International Social Policy, M.A.

  • N/A
    Application Deadline
  • 12 months
    Duration
  • 13340
    Tuition (Year)
    5430
    Tuition (Year)
  • English
    Language
,
Welfare states everywhere face enormous challenges from population ageing, changes in family life and work-patterns, migration and the economic crisis. In a globalised and interdependent world, these issues can only be understood from an international perspective which accounts for these common pressures and processes, but which also recognises and engages with the diversity of national traditions and institutions for delivering welfare. This International Social Policy programme is offered by the University of Kent.
  • Overview
  • Programme outline
  • Key facts
  • Admission requirements
  • Fees and funding

About

The International Social Policy programme takes a policy analytic approach to provide you with an advanced understanding of current debates, theories and concepts relevant to international social policy. You learn about the common features of social policy arrangements internationally and the variety and differences that characterise welfare across the countries and regions of the world. Drawing on the research-based expertise available at SSPSSR which relates to countries ranging from China, South Korea and Singapore in South East Asia to the UK, Germany and Sweden in Western Europe, you are equipped to understand how national and global forces interact to shape trajectories of welfare system development.

The programme enables you to apply theories and methods of social policy in exploring enduring cross cutting themes in social policy, including the prioritisation of equality and capabilities, as well as to drill down to how and why policy unfolds in key welfare fields. You develop policy analytic skills in relation to such areas as health, migration, pensions, education, social care, and children & family related policy. You acquire expertise in the use of primary and secondary data collection in areas pertaining to all these aspects of social policy, and are thus equipped to think critically about the development of social welfare systems in a global age across the full range of national contexts and policy situations.

This International Social Policy programme is offered by the University of Kent.

About the School of Social Policy, Sociology and Social Research

SSPSSR has a long and distinguished history, and is one of the largest and most successful social science research communities in Europe.

Academic staff specialise in research of international, comparative and theoretical significance, and we have collective strengths in the following areas: civil society, NGOs and the third sector; cross-national and European social policy; health, social care and health studies; work, employment and economic life; risk, ‘risk society’ and risk management; race, ethnicity and religion; social and public policy; sociology and the body; crime, culture and control; sociological theory and the culture of modernity.

National ratings

In the Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2014, research by the School of Social Policy, Sociology and Social Research was ranked 2nd for research power in the UK. The School was also placed 3rd for research intensity, 5th for research impact and 5th for research quality.

An impressive 94% of our research-active staff submitted to the REF and 99% of our research was judged to be of international quality. The School’s environment was judged to be conducive to supporting the development of world-leading research, gaining the highest possible score of 100%.

Careers

Building on Kent’s success as the region’s leading institution for student employability, we place considerable emphasis on you gaining specialist knowledge in your chosen subject alongside core transferable skills.

We ensure that you develop the skills and competences that employers are looking for including: research and analysis; policy development and interpretation; independent thought; writing and presentation, as well as time management and leadership skills.

You also become fully involved in the professional research culture of the School. A postgraduate degree in the area of social and public policy is a particularly flexible and valuable qualification that can lead to many exciting opportunities and professions.

SSPSSR consistently ranks highly for student satisfaction and teaching quality, ranking 6th in the UK for our Social Policy students' employment prospects (2015 Complete University Guide).

Recent graduates have pursued careers in academia, journalism, local and central government, charities and NGOs in roles which utilise their wide range of skills and are often found in managerial positions.

Programme Structure

We place considerable emphasis on structured, interactive seminars with a high degree of student participation. You also join the staff/graduate seminars which allow MA and research students to become involved in a professional research culture.

The programme gives you a clear and confident grasp of social policy in developed and developing countries. You gain an advanced understanding of the relevant debates, theories and concepts of international issues alongside skills in research design and data collection.

Modules

The following modules are indicative of those offered on this programme. This list is based on the current curriculum and may change year to year. Most programmes will require you to study a combination of compulsory and optional modules. You may also have the option to take modules from other programmes so that you may customise your programme and explore other subject areas that interest you.

