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Course content

Created for international students who wish to familiarise themselves with academic learning in the UK before undertaking rigorous study in their chosen subject. Students undertake a preparatory year of English language and undergraduate modules in the subject area before embarking on Master's level modules in their second year.

Course detail

Through this programme, you learn to apply theories and methods of comparative social policy in specific fields such as health, migration, pensions, education, social care, poverty and social exclusion, urban development and family policy. You learn advanced research techniques and gain the capacity to critically appraise the development of social welfare systems in a global age.


You will learn to think critically, analyse data and present key findings as well as developing key transferrable skills including time management, team work, research and analytic methods, problem-solving and IT skills. Teaching is student-centred through a combination of taught classes, lectures, seminars, group work and independent study.

You will gain exceptional skills in advanced research methodologies, learning the techniques and approaches that social researchers use to organise, structure and interpret data. You will learn about the process of research and how the analysis and presentation of evidence is influenced and can be influential in social policy. You will become adept at using and understanding a range of frameworks and methodologies and will be able to assess the most appropriate to use in a given scenario. You will use these skills to look at the ways in which different countries organise social policy and welfare systems.


As well as taking core modules, you choose from a range of optional modules; typical modules may include:

  • Comparative social policy
  • Design of social research
  • Key issues in comparative social policy
  • Sociologists of health, illness and medicine
  • Poverty, inequality and social security
  • Social and political movements
  • Race, difference and belonging


Over 98% of Kent's postgraduate students who graduated in 2016 were in work or further study within six months. Recent graduates from our School have pursued careers in academia, journalism, local and central government, charities and NGOs.

How to apply: https://www.kent.ac.uk/courses/postgraduate/apply/

Why study at the University of Kent

We offer inspirational teaching and supervision alongside first-class library and IT facilities. You also benefit from our high-impact research in all subjects. Whatever you are looking to study, Kent provides a dynamic and challenging environment for your postgraduate studies.

  • Kent was awarded gold, the highest rating, in the UK Government’s Teaching Excellence Framework
  • Kent is ranked 21st in the Times Higher Education (THE) ‘Table of Tables’ 2017
  • Kent is ranked 25th in the Complete University Guide 2018
  • Kent is ranked 22nd in the Guardian University Guide 2018
  • 42% of our academics are from overseas and we have students representing 158 nationalities
  • In the most recent research rankings, 97% of research at Kent was found to be of international quality (REF 2014)
  • Kent is ranked 17th in the UK* for research intensity and research output (REF 2014)
  • Find out more: https://www.kent.ac.uk/courses/postgraduate/why-kent/

* of 122 universities, not including specialist institutions

Postgraduate scholarships and funding

We have a scholarship fund of over £9 million to support our taught and research students with tuition fees and living costs. Find out more: https://www.kent.ac.uk/courses/postgraduate/fees-and-funding/index.html

English language learning

Kent offers a range of modules and programmes in English for Academic Purposes (EAP) which you can access throughout your degree https://www.kent.ac.uk/international-pathways/

Visit the International Social Policy 2 year MA page on the University of Kent website for more details!






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Recipient: University of Kent

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