1. Cycle Studies
(Undergraduate) – Intramural and Extramural Programme
Graduates of the first cycle studies at our Institute know what sociology is and how it differs from other disciplines. In the course of their studies they get a general understanding of the contemporary world and of the social and cultural life in Poland and worldwide. The curriculum enhances their erudition by offering room for serious exploration of the classics and of the most recent studies and theories. However, our graduates leave our Institute with something far more precious: the capability of applying their learning in practice. This is because we focus on real, hands-on skills (mathematics, research practice, writing, interpersonal skills, self-presentation, analytical skills), giving our students a unique set of competencies to ensure a very broad choice of options for their careers.
The first cycle studies pursue the following education goals:
- gaining essential knowledge of sociology, enhanced with that from basic social sciences;
- gaining skills which enable graduates to interpret and analyse simple research problems using methodologies and techniques of sociological research;
- gaining skills and competence which enable graduates to undertake effective team work and self-motivated learning, and to plan their career paths;
- gaining essential competence for sharing their knowledge and applying skills in social and professional life;
- developing sensitivity to ethical issues, a sense of responsibility and a pro-social attitude.
Graduates of the first cycle studies possess just the right qualifications to undertake employment in auxiliary positions in public administration, research providers or consulting firms, culture institutions, the media or non-governmental organisations involved in social and cultural life.
Our graduates are prepared to continue their sociological studies and obtain a graduate degree in sociology or to undertake second cycle studies in a related discipline (e.g. economics, ethnology, political studies, journalism, social policy, international relations) and/or in humanities (history, philosophy, cultural studies).
The first cycle (undergraduate) studies at the Institute of Sociology stretch over three years. The curriculum covers a complete spectre of sociological education.
The first three terms provide a general education. As early as during our undergraduate programme we offer unique (at the country level), extensive courses in sociological theories (classical and contemporary), as well as in methodology and statistics.
Our curriculum combines a respect for sociological tradition with a focus on contemporary achievements in our discipline. Our courses deal with the debates which are currently taking place in the social sciences, supported by the most recent literature.
We put particular emphasis on research methods: from the very first years of study we offer practical classes with the use of software supporting quantitative and qualitative data analysis.
Starting from the third term, our students may choose one of four broad-ranging thematic modules:
Media, Marketing, Communication
The purpose behind this module is to familiarise students with the key concepts, theories and methods used in research on social communication, with a particular focus on interpersonal communication, mass media, and advertising. The pivotal notion of the module is communication, analysed in various social contexts: from individual and group communication through public discourse to mass communication.
The module is targeted at students who are interested in the processes occurring in the various spheres of social life. Courses are selected for this module with a view to developing skills in analysis, diagnosis and criticism of communication content and the ability to link them with underlying features of social structure and culture.
On the one hand, the module is designed to provide essential tools to analyse communication processes and their critical observation and, on the other, to become a source of practical skills related to preparation, analysis and interpretation of research, the understanding of advertising and marketing messages, and key pertaining techniques.
Graduates of the module will have mastered core skills in: knowledge of marketing and market research, the theory of communication, descriptions/theories of consumption, discourse analysis, analysis and interpretation of marketing research, theories of consumerism, theories of mass media, as well as interpersonal interactions and communication.
Politics and Democracy
This teaching module is an integrated set of courses intended for students who are interested in the sociology and philosophy of politics. Courses cover general issues of political order and the rules of democracy, as well as specific areas of interest within the sociology of politics. The curriculum offered is intended to familiarise students with the following:
- electoral mechanisms,
- the functioning of political parties,
- political marketing and electoral campaigns,
- resolution of political conflicts,
- modern-day philosophy of politics and history of political ideas,
- the functioning of public administration,
- the European integration process and political institutions of the European Union,
- specific national and EU policies (e.g. education, health, etc.).
During courses offered within this module, students become familiar with quantitative and qualitative research techniques used in political and social inquiry, and learn to design and conduct research by themselves. They study mechanisms behind political and social campaigns, and explore the intricacies of the political system of the European Union. Skills developed during this module may prove useful in further work at research agencies and institutes, PR agencies, media, public administration (EU, national and local levels), and educational institutions.
Social Problems and Public Affairs
This teaching module represents an integrated set of courses offered to students who want to get a grasp of the following:
- phenomena and processes representing a challenge for civil society institutions and welfare state institutions (unemployment and other problems on the labour market, poverty, social exclusion, inequalities in education, inequalities related to gender and age, addictions, etc.),
- technologies of social change aiming to solve social problems, theoretical frameworks for the description, measurement and analysis of phenomena and processes considered to be social problems, and the related methodological intricacies,
- mechanisms and dynamics of public governance in Poland and worldwide (with a special focus on labour market policy, educational policy, social aid and social support, and penal policy),
- changes in the structure of public administration as a response to the problems of co‑ordination and governance in the public sphere,
- premises for, and the scope of, collaboration between public administration and the so-called ‘second sector’ and ‘third sector’.
The list presented above is by no means exhaustive, and the topics covered under the module may evolve as necessary. The key assumption is unchanged, however: the module deals with challenges for public order, as well as institutionalised responses to those phenomena.
Cultural Diversity of the Modern World
This module is intended for those interested in culture (in its multiple varieties and understandings), and its diversity resulting from social factors.
This module covers issues such as:
- faces of ethnic diversity in contemporary European societies and challenges related to the presence of minorities,
- cultural differences in the contemporary world (diversity in Europe, Europe versus non-European cultures),
- transformations of individual and group identities in the contemporary world,
- cultural facets and consequences of globalisation,
- culture in post-modern society and a multitude of discourses in modernity,
- diversity of cultural patterns, micro-universes (incl. global micro-worlds) and subcultures in the reality around us,
- diversity of lifestyles and consumption in contemporary society,
- mass culture and popular culture phenomena and their sociological interpretations; interfaces between sociology, literature and arts; the social significance of the Internet.
Students who take this module will acquire knowledge about the key dimensions of cultural diversity in the contemporary world. They will become familiar with key concepts, theories and studies in intercultural contact and migration, the sociology of ethnicity, gender studies, transformations of identities, and new phenomena in culture.
Students will be equipped with the skills to analyse and diagnose various cultural aspects of reality and will learn how to research a variety of socio-cultural phenomena.
Module participants will become sensitised to the issue of cultural differences and related problems, conflicts, and prejudices.
Students will acquire knowledge and skills which they will be able to use in their career (e.g. social studies, NGOs, public administration, journalism), as well as in their own life in Poland and abroad, in a globalised, multicultural, dynamically changing cultural reality.