1 year full-time,
2 years part-time
The MRes in Social Policy will equip you with advanced social policy specific research skills that are needed to critically analyse and research contemporary social problems and policy issues.
The course offers a combination of taught coursework and supervised independent study. You will also complete an independent study project which is an opportunity for you to demonstrate the research skills and knowledge you will develop in the earlier stages of the course.
This MRes is especially suited for:
The MRes is part of a group of social policy masters degrees that draw on the research excellence of the Department to enable you to study social policy at an advanced level. These courses each offer a unique blend of modules to allow you to specialise in a particular area.
The MRes in Social Policy is based around a combination of social policy analysis and research training. You'll start with a broad introduction to social research methods and social policy analysis. You'll then go on to study effective data collection, analysis and interpretation at an advanced level as well as developing the presentation and communications skills you'll need to effectively disseminate your research.
Most people study for full-time for 12 months, but part-time study over 24 months is also available.
In the autumn term you'll take two compulsory modules:
In the spring term you'll take two more compulsory modules that build upon your earlier study:
More details on the MRes in Social Policy modules.
In the summer term and summer months you'll take part in the Graduate Dissertation Workshop. This will give you the chance to develop your research interests and participate in a group project with other students who have similar interests. You will also use this time to work on your individual research project.
You will design, develop and manage your own original research project. You'll produce a 15,000-20,000 word dissertation under the guidance of your own individual supervisor.
Given the individual nature of dissertations, there is huge variation in the topics which can be studied. Recent projects by Social Policy masters students include:
Now I'm studying for my PhD, specialising in mental health street triage. I'd love to work in mental health research but also teach at the same time, so I'm lucky at the moment to be able to teach on the Introducing Social Policy module.Alice, MRes Social Policy graduate, 2014-15
Hear more from Alice about her experience studying this course.
There are a number of funding opportunities for students studying this masters degree:
You can also explore more general sources of postgraduate scholarships and funding:
The modules for this course have been specifically developed for postgraduate study. You'll be taught through a combination of hands-on workshops, lectures and seminars based on real cases and data. You will find that small group working and establishing your own perspective on social issues becomes a core part of your studying process.
Your assessment will be continuous and based mainly on essays and reports. You will receive written feedback on all assessed work.
You'll complete a 15,000-20,000 word dissertation as part of your own specialist research project. You'll also have the opportunity to present your research as it progresses to a wider audience as part of our dissertation workshops.
The teaching has been really good. The staff are all research active so when they're lecturing they feed their own research into the lectures, tutorials and everything. It's interesting to hear about the real life applications of theory and knowledge.Caitlin, MRes Social Policy
The Department has one of the largest concentrations of social policy research in the UK. In the 2014 Research Excellence Framework we were ranked third in the UK for overall research performance and joint first for the impact of our research. Graduate students have access to staff, projects and research across a wide range of social policy areas and the Department is home to many internationally renowned research centres, including:
The MRes in Social Policy develops skills required by employers in a number of areas, especially policy analysis and research. You'll also find you develop transferable skills that will allow you to progress to different career areas or to continue your studies at PhD level.
The MRes in Social Policy is designed for students who want to become active in social policy analysis and research. Graduates from the MRes in Social Policy go on to a wide variety of destinations but most tend to go into one of three key areas:
There are also opportunities outside social policy, including civil service, journalism and social enterprise.
You will normally be expected to have at least a 2:1 undergraduate degree or equivalent qualification. You will also be considered if you have relevant work experience and academic potential.
You can apply and send all your documentation electronically through our online system, which allows you to save your progress and return later to finish. If you're unable to apply online, you can submit a paper application.