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SOCI3001 Comparative Sociology

Module Overview

This module is concerned with the development of modern societies and the nature of 'modernity'. It will draw on the writings of contemporary sociologists in order to consider what the most important processes of social change taking place are and how these have come about.

Aims and Objectives

Module Aims

This module aims to highlight the importance of comparison in sociology. It considers how sociologists have used historical and spatial comparisons to develop our understanding of how different types of social order are maintained and how different patterns of social change unfold.

Learning Outcomes

Learning Outcomes

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • Identifying the distinctive contribution made by the comparative perspective to sociological analysis.
  • Describing and assessing key concepts and theoretical perspectives used in the analysis of the development of modern societies and the nature of modernity.
  • Synthesise and summarise information from a variety of sources.
  • Evaluating competing models and explanations of the development of different types of modern society.
  • Reflecting critically on the role of sociologists in predicting and contributing to processes of social change.
  • Draw on different types of evidence in the development of an argument.
  • Employ the comparative method in the analysis of social phenomena.


Theoretical analysis of the patterns of social structure and the nature of power within western capitalist, post-communist and underdeveloped countries will be complemented by historical and international comparisons, and by an examination of the meanings of ‘development’, ‘industrialisation’, ‘democratisation’ and ‘globalisation’. In addition, the practical role of sociologists in applying sociological theory by predicting and contributing to processes of social change will be discussed

Learning and Teaching

Independent Study125
Total study time150

Resources & Reading list

Adams, Clemens and Orloff (eds) (2005). Remaking Modernity. Politics, History and Sociology. 

Steinmetz (ed) (2013). Sociology and Empire. The Imperial Entanglement of a Discipline. 

Roberts & Hite (eds) (2000). From Modernizaton to Globalization. Perspectives on Development and Social Change.. 

Mahoney & Ruschemeyer (eds) (2003). Compartive Historical Analysis in the Social Sciences. 

G Crow (2997). Comparative Sociology and Social Theory. 

Lange, Matthew (2013). Comparative-Historical Methods. 

Bhambra, Gurminder (2014). Connected Sociologies. 



MethodPercentage contribution
Essay  (2000 words) 40%
Exam  (2 hours) 60%


MethodPercentage contribution
Exam 100%

Repeat Information

Repeat type: Internal & External

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