2019 start

International Social Change and Policy

Department of Sociological Studies, Faculty of Social Sciences

You aim to understand the human world, where you fit into it and how you can help other people. As one of the UK’s top ten research departments in our field, we can help you to achieve your goals.
Postgraduate students from the Department of Sociological Studies in lecture theatre

Course description

This innovative course will develop your awareness of the most pressing challenges posed by social change.

It will enable you to critically examine dominant policy responses to key aspects of social change at national, cross-national, comparative and global levels, and make you aware of agendas on policy alternatives and futures.

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Core modules

  • Innovations in Qualitative Research
  • International Social Change and Social Problems
  • International Social Change: Analysing Policy Responses
  • Quantitative Research and Fundamental Statistics
  • Methods for International Social and Policy Analysis

Optional modules

  • Key Issues in Environment and Development
  • Key Issues in Global Public Health
  • Theorising the City in the Global South
  • Urban Development in the Global South
  • Ideas and Practice in International Development


You'll be taught by social policy, sociology and social work academics. They will give you a deep understanding of the causes of, and solutions to, global and international social problems.

There is a strong emphasis on developing the practical skills required by social policy analysts working internationally.


Assessment can vary across modules between a combination of essays, oral presentations, posters and portfolio work. You are assessed in a variety of ways in order to test a range of knowledge, skills and capabilities through modes of assessment appropriate to the specific subject. There is also a dissertation, which provides the opportunity to focus in-depth on a topic of individual choice. You can choose to do a standard dissertation or a dissertation linked to an internship.


1 year full-time

Entry requirements

The minimum entry requirement is a 2:1 honours degree, or equivalent, in a relevant or social science discipline, such as sociology, social policy, politics, international relations, or development studies.

English language requirements

Overall IELTS grade of 6.5 with a minimum of 6.0 in each component, or equivalent.

Entry requirements for international students


You can apply for postgraduate study using our Postgraduate Online Application Form. It's a quick and easy process.

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The course information set out here may change before you begin, particularly if you are applying significantly in advance of the start date.