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BA - Sociology as a major

If you’re fascinated by the history and creative activities of humankind and how this shapes societies and our future, then a Bachelor of Arts (BA) is for you. Our graduates are in demand for their flexible skills, practical outlook and depth of understanding they bring to their roles.

Sociology at Waikato moves you beyond assumptions and explores who we are and our place in the world. You'll study human relationships and how societies form. Sociology at Waikato is highly respected and is a top 250 QS-rated subject.

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Key information

Years: 3
Points: 360
Start Dates: Semester A (February) and Semester B (July)
Fees (Domestic): $6,117-$7,132 per year
Fees (International): $24,425 - $31,795 per year
Entry Requirements: Undergraduate International
*Tuition fees shown are indicative only and may change. There are additional fees and charges related to enrolment please see the Table of Fees and Charges for more information. You will be sent an enrolment agreement which will confirm your fees.

Career opportunities

  • Heritage Presenter
  • Iwi Development Officer
  • Media or Social Commentator
  • Social Analyst
  • Social Researcher
  • Youth or Social Service Worker

Degree Planner

Degree planner — BA in Sociology

Please see degree planner footnotes for level 100, 200 and 300 paper selection options.

Year 1

One of
WKEMP100 or GNSEX101

One from List A
(see BA Papers below)

Field of the Degree
100 Level

Field of the Degree
100 Level



Year 2

200 Level Paper listed below

One from List B
(see BA Papers below)

Field of the Degree
200 Level




Year 3

300 Level Paper listed below

300 Level Paper listed below

300 Level Paper listed below

One from List C
(see BA Papers below)




  • Stream
  • Elective
  • Compulsory

Sociology involves the analysis of society: that is, how people organise and participate in groups and larger social structures, and how societies change. Sociologists ask questions about society, challenging what is normally taken for granted. Students who major in Sociology develop, not only a good understanding of social structures, social issues and policies, and social change, but also strong research and information literacy skills that prepare them well for employment in many fields.

Sociology is available as a major for the BA and the BSocSc. Sociology may also be taken as a second major or as a minor, subject to academic approval of the Faculty in which the student is enrolled.

To complete Sociology as a single major, students must gain 135 points from papers listed for Sociology including SOCIO101, and either WKEMP100 or GNSEX101 or SOCIO102; SOCIO200, at least 15 points from other SOCIO coded 200 level papers, and a further 15 points at 200 level; SOCIO301, at least 15 points from other SOCIO coded 300 level papers, and a further 30 points at 300 level or above.

To complete Sociology as part of a double major, students must complete SOCIO101, SOCIO200, SOCIO301 and 75 further points from papers listed for Sociology of which at least 60 points must be above 100 level and 30 points must be above 200 level.

To complete a minor in Sociology, students must complete 60 points from papers listed for Sociology, including SOCIO101, SOCIO200, and SOCIO301.

100 Level

Code Paper Title Occurrence / Location
ECONS102Economics and Society19B (Hamilton)
This paper introduces selected economic models, with a focus on developing and applying critical thinking skills to a range of business and social issues and to economic policies.
GNSEX101Gender and Sexuality: Representations and Realities19B (Hamilton)
This paper considers issues related to gender, sexuality, and the body including health issues, media representations, gender based violence, and forms of resistance.
HMDEV100Lifespan Development19A (Hamilton), 19B (Online) & 19B (Tauranga)
HMDEV100 focuses on understanding and enhancing human development through an exploration of biological, psychological, social and cultural factors that influence patterns of development and learning over the lifespan.
MAORI150Te Tiriti o Waitangi: An Introduction to the Treaty of Waitangi19A (Tauranga) & 19B (Hamilton)
This paper seeks to provide a sound understanding of Te Tiriti o Waitangi. It reviews historical and contemporary interpretations and takes into account the interplay of contextual issues of the time.
SOCIO101Introduction to Sociology19B (Hamilton) & 19B (Tauranga)
This paper prepares students for further study in a range of social science subjects. It introduces the main sociological theories, concepts and practices that enable an understanding of contemporary societies.
SOCIO102Introduction to Criminology and Criminal Justice19A (Hamilton), 19A (Tauranga) & 19B (Tauranga)
This paper provides students with an introduction to criminology and the criminal justice system, with a focus on the New Zealand context.
SOCPY100Introduction to Social Policy19A (Hamilton) & 19A (Tauranga)
This paper examines the values behind social policy and introduces students to some of the important issues and debates in New Zealand and other democratic societies.
WKEMP100Work, Employment and Society19B (Hamilton)
The purpose of this paper is to focus on the interdisciplinary account of the changing forms and social contexts of work from ancient times to the present and beyond.

