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Overview New digital technologies are changing how we connect and do business


1 year full-time

With improved access to the internet through our smartphones and tablets we have become more connected to each other and to what is happening in the world around us. At the same time social media and information applications are transforming business. This innovative MSc in Social Media and Management will give you an understanding of existing and emerging technology and the ability to assess the impact of social media on commercial, public, and third sector organisations in the UK and worldwide.

Social media is quite a new area providing the chance to explore and discover new research areas, whilst management offers organisational knowledge which I feel is important for future career development.
MSc Social Media Management

Course content What you’ll study


 Social media and information applications are transforming organisational development, competitiveness and flexible working. From raising a company’s profile to improving client and customer relations, this rapidly evolving sector has already affected the way many businesses work. The potential for further change is huge.

You'll develop business awareness and explore the history of organisations, their environments, and the ways in which both have changed. You'll examine how digital information communications technology (ICT) is managed, and learn to identify and analyse the key innovations made possible by new media. You will investigate new methods of digital data analysis and explore the opportunities and challenges presented by the availability of these new data forms.

The Social Media and Management course is taught by experts from both the Department of Sociology and the York Management School, combining experience from the forefront of sociological and business research.


The Social Media and Management course includes seven core modules:

Understanding Social Media
You'll learn to identify key characteristics of new media communications such as YouTube, Facebook and Twitter and understand the impact that social media has had on organisations and on society. You will evaluate how social, economic, cultural and political factors have shaped the design of social media and you will examine real-life case studies to put what you have learned in context.

Metrics and Society
You will explore the social role, significance and consequences of metrics and data. Many of the most significant technological developments of our age will centre around data and metrics and this module will give you the means to understand these developments. You'll see how we are measured and how measurement links into power, governance and control. You will think through what part measurement plays in defining our everyday experiences in society.

Social Research Methods and Management
This module will give a general overview of the decisions social researchers have to make when they develop a sociological project. You will learn how to develop a research project and to identify and manage the different stages of conception, analysis and dissemination of results.

Organisational Analysis
You'll gain a comprehensive understanding of how organisations work, exploring how social, political, ethical, economic and philosophical issues all affect organisational analysis. You will study:

  • Frameworks for organisational analysis
  • Modern organisations: analysis of structures
  • Organisational cultures
  • Organisation as power
  • Gender and identity
  • New organisational forms and the network
  • Theoretical contrasts: organisations and organising
  • New directions in organisation theory and analysis.

Business Information Systems
You will examine the role of information systems in organisations and how the advent of the internet and social media has forced organisations to re-evaluate their information systems to accommodate these changes in technology. By examining real world systems, you will investigate the relationship between information systems, management, business processes, strategy and important ethical and social issues.

Innovation and Technology Management
You will develop a critical awareness of alternative strategies for managing information and technology in modern organisations. You will study:

  • The strategic case for information technology
  • The relationship between information systems (IS), information management (IM) and information technology (IT) strategies
  • Methodologies for strategy formulation
  • Building a strategic architecture for IT, IS and IMIT strategy in practice: economic, legal, ethical and people considerations
  • Organising IT activities: centralisation, specialisation and contingencies
  • Controlling IT funding, NPV[1] and cost-benefit analysis.

Continuity and Change in Organisations
You'll be introduced to the concept of change and how change theories are applied in management areas such as organisational behaviour, strategy and operations. You will be asked to consider why history is important to understanding organisations, environments and the ways in which both change.


You will develop, design, implement and manage your own original research project, supervised by a member of staff with the relevant experience for your topic. You will analyse the data and produce a 15,000-word dissertation based on your research project.

Examples of previous dissertation titles include:

  • Analysing the use of social network sites
  • It’s all about identifications: Organisational control as enacted in discourse around working time arrangements
  • What is online curation and how is it different from other Web 2.0 sharing practices?
  • Social media within organisations: How do different cultural expectations of different user groups affect business email communications? 
  • What is the social and behavioural impact of the Apple iPod?
  • Have social networking websites altered the way that organisations recruit and select university graduates?
  • The impact of social networking sites on charitable fundraising: The comparison between China and the UK
  • A study of visual consumption within visual culture: Based on an affiliate program Fancy
  • The role of new media in politics
  • ‚ÄčApplication of digital by product data in decision making 
  • Social media in big data era: the commercial activities of data collection and application from “scale” to “micro” on social media platform ‚Äč

Study abroad

This course is not associated with a specific Study Abroad programme, but York offers a number of options through international partnering programmes.

Study Abroad with York

Funding opportunities

A range of scholarships and studentships are available for masters students. 

Teaching and assessment How you’ll be taught and assessed

Social Media and Management MSc - Teaching

Teaching format

The Social Media and Management course work combines formal lectures, seminars, practical exercises and workshops. 

  • You'll be introduced to real-life case studies in order to see how the theory works in practice. 
  • You'll attend seminars from visiting scholars on a wide variety of sociological topics.
  • A member of the teaching staff will act as your supervisor throughout the degree to help guide your studies and monitor your progress.
Social Media and Management MSc


Types of assessments used throughout this course include:

  • Assessment essays of between 3,000 and 5,500 words
  • Group presentation project
  • Outline research proposal
  • Examinations
  • Dissertation (15,000 words).

Careers Where you’ll go from here

You'll develop the skills and knowledge you need to follow a career in social media management or consultancy as an information analyst in public or private sector organisations. The masters in Social Media and Management course also provides an ideal basis to progress to further study at PhD level.

Our Sociology alumni

Career opportunities

  • Social media management
  • Social media consultancy
  • Social media marketing
  • Information analyst
  • Information management
  • Information specialist in public or private sector organisations
  • Applying social media applications in journalism

Transferable skills

  • Managing digital communications
  • Business management skills
  • Data analysis
  • Design and completion of original research

Entry requirements How to get here

Course entry

Applicants must have at least a 2:1 degree in a social science or management/business studies-related discipline. Highly qualified students from non-social science disciplines such as computer science are also encouraged to apply.


You can apply and send all your documentation electronically with our online system, which allows you to save progress and return later to finish. If you're unable to apply online, you can submit a paper application.

Applying for postgraduate study

Start your online application


English language

If your native language is not English, you should meet an English language proficiency level of 7.0 in the British Council's IELTS test with at least IELTS 6.0 in writing. We do accept other English Language Tests. Students who have successfully completed a recent undergraduate degree at a UK University are exempt from the English Language requirement.

We also strongly recommend that applicants attend the University's Intensive Summer Courses organised by the EFL Unit.

Enquire Contact our admissions tutor if you have any questions

Related courses

  • MA Social Research

Next steps

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