Social Science Research Methods (Educational Studies) (MSc)
- Duration: 1 year
- Mode: Full time
Why study this course
Advanced training in research methods preparing you for PhD study or research occupations.
Choose a pathway that is suited to your key area of interest.
Engage with new research
Participate in the activities of the School's many research groups.
The MSc Social Science Research Methods will provide you with advanced training in research methods across the full range of the social sciences. All course pathways have ESRC recognition and meet the training requirements for ESRC PhD funding.
This programme offers extensive opportunities for interdisciplinary study, the application of social research expertise for occupational career development, and the pursuit of substantive area of interest at postgraduate level.
You’ll be provided with a thorough theoretical and practical knowledge of how to construct effective research studies, of the variety of data collection methods available to the social scientist and of the principal methods of analysing social scientific data. You’ll also be introduced to the political and ethical frameworks within which social science research is conducted, and to some of the ways in which the results of social science research are disseminated.
Research training in Education builds on the internationally recognised research carried out by our academic staff. You’ll benefit from this specialist expertise in education research, as well as from our interdisciplinary profile within the Social Sciences.
You will be encouraged to attend and participate in the activities of our Education Research Group, which holds regular programmes of meetings providing opportunities to share ideas and discuss issues in the policy and practice of education-related research.
In order to be considered for an offer for this programme you will need to meet all of the entry requirements. Your application will not be progressed if the information and evidence listed is not provided.
With your online application you will need to provide:
- A copy of your degree certificate and transcripts which show you have achieved a 2:1 honours degree in a relevant subject area such as area studies, criminology, critical psychology, education, geography, history, industrial and employee relations, law, management and business studies, pedagogy, politics, public administration, social policy and social work, or sociology, or an equivalent international degree. If your degree certificate or result is pending, please upload any interim transcripts or provisional certificates.
- A copy of your IELTS certificate with an overall score of 6.5 with 6.5 in writing and 5.5 in all other subskills, or evidence of an accepted equivalent. Please include the date of your expected test if this qualification is pending. If you have alternative acceptable evidence, such as an undergraduate degree studied in the UK, please supply this in place of an IELTS.
If you do not have a degree in a relevant area, your application may be considered on the basis of recent and relevant professional experience. Please provide additional evidence to support your application such as signed and dated employer references.
We allocate places on a first-come, first-served basis, so we recommend you apply as early as possible. Applications normally close at the end of August but may close sooner if all places are filled.
We will review your application and if you meet all of the entry requirements, we will make you an offer.
Find out more about English language requirements.
Applicants who require a Student visa to study in the UK must present an acceptable English language qualification in order to meet UKVI (UK Visas and Immigration) requirements.
You are not required to complete a DBS (Disclosure Barring Service) check or provide a Certificate of Good Conduct to study this course.
If you are currently subject to any licence condition or monitoring restriction that could affect your ability to successfully complete your studies, you will be required to disclose your criminal record. Conditions include, but are not limited to:
- access to computers or devices that can store images
- use of internet and communication tools/devices
- freedom of movement, including the ability to travel to outside of the UK or to undertake a placement/studies outside of Cardiff University
- contact with people related to Cardiff University.
This is a one-year full-time programme.
You will be required to complete six 20-credit modules - five core research modules and one specialist pathway module. In all modules you will have the opportunity to engage with literature and research relevant to your pathway.
On successful completion of the taught component, you will prepare a dissertation of a maximum 20,000 words. The 60-credit dissertation component requires independent study. Dissertation topics are chosen by the students in agreement with their supervisors.
The modules shown are an example of the typical curriculum and will be reviewed prior to the 2024/25 academic year. The final modules will be published by September 2024.
|Module title||Module code||Credits|
|Developing Core Research Skills||BST703||20 credits|
|Foundations of Social Science Research||CPT898||20 credits|
|Qualitative Research Methods||SIT700||20 credits|
|Quantitative Research Methods||SIT701||20 credits|
|Research Applications||SIT703||20 credits|
|Debates in Educational Research||SIT704||20 credits|
The University is committed to providing a wide range of module options where possible, but please be aware that whilst every effort is made to offer choice this may be limited in certain circumstances. This is due to the fact that some modules have limited numbers of places available, which are allocated on a first-come, first-served basis, while others have minimum student numbers required before they will run, to ensure that an appropriate quality of education can be delivered; some modules require students to have already taken particular subjects, and others are core or required on the programme you are taking. Modules may also be limited due to timetable clashes, and although the University works to minimise disruption to choice, we advise you to seek advice from the relevant School on the module choices available.
Learning and assessment
How will I be taught?
Your programme will be made up of scheduled learning activities (including lectures, seminars, tutorials and practical sessions) and guided independent study.
You will be expected to actively engage in all the educational activities on your programme of study, to prepare for and attend all scheduled teaching activities, and continue your development as an independent and self-directed learner.
How will I be assessed?
You will have to successfully complete the taught component which comprises of 120 credits.
On successful completion of the taught component, you will prepare a dissertation of a maximum 20,000 words.
How will I be supported?
All modules within the programme make use of our Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) Learning Central, on which you will find course materials, links to related materials and information on assessment. You will be allocated a personal tutor.
Feedback will be available to you throughout the programme and you will be able to discuss your performance with your personal tutor.
What skills will I practise and develop?
You will acquire and develop a range of valuable skills which are discipline specific and more general ‘employability’ skills.
Skills will include:
- the ability to collect, analyse and interpret a range of complex data;
- a range of appropriate qualitative and quantitative research skills;
- the use and application of information technologies;
- the ability to communicate and present ideas and findings in a variety of ways, for example, in writing, and orally;
- the ability to problem solve, and work individually and in groups.
Tuition fees for 2024 entry
Your tuition fees and how you pay them will depend on your fee status. Your fee status could be home, island or overseas.
Fees for home status
Fees for entry 2024/25 are not yet available.
Students from the EU, EEA and Switzerland
We are currently awaiting confirmation on tuition fees for the 2024/25 academic year.
Fees for island status
Learn more about the postgraduate fees for students from the Channel Islands or the Isle of Man.
Fees for overseas status
We are currently awaiting confirmation on tuition fees for the 2024/25 academic year.
We’re based in one of the UK’s most affordable cities. Find out more about living costs in Cardiff.
This programme provides knowledge and expertise suitable for careers in research and development, business, market studies, public agencies at international, national and local levels, education, teaching and other public services work, and voluntary organisations.
It also provides appropriate training for proceeding to a PhD.
Other course options
HESA Data: Copyright Higher Education Statistics Agency Limited 2021. The Higher Education Statistics Agency Limited cannot accept responsibility for any inferences or conclusions derived by third parties from its data. Data is from the latest Graduate Outcomes Survey 2019/20, published by HESA in June 2022.