200 Level

Code Paper Title Occurrence / Location
ANTHY201Ethnicity and Identity19A (Hamilton)
This paper focuses on ethnicity and related categories of division such as "race" and nation. It explores how these concepts link to identity in different cultures and societies.
CMYHE202Understanding the Healthy Body: Sociocultural Perspectives19A (Hamilton)
This paper develops students' understanding of health as a social and cultural issue, not just a biological one.
ECONS200Understanding the Global Economy19A (Hamilton) & 19C (Zhejiang University City College, Hangzhou China)
This paper focuses on developing understanding of contemporary global issues, including economic well-being, sustainable growth, emerging economies, world trade and globalisation.
MAORI250Māori Politics19A (Hamilton) & 19B (Tauranga)
This paper examines Maori and Indigenous politics in a broad sense, from key ideas such as sovereignty, tino rangatiratanga, and autonomy, through to crucial forms of resistance via various political structures including local, Iwi, national and global Indigenous movements.
POPST201Population Studies19A (Hamilton) & 19A (Online)
This course provides a comprehensive introduction to the multidisciplinary field of Population Studies. Students will develop a sound understanding of the demographic drivers of population change and composition, while exploring some of the rich theories and methodological approaches which comprise Population Studies.
SOCIO200Modern Sociology and Western Capitalism: A Cosmopolitan Perspective19A (Hamilton), 19A (Online) & 19B (Hamilton)
This paper examines the ascendancy of modern sociology, from the classic works of Karl Max, Emile Durkheim and Max Weber to contemporary themes such as cosmopolitanism, globalisation and individualisation.
SOCIO203Popular Culture19A (Hamilton), 19A (Tauranga), 19B (Hamilton) & 19B (Tauranga)
This paper offers a sociological perspective on historical and contemporary forms of popular culture.
SOCPY200Social Policy and Social Issues19A (Hamilton), 19A (Tauranga), 19B (Hamilton) & 19B (Tauranga)
The paper continues the study of social policy at 200 level. The focus of this paper is on the welfare state, the policy cycle as well as social problems, such as poverty.
SSRES200Social Science Research Methods19A (Hamilton) & 19B (Online)
This paper introduces the core research methods used in the social sciences. Both qualitative and quantitative approaches are introduced, along with consideration of aspects such as ethics and the Treaty of Waitangi.
WKEMP201Employment Relations in New Zealand19A (Hamilton)
This paper examines the employment relations legislation and its impact on employers, unions and workers. Other issues considered include occupational health and safety, industrial training and practice of employment relations

300 Level

Code Paper Title Occurrence / Location
GNSEX303Intersectionalities: Identities and Inequalities19B (Hamilton)
This paper provides a comprehensive review of the historical context for understanding contemporary issues of race, gender, sexuality, and social class. It investigates micro and macro level experiences and the social construction of identities. In doing so, this paper looks at how power is distributed in society, the theories that...
MAORI303Critical Indigenous Theory19B (Hamilton)
This paper looks at the key theoretical influences, from Marxism to post-structuralism, upon critical Indigenous studies and the most significant writings by those Indigenous scholars who have chosen to engage with critical theory.
POPST302Exploring Population Change19B (Hamilton) & 19B (Online)
This paper applies methods for measuring population size, composition and change, which are used extensively for understanding population issues in public policy, human resource planning, forecasting and business planning.
SDCOA303Sport, Media and Communication19B (Hamilton) & 19B (Online)
This paper expands students' critical sociocultural understanding of the media. Students will develop knowledge of the production and consumption of various forms of media (including social media), and have the opportunity to develop skills in critical media analysis and production.
SOCIO301Contemporary Social Theory: A Praxis Approach19A (Hamilton), 19A (Tauranga), 19B (Hamilton) & 19B (Tauranga)
This paper introduces students to contemporary debates in social theory from a praxis perspective. Particular attention is paid to theories of individualisation and class in relation to contemporary forms of capitalist society.
SOCIO302Globalisation and International Development19A (Hamilton)
This paper examines the impact of globalisation on both developed and developing countries. Special focus is placed on the labour-capital relation. Applied methods of comparative analysis are also introduced.
SOCIO303Technologies, Algorithms and Social Life19B (Online) & 19B (Tauranga)
The sociological investigation of social relations facilated by the Internet, the Web 2.0 paradigm, and extended through the 'internet of things' and the increasing role algorithms and other non-human actors in decision-making.
SOCIO311Current Issues in Criminal Justice19B (Online)
This paper examines sociological explanations for criminal behaviour and examines issues within criminal justice.
SOCIO390Directed Study19A (Hamilton), 19B (Hamilton), 19S (Hamilton), 19T (Hamilton) & 19Y (Hamilton)
Students may, with the approval of the programme convenor and the proposed supervisor, undertake an individual programme of study within the field of Sociology.
SOCPY300Social Policy19B (Hamilton) & 19B (Tauranga)
This paper provides students with experience of the ways in which policy is formulated and enacted. Theoretical perspectives are consolidated and extended to enhance opportunities for employment in the social policy field.
SOCPY301Health, Wellbeing and Policy19B (Hamilton)
This paper provides a critical introduction to key issues in the formation of health policy at both a national and international level.

