Many core elements of the programme are delivered by the College of Social Sciences, so you will be undertaking the modules with other students from across the College. In addition, there is an induction programme during the first two weeks of the term, which is compulsory, but non-assessed and a programme of skills training which is delivered at University-level, mainly by the Staff Development Unit, throughout the year. You are encouraged to attend all the modules in the programme which are appropriate to you. You must discuss your skills training needs with your designated supervisor in the first week of the first term.
This MA is recognised by the ESRC for the provision of research methods training as Year 1 of a '1+3' programme of doctoral study. It is also available as a stand-alone Masters. Home/EU students may enter into a departmental competition to be nominated for the ESRC open competition for '1+3' or '+3' funding (the '1+3' award covers the MA and provides three years' further funding for PhD research; for '+3' funding you must already have an ESRC-recognised research methods MA degree or equivalent).
All core modules are assessed by a 4000-word essay or report. On most advanced training courses, a 3000-report is usually required. The dissertation length is 14,000 words and students are expected to utilise the knowledge and skills they learned from the taught elements in this programme.
Skills and attributes gained
Students will have acquired a solid foundation of a broad range of research methods that are widely used in the social sciences and will have developed:
- A sound understanding of the methodological debates
- An overview of the philosophy of social science and how this informs research design, methods chosen of data collection and analysis
- An ability to use a range of research techniques appropriate to their subject area
- Competence in the representation and presentation of information and data
- An ability to communicate research findings effectively to a wider range of audiences
- An appreciation of the potential use and impact of their research within and beyond academia
- An ability to engage with relevant users at all points in the research process, from devising and shaping research questions through to enhancing practice
Departments from across the School of Government and Society are all based within the recently refurbished Muirhead Tower. Following a £50million refurbishment, Muirhead Tower offers state-of-the-art teaching and research study facilities including free wifi throughout the building and dedicated study areas for postgraduate research students.
Muirhead Tower comprises 12,000sq.m of floor space between two towers. The tower includes a number of sustainable features including solar shading (known in the trade as brise soliel) to control temperatures, as well as low energy fans; timed lighting to reduce energy waste; natural ventilation systems and a heat source taken from the University’s combined heat and power generator.
The space has been designed to create modern, attractive spaces for teaching and research accommodating 150 academic offices, 230 "hubs" for post graduate research students, teaching rooms for up to 100 people and a 200 seat lecture theatre.