UCC Undergraduate courses

Social Science

About This Course

Fact File

  • Title

    Social Science

  • Code


  • College

    Arts, Celtic Studies and Social Sciences

  • Duration

    3 years

  • Teaching Mode


  • Qualifications

    BSocSc (Hons)

  • Fees

    Student Contribution Charge + Capitation Fee: €3,165. See Fees and Costs for full details.

  • Entry Requirements

    2 x H5, 4 x O6/H7; O6/H7 in another language. See Requirements for full details.

  • CAO Points

    2017: 403

Course Outline

This degree is suited to people interested in social issues. It provides a grounding in Social Science, the umbrella term for academic disciplines that focus on society and human behaviour.

The BSocSc is concerned with human, political, economic and social relations that shape the world we live in. Approaching social phenomena from different standpoints helps develop critical perspectives on issues such as:

  • poverty and exclusion
  • culture
  • identity
  • community
  • family, equality and social justice
  • globalisation and the environment

Social policy is a core subject on this degree, the study of which incorporates key debates about human and societal wellbeing and how basic needs are met.

The BSocSc offers a range of learning experiences. You can attend agency visits, undertake work experience for credits, study a new language and conduct a research project. Our graduates have an array of Social Science skills, which prepares them for a variety of postgraduate/career destinations.

Year 1 Modules:

Applied Psychology (5 credits each):  

  • AP1110 Psychology as Science;
  • AP1149 Introduction to Developmental and Social Psychology 

Economics (5 credits each):

  • EC1117/EC1118 Markets and Government:  An Introduction to Economics 

Philosophy (10 credits each):

  • PH1005 Philosophy and Social Science - An Introduction or
  • SS1012 Social Practice and the Social Professions 

Social Policy:

  • SS1017 Politics and Social Policy (Part 1) (10 credits) and
  • SS1018 Politics and Social Policy (Part 2) (5 credits)


  • SC1012 Introduction to Sociology (5 credits) and 
  • SC1013 Key Issues in Sociology (10 credits)

Year 2 Modules:


Economics; Social Policy; Philosophy; Applied Psychology; Sociology and Society


Social Policy; Sociology; Statistics; Languages; Chinese Studies; Philosophy

Year 3 Modules:


Politics and Social Policy


Sociology; Social Policy; Economics; Social Work and Social Services; Sociology and Society; Applied Psychology; Languages; Philosophy; Statistics

See the College Calendar for more detailed information on the programme and the Book of Modules for a more detailed description of programme modules.

Course Practicalities

Expected lecture hours: 15 hours per week, in addition to approximately five hours of tutorials/seminars, etc

Expected reading hours: As with all Social Science degrees, reading hours are also a core part of the course where, for example, key literature and policy under examination in lectures are studied in depth in your own time.

Field visits: Agency field visits are scheduled to take place over one week in Year 2 and students taking the fieldwork placement module are required to commit 150 hours to the agency/organisation during the summer prior to Year 2 and/or Year 3.


Written exams will take place before Christmas and in May.  Not all modules will have formal examinations.  Many modules use other types of assessment and on the BSocSc in broad terms there is a strong emphasis on continuous assessment, which in the case of many modules is weighted in equal terms with the end-of-semester examinations. Other modules are assessed entirely through continuous assessment.

Continuous assessment on the BSocSc is designed to develop a wide range of Social Science skills. Course work includes learning portfolios, essays, group presentations, book/policy reviews, agency profiles, and a final-year research project. 

Who teaches this course

The BSocSc is an interdisciplinary degree and staff from a number of schools are involved in teaching on the course. Participating schools include Applied Social Studies, Philosophy and Sociology, Economics and Applied Psychology, and staff from these schools contribute modules across the degree. Many of the staff in the School of Applied Social Studies lecture on the course.

Our teaching and research interests span a broad range of social science areas. See here for more information.

Teaching staff on the BSocSc undertake research, are involved with community, advocacy and service-based organisations, and publish articles and books, many of which are written particularly with the learning needs of BSocSc students in mind.

