Do you want to develop your knowledge about society and politics, as well as honing the sharp analytical skills required by modern organisations? Our new MA draws on our considerable expertise in quantitative methods.
It will develop your understanding of the innovative quantitative approaches in political science concerning data in unprecedented scales in text, image, numeric and video formats, and their impact on public policy. You’ll sharpen your communication and collaboration skills through a mixture of small group seminars, lectures and workshops, which may include mini-lectures followed by discussion, Q&A sessions, organised debates, peer presentations, policy briefs, and group work.
Our core modules will give you the key critical and technical skills to deal with (big) data. You’ll also select optional modules which may be chosen from other departments in areas including digital studies, methods, gender, media, health, governance, or human rights. You will become highly employable in areas requiring strategic decision-making or analysis, whether in academic or non-academic research, international organisations, NGOs or private companies.
More generally, you will be able to contribute to any activity involving statistics and data management, including strategic analyses and planning, auditing, marketing, research, international development and diplomacy.
In contrast to degrees such as Data Science or Data Analytics where the focus ends up being almost exclusively on data practices and computational tools, the MA in Big Data provides students with a knowledge and understanding of the central and innovative quantitative approaches in political science, the debates they have generated, and the implications of different approaches to issues concerning big data and public policy. The MA also draws on the considerable expertise which Warwick now has in quantitative methods located in PAIS, Sociology, the Centre for Interdisciplinary Methodologies (CIM) and the Q-Step Centre.
Given that a noteworthy part of big data is actually social data, this MA programme seeks to attract students from a variety of social science-related disciplines, including politics, sociology, philosophy and economics; you do not need a background in statistics to be eligible for the course. Students are required to take two core modules (one in each academic term), Quantitative Data Analysis and Interpretation and Big Data Research: Hype or Revolution?, and have a range of optional modules to choose from in PAIS or from other departments across Warwick including Law, Philosophy, Sociology and the CIM. Graduates of this degree will be able both to engage technically with data released at a new scale and to keep a critical expertise on their relevance and quality, skills which are increasingly required in the competitive global job market.