About This Course
1 Year Full-time; 2 Years Part-time
Full-time, Part-Time. See Additional Teaching Mode Information for more info.
€6,130; €3,130 (Year 1 Part-time); €3,130 (Year 2 Part-time)
See Fees and Costs for full details.
See Requirements for full details.
Open for EU applications, check rounds closing under How to Apply
Non-EU Closing Date
30 June 2023
11 September 2023
This full-time, one year course analyses social policy relating to contemporary issues facing Ireland, Europe and the wider world. The course gives you the theoretical and practical skills to engage in social research and policy analysis. As part of this course, you can specialise in the social policy area of your choice. The delivery of the programme is innovative, discussion-led and seminar-based to encourage the active participation of the group.
The MSocSc (Social Policy) core modules include:
- Contemporary Social Policy Issues
- Social Research: Methodology and Ethics
- Social Policy Analysis
Students are also required to conduct a piece of social research and submit a 25,000-word thesis.
You will also pursue a specialist pathway from one of the following:
- Children and Young People
Designed for a wide range of professionals working with children and young people. You are encouraged to reflect on policy, theory, and practice. Topics covered include children and young people in society; children’s rights, participation, and democratic engagement; and researching childhood and youth.
- Conflict, Transformation and Peace Building
Explores the causes and dynamics of conflict in society, and looks at grassroots and governmental approaches to peace-building internationally. Conflict in Ireland and the peace process in the North will act as a focus. ‘Transitional justice’ and ‘nation-building’ in post-conflict societies will also be considered.
- Mental Health and Disability
Helps you understand key perspectives in the areas of mental health and disability, and their implications for policy, research and practice. Issues of human rights and citizenship are given particular attention.
Further details of the programme content and modules are in the Postgraduate College Calendar
Additional Teaching Mode Information
The part-time option will be taught during evening hours over 2 years.
Further details on the modules listed above can be found in our Book of Modules. Any modules listed above are indicative of the current set of modules for this course but are subject to change from year to year.
You can find the full academic content for the current year of any given course in our University Calendar.
Lectures take place on Tuesdays and Wednesdays from 5.30-7.30 pm (for both full-time and part-time students). You are also expected to engage in ongoing online seminar activities and discussions, as well as self-directed learning. You are required to read articles before attending lectures.
The MSocSc (Social Policy) course gives you the skills to understand and discuss key issues in contemporary social policy, specialise in a policy field of your choice, and conduct policy research. Our assessment methods enable students to become autonomous social policy analysts and researchers. Assessment includes: writing and presenting a policy report, participating in online discussions of contemporary key social policy issues, theoretical analysis of a current policy issue, and a 25,000-word social policy research thesis.
Who teaches this course
The teaching is delivered by members of staff in the School of Applied Social Studies. Outside speakers are also invited to give seminars that are relevant to each of the specialist pathways. The teaching is strongly informed by research and lecturers contribute to the course in their particular areas of expertise. Students are also active participants in the learning process. For example, the modules are constituted in the form of a series of seminars, and students are expected to read articles that are later discussed in class.
Why Choose This Course
The course gives you the unique opportunity to take a one-year full-time evening course in an era of rapid social change and policy developments. It will give you the skills to:
- engage in social policy analysis
- become an autonomous researcher
- link practice with theoretical and conceptual debates
- address contemporary debates in key social policy issues
- evaluate, and ultimately have an impact on policy agendas
Skills and Careers Information
Our graduates are employed in a variety of posts including the public and voluntary sectors and other services/advocacy groups. The course is ideally suited to those who have worked in this area, or who are interested in working in social policy-related areas such as youth work, community work, social activism, and trade unionism. The specialist pathways also suit various professionals working with children and young people, or in the areas of mental health, disability, conflict transformation, and peacebuilding.
To apply for this course you will need a Second Class Honours Grade II in a primary honours degree in Social Policy (NFQ, Level 8) or equivalent. Applicants with other relevant degrees in the broad areas of the humanities and social sciences (sociology, philosophy, politics and government, social care, social work, early childhood studies, public health, history, law, economics, archaeology, anthropology, theology) and/or relevant experience, e.g. extensive experience in the areas of community activism, youth work, social work, trade union activism and development work will also be considered.
Applicants who do not meet the normal academic or experience requirements may also be considered under Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) following a review of their individual qualifications and experience by the course commitee, at which they must satisfy the course commitee of their ability to fulfil the academic requirements of the programme. The review will consist of an interview by the course commitee and an evaluation of the applicant’s prior relevant experience and understanding and knowledge of social policy. Such applications are subject to the approval of the College of Arts, Celtic Studies and Social Sciences.
Students who have gained an award of the Higher Diploma in Social Policy, or the CACE Higher Diploma in Facilitating Inclusion (Disability Studies), will also be considered eligible to apply to undertake the MSocSc (Social Policy).
English Language Requirements
Applicants that are non-native speakers of the English language must meet the university-approved English language requirements. Please visit our PG English Language Requirements page for more information.
For applicants with qualifications completed outside of Ireland
Applicants must meet the required entry academic grade, equivalent to Irish requirements. For more information see our Qualification Comparison page.
For full details of the non-EU application procedure visit our how to apply pages for international students.
- 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.
- Note that not all courses are open to international/non-EU applicants, please check the fact file above. For more information contact the International Office.
Fees and Costs
The EU fee for this course is €6,130; €3,130 (Year 1 Part-time); €3,130 (Year 2 Part-time).
The Non-EU fee for this course is €16,700.
If your course required a deposit, that figure will be deducted from your second semester fee payment in January.
EU student fee payment
Fees for EU students are payable in two equal instalments. First payment at registration in August and the second in January.
International student fee payment
International Students can pay in two equal instalments once they have paid the appropriate deposit. The initial payment is due on registration and the balance usually by the end of January.
How can I pay?
You can pay by Credit/Debit card online or by credit transfer.
If you have any questions on fee payment please email our Fees Office at firstname.lastname@example.org.
How Do I Apply
1. Check Dates: Check the opening and closing dates for the application process in the fact file boxes at the top of the page.
- For Irish and EU applicants we operate a rounds system and you can check the rounds closing dates here.
- Note that not all our programmes are subject to the rounds system so check the opening and closing dates for your specific programme in the fact file boxes above.
2. Gather Documents: Scanned copies of supporting documents have to be uploaded to the UCC online application portal and include:
- Original qualification documents listed on your application including transcripts of results from institutions other than UCC;
- Any supplementary items requested for your course if required.
3. Apply Online: Apply online via the UCC online application portal. Note the majority of our courses have a non-refundable €50 application fee.
Any questions? Use our web enquiry form to contact us.
Additional Requirements (All Applicants)
Please note you will be required to provide additional information as part of the online application process for this programme. This will include the following questions:
You may enter the details of professional or voluntary positions held. We strongly encourage you to complete this section with all relevant work experiences that will support your application.
Please describe your motivation and readiness for this programme.
- Please enter the names and email addresses of 2 referees.
The closing date for non-EU applications is 30 June 2023Apply Now