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MSc Inequalities and Social Science

About the MSc programme

As a result of dramatic economic and social changes over recent years, the study of inequality has rapidly developed as one of the most important areas of inter-disciplinary social scientific study. This MSc offers a comprehensive and wide-ranging programme which includes expertise from leading academics in the Departments of Sociology, Anthropology, Economics, Geography, Government, Law, Social Policy, Media and Communications, Gender, and Statistics and will provide students with state-of-the-art teaching in this area. The programme will:

  • introduce students to a range of interdisciplinary approaches to the social scientific analysis of inequality
  • develop theoretical awareness of different conceptions of the meaning of inequality and its various dimensions
  • introduce students to the political economy of inequality and the role of political institutions in combating inequality
  • introduce students to different methods for the measurement of inequality, both quantitative and qualitative
  • make students familiar with debates on the causes and consequences of increasing global inequality
  • allow students to place issues of inequality in a fully international context
  • give students the skills and awareness to go onto conducting research in the area of inequalities

Programme details

You take a total of three course units through a combination of full and/or half units, and all students take Social Scientific Analysis of Inequalities and at least one methods course. All students who are expecting to study for PhDs will be strongly encouraged to do both of these courses and possibly additional methods courses. You will also complete a dissertation of up to 10,000 words on a subject of interest related to the courses.

You will be advised on the dissertation topic by your academic adviser who will be from one of the departments listed above according to your area of interest. You choose the topic, which can be empirical or theoretical in its approach. Students may opt for an inter-disciplinary inquiry or a dissertation potentially located in any of the disciplines involved in this MSc.

Compulsory courses

(* half unit)

You will also study one and a half units taken from a number of courses from the contributing departments, all of which have been chosen to showcase the expertise of these departments in the area of inequality. The choice of optional courses includes the following:

Class, Politics and Culture*; Urban Inequalities*; Anthropology of Economy (1): Production and Exchange*; Anthropology of Economy (2): Development, Transformation and Globalisation*; The Politics of Inequality and Redistribution*; Dilemmas of Equality*; Gender, Globalisation and Development: An Introduction*; Gender, Population and Policy*; Regional Development and Policy*; The Politics of Housing*; World Poverty and Human Rights*; Employment Law*; Critical Approaches to Media, Communication and Development*; Media Culture and Neoliberalism in the Global South*; Welfare Analysis and MeasurementMultilevel Modelling*; Longitudinal Data Analysis*; Families and Inequalities*

You can find the most up-to-date list of optional courses for MSc Inequalities and Social Science 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

This is a new programme and we expect students to go into a wide variety of fields who are interested in addressing inequalities, including government, NGOs, politics, public administration, the social and health services, advertising, journalism, other areas of the media, law, publishing, industry, personnel and management.


Application code: L3UJ (check availability)

Start date: 22 September 2016

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

Intake/applications: New programme for 2015

Minimum entry requirement: 2:1 in any discipline, with social science background and/or work experience in the social policy field advantageous but not essential (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