Sound Sociology

Over the years we’ve highlighted a small, but growing, number of Sociology Podcasts, the majority of which have been aimed at a-level students – either because that’s the way the market’s pointing with the increasing popularity of Sociology at this level or because the potential GCSE audience is relatively small in comparison.

Sound Sociology “Presented by JCOSS” – I don’t actually know who or what that is – bucks this general trend by focusing squarely on GCSE Sociology.

And that’s no bad thing because what you get, since November 2020, is a weekly podcast around the 5 – 10 minute mark (some are slightly less, some slightly more) focused on a single topic (crime and class, official statistics and so forth) that has a kind of revision-vibe to it.

There’s around 80 individual podcasts (give-or-take – I lost count) grouped into the familiar AQA Specification groupings (introductory sociology, crime and deviance, stratification, families, education and research methods) and while the narration isn’t exactly dynamic – it sounds, at times, as if it was recorded in a small cupboard and the presenter seems to be extemporising at times –  there’s no reason why a lot of these podcasts couldn’t serve as introductory / summatory sessions.

Having said that, in August 2021 there’s a big change of direction, away from the short revision-type material that’s presumably been exhausted, towards longer podcasts lasting between 25 and 40 minutes. The latter are much more conversational and involve the presenter talking to other teachers and students about a range of topics – from sociology stuff to careers.

How useful you’ll find this change of format is probably down to what you want to use the podcasts for. The answer is probably to suck it and see.

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