An A-Level in 'Selfies'


Sixth-formers taking their A-levels will now be able to study the culture of 'selfies', as part of a new qualification drawn up by exam board OCR and approved by exams regulator Ofqual.

Students who choose to study sociology will now cover topics such as social media, online safety and privacy as part of a new course.

The exam board said that it will include looking at 'evidence-based research on globalisation', such as studies on why many young people claim they could not live without the internet and how men and women behave differently online.

Victoria Hunter, OCR subject team manager, said: "We have brought our syllabus bang up to date with exciting new content that tackles some of the biggest issues facing societies today.

"Globalisation and digital communication are transforming work, family and leisure life. No sociology A-level would be complete without making it compulsory to study how people are responding to the new rules of the digital global village.'

She added: "Students will apply sociological theories and methods to explore weighty questions around online censorship, how to police the rising tide of global organised crime, if the selfie culture encourages sexualisation of young girls, whether social networks unite or isolate people and the role of digital networks in creating virtual communities"

The new A-level, which will be available from September 2015, is split into three parts. The first looks at core sociological themes such as socialisation, culture, identity and power, and the second looks at research methods, including data analysis taking into account inequality, class, gender, ethnicity and age. The third focuses on 'globalisation', allowing students to explore different methods of social enquiry and develop their understanding of social processes, change and policy.

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