  • Design of Social research
  • Key Issues in Comparative Social Policy
  • Comparative Social Policy
  • Organised Civil Society and the Third Sector
  • The Family, Parenting Culture and Parenting Policy
  • Governing Science, Technology and Society in the 21st Century
  • Foundations of Sociology
  • Politics and Sociology of the Environment
  • Sociology of health, illness and medicine
  • Qualitative Research
  • Quantitative Data Analysis
  • Terrorism and Modern Society
  • Dissertation
Teaching and Assessment

Modules combine various forms of coursework; a research dissertation also acts as a modular component of the course in its own right.

Programme aims

This programme aims to:

  • provide you with an advanced understanding of current debates, theories and concepts relevant to international social policy
  • impart country-specific as well as cross-national empirical and theoretical knowledge of current challenges and processes of transformation of welfare systems
  • enable you to apply theories and methods of social policy in exploring specific policy fields such as health, migration, pensions, education, social care, poverty and social exclusion, urban development, and family policy
  • develop your skills in research design and data collection in areas pertaining to social policy
  • familiarise you with using primary and secondary data to develop cutting-edge research in the field of international social policy.
Learning outcomes

Knowledge and understanding

You will gain knowledge and understanding of:

  • comparative approaches to social policy
  • research design and methodologies for studies of social policy
  • theories and ideologies of welfare provision in a global world
  • the impact of post-industrialisation and globalisation to the study and understanding of social policy
  • an understanding of social policy developments in Europe and across the world
  • implications and challenges of social policy programmes for gender, class, age, ethnicity and race
  • an understanding of the relationship of international actors to national social policy systems
  • the use of qualitative and quantitative research methods and their critical application in the scholarly literature and in policy papers.
Intellectual skills

You develop intellectual skills in:

  • the ability to develop reasoned arguments, synthesise relevant information and exercise critical judgement
  • the ability to use theoretical concepts and frameworks to gain a sophisticated understanding of the challenges and dilemmas of international social policy
  • the ability to reflect on and manage your own learning and seek to make use of constructive feedback from your peers and staff to enhance your performance and personal skills
  • general research skills: how to gather data from secondary sources, especially large international data sets and web-based resources
  • seminar presentations and discussions will encourage you to present information verbally.
Subject-specific skills

You gain subject-specific skills in:

  • the ability to identify and understand key issues in theory and research on international social policy from a multidisciplinary perspective.
  • the ability to identify current debates and challenges for specific policy fields using a comparative framework
  • the ability to research and access the main sources of information relevant to international social policy
  • the ability to understand the logic behind applied research, from research design to data collection and data analysis
  • the ability to present results in a meaningful way to international academic forums, as well as to more varied audiences.
Transferable skills

You will gain the following transferable skills:

  • the ability to undertake research from a diverse range of sources, including data compiled by international and national policymakers, transnational agencies and governmental data, as well as existing survey and interview data
  • the ability to summarise detailed and complex bodies of information concisely and accurately
  • the ability to formulate arguments in verbal presentations, using social science language and terminology, and defend these against opposing views
  • the ability to present information and arguments in written form, in accordance with academic conventions, and appropriately to the intended readership
  • the ability to evaluate personal performance.

Detailed Programme Facts

    • Started in

      • There is no deadline for this start date.

      Dates reflect the university's timezone.

  • Credits (ECTS)
    90 ECTS
    • Total Kent credits: 180
    • Total ECTS credits: 90
  • Credits
    180
    • Total Kent credits: 180
    • Total ECTS credits: 90
  • Duration full-time 12 months
  • Languages
    • English
  • Delivery mode
    On Campus
  • Educational variant Part-time, Full-time
  • Intensity Flexible
  • Duration part-time 24 months
  • Part-time variant
    Flexible

Test Scores

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Academic Requirements

A 2.1 or higher university degree in a social science discipline.

Tuition Fee Per Year

  • GBP 13340 International
  • GBP 5430 EEA

Part-time: UK/EU - £2720; Overseas - £6690

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