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MSc Culture and Society

About the MSc programme

The MSc Culture and Society gives its students the opportunity to develop expertise in the social study of cultural processes. Its ethos emphasises tight integration of leading edge cultural theory, innovative methodologies and attention to the most significant cultural trends and practices, globally and locally.

As a student on MSc Culture and Society you have free range to study and research any social processes that fall within the many broad understandings of ‘culture’. For example, students may take courses on, or pursue independent research projects towards dissertations in areas such as textual or visual analyses of cultural texts; ethnographies of culture and media industries; studies of urban space, design or city culture; consumption and consumer culture; multi-culturalism and ethnicity; gender and sexuality; class and cultural capital. Moreover, the degree actively encourages students to think and research globally.

MSc Culture and Society students come from a diversity of backgrounds – anything from economics through anthropology to cultural and media studies and on to arts, design and humanities. The degree core course – Cultural Theory and Cultural Forms – is designed to support all students, from whatever background, in developing a foundation in sociological approaches to cultural research.

Acceptance on this programme will give you the opportunity to:

  • Work with research active staff, who are renowned in their fields, across a wide range of cultural research, and located across a range of departments and institutes linked with the programme (including Media and Communications, Geography and Environment, the Cities Programme, Social Psychology, Anthropology, Gender and Information Systems). Core staff on this degree include Professor Mike Savage (class culture and stratification; urban culture; and new methodologies); Dr Fabien Accominotti (economic sociology; sociology of culture; historical sociology; social networks; and the study of status and inequality); and Dr Sam Friedman (social class; social mobility; cultural taste; and comedy and humour).
  • Consolidate or extend your skills in cultural analysis through the programme's two term compulsory course in cultural theory and cultural forms, supplemented by an extensive range of research-led option courses.
  • Do empirical work in your dissertation into an aspect of cultural practice or cultural theory.
  • Apply for a research degree (MPhil/PhD) following completion of your MSc, building particularly on the work of your dissertation.
  • Gain a higher degree in cultural research within a social science framework will provide you with a knowledge of how the 'cultural turn' has affected the social sciences, and skills in critical social understanding and techniques of social enquiry, that will enable you to develop insights into contemporary cultural forms and processes that have a solid basis in sociological analysis.

Programme details

Compulsory courses and optional courses involve teaching by LSE staff renowned for their expertise in the field of cultural research. These staff reflect an interdisciplinary range of approaches to the connections between culture, society, economy, and media within a broad social sciences framework. 

You take compulsory courses plus methods training. You also write a dissertation of 10,000 words on an aspect of cultural practice or theory. You will be advised on your choice of dissertation topic by your academic adviser, and that topic may be empirical or theoretical in its approach. You will be appointed an individual adviser with a related research interest whom you can meet with regularly during term times.

Compulsory courses

(* half unit)

Students will be expected to choose courses to the value of two units from a range of options.

You can find the most up-to-date list of optional courses for MSc Culture and Society in the Programme Regulations section of the current School Calendar.

You must note however that while care has been taken to ensure that this information is up to date and correct, some circumstances may cause the School to subsequently change, suspend or withdraw a course or programme of study, or change the fees that apply to it. The School will neither be liable for information that after publication becomes inaccurate or irrelevant, nor for changing, suspending or withdrawing a course or programme of study due to circumstances outside of its control. You must also note that places are limited on some courses and/or subject to specific entry requirements. The School cannot therefore guarantee places on its courses. You should visit the School's Calendar, or contact the relevant academic department, for information on the availability and/or content of courses and programmes of study. Certain substantive changes will be listed on the Updated graduate course and programme information page.

Graduate destinations

Graduates have gone on to a diverse range of destinations including doctoral degrees, cultural policy and management jobs, teaching, creative industries (including advertising and marketing), performance arts and more.



Application code: L3UC (check availability)

Start date: 22 September 2016

Duration: 12 months full-time, 24 months part-time  

Intake/applications in 2014: 19/183

Minimum entry requirement:
2:1 degree in a subject appropriate to the programme to be followed (see entry requirements)

English requirement: Standard (see English requirements)

GRE/GMAT requirement: None

Fee level: UK/EU £12,504; overseas £19,344

Financial support:
Graduate Support Scheme (see Fees and financial support)

Application deadline: None – rolling admissions