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Faculty of Arts, Cultures and Education

MSc in Social Research

Postgraduate - Taught MSc

Open for admission in 2022/23 to UK students

Closed for admission in 2023/24 to international students

Start in September

Full time Part time
MSc 1 year 2 years

About the course

We are sorry, but due to exceptional demand, this course is now closed for applications from international students for entry in 2022. Applications for 2023/4 will open in September 2022.

If you are a home (UK) student and want to apply for this postgraduate programme please contact admissions on 01482 466850 or pghome@hull.ac.uk.

These postgraduate programmes aim to create highly sought-after researchers who are ready to apply their advanced knowledge and practical skills in the workplace or on further research.

You will learn how to collect, analyse and interpret social data and become skilled in interview techniques, surveys, problem-solving, communication skills and the latest industry software.

Students examine issues from across the social sciences and are introduced to both quantitative and qualitative research methods before having the option of specialising.

During the programme, you will research real world issues, for example evaluating local health care services, predicting voting behaviour during elections or researching the impact of Hull’s year as the 2017 UK City of Culture on local people.

Taught by experienced researchers who are experts in their fields, the interesting and varied curriculum will be delivered through an enquiry-based approach to teaching including small-group work, tutorials, workshops and independent study.

It was designed with input from industry experts, former students and leading academics to ensure that it meets the demands of the modern social research industry.

Students will be provided with a high level of academic support across the programme. Where possible, all core modules will be taught on one specific day (currently Thursdays) to accommodate part-time and working students.

There are two variants: 

  • MSc in Social Research
  • MSc in Social Research (Doctoral Training Programme) Pathway

 

Both MSc variants comply with the UK Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) requirements for Masters level training which is a pre-requisite for their +3 PhD funding across universities in the UK. Students on the two variants achieve the same number of credits (180 credits) for modules taken. The main difference is that the Doctoral Training Programme (DTP) pathway replaces some of the specialist research methods modules with discipline-specific research training and dissertation and involves you with the ESRC White Rose Social Sciences DTP, e.g. for the teaching of the ‘Working Beyond Disciplines’ module and in other ways.

The MSc Social Research - Doctoral Training Programme (DTP) pathway is specifically designed for students taking the MSc in preparation for PhD in one of the three units in Hull that are part of the ESRC White Rose DTP. The three subject areas (i.e. Human Geography, History and Psychology) are members of the ESRC-funded DTP, which offers both ‘1+3’ and ‘+3’ funding. All DTP students are linked to one of these three units and receive discipline-specific research training in Human Geography, History or Psychology. The DTP pathway caters for both ESRC-funded and non-funded (i.e self-funded) students.

For all other students taking the MSc in preparation for PhD in the wider social sciences, or to gain valuable transferrable skills for the job market, then the MSc Social Research is recommended. For further details, feel free to get in touch with the Programme Director, Professor Monica Magadi.

What you'll study

MSc in Social Research

All modules are subject to availability and this list may change at any time.


  • Research Design and Methodology

    Explore the key features of qualitative and qualitative research designs, including evaluation research. This module enables you to choose appropriate methodological approaches and research design in full awareness of their strengths and limitations, for addressing research questions​.

  • Introducing Statistics and Data Analysis with SPSS

    Gain the transferable skills in the use of Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (SPSS) to enable you appropriately use, meaningfully present and accurately interpret univariate and bivariate statistical analysis in an effective and informative way.

  • Collecting Qualitative Data

  • Philosophies of Social Science

  • Surveys and Questionnaires

    The module will give you a complex understanding of what is required in the management and successful execution of survey work, and an awareness of the different forms a survey can take.

  • Analysing Qualitative Data

    This module takes a hands on approach to familiarise you with some of the most commonly employed data analysis methods in qualitative research.

  • Advanced Quantitative Analysis

    This module provides training in the use of relevant statistics software (SPSS and MLwiN) to undertake analysis on a range of statistical modelling techniques, including regression analysis, factor analysis and multilevel modelling. It develops your abilities to critically evaluate quantitative approaches in social and health research.

  • Dissertation in Social Research

    Conduct a qualitative or quantitative research project, guided by an allocated academic supervisor. You'll be supported through a series of workshops designed to assist you with writing a dissertation, such as; research ethics, methodology and data analysis.

MSc in Social Research (Doctoral Training Programme) Pathway

All modules are subject to availability and this list may change at any time.


  • Research Design and Methodology

    Explore the key features of qualitative and qualitative research designs, including evaluation research. This module enables you to choose appropriate methodological approaches and research design in full awareness of their strengths and limitations, for addressing research questions​.

  • Introducing Statistics and Data Analysis with SPSS

    Gain the transferable skills in the use of Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (SPSS) to enable you appropriately use, meaningfully present and accurately interpret univariate and bivariate statistical analysis in an effective and informative way.

  • Collecting Qualitative Data

  • Working Beyond Disciplines

  • Surveys and Questionnaires

    The module will give you a complex understanding of what is required in the management and successful execution of survey work, and an awareness of the different forms a survey can take.

