SPOR06048 2016 Sociology of Sport

General Details

Full Title
Sociology of Sport
Transcript Title
Sociology of Sport
N/A %
Subject Area
SPOR - Sport/Rec/Leisure
MKTS - Marketing, Tourism & Sport
06 - NFQ Level 6
05 - 05 Credits
Start Term
2016 - Full Academic Year 2016-17
End Term
9999 - The End of Time
Paula Ryder
Programme Membership
SG_BAPPL_C06 201600 Higher Certificate in Business in Applied Sport SG_BAPPL_B07 201900 Bachelor of Business in Applied Sport with Business

This subject aims to introduce the student to the historical evolution of sport recreation & leisure and its link with society. It aims to discuss key sociological terms as they apply to sport in society. It will examine sociological issues in modern sport and society.

Learning Outcomes

On completion of this module the learner will/should be able to;


Define the main roles that sport and recreation served in the history of ancient civilisations 


Relate the growth and development of sport in the pre industrial to that of the post industrial era.


Define the functions of sport in society in relation to social cohesion, control, socialisation, conditioning, comformity, image and social status


Explain the theories that have been developed by sociologists to gain a deeper understanding into sport as part of everyday life, history and culture.



Review a number of contemporary issues relating to sport and recreation in modern society


Plan and execute a group project that explores sociological questions in detail and helps the student discover the practical value and complexity of the relationship between sport and society

Teaching and Learning Strategies

Direct instruction - Lectures, Guest speakers,

Guided exploration

Oral presentation

Media Analysis, Social networking application and services.

Case study

Questioning and Discussion


Module Assessment Strategies

Each student will have two pieces of continuous assessment to complete. 1 individual assessment and 1 group assessment.

Individual assessment – written paper on key sociological terms, history of sport in society

Active Investigation Group project to include a paper review of appropriate peer reviewed Journal Article

Group Project on contemporary issues in sport in society to inc presentation in class or poster presentation

40% is required in the final exam in order to pass the module



Repeat Assessments

Students will be entitled to a repeat assessment provided they can show medical cert for missing initial assessment. Students will have to repeat the part of the module they failed.

Indicative Syllabus

Explore sociology of sport - What is the Sociology of Sport? Why Study Sports in Society? What are sports? What is Socialization? Becoming Involved in Sports / Changing or Ending Sport Participation, Being Involved in Sport, What happens?

Identify social theories - How can they help us study Sports in Society? Agency and structure theories, Functionalist Theory, Conflict Theory, Interactionist Theory, Critical Theory, Feminist Theory, Figurational Theory.

Discuss the history of sport, recreation & leisure - Global Perspective - Greek, Roman, Medieval, Celtic, Renaissance, Reformation, Enlightenment, The Industrial Revolution, The emergence of Organized Competitive sports.

Discuss contemporary issues : a selection from the topics indicated below

  • Deviance in Sports: Defining, Problems Faced, Research, Performance-Enhancing Substances.
  • Violence in Sports: Define, History, Violence on / off the field, Among Spectators
  • Gender and Sports: Participation and Equity Issues, Ideological and Cultural Issues.
  • Race and Ethnicity: Definition Race, Ethnicity, Minority group, Racial Classification Systems & Racial Ideology in Sports, Sport Participation among Racial and Ethnic minorities.
  • Social Class: Social Class / Relations, Sport and Economic Inequality, Social Class and Sport Participation Patterns, Economic and Career Opportunities in Sports, Sport Participation and Occupational Careers among Former Athletes.
  • Sports and the Economy: Emergence and Growth of Commercial Sports, Commercialization and Changes in Sports, Owners / Sponsors / Promoters in Commercial Sports,
  • Sports and the Media: Characteristics of the Media, Sport / Media - Two way relationship.
  • Sports and Politics: The Sports-Government Connection, Politics in Sport, Do Governments and Globalization Influence Sports?

          Current/topical issues in sport in society.

