Hi, my name’s Christa, and I study Social and Political Sciences (SPS) here at York. SPS covers learning across three core departments at the University: politics, sociology and social policy. If you’re interested in any (or all) of these subjects, you should read on to learn how they fit into the SPS degree!
When I was applying for university, I didn’t know what degree I wanted to pursue. I enjoyed studying sociology and elements of politics in my other lessons at college. But I couldn’t decide which specific course to choose, as I feared making the wrong choice. When we had a university fair at college, I spoke to a representative of the Uni of York. He suggested I check out SPS as I could study across all the subjects I had an interest in.
What SPS offers
In my first year, I studied a handful of core modules that introduced the key principles of politics, sociology and social policy. I also got to cover contemporary issues in social and political sciences. This helped me to better understand the departments I was studying under, especially politics, since I’d never properly studied it before.
In 2nd and 3rd Year, the direction I wanted to take my degree in was placed into my hands. With the conceptual foundation 1st Year had given me, I was able to choose from a huge list of option modules across all the departments in SPS.
I focused my studies down a more sociological route, taking a module on Social Interaction and Conversation Analysis in 2nd Year. This module introduced me to sociological ideas that I’d never encountered before, but that I fell in love with. In fact, I ended up taking the follow-on module Talk at Work in 3rd Year, as well as basing my dissertation on the core learnings of the Conversation Analysis module!
In my opinion, this structuring of the SPS degree – which allowed me to narrow down my specific focus across my three years of study – gave me better flexibility to explore the learning I was the most passionate about.
However, the degree’s structure also ensured I didn’t neglect other fields of study. Since I’d taken mostly sociology and social policy modules in my second year, I had to take a politics module in my third year to balance it out. This meant I got the most value out of my interdepartmental degree, and encouraged me to learn outside of my regular studies.
The School of Social and Political Sciences
Studying across several departments means I have teaching across both Campus West and East. I get to explore the whole University, and enjoy all the facilities (and views!) it offers.
The School of SPS has a hub in the Church Lane Building (CLB) on Campus West. So SPS has the same feeling of community with fellow students and staff that a singular departmental degree would do. There are regular events in the CLB, such as debates and informal meetings (with pizza!). These are a fab opportunity to discuss the practicalities and functioning of the degree with SPS leaders.
If, like me, you’re uncertain about what field of study you want to choose, then consider studying a multi-departmental degree, like SPS. I’ve had the freedom to study across a wider range of subjects than I ever expected from a degree. I feel ready to graduate knowing I’ve studied what I’m specifically interested in, as well as ensuring I have many career options in the future.
I hope this blog has shown you the benefits of choosing SPS as a degree. Sociology, politics and social policy are all very relevant subjects to study in today’s world. So, if you want to gain a better understanding of the world we live in (and don’t want to be restricted to just one field of study), then SPS is the perfect degree to choose!
Thank you so much for reading this blog, and good luck in your future studies!