  • Analysing Qualitative Data

    This module takes a hands on approach to familiarise you with some of the most commonly employed data analysis methods in qualitative research.

  • Advanced Quantitative Analysis

    This module provides training in the use of relevant statistics software (SPSS and MLwiN) to undertake analysis on a range of statistical modelling techniques, including regression analysis, factor analysis and multilevel modelling. It develops your abilities to critically evaluate quantitative approaches in social and health research.

  • Power, Authority and Freedom in History

    This module comprises of 4 thematic blocks, from which you will choose 3 at the beginning of the module. Each block is built around a key problem in the study of power, authority and freedom, covering a broad chronological range.

  • Contemporary Research in Human Geography

    ​In this module you will review some of the key contemporary philosophical and epistemological issues in human geography. Through reading and discussion, you'll compare and critically evaluate different strands of thought in contemporary human geography to prepare you for undertaking research for your PhD.​

  • Professional Practice and Communication Skills

    ​You will develop towards professional practice by acquiring a critical understanding of the skills required to be an ethical, reflective, evidence-based, and research active practitioner who can communicate professionally both orally and in writing.​

  • Dissertation in Social Research

    Conduct a qualitative or quantitative research project, guided by an allocated academic supervisor. You'll be supported through a series of workshops designed to assist you with writing a dissertation, such as; research ethics, methodology and data analysis.

Where you'll study

The location below may not be the exact location of all modules on your timetable. The buildings you'll be taught in can vary each year and depend on the modules you study.

Click to view on Google Maps
Hull Campus

Click to view directions on Google Maps

Fees and funding

  • Home: £8,950 (2022/23 entry)
    £9,400 (2023/24 entry)
  • Home (part-time): £495 (10 credits), £995 (20 credits), £2,985 (60 credits), £4,475 (90 credits) - 2022/23 entry
    £520 (10 credits), £1,045 (20 credits), 3,135 (60 credits), £4,700 (90 credits) - 2023/24 entry

UK students can take out a Master’s Loan to help with tuition fees and living costs. For 2022 entry, they provide up to £11,836 for full-time and part-time taught and research Masters courses in all subject areas. Find out more about Postgraduate Loans.

  • EU/International: £8,950 (2022/23 entry)
    £10,000 (2023/24 entry)

International applicants may need to pay a tuition fee deposit before the start of the course. Visit our tuition fee deposit page for more information.

Please see the terms and conditions for International fees 2022/23

Graduate PGT Scholarship

The University of Hull is pleased to offer graduates progressing from undergraduate to postgraduate taught study a £1,000 scholarship towards the cost of their tuition fees.

Find out if you’re eligible by visiting the University of Hull Graduate PGT Scholarship page.

International Scholarships and Bursaries

For a list of all scholarships and bursaries for international students, please visit the International Scholarships and Bursaries page.

Scholarships and Bursaries

The University offers a range of scholarships to help you with your studies.

For more information, please visit the Scholarships and Bursaries page.

Research real-world issues - evaluating local health care services and predicting voting behaviour in elections.

Learn how to collect, analyse and interpret social data and become skilled in interview techniques, surveys, problem-solving, communication skills and the latest industry software.

Right from the start, you'll gain practical skills that social scientists use to investigate and explain our constantly changing world.

This programme was designed with input from industry experts, former students and leading academics to ensure it meets the demands of the modern social research industry.

Entry requirements

The programme is open to applicants with at least 2:2 Bachelor Honours degree (or international equivalent) in any discipline. 

Applicants with relevant and extensive work experience from, local authorities or the NHSfor instance, are encouraged to apply even if they have not been to university. Evidence of vocational qualifications, training, written reports and letters of endorsement from line managers should be submitted. These candidates will be required to write a short essay.


In order to ensure our students have a rich learning and student experience, most of our programmes have a mix of domestic and international students. We reserve the right to close applications early to either group, if application volumes suggest that this blend cannot be achieved. In addition, existing undergraduate students at the University of Hull have a guaranteed ‘Fast Track’ route to any postgraduate programme, subject to meeting the entry criteria.

International students

Application deadline
  • 15 August 2022

Your deposit should be paid by 25 August, you should accept any offer by 29 August and your CAS must be issued by 5 September.

Language requirements

If you require a student visa to study or if your first language is not English you must provide acceptable evidence of your English language proficiency level.

This course requires academic IELTS 6.5 overall, with no less than 5.5 in each skill. See other accepted English language proficiency qualifications.

If your English currently does not reach the required standard, you may be interested in our pre-sessional English Language programmes.

Visit your country page to find out more about entry requirements.

Future prospects

This programme is an ideal route for those aiming for research careers in the public, voluntary or private sectors, including would-be senior civil servants keen to take advantage of the Government’s Fast Stream scheme to find the leaders of the future.

It equips students with practical skills and experience for a wide range of organisations including research agencies, charities, independent organisations, trade unions, pressure groups and lobby groups.

The programmes also offer continuing professional development for those already working as researchers and who want to advance their careers. It is also an excellent training programme for those wishing to progress to PhD level study.

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