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Course content

Overview

Develop the skills and knowledge to produce meaningful social research with this challenging programme.

Core modules will teach you how to turn social research issues and questions into workable research designs, as well as handling quantitative and qualitative data and issues such as ethics and funding applications. You’ll also have the chance to specialise through a choice of optional modules, allowing you to focus on research in topics such as disability studies, care, social policy analysis, criminology and evaluation of programmes and policies.

This taught programme has recently been redesigned to meet the new postgraduate training and development guidelines of the ESRC, meaning it stands alone as an MA but will also prepare you for doctoral research in this dynamic field of scholarship. You’ll be well prepared to become a specialist social science researcher, supported by expert tutors across our active research centres and institutes.

You’ll learn in a research-intensive, stimulating environment. As well as the Leeds Social Sciences Institute which fosters collaboration, you’ll benefit from the interdisciplinary expertise hosted by the Centre for Disability Studies, Centre for Ethnicity and Racism Studies, Centre for Interdisciplinary Gender Studies and many others. All of these centres run their own calendars of events such as workshops and seminars.

Find out more about Research in the School of Sociology and Social Policy.

Course content

At the start of the programme you’ll build your knowledge of research design, learning to connect abstract theoretical and methodological perspectives with practical research strategies. Sampling and selection, choosing the right data collection and analysis methods, the ethics and politics of research design and creating research proposals will all be among the topics you explore.

You’ll also have the chance to deepen your subject knowledge with your optional module. You could focus on crime, social policy analysis or evaluative research as well as disability studies, care or social thought.

In semester two you’ll begin intensive training in analysing quantitative and qualitative data. You’ll learn to use statistical software, design surveys and questionnaires and record, code, organise and manage qualitative data. You’ll evaluate different research methods, understanding the benefits, limitations, and ethical implications of each one and when to use them.

Course structure

The list shown below represents typical modules/components studied and may change from time to time. Read more in our Terms and conditions.

For more information and a full list of typical modules available on this course, please read Social Research MA Full Time in the course catalogue

For more information and a full list of typical modules available on this course, please read Social Research MA Part Time in the course catalogue

Modules

Compulsory modules

  • Researching Society and Culture
  • Quantitative Research Methods
  • Qualitative Research Methods
  • Understanding Society and Culture
  • Dissertation

Optional modules (selection of typical options shown below)

  • Contemporary Social Thought
  • Social Policy, Politics and Disabled People
  • Contested Bodies
  • Que(e)rying Sexualities
  • Social Policy Analysis
  • Social Policy Debates
  • Policy and Programme Evaluation
  • Disability and Development
  • Power, Critique and Global Transformations
  • Sociology of Media and Culture

Learning and teaching

We use a range of teaching and learning methods to develop the research skills and theoretical knowledge you need. These include seminars, tutorials, and presentations. You’ll also attend practical sessions and workshops where you’ll get to grips with data analysis. Independent study is also vital to this programme, allowing you to refine your skills and prepare for your taught sessions.

Assessment

You’ll experience different assessment methods, including presentations, literature reviews, research proposals and essays. In data analysis modules, you’ll be expected to analyse and engage with data within your essays. We offer plenty of support with aspects such as academic writing.

Applying, fees and funding

English language requirements

IELTS 6.5 overall, with no less than 6.0 in any component. For other English qualifications, read English language equivalent qualifications.

Improve your English

International students who do not meet the English language requirements for this programme may be able to study our postgraduate pre-sessional English course, to help improve your English language level.

To find out more, read Language for Communication and Society (6 weeks) and Language for Social Science and Arts: Communication and Society (10 weeks).

How to apply

Application deadlines

  • International students: 30 June
  • UK/EU students: 31 July

APPLY (FULL TIME) 

APPLY (PART TIME) 

Documents and information we will need include:

  • Original or certified copies of your transcripts
  • Original or certified copies of your degree certificate
  • Original or certified copy of your IELTS/TOEFL results (if English is not your first language)
  • Details of two referees.

Read about visas, immigration and other information in International students. We recommend that international students apply as early as possible to ensure that they have time to apply for their visa.

Fees

  • UK/EU: £8,750 (total)
  • International: £19,000 (total)

Read more about paying fees and charges.

For fees information for international taught postgraduate students, read Masters fees.

Scholarships and financial support

If you have the talent and drive, we want you to be able to study with us, whatever your financial circumstances. There may be help for students in the form of loans and non-repayable grants from the University and from the government. Find out more at Masters funding overview.

Career opportunities

In the last decade there has been enormous growth in social research, leading to an increasing variety of career options. There are a number of different research environments, such as academic departments, third sector organisations, private research organisations and governmental agencies – all of which have distinctive research cultures.

There is an increasing emphasis on the production of high quality, rigorous and meaningful research by professionally trained researchers. We designed the MA in Social Research to provide such training, and the course will interest people pursuing, or enhancing, a research-related career in a wide range of settings.


Visit the Social Research MA page on the University of Leeds website for more details!

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