BSc Social Policy

UCAS code: L400

Usual standard offer:
A level: grades A A B

International Baccalaureate: Diploma with 37 points including 6 6 6 at Higher level

Other qualifications are considered

For further details, see

Applications 2015:

First year students 2015:

First year:

Second year:

Third year:

  • Dissertation on an Approved Topic
  • Two social policy options
  • One outside option from an approved list

Please note that not every course is available each year and that some courses may only be available with the permission of the course convenor and/or may be subject to space.

You can find the most up-to-date list of optional courses 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, a change of circumstances since publication may cause the School to 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 exceptional circumstances or events outside of its control. You must also note that places are limited on some courses or programmes of study and/or subject to specific entry requirements. The School cannot therefore guarantee you a place. 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 page.

Programme details

First year

The compulsory course, Foundations of Social Policy, gives you a framework for understanding how and why societies have developed a variety of institutional arrangements to provide for their social welfare needs, focusing on key developments in different areas of social policy, such as social security, education, housing, health and social care.

The second compulsory course, Social Economics, Politics and Policy, provides an introduction to theories and concepts of social economics; it considers how the market economy affects people’s lives and looks at the arguments for and against government intervention in different social policy areas. 

You will also take Sociology and Social Policy, which provides an introduction to sociology and applies sociological perspectives to social policy fields and issues. I

You may choose your fourth course from the wide range of options available in other departments, but students are encouraged to choose courses that introduce them to one of several social science approaches that have relevance to the study of social policy.

Second and third years

There are two compulsory courses in the second year. Comparative and International Social Policy examines the distinct challenges of welfare provision faced by mature welfare states and the developing world. Research Methods for Social Policy will give you a comprehensive introduction to methods of social research with a statistical emphasis. You choose your final two courses from the options available throughout LSE - at least one must be a social policy course. 

The third year compulsory course is a dissertation on a relevant topic, giving you the opportunity to explore an area which interests you in some depth.

You choose your final three courses from the options available throughout LSE - two must be social policy courses.