • Access to HE Diploma: Pass relevant diploma with some credits at distinction.
  • International Baccalaureate: Pass Diploma with 28 points minimum.
  • BTEC Nationals: Full Diploma with DDM.

Other national and international qualifications considered. If you do not meet the entry requirements for this course, you can apply for the International Foundation Year run by our dedicated International Study Centre. The ISC provides academic and English language support to help you progress to your chosen undergraduate degree at the University of Leicester.

Second year entry may be possible with suitable qualifications.

Selection Process

Applicants are not normally interviewed. If you receive an offer you will be invited to visit the University.

English Language Requirements

IELTS 6.5 or equivalent. If your first language is not English, you may need to provide evidence of your English language ability. If you do not yet meet our requirements, our English Language Teaching Unit (ELTU) offers a range of courses to help you to improve your English to the necessary standard.

International Qualifications

Find your country in this list to check equivalent qualifications, scholarships and additional requirements.

Countries list

Fees and Funding

  • Starting in 2016

    • £9,000 per year

    Starting in 2017

    An inflationary increase (2.8% based on RPIX*) in tuition fees and student support loans have been announced by the Government for 2017. This is still subject to formal parliamentary approval however, if approved, fees for 2017/18 entry could rise to £9,250 in 2017/18.
    After 2017/18, the tuition fee you pay may increase annually in line with inflation (RPIX) and is subject to government regulations.
    (*RPIX is a measure of inflation in the UK, equivalent to all items in the Retail Price Index (RPI) excluding mortgage interest payments.)

  • Starting in 2016

    • £14,630 per year

    Starting in 2017

    • To be confirmed
    • If you take a Year Abroad, your fee will be 15% of the full-time tuition fee.

Career Opportunities

You will regularly discuss career preferences with your personal tutors at each level of study, building up a profile of your optimum career pathways.

You can use your own work experience as a focus for your Third Year research project, providing a more reflexive approach to thinking about future careers.

The 'Parliamentary Studies' module is approved and co-taught by staff at the Houses of Parliament and has the support of The Speaker and the Clerk of the House in the House of Commons, and the Lord Speaker and the Clerk of the Parliaments in the House of Lords. Included in this module is an opportunity to visit Parliament.


Our Career Development Service is here to support you, with advice on interviews, CVs, work experience, volunteering and more. From Freshers’ Week to Graduation and beyond, they are here to help you reach your professional goals.

Course Qualification Duration UCAS Code Availability
Politics and Sociology BA 3 years full-time LL23 Apply Now
Politics and Sociology with Year Abroad BA 4 year full-time LL23 Apply Now
Politics and Sociology
3 years full-time
Politics and Sociology with Year Abroad
4 year full-time