Frequently Asked Questions

Questions

1. What are the dates of the terms in 2013-14?|
 
2. Where is the Department of Sociology located?|

3. When is the orientation meeting? Is it important to attend?|

4. What is the difference between a 'course' and a 'programme'? |

5. What is the difference between a 'class' and a 'seminar'? |

6. Is there a Departmental Common Room?|

7. Is there any formal representation of students in the Sociology Department? |

8. When will I be given access to email? Can I access reading lists before the session begins?
|
9. What study skills support is provided by the School? |

10. How many hours a week are given over to lectures and classes/seminars? How is teaching distributed across the three terms?
|
11. Can I tape lectures and access lecture notes? |

12. How often will I meet my academic adviser?|

13. Do students usually work to support themselves while studying, and what paid jobs are available within the School? Also, are internships arranged by the Department?
|
14. When will the examinations be held and when will the examination timetable be available?|

15. Are there any social/study events in the Department of Sociology?|

16. I can’t find the answer to my question here, where can I find it?|

 

Answers

1. What are the dates of the terms in 2013-14?

There are three terms in the LSE academic year, quaintly named Michaelmas Term (MT), Lent Term (LT) and Summer Term (ST). This year’s dates are:

MT: Thursday 3 October to Friday 13 December 2013
(teaching begins on Monday 7 October 2013)

LT: Monday 13 January to Friday 21 March 2014

ST: Monday 28 April to Friday 4 July 2014

 

2. Where is the Department of Sociology located?

The Department is located in the centre of the campus, in St Clement’s Building (prefix STC) - main entrance next to Waterstone’s bookshop.  See: Maps and directions|

Academic staff offices and administrative offices are mainly located on the second floor of St Clement's, with a few academic staff members located on the third and fourth floors.   Please note that our postal address is The Department of Sociology, LSE, Houghton Street, London WC2A 2AE.

 

3. When is the orientation meeting? Is it important to attend?

Orientation events are held the week before classes begin (from Monday 29 September in 2014).  Our Information for new arrivals page will have a link to the Sociology Orientation timetable 2014 when the schedule has been finalised, later in the summer, so do check when the orientation meeting for your programme is being held. LSE also holds general orientation sessions for all new students -  now known as the Welcome Presentation - again, follow the link from Information for new arrivals to the School’s orientation pages.

It’s a good idea to attend all orientation sessions if you possibly can, but if you are unable to arrive in time please let the departmental administrator for your programme know.

 

4. What is the difference between a 'course' and a 'programme'?

We use the words 'course' and 'programme' interchangeably. In other words, the 'MSc Sociology degree programme' can also be referred to as the 'MSc Sociology course'. A course within that, e.g. SO433 Cultural Theory, may be referred to as a course or a paper (NB the prefix ‘SO’ means this is a Sociology Department course – or paper).

So, a programme may be called a course, but a course will never be called a programme. It should all make sense after you arrive!

 

5. What is the difference between a 'class' and a 'seminar'?

Classes are held for undergraduate students to provide an opportunity to discuss issues raised in lectures and as a result of private study. Normally, classes have up to 14 students and meet for one hour a week. Most classes involve student presentations as a way of starting discussion.

Seminars are similar to classes but are held for postgraduate students and will normally have up to 15 students, although some course conveners may have opted to keep all the students together in a larger group. They are normally 1.5 hours in length but again, that may vary.

 

6. Is there a Departmental Common Room?

The Robert McKenzie Room (STC 219) can be used as a common room/study space when not in use for meetings or seminars.   

 

7. Is there any formal representation of students in the Sociology Department?

Yes, there are staff student committees for all our programmes. There are two student representatives from each year for the BSc and MPhil/PhD programmes, and for each MSc programme. These are decided by the students within the first few weeks of MT and there are termly meetings of the committees so that student reps can raise any issues of concern with staff.

