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Full time & Part time See Course MSc 1 year full-time; 2 years part-time

About the course

What is public policy? Who is it shaped by? Which institutions are involved? What impact does it have on an economic, social and cultural environment that is increasingly globalised?

This programme investigates the international public policy environment in terms of the global political economy and the impact of business, voluntary sector and public policy agents in the field of multi-level governance.

It is intended for those who aspire to pursue professional career options, including policy planning, policy consultancy and policy officer positions for large and medium institutions and policy consultancy.

As well as considering generic policy concerns, the programme gives you an opportunity to choose from a range of substantive policy issues, such as the economics of public policy, poverty

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Entry Requirements

An upper second-class honours degree (or international equivalent).

Course Content

Where is University of Bristol


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Student Profile(s)

Gemma Heath

261.jpg Gemma Heath (MSc Public Policy 2008)
Gemma Heath gained an MSc in Public Policy at the School for Policy Studies in 2008 and hopes to go on to work for an NGO.
My reasons for choosing a Masters at Bristol were based on the reputation of the institution, its location and, most importantly, the fact that it offered a course I would enjoy studying. The University of Bristol’s reputation was clearly apparent, but it was also the structure of the course and the modules offered that attracted me to the MSc in Public Policy at the School for Policy Studies.
I began university life at the University of Manchester, where I studied a BA in Historical Studies and Social Sciences. Almost immediately after graduating I realised that I still did not feel like I had gained as much knowledge as I would have liked; I felt there was so much more out there to learn. I wasn’t ready to give up on education, so I decided to apply for a taught Masters.
Before I started my Masters, I found myself a job as a claims advisor for an insurance company and also spent some time helping a local candidate with his election campaign, which allowed me to observe some of the theories I had learnt during my first degree in practice within local politics.
Weighing up the benefits
I have sometimes been given the impression that postgraduate study can be viewed as a disadvantage to obtaining real life work experience by certain employers. However, for me, postgraduate study was a way to carry on learning more about a subject which I love, and I still think my Masters puts me in a good position for the future.
When I complete my Masters I am hoping to find work within an NGO so I can make an impact on policy decisions through that route. But there are several career areas I could attempt to enter as a result of my postgraduate studies, such as local or national government, or working within a charity.
I think that postgraduate study is worth the cost because skills from a Masters programme are easily transferable to many careers, and, with the hunt for graduate jobs becoming increasingly competitive, it is quite possibly something that will give you an edge over thousands of undergraduate students.
Extract reproduced with kind permission from

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