Why Choose This Course

The BSocSc was excellent preparation for my Masters degree in Occupational Therapy Studies in the UK

Peter Nestor

Graduate, 2012

Find Out More

The BSocSc degree course is delivered in an academically supportive and student-centred way.

There is a strong commitment to first-year student supports with small group tutorials, seminars on study and writing skills and ongoing tutor and staff availability throughout the year.

The School of Applied Social Studies has appointed three dedicated coordinators for each year of the course. They are an important resource for students who may have queries about module choices, the structure of the course or are looking for academic advice.

The BSocSc in UCC is a long-established and well-regarded academic degree. Committed to developing independent and critical thinking skills, our graduates develop vital research, argumentation and analytical skills that will equip them for successful engagement in work, study and active citizenship.

Placement or Study Abroad Information

Placements are offered on an optional basis on the BSocSc, where you organise fieldwork experience in an agency of your choice, with support from staff. You will undertake a minimum of 150 hours work in a setting relevant to your study. You will complete your work experience in the summer months prior to Year 2 and/or Year 3 of the degree.

Students have undertaken placements in a diverse range of settings including:

  • youth projects
  • community/rural development projects
  • city and county councils
  • schools
  • childcare organisations
  • disability services
  • resource centres
  • agencies representing refugees and asylum seekers
  • Traveller advocacy organisations
  • voluntary/charitable organisations

Some students have chosen to complete their placements abroad in countries such as India, Sri Lanka, Belarus, Romania, Ukraine, Kenya, Ghana and South Africa.

Skills and Careers Information

The degree does not provide a professional qualification but acts as a gateway to a range of postgraduate opportunities in areas such as:

  • social work
  • occupational therapy
  • speech and language therapy
  • planning and sustainable development
  • community and youth work
  • social policy and social research
  • criminology
  • teaching
  • marketing and management
  • journalism

BSocSc graduates are employed in a variety of settings including public and voluntary sector organisations such as:

  • health services
  • probation
  • social care
  • local government
  • housing associations
  • service/advocacy groups

As such, the degree is ideally suited to those who are broadly interested in working with people in a social-/community-focused environment but who are as yet undecided about what particular area they would like to specialise in. 


Leaving Cert entry requirements:

At Least six subjects must be presented. Minimum grade requirement of 2*H5 and 4*O6/H7. Applicants will need to meet the following minimum entry requirements:



Other Language




FETAC Requirements.

Non-EU Candidates

Non-EU candidates are expected to have educational qualifications of a standard equivalent to the Irish Leaving Certificate. In addition, where such candidates are non-native speakers of the English language they must satisfy the university of their competency in the English language.

To verify if you meet the minimum academic and language requirements for this programme please visit our qualification comparison pages.

For more detailed entry requirement information please refer to the International website.

Mature Students Requirements

Please refer to the mature student entry requirements for details. 

Fees and Costs

Full-time EU/EEA/Swiss State undergraduate students may be exempt from paying tuition fees. The State will pay the tuition fees for students who satisfy the Free Fees Criteria. In 2017/18 the Student Contribution Charge will be €3,000 and the Capitation Fee is expected to be €165.

Non-EU Fees

The 2017/2018 Undergraduate Fees Schedule is available here.

How Do I Apply

EU Applicants: Application to Year 1 of the degree programme is made directly through the Central Applications Office (CAO). Applicants should apply online at www.cao.ie. The normal closing date for receipt of completed applications is 1st February of the year of entry.

Non-EU Applicants

Mature Applicants:  Application is made through the CAO (www.cao.ie) and the closing date for receipt of completed applications is 1st February of the year of proposed entry.

Non-EU Applications

Applicants who are interested in applying for the programme can apply online.

For full details of the non-EU application procedure visit our how to apply pages for international students.


**All Applicants please note: modules listed in the course outline above are indicative of the current set of modules for this course, but these are subject to change from year to year. Please check the college calendar for the full academic content of any given course for the current year. 

In UCC, we use the term programme and course interchangeably to describe what a person has registered to study in UCC and its constituent colleges, schools and departments. 

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