 

8. When will I be given access to email? Can I access reading lists before the session begins?

If you are coming to the Sociology Department as an undergraduate, you will be sent information from the School's Undergraduate Admissions Office in due course regarding the date from which you can access your network log-in and email account. Please note that this information will only be sent to you once any conditions attached to your offer have been met. Such access is likely to be prior to registration but after 31 August. At this point you will also be able to make your course selection via LSE for You, and to register on Moodle, the School's virtual learning environment, where you will find reading lists.

If you are coming to the Department as a postgraduate student, you should check the Graduate Admissions website during the summer for a link to information regarding your network log-in and email access which will be via LSE for You.

Once you have a School network account, you will be able to register on Moodle and may be able to gain access to the readings and other information even if you decide not to take the subject as an examination option (provided access has not been limited to students enrolled on the course, as is sometimes the case).

 

9. What study skills support is provided by the School?

The School offers a range of study support facilities, via the Library, IT Services, LSE Learning World (run by the Teaching and Learning Centre (TLC)), LSE Language Centre, and Student Services Centre. TLC support includes study skills lectures and workshops as well as one-to-one 'tutorials' for students requiring more detailed support. Easy access to the various events and support activities are available via LSE Learning World website.

 

10. How many hours a week are given over to lectures and classes/seminars? How is teaching distributed across the three terms?

For each examinable course that you will be taking, there will normally be a weekly 1-hour lecture and an accompanying 1-hour weekly class (for undergraduates) or 1.5 hour weekly seminar (for MSc students). These normally run during Michaelmas and Lent Terms with revision sessions in the early part of the Summer Term. Sometimes you will also be advised by the course coordinator to attend a complementary set of lectures. Details of the teaching arrangements for individual courses can be found in the relevant course guides.

You can also view the online sessional timetable for each course and see your personal timetable on LSE for You.

 

11. Can I tape lectures and access lecture notes?

The recording of lectures requires the prior consent of the lecturers, who may also distribute lecture notes and slides at their own discretion. The Department will make reasonable adjustments for the needs of students with disabilities.

 

12. How often will I meet my academic adviser?

This and other details of academic adviser provision can be found in:
Code of Good Practice for Undergraduate Programmes: Teaching, Learning and Assessment|

Code of Good Practice for Taught Course Masters Programmes: Teaching, Learning and Assessment|.

 

13. Do students usually work to support themselves while studying, and what paid jobs are available within the School? Also, are internships arranged by the Department?

Some students do take on part-time work during their studies. However, as it is important not to over-commit yourself, it is advisable to speak to your academic advisor about any such plans to ensure that the time commitment involved will be compatible with your studies. The Students' Union offers some opportunities, and the Conference and Events Office employs students as stewards for the many public lectures and events held at LSE.  Otherwise the School has relatively few part-time employment opportunities but you could try asking the Library and your hall of residence if there are any vacancies. The Department does not arrange internships but graduate students may be interested in the LSE Internship Scheme. For more guidance see Part time work|.

 

14. When will the examinations be held and when will the examination timetable be available?

Examinations are held in the Summer Term, normally from week 2 for undergraduate students and week 6 for MSc students. The provisional examination timetable, which is organised by the School's Examinations Office not the Sociology Department, is normally published by the end of the preceding Lent Term.

 

15. Are there any social/study events in the Department of Sociology?

We start the year with a welcome party for all new sociology students during Orientation Week, so do come to that if possible. We also have a Christmas party in the last week of MT and you may have get-togethers by programme.

The Department hosts a weekend conference each year for PhD students, with any spare places going to MSc students. It is held at Cumberland Lodge, Windsor Great Park (to the west of London) in late January and provides an opportunity to discuss a particular topic in depth, and enable staff and students to mix informally in pleasant surroundings. See Cumberland Lodge|.

 

16. I can’t find the answer to my question here, where can I find it?

Your individual course handbook should give you most of the information you need to know. All the handbooks will be available online, and you will be given a physical copy at the beginning of term. In addition, there is more information about every aspect of studying at LSE on the LSE website. If you are still not sure, talk to a departmental administrator.

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