Coursework & Assessment Breakdown

Coursework & Continuous Assessment
50 %
End of Semester / Year Formal Exam
50 %

Coursework Assessment

Title Type Form Percent Week Learning Outcomes Assessed
1 Group Project Group Active Investigation Applied Project Continuous Assessment Group Project 35 % Week 10 3,4,5,6
2 Written test paper on key sociological terms Continuous Assessment Closed Book Exam 15 % Week 5

End of Semester / Year Assessment

Title Type Form Percent Week Learning Outcomes Assessed
1 Final Exam Final Exam Closed Book Exam 50 % End of Term 1,2,3,4,5

Full Time Mode Workload

Type Location Description Hours Frequency Avg Workload
Lecture Lecture Theatre Lecture 3 Weekly 3.00
Site Visit Not Specified Field trip 2 Once Per Semester 0.13
Total Full Time Average Weekly Learner Contact Time 3.13 Hours

Required & Recommended Book List

Recommended Reading
2010-09-15 Sport and Society (Issues Series) Independence Educational Publishers
ISBN 1861685599 ISBN-13 9781861685599
Recommended Reading
2006-11-09 Social Issues in Sport Human Kinetics
ISBN 0736058729 ISBN-13 9780736058728

Sport is all around us. Yet few of us look critically at how it affects our livesand even fewer look at how we as a society affect sport. Social Issues in Sport is an outstanding introduction to the multifaceted roles of sport and physical activity in society and the perfect tool for examining sport from a critical perspective. The text's engaging writing style, full-color format, and sound learning tools make it accessible and effective at getting students involved in and excited about the material. A full array of instructor resources make this book a highly functional and enjoyable way for instructors to introduce this subject to their students.

While the book is solidly grounded in research, it does not dwell on theory. Social Issues in Sport is written to whet the appetite of students in sport management and sport studies for a deeper look at the issues, contradictions, and confusion that characterize our lovehate affair with sport. In Social Issues in Sport, students will find heavy emphasis on areas that other texts often overlookincluding the role of coaches, importance of lifetime sport and fitness, sport in education, and sport for special populations such as the physically and mentally challenged and the elderly. As a result, students gain a complete view of what constitutes sport and physical activity and a firm grasp of the sociocultural considerations vital to their understanding of sport. Students are encouraged to see the sport world not only with their eyes wide open to the problems but also with an optimistic, encouraging view of its future.

Author Ronald Woods draws on a lifetime in sport as a participant, observer, fan, teacher, coach, administrator, and critic. His wide-lens view of sport helps students make sense of the world of sport and physical activity and, more important, apply it to their own personal and professional lives. Woods' easy-to-comprehend distinction between sport for recreational participation, high performance, and spectating illuminates for students the profound differences in how sport can be viewed and challenges their thinking about their own roles as participants and spectators. Woods' diverse background in sports gives him a unique perspective and allows him to write with a style and clarity that students will appreciate.

This full-color book is organized into four parts that reflect the presence of sports around us. Part I sets the stage for studying sport in society. Part II examines the scope and effect of sport on society. Part III explores sport as an institution and how it functions within other institutions such as schools, colleges, and the Olympic movement. Part IV focuses on the interaction between our society's culture and sports.

In 19 chapters, the book enthusiastically invites students to explore many issues, such as how a participant, spectator, coach, and administrator may have differing views of sports; how to distinguish between different levels of play, games, and sport when assessing the role of sport; and what trends to expect in the future and how to be part of a positive development of sporting structures.

Social Issues in Sports contains the following features that encourage learning:

-An engaging writing style, rich with examples and pedagogical aids, gets students excited about and invested in the sporting world around them.

-Interesting sidebars include up-close profiles of significant people and organizations (In the Arena With), examples of how sport is viewed in the public (Pop Culture), and insights from those who study the subject extensively (Expert's View).

-Activity Time-Outs, nicely integrated with the text, invite readers to recognize and assess the sociocultural issues that sport raises and apply the book's concepts to their own lives.

