Impatient to change society?


Fascinated by society and the consequences of human behaviour?

Founded in 1964, our Department of Sociology rapidly became known for its sociological pioneers and new approaches. We have played a major role in shaping the discipline ever since. We fostered foundational research on gender, sexualities, deviance, sociological criminology, survey methods, social stratification and oral history. We continue to lead in these fields today.

Embracing an interdisciplinary approach and our commitment to social justice, our courses focus on three main areas of Sociology:

  • Sociology
  • Criminology
  • Digital Culture and Data Science

Impatient to be a part of positive change? You’re in the right place.

Why study here?
  • We're ranked 59th globally and 10th in the UK for Sociology in the QS World University Rankings by Subject (2023)
  • Founded in 1964, Essex has one of the longest standing Sociology Departments in the UK 
  • Dedicated student resource centre offering academic and personal support
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Essex Q-Step Centre

Enhance your degree and demonstrate your quantitative skills with Q-Step. By following the Q-Step pathway of modules within your existing course, you will graduate from Essex with a qualifier award at the end of your degree, signalling to employers your capability in highly sought after quantitative research skills.

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Looking to start in 2024?

Sociology courses in Clearing for 2023

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Courses (32)

Develop imaginative new approaches to sociology.

Work alongside our world-class academics who have spearheaded the pursuit for a new understanding of the social world since the Department of Sociology was founded in 1964.  Our spirit of critical enquiry drives us in the quest for academic excellence, exploring questions of social justice and equality.

We build on the traditions of sociological analysis, with a range of both qualitative and quantitative methods. We explore the contributions of cultural history, criminology, social anthropology, social psychology, social philosophy, feminism, and global sociology.

Impatient for social change? Welcome home.


Why study here?
  • We are 2nd in UK for research power in sociology (Times Higher Education research power measure, Research Excellence Framework 2021).
  • Get to grips with big data through the UK Data Archive and our renowned Institute for Social and Economic Research (ISER).
  • We're ranked 59th globally and 10th in the UK for Sociology in the QS World University Rankings by Subject (2023)
Impatient to enrich sociological research?

We are 2nd in UK for research power in sociology (Times Higher Education research power measure, Research Excellence Framework 2021). Join our pioneering research community and have a meaningful impact on the future of sociology.

Why study here?
  • You work with world-leading scholars who have their finger on the pulse of modern society, in an exciting and active research environment.
  • We offer supervision that stretches out across Europe, North America, Latin America, and the Asian sub-continent.
  • We're home to a number of doctoral training centres; research-council-funded programmes that offer funding and training via studentships.
Student holding books next to the library at Colchester Campus
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We understand that deciding where and what to study is a very important decision for you. We'll make all reasonable efforts to provide you with the courses, services and facilities as described on our website. However, if we need to make material changes, for example due to significant disruption, or in response to COVID-19, we'll let our applicants and students know as soon as possible.