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Family Chapter

This complete textbook chapter taken from the 1st edition of AS Sociology for AQA covers:

1. Defining the family group.

2. Perspectives on the family.

3. Family and social policy.

4. Family and household changes.

5. Marriage, divorce, cohabitation, separation and child-bearing.

6. Domestic labour, gender roles and power relationships.

7. Childhood.

Family Chapter

This complete textbook chapter taken from the 2nd edition of AS Sociology for AQA covers:

1. The relationship of the family to the social structure and social change, with particular reference to the economy and to state policies.

2. Changing patterns of marriage, cohabitation, separation, divorce, child-bearing and the life-course, and the diversity of contemporary family and household structures.

3. The nature and extent of changes within the family, with reference to gender roles, domestic labour and power relationships.

4. The nature of childhood, and changes in the status of children in the family and society.

5. Demographic trends in the UK since 1900; reasons for changes in birth rates, death rates and family size.

Key Concepts and Trends

This complete chapter, taken from OCR Sociology for AS (2012), covers: definitions of family and household, different family structures and structural trends, trends in families and households, marriage, cohabitation and divorce trends

Family Structure


The Relationship Between Family Groups and Social Structures: Defining the "Family Group"; basic types of family structure. Is the Family Group a Universal Social Institution? Sociobiology and Methodology.

Family Structure


The universal nuclear family? The significance of family groups in society. Introduction to perspectives on family life (Functionalist, Marxist, Feminist).

Family and Industrialisation

Introduction to Functionalist Theory; the Fit Thesis - an outline and critique.

Family Diversity

The diversity of contemporary social life: Commonsense perceptions of family structure; Life-cycle and family structure; Forms of diversity (organisational, cultural, class, life course and cohort).

Family Diversity

This complete chapter, taken from OCR Sociology for AS (2012), covers different types of diversity: Organisational, Class, Cultural diversity (age, gender, ethnicity) and Sexual. It also examines postmodernism and New Right approaches to family diversity and social policies related to family life.

Family Roles, Responsibilities and Relationships

This complete chapter, taken from OCR Sociology for AS (2012), covers: the domestic division of labour, power relationships within the family, the relationship between children and parents, Functionalist, Marxist and Feminist explanations of family roles, demographic trends and changes.

The Role of Family in Society

This complete chapter, taken from OCR Sociology for AS (2012), covers: Family functions and orientations, the link between individuals and society, family dysfunctions (the “Dark side of family life”), the ideological, economic and political roles of the family, Cultural, social and symbolic capital.

Family and Social Change


Historical overview of family development (Willmott and Young, Bott, Shorter); Gender and power relationships (Domestic Labour).

Family and Social Change


Theoretical explanations of gender roles: Biological, Sociobiological, Functionalist, Socio-Economic (cultural).

Family and Social Change


The concept of power: definitions, the relationship between power and ideology; power relationships within the family; operationalising the concept of power; dimensions of power.

Family and Social Change


The "Symmetry - Patriarchy" debate: Is contemporary family life symmetrical or patriarchal?

Family Breakdown

Examination of New Right arguments about "family decline" and "breakdown". These notes consider marriage, cohabitation, illegitimacy, single-parenthood and divorce as indicators of the reliability and validity of this thesis.

Critical Approaches to the Family

This teaching and learning study pack covers a range of critical approaches to understanding the family group - from Radical Psychiatry, through Marxism to Feminism. The pack also contains a variety of exercises and activities to consolidate student understanding.

Sex and Gender

The distinction between sex and gender; The concepts of socialization, instinct, reflex and biological drives; The relationship between socialization and culture.. A shorter version of this file is also available.

Gender Socialisation

The process of gender socialisation; Mead's concept of role play; aspects of primary socialisation (Imitation, Identification, Role Learning, Conditioning); Culture, socialisation and the individual.

Women and Work


Sociological and non-sociological explanations of workplace inequality; empirical evidence relating to gendered inequalities; the concepts of horizontal and vertical segregation; sexual discrimination.

Women and Work


Theories of workplace inequality; "dual labour market" theory; "reserve army of labour" theory.


Overviews of Liberal, Marxist, Radical and Socialist Feminism; the concepts of patriarchy and sex class.


Defining childhood; Changing conceptions of childhood; Historical and Comparative dimensions.

Old Age

Defining old age; Changing conceptions of old age; Historical and Comparative dimensions.

Social Policy

Defining "social policy"; the relationship between policy and ideology; the concept of a "family ideology"; the relationship between policy initiatives and their outcomes; the social democratic and market liberal perspectives on welfare; examples of social policies as they have affected family life directly and indirectly in Britain.


Introductory | Deviance | Identity | Education | Family | Global | Media |

Health | Methods | Politics | Inequality | Theory | Religion | Welfare

Family Life


Notes | PowerPoint | NotAFactsheet | Lesson Plans | Worksheets | Revision | Simulations | Flipbooks

Family and Social Change

4 short films

Family Diversity

Modernity and Change

What is Childhood?

Children and New Technology

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