Starting university can be an exciting and confusing time, especially when you have more freedom to choose what and how you study. I thought I’d share what I’ve learned about how best to choose modules.

Go with your interests – Chances are you’ll do best in what you enjoy, so make sure you align your module choices with your interests. Remember, (at least some of) the studying should be enjoyable! Although it might seem ages away right now, you could also consider whether you would want to claim a specialism in your final year. Details of these are available on the Warwick Sociology Department website, and require you to have taken particular modules throughout your time here, as well as a dissertation on a related topic (for single honours students). However, if you’re not sure yet, there is still time to study enough CATS (credits) in your intermediate and final years. 

Pay attention to assessment methods – The Sociology Department uses a range of assessment methods, but summative assessments for modules (ones which count towards the final mark) tend to involve either an essay or exam. Think about which you usually perform better in. You may prefer a mixture of exams and essays so you don’t have so many deadlines over a similar time period. For some modules, there is also the option to choose your assessment methods. Exams usually take place in the summer term.

Attend module fairs – Module fairs are a great way to find out more information about the modules on offer, and will tell you more about the content, learning outcomes and expectations of different modules. Similarly, you may also be able to ask students who have already taken a specific module about their experience of it. 

Note down the terms – It is important you follow the structure of your degree to avoid timetable clashes. This usually means taking the same amount of modules per term and making sure you have the correct number of CATS. You might not be able to take all the modules you want to owing to this, but try to ensure that the majority of them are ones you expect to enjoy. There may also be the opportunity to take modules from outside the Sociology department. Furthermore, consider any other commitments you may have each term – some will be busier than others and this could influence your decisions. 

Think about skills – If you struggle to find modules that interest you, think about the skills you could gain from taking them that may help later on with job or further study applications. This might also motivate you to succeed in core modules (ones you cannot choose) you may find difficult or not engage as much with, but hopefully you enjoy them! Additionally, several sociology modules build on and make connections with other modules, which may give you more insight into particular topics, making particular modules more interesting to you and potentially easier to study. 

I hope you found this post helpful. As always, if you have any queries or comments, please feel free to leave them below. 

Take care, 

Ellie