Please note that there may be changes in the course descriptions (including the course literature) and the exam dates before the start of the semester in question. If few students are registered for a course, there may be changes in the lecture and examination types.

In case the corona situation changes, there may be changes in the assessment forms (course requirements and / or exam). Any changes will be announced in the relevant Canvas-room. All students must stay continuously updated on these changes.

SAM1210: Introduction to the Social Sciences

Time schedule | PDF-version for print

General information | Course requirements | Final assessment | Course objective and content | Literature 

Person responsible for the course:Espen Gilsvik (
Credit points (ECTS):10
Start of studies:Spring
Study programme:Bachelor's degree programme - Bachelor of Theology
Bachelor's degree programme - Bachelor in Theology, Religion and Society
Department:Department of Theology and Ministry
Examination support material permitted:List F 2

Examination dates/written assignment deadlines

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1 Final deadline to withdraw from examination

Examination typeDate / DeadlineWithdrawal deadline 1
Essay – New and postponed - N.B. Own rules for access.2021-08-16 16. Aug 20212021-08-01 1. Aug 2021
Submission deadline:12:00
Release date for results: 6. Sep 2021

General information

The course introduces students to the social sciences, with emphasis on the basic concepts, methods and theoretical orientations characteristic to sociology. Sociology explores the minute aspects of social life, as well as global social processes and structures, and it situates peoples' lives in broader social contexts by understanding how political, economic and cultural forces constitute social life. A wide range of topics are covered in the course, including economy, globalization and social change, work, ethnicity and migration, religion, environment, media, gender and sexuality, education, social stratification and governance. The course aims at making the students familiar with contemporary sociology and its historical roots, and to stimulate critical and logical thinking concerning explanations of society, social interactions, organizations and institutions.
Modes of teaching and learning activities:
Group assignments
Essay writing
The course is a core subject in the study program Bachelor in Theology, Religion and Society.

Course requirements

The student will:
  • submit and get approved an essay of 12-1500 words on a subject covered in the course.
  • attend at least 60 percent of the lectures.
  • participate in the electronic evaluation of the course if such evaluation is stipulated in the relevant term.
When course requirements are not fulfilled, this will count as one examination attempt, unless the student withdraws before the set deadline (1 May/November).

Final assessment

For the spring semester 2021 the final assessment in the course will be based on the following assessment form:
The final assessment for this course is an essay (2000-2500 words). This essay is a revised version of the essay draft submitted during the term. In order to receive a final assessment, the student must fulfill the course requirements within the fixed deadline. The course and final essay will be graded A-F.
This assessment form will also be used on new and deferred exams.
For other semesters than the spring semester of 2021, the following assessment form will be used:
The final assessment for this course is based on a 4-hour written exam. The course and final exam will be graded A-F.
In order to receive a final assessment, the students must fulfill the course requirements within the set deadlines.

Course objective and content

The student has:
  • good knowledge of basic theoretical perspectives in sociology, and how they can help explain and interpret social phenomena.
  • good knowledge of the sociology of education, social class and governance in various political and historical contexts.
  • knowledge of central topics and challenges associated with economy, globalization and social change.
  • knowledge of social aspects of ethnicity, migration and religion in the world.
  • knowledge of the role of media in modern society.
The student can:
  • answer a given problem statement in an analytical and comprehensive manner, relating to sociological theory.
  • give scientifically grounded arguments in discussions around social issues.
  • use central concepts and theories in sociology to explain social phenomena.


To access electronic literature when you are not at MF:

  • Giddens, A. & Sutton, P. W. (2017). Sociology (8th ed.). Polity Press. Library

> PDF version for printing