ATSS: Critical views of the family

The filing cabinet that just keeps on giving has revealed another of its little secrets in the form of an ATSS Teaching and Learning Support Pack on Critical Approaches to the Family (stuff like Radical Psychiatry, Marxism and Feminism). This pack takes the same format as previous packs on globalisation, deviance and research methods: general […]

More ATSS Teacher Support Material

Thanks to the very useful online file converter Zamzar I was able to convert one of the old ATSS support booklets from it’s original Microsoft Publisher .pub format to a more-friendly and easily-edited Word format. This booklet illustrates the concept of News Values and is based around the question of “Who creates the news?”. The material […]

ATSS Teacher Support Materials

Those of you with long memories may recall the ATSS (Association for the Teaching of Social Science), an organisation that was eventually folded into the British Sociological Association and lives on (sort-of) in their Teaching Group. Anyway, a while back (probably 10 years or so?) ATSS produced a range of Teacher Support booklets, some of […]

Sociological Research Articles

I found this document lurking on a hard drive and while I’ve absolutely no idea from where it originally came, the metadata says “2008” and since it’s called “Sociological Research articles (since 2000)” it’s a fair bet it contains articles published between those two dates. As you can see, very little gets past me. Digging […]

Revising Perspectives

I’ve been trawling through some of the old ATSS material I seem to have collected and “stored” (oddly, enough, behind bookcases and stuffed towards the back of filing cabinets) over the years and came across this simple revision activity by Warren Kidd. I’ve adapted it very slightly from the original but in the main it’s […]

“Society Is Like”: Simple Sociological Analogies

This activity uses simple analogies (plus some optional optical illusions…) to introduce students to a variety of sociological perspectives. Whatever you may think about the notion of “sociological perspectives” (useful categorising concepts that help students get to grips with a range of related ideas? Or a misleading way of grouping writers in an oversimplified attempt […]

Patterns of Crime and the Social Characteristics of Offenders: Gender and Ethnicity

After a brief hiatus, we’re back to business with a fifth example of Jill Swale’s ATSS work, this one focusing on patterns of offending and how differences based on gender and ethnicity (you can easily add further variables, such as age, to the exercise if you want) can be identified and explained. The exercise itself […]

Sociology and Issues in the News

This simple activity, culled once more from the ATSS archive, has a dual purpose in terms of helping students: 1.     Develop a critical and sociological understanding of “news” and how it is socially constructed and presented. 2.     Interpret and apply sociological knowledge to real social situations. The activity requires no great preparation and involves students […]

Using “Thinking Hats” to Structure Discussions

I’ve always thought Edward De Bono’s “Six Thinking Hats” (1985) is an idea that fits quite neatly with the demands placed on students in a-level sociology and psychology. Three hats speak directly to the assessment process: 1.White: facts, information known or needed. 2. Black: weaknesses, limitations and judgements. 3. Yellow: advantages and uses. The remaining […]

Crime and Gender: Critical Thinking and Essay Writing

A third example of Jill Swale’s work, once more culled from the ATSS archive lurking in my expansive filing cabinet, is an essay-writing exercise constructed around the question: “Assess the view that the women’s crime rate, according to official statistics, is lower than men’s because of differential enforcement of the low.” The activity has three […]