500 Level

Code Paper Title Occurrence / Location
EDUCA557Research Methods19A (Hamilton), 19A (Tauranga), 19B (Online) & 19S (Block)
This paper introduces students to the major educational research paradigms, methodologies appropriate to collecting data in schools (including interviews, observations, surveys, case studies), action research, literature reviews, critiquing research, and report writing. It includes consideration of ethical issues in research.
HSHUP501Research Methods in Health, Sport and Human Performance19A (Hamilton) & 19B (Tauranga)
This paper will allow students to develop their skills for finding and analysing literature, gain an understanding of different research designs, methodologies and ethical issues in health, sport and human performance settings, learn different statistical and analysis techniques. This paper will split into two streams where studen...
MAORI570Te Mahi Rangahau: Māori, Pacific and Indigenous Research Methods and Issues19A (Online) & 19B (Online)
This paper introduces students to a range of research issues, helps students identify and apply the most effective methodology, understand, review and apply various research methods including kaupapa Maori and indigenous epistemologies.
POPST509Research Methods for Population Analysis19B (Hamilton) & 19B (Online)
This paper provides students with hands-on experience conducting population research, working with real world data to analyse to investigate population issues. Students will gain a sound understanding of how to access, analyse and interpret data and how to communicate their findings, skills directly applicable to a range of policy,...
SOCIO502Society, Economy and State19A (Hamilton)
This paper brings Sociological theory and Social Policy practice together in a paper that is grounded in a praxis approach. Students will be expected to think critically and deeply about the nature and dynamic of structures and regulatory frameworks of contemporary capitalism, and to think actively about how social change occurs.
SOCIO503Comparative Indigenous Criminology19A (Hamilton)
This paper offers students an opportunity to engage in in-depth critique and analysis of Indigenous peoples' experiences of crime control in settler colonial contexts. By focussing on the 'big four' settler colonial jurisdictions, Aotearoa New Zealand, Canada, the US and Australia, the paper is also designed to introduce students ...
SOCIO505Globalisation and Social Movements19A (Hamilton)
Within the context of an analysis of the neoliberal policy framework and global capitalism; this half paper focuses on the merging social movements of the 21st century. Initial focus will be placed on the anti-globalisation movement, but in the context of a range of related movements especially the labour movement, new peasant move...
SOCIO589Directed Study19A (Hamilton), 19B (Hamilton) & 19S (Hamilton)
Students have the opportunity to pursue a topic of their own interest under the guidance of academic staff. Open to selected students who meet the criteria set out in the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences Graduate Handbook.
SOCIO590Directed Study19A (Hamilton), 19B (Hamilton), 19S (Hamilton) & 19Y (Hamilton)
Students have the opportunity to pursue a topic of their own interest under the guidance of academic staff. Open to selected students who meet the criteria set out in the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences Graduate Handbook.
SOCIO591Dissertation19C (Hamilton)
A report on the findings of a theoretical or empirical investigation.
SOCIO592Dissertation19C (Hamilton)
A report on the findings of a theoretical or empirical investigation.
SOCIO593Sociology Thesis19C (Hamilton)
An externally examined piece of written work that reports on the findings of supervised research.
SOCIO594Sociology Thesis19C (Hamilton)
An externally examined piece of written work that reports on the findings of supervised research.

800 Level

Code Paper Title Occurrence / Location
SOCY800Sociology MPhil Thesis19C (Hamilton)
No description available.

900 Level

Code Paper Title Occurrence / Location
SOCY900Sociology PhD Thesis19C (Hamilton), 19C (Tauranga) & 19D (Hamilton)
No description available.

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Subject links

Sociology and Social Policy Program

Study in Tauranga

Sociology is one of five BA major subjects available in Tauranga from 2019. To ask about being one of the first students in our new CBD campus (opening 2019), contact a Future Student Advisor:


Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences:
Phone: 0800 800 145 or +64 7 838 4138
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