Master Social Work - Máster en Trabajo Social
The MA Social Research (Social Work and Professional Practice) is recognised by the ESRC as a research training pathway designed to provide participants with a sound background in overall research design and the most up-to-date training in methods, including data collection and analysis for potential doctoral students. It is aimed at those who have practice experience in the fields of social work, health and social care or criminal justice, and who are interested in undertaking an academic or research career. The MA Social Research (Social Work and Professional Practice) welcomes applications from international students.
A good Honours degree or equivalent is normally required. This will usually be in a social science, although applications from those with degrees in other disciplines will be considered. Applications are also encouraged from those without an Honours degree who have five years or more relevant work experience in a policy or practice area.
We accept a range of qualifications from different countries.
English language requirements
You can satisfy our English language requirements in two ways:
by holding an English language qualification to the right level.
by taking and successfully completing one of our English courses for international students.
The core modules of the course are:
Introduction to Social Science Research (20 credits)
Module Lead: Fiona Carmichael; Nick Peim
This module aims to provide a general introduction to studying and research methods and prepares you for your disseration, emphasising key skills such as searching literature, finding datasets and presenting and criticising arguments. It also covers ethnics of research, the role of theory and philosophical bases for understanding the social world.
Research Design (20 credits)
Module Lead: Graeme Douglas; Gary Thomas
This module links the introductory module and data collection module through consideration of research, design, questions, warranting practices and sampling methods. All the elements of research design are linked into an over-arching theme of the full cycle of research activity.
Social Research Methods I (20 credits)
Module Lead: Harriet Clarke; Ian Davison
This module introduces the principles and practices of data collection and explores rationales of the various methods. It will focus on the different stages of data collection, including various methods used to gather textual and numerical data.
Social Research Methods II (20 credits)
Module Lead: Harriet Clarke; Matt Bennett
This module introduces students to a range of aproaches for analysing and handling data. It will include covering statistical methods for quantitative data and methodological approaches for qualitative data. It emphasises that the method of analysis is not determined by the method of collection.
Researching Professional Practice
Module Lead: Sue White
This module enables students to explore professional practice using different research approaches and considering the role of service users and professional practitioners as stakeholders of the research. Students are encouraged to draw on their own experiences of professional practice within social work and social care organisations.
Researching Social Policy* (20 credits)
Module Lead: Jenny Phillimore
This module is concerned with the politics of social research, rather than research methods and methodology. It addresses issues such as: how are certain topics identified as subjects for research, how is research commissioned and funded, and what are the relationships between research and the policy process. It draws on real-life experiences of doing research and being researched to explore these issues.
Dissertation (60 credits)
On completion of the taught (120 credits), Masters students undertake a 10,000 word dissertation on a subject of their choice. Each student is allocated a supervisor, selected for their experience of both the subject matter and supervision.
The modules on Social Research Methods I and Social Research Methods II cover a wide range of approaches, including the ´qualitative´ and ´quantitative´ traditions, plus mixed methods.
For courses marked * you may instead select various intensive short courses on research methods from a wide range, including narrative analysis, advanced qualitative analysis, logistic regression, factor analysis and others.
This course is designed for those considering research as a career. That includes those wanting an academic career, for whom this degree is ideal preparation for undertaking a doctorate (PhD). It also includes those seeking a research career in such areas as central government, charities and in consultancies and social research. The degree also provides good transferable skills in evaluation and in analysing data and the ability to critique published research.