"In a society that is continuously producing data, social research is increasingly important. We examine the complex relationships between social actors using innovative approaches to qualitative and quantitative research. Students have the opportunity to specialise in particular methodologies to illuminate important issues and debates in contemporary society."Dr Elena Vacchelli, MSc in Social Research Programme Leader
This master's degree combines cutting-edge epistemological approaches and methodological training in contexts that can be applied to a range of different career paths, including academic professions and more practice-oriented research roles in third-sector organisations and market research.
Students will learn about the most up-to-date research methods techniques reflecting current developments in research design and practice, including evidence-based evaluation techniques and training in current research packages for qualitative and quantitative research such as NVivo10 and SPSS.
This degree offers unique combination of modules not currently available in other London-based universities, taught by an academic team with a wealth of top-level research experience in the UK and beyond.
Our experts include Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences and the co-director of the Social Policy Research Centre at Middlesex Professor Louise Ryan, migration specialist Dr Alessio D'Angelo, and Dr Elena Martellozzo, who has worked with the Metropolitan Police to tackle online child abuse.
The programme is led by Senior Lecturer Dr Elena Vacchelli, whose work focuses on gender and sexuality, migration and urban studies. She has extensive experience in conducting and coordinating local, national and European research in areas such as migration policies, with a particular focus on gender equality.
Through our teaching teams' liaison with key research institutions and agencies (ranging from independent, third sector and government research agencies to more corporate market research institutions), we are able to put on regular workshops and attract expert speakers to further enhance your learning.
This course is subject to validation.
Four core plus two optional modules are completed over terms one and two, with a Dissertation or Work Integrated Learning period in term three.
Each module is typically worth 20 credits except the Dissertation and Work Integrated Learning, which are worth 60 credits each.
This module aims to critically consider the methodological and philosophical context of social research, relationships between different paradigms, methodologies, theories and research designs. Students will develop research design skills and become familiar with ethical and governance frameworks within which social science research takes place in contemporary Britain.
This module on provides an introduction to a range of epistemological approaches for undertaking qualitative research and highlights specific qualitative research methods focussing on a critical awareness of the possibilities and limitations associated with each approach. This includes visual methods, e-research, pluralist methods and post-qualitative research and affords experience of each part of the qualitative research cycle, focussing on specific techniques required for carrying out qualitative research.
This module aims to provide an account of a range of quantitative research methods and strategies for the social sciences, discussing their application, potential and limitations, including issues of data quality, data protection and ethics. This is done through both theoretical discussions and the presentation of a number of case studies from a range of research areas and settings, including academic research and public sector data reporting.
This module introduces students to a range of different evaluation approaches, focusing specifically on monitoring and evaluation systems. Starting with theoretical and epistemological approaches, students will explore a range of different systems models in a range of public and social policy areas (e.g. health, education, housing), and will explore specific real-world case studies from evaluation researchers and practitioners.
Eligible students can replace this module with Work Integrated Learning with prior approval.
This module enables students to learn, evaluate and experiment the use of ethnographic digital research tools including contemporary techniques and approaches to digital-based and qualitative social research. Students will learn how to use digital ethnography for the study of digital spaces and online interaction and apply this knowledge to the development and planning of a research project or research proposal that uses digital ethnography as a main research technique for data collection.
With increasing amounts of social activity taking place on the internet cybercrime is becoming an important area of research. This module aims to introduce students to the legal context of cybercrime and to contemporary methods used in researching cybercrime in the context of current work through a series of case study guest lectures. The module also aims to build upon the Research Methods module in enabling students to apply skills learnt in practical assessments and workshops focusing upon the research process, from design to implementation.
This module aims to give students an overview of a range of methods commonly used in conducting research on migration and asylum, and migrant and minority populations. This will include qualitative data collection and analysis (e.g. focus groups, biographical and semi-structured interviews, ethnography, discourse and media analysis, online research, visual methods), quantitative methods (e.g. secondary migration, population and social statistics), survey design, and project and programme evaluation.
This module aims to facilitate students' learning of marketing research processes, to critically evaluate and interpret market intelligence reports, prepare market research proposals and conduct market research. Students will also learn a wide range of measurement techniques and scales, and be able to design appropriate data collection instruments, such as online and offline questionnaires.
This module aims to provide an introduction to statistics in the social sciences, presenting and discussing a variety of methods which can be applied to a broad range of research areas. This is done through a critical discussion of statistical theory as well as through the application of statistical analysis techniques to small and large-scale secondary datasets. Students learn these techniques through a number of in-lab exercises using the software package SPSS (Statistical Package for the Social Sciences), and in this way the module aims to provide skills in using SPSS in an analytical, non-mechanical way.
This module introduces techniques of coding and qualitative data analysis and is specifically tailored for the use of the NVivo10 software, with the aim of developing practical skills and a critical appreciation of the benefits and disadvantages of computer software for storing, organising and analysing qualitative data. NVivo is one of the most powerful and widely used research packages for the analysis of qualitative data, and students will be able to analyse a range of qualitative data such as interviews, focus group transcripts, diaries, journal articles, policy reports as well as multimedia.
This practical experience module provides the means for students to link academic work with 'real-world' work experience related to their specific programme. The aim is to enable the student to conceptualise the relation of theory to policy decisions within the wider world context. This module also aims to develop and embed specific key skills that will facilitate career paths and employment in your chosen speciality.
Not all of the optional modules listed will be available in any one year. Module availability is dependent on staffing and the number of students wishing to take each module.
You will learn via a combination of lectures, seminars, workshops and lab sessions designed to facilitate your learning.
Practitioners and research professionals invited as guest speakers from leading private, independent and public research institutions such as Ernst&Young, Facebook, Ipsos MORI, NatCen Social Research, and CBRE will provide practical perspectives and allow you to engage in contemporary debates and discuss real-world case scenarios.
Students' knowledge, understanding and skills are assessed by a variety of assessment methods including essay writing, reports, reviews and research or project proposal.
UK/EU and international students are eligible to apply for this course.
If you have relevant qualifications or work experience, academic credit may be awarded towards your Middlesex University programme of study. For further information please visit our Accreditation of Prior Learning page.
We accept the equivalent of the above qualifications from a recognised overseas qualification. To find out more about the qualifications we accept from your country please visit the relevant Support in your country page.
If you are unsure about the suitability of your qualifications or would like help with your application, please contact your nearest Regional office for support.
You will not need a visa to study in the UK if you are a citizen of the European Union, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway or Switzerland. If you are a national of any other country you may need a visa to study in the UK. Please see our Visas and immigration page for further information.
You must have competence in English language to study with us. The most commonly accepted evidence of English language ability is IELTS 6.5 (with minimum 6.0 in all components). We also normally require Grade C GCSE or an equivalent qualification. Visit our English language requirements page for a full list of accepted tests and qualifications.
If you don't meet our minimum English language requirements, we offer an intensive Pre-sessional English course.
Entry onto this course does not require an interview, portfolio or audition.
Applications for postgraduate study should be made directly to the university. Please visit our Postgraduate application page for further information and to apply.
Completing this course will open up opportunities for career development in a wide range of professions, including:
Find out about our wide range of postgraduate scholarships worth up to 50% of the tuition fee.
MSc in Social Research
This course is offered full-time or part-time.
Full-time students: £7,500
Part-time per taught credit: £50
Part-time per dissertation: £25
Full-time students: £12,500
Part-time per taught credit: £84
Part-time per dissertation credit: £42
Find out about our flexible payment plans for UK/EU students, and how they can help you spread the cost of your course.*Course fees are subject to annual inflation so the total costs for part time study are shown here as a guide