This course is designed for those considering research as a career. That includes those wanting an academic career, for whom this degree is ideal preparation for undertaking a doctorate (PhD). It also includes those seeking a research career in such areas as central government, charities and in consultancies and social research. The degree also provides good transferable skills in evaluation and in analysing data and the ability to critique published research.
"Birmingham appealed to me not only simply because it was my local university. I was particularly attracted to the Institute of Applied Social Studies at Birmingham because of its established tradition of Social Work teaching, strong links with practice settings and reputation as a leading centre for research. Having worked within the youth justice system for a number of years, I was keen not only to further my education, but also to be able to apply the knowledge which I had gained through practice experience. The MA Social Research (social work and professional practice) allowed me to do just that, with modules specifically designed to enable students to critically explore policy and research within their own areas of interest.
Studying alongside work can be very challenging, but all of the staff whom I came into contact with were really encouraging, helping me to get the most out of my course and offering support when I needed it. The teaching which I received was excellent and this, together with the opportunity to interact with students from differing backgrounds, meant the learning environment was great. Throughout my time at Birmingham I have felt really valued, it's good to have a sense that you are contributing and can take a proactive role in your own and others' learning experiences.
I would whole heartedly recommend the MA Social Research (social work and professional practice) to practitioners interested in either further their knowledge of the role of research within a particular setting, or keen to undertake their own research. The course has allowed me to develop personally and professionally; opening up a whole new world of opportunity. The ESRC recognised research training equipped me with the skills and confidence necessary to apply for a doctoral studentship and, having been successful in my application, I am now studying full time towards a PhD.