This programme provides students with an excellent grounding in social science research methods and theory and in contemporary public policy analytical processes. It is ideally suited for students wishing to undertake a PhD or to work in public/third or private sector organisations.
• MRes: 12 months full-time; 24 months part-time
• Contact: Mhairi [email protected]
• Studying public policy theory and practice within the urban setting of Glasgow allows for direct engagement with many of the most pressing public policy problems of our time and with the types of solutions being developed to combat these.
• Our programme is recognised by the Scottish Graduate School which oversees the allocation of ESRC studentships.
• By the end of the programme our successful students will leave equipped with a secure grounding in social science research theory; will have developed transferable skills in qualitative and quantitative research methods; will have demonstrated grounded knowledge and understanding of specialist areas of public policy in order to allow students to pursue their own career interests; and will have met fully the research training requirements of the UK Economic and Social Research Council and the Social Sciences Graduate School for doctoral students.
The core teaching for this programme is delivered over two semesters followed by the completion of an independent research project. Teaching is offered by two main providers – the College of Social Sciences Graduate School provides core courses in research methods and social theory to ensure a grounding in a broad set of research skills; the subject area of Urban Studies provides core training in the skills and theory of policy analysis and evaluation.
Students enhance this training by selecting additional courses across the School and College of Social Sciences allowing for the development of knowledge of most relevance to the student’s own research interests. The majority of teaching is delivered through lectures and seminars, but may also include lab work, input from policy/practice experts and, in some case, UK field trips.
• Social science statistics
• Qualitative methods
• Introduction to social theory for researchers
• Understanding public policy
• Evidence, evaluation and policy
Core non-assessed components
• Graduate School induction week
• IT discovery and resources
• Transferable kkills and personal development planning
• Social science statistics 2
• Advanced qualitative methods
• A wide range of options across Urban Studies, the School of Social & Political Science or College of Social Sciences, as approved by the programme director
Background and Aims
The Research Masters in Public Policy and the Research Masters in Urban Research are designed for those who wish to advance their research skills for application either in academia or within a broad range of public, private or third sector organisations. These two programmes are part of a suite of Research Masters offered within the College of Social Sciences. They are recognised by the Economic and Social Research Council as providing a thorough background in social science research and offer an excellent training prior to commencing doctoral studies. The ESRC is the main funder of postgraduate research studentships in the UK.
Both programmes aim to equip graduates with the skills and knowledge to formulate theortetically interesting research questions within the context of a particular field of study and to turn these into robust and feasible research designs. We aim to produce graduates who are independent, critical thinkers able to make well-judged contributions to policy and research debates and to work in a wide range of academic, policy and practice roles. In particular, we aim to provide our students with a sound conceptual and methodological basis to commence their PhD studies or equivalent work-related research careers. We expect our graduates to be able to:
• demonstrate a sophisticated understanding of the key approaches to conceptualising research questions and the appropriate methodologies for addressing them;
• develop in-depth and specialised understanding in chosen policy fields;
• acquire important transferable skills in self-management, critical analysis, and written communication.
All our postgraduate students have the opportunity to participate in a wide range of seminars and workshops in addition to their taught courses.
Glasgow is not only an excellent place to study but it represents a rich environment in which to study public and urban policy. The city is seen as an object-lesson in public-sector led revival while Scotland established its own Parliament just over ten years ago. This body was set up with a wide range of powers but a very active debate continues about its relationships with UK and European governments.
The programme aims to provide a strong foundation for advanced research in public policy, both in the context of careers in the public and voluntary sectors, and especially of further studies to PhD level. These are the routes taken by most of our students on completion of the programme.
A 2.1 Honours degree or equivalent qualification (for example, GPA 3.0 or above) in a relevant subject unless otherwise specified. Applicants who do not meet these requirements but with professional experience may be considered.International students with academic qualifications below those required should contact our partner institution, Glasgow International College, who offer a range of foundation courses.