Sociology is the study of social life and social change - a domain with huge scope that Zygmunt Bauman describes as any aspect of the world 'that bears the imprint of human activity'. This can lead the sociologist to many different topics of study from reproduction of inequalities in relation to social categories (eg race, class or gender), to the shaping of intimate relationships by wider cultural contexts, or the generation of resistance and protest by economic trends and crises. The degree in Sociology engages you in research and writing on a range of sociological topics. When you study these areas you will be looking at patterns of individual and group behaviour, the rules and norms that govern that behaviour in different societies and the meanings that people attribute to their own life circumstances, their social identities and their relationships. You will learn and use a range of theories and concepts to help understand topics of interest, and a set of rigorous and systematic approaches to gathering and interpreting information to help you develop reliable knowledge. When you study sociology at The University of Manchester you encounter course units examining the latest sociological puzzles through up-to-date theories and methods. You will be given a thorough grounding in a wide range of classic and contemporary theoretical approaches as well as a set of research skills that allow you to carry out your own sociological investigations. Each year you will be asked to select from a wide range of course units. We can guide you to select options that fit your developing intellectual interests - but by the third year most of our students know exactly what type of sociologist they are.