-An instructor guide, test package, and presentation package provide instructors with tools and assignment ideas to ensure that students remain engaged.
Social Issues in Sport is an engaging, in-depth, and inspiring resource that will help students understand the value of sport and its limitations and equip them to make choices about the role sports will play in their lives.

Recommended Reading
2002-09-13 Power Games: A Critical Sociology of Sport Routledge
ISBN 0415251001 ISBN-13 9780415251006

Critical and radical perspectives have been central to the emergence of the sociology of sport as a discipline in its own right. This ground-breaking new book is the first to offer a comprehensive theory and method for a critical sociology of sport. It argues that class, political economy, hegemony and other concepts central to the radical tradition are essential for framing, understanding and changing social and political relations within sport and between sport and society.
The book draws upon the disciplines of politics, sociology, history and philosophy to provide a critical analysis of power relations throughout the world of sport, while offering important new case studies from such diverse sporting contexts as the Olympics, world football, boxing, cricket, tennis and windsurfing. In the process, it addresses key topics such as:
* nations and nationalism
* globalisation
* race
* gender
* political economy.
Power Games can be used as a complete introduction to the study of sport and society. And will be essential reading for any serious student of sport. At the same time, it is a provocative book that by argument and example challenges those who research and write about sport to make their work relevant to social and political reform.

Recommended Reading
2003-12-01 Sport, Culture and the Media (Issues in Cultural and Media Studies (Paperback)) Open University Press
ISBN 0335210759 ISBN-13 9780335210756

Reviewers comments on the first edition
Marks the coming of age of the academic study of media sport.

Media, Culture & Society
The book is extremely well-written ideal as a student text, yet also at the forefront of innovation.
International Review of Cultural Studies
A thoroughly worthwhile read and an excellent addition to the growing literature on media sport
Sport, Education and Society

Sport, Culture and the Media was the first book to analyse comprehensively two of the most powerful cultural forces of our times: sport and media. It examines the ways in which media sport has established itself in contemporary everyday life, and how sport and media have made themselves mutually dependent.

This new edition examines the latest developments in sports media, including:

  • Expanded material on new media sport and technology developments
  • Updated coverage of political economy, including major changes in the ownership of sports broadcasting
  • New scholarship and research on recent sports events like the Olympics and the World Cup, sports television and press, and theoretical developments in areas like globalisation and spectatorship.
The first part of the book, Making Media Sport, traces the rise of the sports media and the ways in which broadcast and print sports texts are produced, the values and practices of those who produce them, and the economic and political influences on and implications of 'the media sports cultural complex'. The second part, Unmaking the Media Sports Text, concentrates on different media forms television, still photography, news reporting, film, live commentary, creative sports writing and new media sports technologies. This is a key textbook for undergraduate studies in culture and media, sociology, sport and leisure studies, communication, race, ethnicity and gender.

Recommended Reading
2011 Sport and Sociology. Routledge. 2011. Routledge
ISBN 0415571235 ISBN-13 9780415571234

Module Resources

Non ISBN Literary Resources

Sport in Society. Issues and Controversies 8th Ed. Coakley J. McGraw - Hill (2009)

Sport in Contemporary Society: An Anthology, 8th Edition by D. Stanley Eitzen (Jun 30, 2009)

Sport and Society: A Student Introduction by Professor Barrie Houlihan (Jan 17, 2008)

Making Sense of Sports by Ernest Cashmore (Oct 20, 2010)

Learning Culture through Sports: Exploring the Role of Sports in Society by Brian Lampman (Mar 30, 2006)

Applied Sociology of sport, Editors; A Yiannakis, S Greendorfer,Human Kinetics, 1992

Fighting Fans, Edited by; Dunning et al,UCD Press. 2002

Lafeber, W. 2000. MichaelJordan and the New Global Capitalism, New York

Davis, R. 2002 Media Power and Responsibility

Other Resources










  • Internationsl Review for the Sociology of Sport
  • Sociology of Sport Journal
  • Journal of Sport and Social Issues
  • Quest
Additional Information