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Social Sciences (Postgraduate Certificate-Diploma-MA)

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  • Entry requirements
    Standard Entry A second class honours degree in a social science related subject area, an equivalent professional qualification and/or relevant experience will be considered as entry requirements. Degree and non-degree applicants will be asked to complete a written application and may be invited for interview before admission. All international students must have an English language capability of IELTS level 7.
  • Academic Title
    Social Sciences (Postgraduate Certificate/Diploma/MA)
  • Course description
    As societies change so rapidly there is a need for reflection and analysis to understand those changes and our place within them. Social science has always been at the forefront of developing our understanding and analysis of society and this course will do just that.

    You will explore key social science concepts that will give you the analytical tools to make sense of the global society we live in. Our programme is rooted in core research skills and the application of theory to practice, and focuses on issues of inequality, diversity and social justice. This programme is specially designed to enable you to shape your own study through the application of key social science concepts and ideas to the wide range of topics offered in options across our postgraduate programme.

    What you will study
    Throughout the programme you will be encouraged to relate and apply the knowledge and experience you have to the study of your own society and that of others. You will learn different approaches to research and apply your skills to issues in the real world. You will have the opportunity to explore the links between theory, policy and practice and to relate your own experiences to contemporary thinking in the social sciences. While the starting point for study is the UK, the programme will take into account comparative and global issues and contexts. Options will be half of your taught programme. A wide range of options are offered by the division, and can include work-based learning, crime and social change, racial inequality and social policy, researching for change, European employment policy and theories and issues in social justice .

    Modules studied
    Students must successfully complete two core modules, two option modules and an independent piece of research for the award of MA. The structure of the programme is as follows:

    Researching Society is concerned with the variety of methods of research used in the social sciences and criminology which are appropriate at postgraduate level. It describes and evaluates these methods but more importantly, it places emphasis on the application of such methods to research problems. Specialist research sessions are run for students doing different postgraduate programmes.

    Sociology of Inequality uses sociological theory to examine the relationships between different forms of inequality and current debates about diversity. It begins with the experiences we have of inequality and explores the responses of communities, societies and institutions to those experiences. It analyses key themes in inequality such as class, race and gender and takes case studies from the UK and the developing world.

    Options include Nature and Society, Researching for Change, Crime and Social Change, Racial Inequality and Social Policy, Crime, Media and Culture, Popular culture(s) or Challenging Inequality: Activism and Resistance.

    Year 1 Modules

    MP0709 Popular Culture(s) (OPTION, 30 Credits)

    SO0512 Crime, Violence and Masculinity (OPTION, 30 Credits)

    SO0538 Work Based Learning (OPTION, 30 Credits)

    SO0541 Advanced Qualitative Methods (OPTION, 30 Credits)

    SO0543 Dissertation (CORE, 60 Credits)

    SO0547 Racism and Civil Rights (OPTION, 30 Credits)

    SO0550 Equal Opportunities: Laws, Politics and Issues (OPTION, 30 Credits)

    SO0552 Researching Society (CORE, 30 Credits)

    SO0554 The Sociology of Inequality (CORE, 30 Credits)

    SO0556 Issues in Crime and Social Control (OPTION, 30 Credits)

    Assessment is specific to each of the modules but a student studying the programme will be appropriately assessed through different methods that support intellectual rigour and encourage the application of skills. The emphasis is to make the assessment processes as relevant as possible to both the process of learning and to the workplace (where appropriate).

    The modules are assessed in a variety of ways. A full range of assessment methods is used including assignments, reflective journal, portfolio of evidence, and for the Masters degree, a dissertation.

    Students will be supported in their learning and teaching through the active use of the elearning portal to encourage peer group interaction and support. They will be allocated to guidance tutors who will support them in their choice of modules and options that encourage their intellectual development and their employability.

    This programme will be of value to those who want a sound grounding in social science but also want to explore their own areas of interest. Students will be able to tailor the programme to meet their future needs from professionally oriented courses in equal opportunities or criminology to more theoretical or conceptual areas of study.

    An understanding of key issues in social science opens up wide career opportunities, including in national and local government, policy-making organisations, NGOs, research agencies, voluntary bodies and charities, and the media.

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