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Postgraduate course

Social Science MRes

Expand your research skills and learn key competencies for addressing the challenges facing society.

students in a lecture

Develop and carry out advanced social scientific research and engage in high quality analytical work. You will design and undertake a substantial piece of independent research. The experience of conducting research will provide you with valuable academic and transferrable skills.

York campus

  • Duration – 1 year full-time | 2 years part-time
  • Start date – September 2022
  • School – York Business School

Tuition Fees

    UK and EU 2021-22 £6,500 full time

    International 2021-22 £12,750 full time

Course overview

The Social Science MRes s a collaborative course that will equip you with the methodological, theoretical and interpersonal competencies needed to challenge contemporary social challenges through research.

As well as conducting advanced research, related to an area of interest, the course will strengthen your ability to resource and evaluate information and to critically analyse data.

You will develop your organisational and team working skills and learn how to disseminate research findings to academic and stakeholder audiences.

You will gain experience in a range of quantitative and qualitative research techniques. You will also understand the philosophical debates underlying research methods and research design.

By engaging in independent research, conducting social research and analysing data, you will gain the practical experience needed to complete your dissertation and succeed in the workplace

You will deliver your dissertation proposal at the Social Sciences Postgraduate Research Conference at the end of the semester.

Course structure

Level 1


Credits: 30

Compulsory module

This module ensures familiarity with quantitative research methods. You will learn to use appropriate software in your research. This prepares you for your dissertation module and provides desirable skills for employment. Completion of this module will broaden your research repertoire and you will become a more flexible social researcher.

Credits: 30

Compulsory module

This module focuses on developing qualitative research methods. It will allow you to undertake advanced social scientific research. This could include interviews, focus groups, ethnography or arts-based methods. You will also consider the ethical implications of such research. You will work with your tutors to interpret and analyse the data you have gathered. This module will prepare you for your dissertation, particularly the ethical approval process.

Credits: 40

Compulsory module

Develop and design a research proposal and prepare a conference presentation. Deliver your presentation at our postgraduate conference. You will receive one-to-one support throughout the module from an academic supervisor. Understand how to navigate ethics approvals, disseminate research ideas and manage your time.

Credits: 80

Compulsory module

The dissertation is the core of the MRes Social Science programme. It offers you the chance to develop and undertake original empirical research. Gain a deep understanding of a subject you are passionate about. Develop a coherent argument and produce a piece of writing of up to 20,000 words. To complete this you will draw on qualitative and quantitative research. 

Teaching and assessment

You will receive regular formative feedback from your supervisors on:

  • research design and methods
  • recruitment
  • analytical approaches
  • dissemination
  • networking
  • impact.

Advanced research methods one
Replicable multi-variate analysis (45%), and a research report (2,000 words, 45%). Sign up to the UK data archive, download a dataset and run a statistical test on the dataset (10%).

Advanced research methods two
Paper exploring a qualitative method in depth (2,000 words, 50%). Paper engaging in qualitative coding and data analysis of secondary qualitative data (2,000 words, 50%).

Designing social research 
Develop a research proposal (4,000 words, 70%) for your dissertation. Present your research plans to staff and peers at the end of semester two (30%).

A substantial piece (20,000 words, 80%) of independent research. Viva examination (worth 20%).

Entry requirements


Entry onto this postgraduate course requires a minimum of a 2:1 undergraduate degree in a related subject. These could include sociology, criminology, anthropology or social policy.

International Students

If you're an international student, you'll need to demonstrate experience, or qualifications equivalent to those above.

If your first language is not English you must show evidence of English Language competence at IELTS level 6.0 (with no skill below 5.5) or equivalent.

Research Proposal

There is a writing element to the application process for this course. You will need to write a brief, preliminary and non-binding, research proposal. This should be up to 500 words. It should describe the research you would like to pursue, and the methods you may draw on.

APEL policy

If you can't meet these minimum requirements it may be possible to take into account evidence of Accreditation of Prior Experiential Learning (APEL) as an alternative method of meeting the programme’s entry requirements. In such a case, appropriate references and records of employment might be presented to support the applicant’s case for admission.

Fees and Funding

UK and EU 2022 - 2023

The tuition fee for 2022 entry to this postgraduate course is £6,500 for full time UK/EU, Jersey, Guernsey and Isle of Man students.

For UK/EU, Jersey, Guernsey and Isle of Man students studying part time, the tuition fee for 2022 entry to this postgraduate course is £3,250 per year.

Postgraduate loans are available to help you pay for your master’s course. Find out more about postgraduate funding opportunities.

International (non-EU) 2022 - 2023

The tuition fee for 2022 entry to this postgraduate course is £12,750 for international students.

For international students studying part time, the tuition fee for 2022 entry to this postgraduate course is £6,375 per year.

Due to immigration laws, international students on a Student Visa must be studying full-time. For more information about visa requirements and short-term study visas, please visit the International Visa and Immigration pages.

More information about funding your studies is available on our International Fees and Funding page.

Tuition Fees

    UK and EU 2021-22 £6,500 full time

    International 2021-22 £12,750 full time

Alumni Scholarships

If you are an alumni of York St John University we have scholarships available to help you continue your studies.

Scholarships for Alumni

Additional costs and financial support


Whilst studying for your degree, there may be additional costs related to your course. This may include purchasing personal equipment and stationery, books and optional field trips.


View our accommodation pages for detailed information on accommodation and living costs.

Apply for this course

You can apply directly to the course via our Apply Now links. Please select the variant of the course that you intend to undertake (full time or part time) as the link will take you to a customised form for the specific course.

You will need to create a login and password and complete the online form. Please contact two referees in advance of submitting your application as an automated request will go out as soon as you submit, and your application will not be reviewed until both references are in place.



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