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MSc Applied Social Research

Gain transferrable research skills and expand your future career possibilities with our MSc Applied Social Research.

Applied Social Research

Economic and Social Research Council Logo

Key facts

  • Award Masters / MSc, Postgraduate Diploma, Postgraduate Certificate
  • Start date October (full-time or part-time) or January (part-time)
  • Duration MSc full-time: 12 months, MSc part-time: 30 months
  • Mode of study Part-time, Full-time, Campus based, Stand-alone modules

This Masters course provides you with the skills and knowledge you need to carry out robust social research and evaluation.

You’ll learn how to collect, analyse and report qualitative and quantitative data, taking account of ethics, reliability and validity. You’ll also critically examine the theoretical foundations that underpin social scientific research and explore the issues with social network research. Finally, you’ll develop an understanding of the relationship between research and policymaking.

Our MSc is recognised by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) as meeting the research training guidelines for undertaking a PhD in Sociology, Social Policy, Social Work or Socio-legal Studies, as well as preparing you for an ESRC-recognised interdisciplinary PhD in Families, Relationships and Demographic Change and Social Care.

  • Top reasons to study with us
  • Course objectives

    The objective of our MSc Applied Social Research is to provide you with the skills and knowledge required to collect, analyse and report qualitative and quantitative data, taking account of ethics, reliability and validity. Your studies will enable you to:

    • critically examine the theoretical foundations that underpin social scientific research
    • examine issues concerning comparative social research
    • develop your understanding of the relationship between research and policy, and the meanings of evaluation, its terminology, practice and use
  • Professional accreditations

    Our MSc is recognised by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) as meeting the research training guidelines for undertaking a PhD in Sociology, Social Policy, Social Work or Socio-legal Studies, as well as preparing you for an ESRC-recognised interdisciplinary PhD in Families, Relationships and Demographic Change and Social Care.

  • Work placements

    During your studies you’ll have the opportunity to carry out a research placement to gain practical experience and establish professional contacts.

  • Flexible learning

    If you’re interested in studying a module from this course, the Postgraduate Certificate or the Postgraduate Diploma then please email Graduate Admissions to discuss your course of study.

  • Research

    When you study Applied Social Research at the University of Stirling, you’ll be introduced to leading-edge empirical and theoretical research in a vibrant, multi-disciplinary environment.

    Underpinning the expertise of our staff, the University of Stirling scored highly in the most recent Research Excellent Framework (REF 2014) – a UK-wide assessment of universities’ research output. In the Social Work and Social Policy unit of assessment, highlights included:

    • 78% of our overall research activity was assessed to be internationally excellent or world-leading
    • 100% of research environment factors assessed as internationally excellent or world leading
    • 100% of our research impact was assessed as world leading or internationally excellent
    • we were judged to have the 2nd highest research power in Scotland and 13th highest in the UK
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