Research [Photo (cc)]

Watch the video

Department research

Discover our research interests and begin your research career by undertaking a PhD supervised by leading experts in our Department.

Careers in research

Research in the social sciences can be incorporated into many roles. In addition to the traditional academic route of PhD study and lectureships, social researchers are present in large policy-making or policy-analysis organisations and charities. Many of the research skills you develop can also be used in other contexts such as marketing and business.

Progressing from our Undergraduate programmes, our Masters programmes include more advanced research skills appropriate for developing a career in social research. In particular our two MRes programmes with advanced social research training provide excellent preparation for those wishing to work in research agencies or undertake PhD study.

Relevance of our degrees

All of our degree programmes incorporate research skills training, ranging from dissertation support for undergraduate programmes and the specialist Social Research Methods module in Year 2 of our BA Applied Social Science and Social Policy programmes, to the advanced methods training in our postgraduate Social Policy, Comparative and International Social Policy and Masters of Research degrees.

Research also underpins the teaching on our programmes, so students will be able to interpret research data and understand its importance in influencing policy and practice. Training is provided in both quantitative and qualitative methods, and draws upon the expertise of our academic staff in their respective fields.

Profile: Shan Shi

Shan Shi, from China, studied on our MA Comparative and International Social Policy programme (2011-12) and wrote a comparative study of welfare retrenchment in European countries as a dissertation. 


The teachers here are knowledgable and are experts in the area. The module design is high quality, during which I've learned a lot of useful theories and methodologies, especially SPSS and comparative methods like fuzzy-set [analysis].

[After graduating I plan to] go back to China and look for a job in the area of social research, or international or non-governmental organisations.

End quote