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Course content

Overview

The MRes Social Policy programme is designed for;

- those developing careers as policy analysts or applied researchers in national or international social or public policy organisations or government departments
- prospective PhD students in social or public policy.

The programme combines the academic study of social policy with a comprehensive exploration of research methods. Students develop experience and skills through analysing, comparing and evaluating social and public policies. Within an active research community (http://www.bath.ac.uk/sps/research/research-students/) students are supported in identifying, investigating and realising their own original research. We encourage diversity of intake regarding experience, qualifications and interests to stimulate the mutual experience and learning.

The excellence of the research undertaken within the Department of Social & Policy Sciences has been recognised most recently by the award of the prestigious Queen's Anniversary Prize in 2011.

- South West Doctoral Training Centre
This MRes is accredited by the Economics & Social Research Council (ESRC), specifically, as part of the larger South West Doctoral Training Centre (SWDTC). It forms part of the Social Policy Discipline-specific Pathway.

The MRes can be taken as a course in its own right, or as part of the 1 + 3 (MRes + PhD) pathway, where successful graduates could proceed onto an MPhil or PhD in the Department of Social & Policy Sciences.

If applying for an MRes + PhD (the 1 + 3 programme) you should indicate on the Application Form, your preferred PhD route.

Progression from the MRes to the MPhil or PhD stage is dependent on achieving an acceptable level of achievement (typically an overall average of 60% on at least the taught component of the MRes).

Visit the website http://www.bath.ac.uk/study/pg/programmes/mres-soci-poli/

Programme structure

Core Units

- Short research apprenticeship project (MRes)
- Quantitative methods 1: introduction to quantitative methods
- Long research apprenticeship project
- Research for policy: concepts, methods and values
- Qualitative methods 1, Principles & skills of social research
- MRes Dissertation

Optional units

- Comparative European social policy
- International family policy
- Globalisation & economic insecurity: social policy challenges
- Comparative research methods
- Quantitative methods 2
- Qualitative methods 2

View Programme & Unit Catalogue (http://www.bath.ac.uk/catalogues/2015-2016/sp/sp-proglist-pg.html#FB) for further information.

Learning and teaching

Our programmes are modular, consisting of self-contained units, taught and assessed on a semester basis. As you progress through each semester and successfully pass the examinations, you will receive credit for the units, thus providing you with a clear indication of your academic progress.

Teaching takes the form of lectures, classes and seminars. Lectures are quite formal, whereas classes and seminars involve interaction between the lecturer and a small number of students for study skills and discussion.

Methods of assessment

Assessment consists of a combination of coursework essays, class exercises, projects, oral presentations and examinations.

We also place strong emphasis on developing presentation and discussion/communication skills, which in many units is part of the assessed work.

Careers

The Social & Policy Sciences department is committed to ensuring that postgraduate students acquire a range of subject-specific and generic skills during their training.

Our graduates generally go on to work in a wide variety of organisations, such as:

- Social research in universities and research institutes, government, business, voluntary organisations and international organisations.
- Public policy analysis at local, national and international levels.
- Public information and campaigning within organisations concerned with wellbeing, sustainability and social justice.

About the department

The Department of Social & Policy Sciences (http://www.bath.ac.uk/sps/) includes academics from social policy, sociology, social work and international development.

The international excellence of our research (http://www.bath.ac.uk/sps/research/) was recognised by the award of the prestigious Queen's Anniversary Prize in 2011.

We are committed to advancing learning and knowledge through teaching and research. Our Department collaborates with a wide range of users at the local, national, European and global levels.

Postgraduate programmes:
We offer a wide range of postgraduate programmes. Our postgraduate teaching strongly reflects our research and our links to policy-makers and development institutions at the national, European and global level.

Our Department also has an active MPhil/PhD research programme. We take great pride in fostering a friendly and supportive learning environment.

Seminar series:
We run a lively and well attended postgraduate research seminar series. Each of the Research Centres run seminar series and conferences associated with their research activities. The University of Bath also has a Research in the World public lecture series where key national and international academics are invited to speak.

Main areas of research

We are an internationally-recognised research-intensive department with a strong focus on policy and practice and a commitment to contribute to social wellbeing and social justice.

We draw together academic staff with backgrounds in Social Policy, Sociology, Social Work and International Development and work closely with colleagues in Psychology, Economics, and Health.

We also have an active and vibrant community of research students (http://www.bath.ac.uk/sps/research/research-students/) undertaking their own research alongside our academic staff.

Find out how to apply here - http://www.bath.ac.uk/hss/graduate-school/taught-programmes/how-to-apply/

Visit the Social Policy (MRes) page on the University of Bath website for more details!

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