Undergraduate study - 2021 entry

MA Sociology

UCAS code: L300

Duration: 4 years

Delivery: Full-time

School: Social and Political Science

College: Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences

Study abroad

Introducing MA Sociology

Sociology examines how individual choices are affected by wider social forces and how they can be understood by placing them in their social context.

We study the relationship between individuals and groups, issues of belonging and identity, the social causes of cooperation and conflict, and the way societies and social institutions are formed and change over time.

Our programme also equips you to compare different national contexts and understand contemporary social issues from a global perspective.

Staff at the University of Edinburgh carry out research on a diversity of topics and offer teaching related to their research, meaning that you will be exposed to a range of topics, ideas and approaches to Sociology.

Year 1

We introduce you to key sociological ideas by studying the relationship between individuals and groups through examining examples such as social change, drug use, race and ethnicity and gender.

We also help you develop the key skills you need to study sociology and apply your knowledge to life outside the classroom. You will select from a wide range of option courses, depending on the programme you choose.

Year 2

You will study how sociologists produce and use theory (Sociology 2a) and research evidence (Sociology 2b). You will then choose four option courses, depending on your programme.

Year 3

You will learn practical research skills, carry out a group research project, and study social theory. Option courses cover many areas including environment and risk, globalisation, nationalism, the internet, and youth culture.

Year 4

In Year 4 you will take more option courses and complete an individual research project supported by a member of teaching staff. There are opportunities to present your research findings to your peers.

Programme structure

Find out more about the compulsory and optional courses in this degree programme.

To give you an idea of what you will study on this programme, we publish the latest available information. However, please note this may not be for your year of entry, but for a different academic year.

Programme structure (2020/21)

Our facilities

The School of Social and Political Science is in the University's Central Area with easy access to the University's library and computer facilities.

Study abroad

In Year 3 you may study abroad through the University's international exchange programme or the School's exchange programme with universities in Bremen and Copenhagen.

What are my options for going abroad?

How will I learn?

We use a combination of tutorials and lectures, online resources, class discussions and presentations.

How will I be assessed?

You will be assessed primarily through coursework including essays and short assignments of various kinds, take-home papers and in Year 4 you will complete an individual research project.

Programme details

Find out more about this programme's aims, what you will learn, how you will be assessed and what skills and knowledge you will develop.

To give you an idea of what to expect from this programme, we publish the latest available information. However, please note this may not be for your year of entry, but for a different academic year.

Programme details (2020/21)

Graduates go on to a wide variety of careers in the private sector, voluntary sector, local or central government, the media or journalism, or use their practical and research skills to work in social or market research.

Many graduates go on to postgraduate study and an academic career or teaching.

Standard entry requirement

The standard entry requirement is:

  • SQA Highers: AAAA-AABB by the end of S5 or AAAA-AAAB by the end of S6. BBB must be achieved in one year of S4-S6.(Revised 09/04/2020 from AAAA-AAAB and to include alternate grades to be achieved by end of S6.)
  • A Levels: AAA - ABB.
  • IB: 43 points with 776 at HL - 37 points with 666 at HL.

Minimum entry requirement

The minimum entry requirement for widening access applicants is:

  • SQA Highers: ABBB by end of S6. BBB must be achieved in one year of S4-S6.
  • A Levels: ABB.
  • IB: 34 points with 655 at HL.

More information for widening access applicants

Required subjects

The grades used to meet our entry requirements must include:

  • SQA: Highers: no specific Higher subjects required. National 5s: English at C.
  • A Levels: no specific A Level subjects required. GCSEs: English at C or 4.
  • IB: HL: no specific subjects required. SL: English at 5.

Find out more about entry requirements

International applicants

We welcome applications from students studying a wide range of international qualifications.

Entry requirements by country

International Foundation Programme

If you are an international student and your school qualifications are not accepted for direct entry to the University you may be eligible for admission to this degree programme through our International Foundation Programme.

International Foundation Programme

Mature applicants

We welcome applications from mature students and accept a range of qualifications.

Mature applicant qualifications

You must demonstrate a level of English language competency at a level that will enable you to succeed in your studies, regardless of your nationality or country of residence.

SQA, GCSE and IB

For SQA, GCSE and IB students, unless a higher level is specified in the stated entry requirements, a pass is required in English at the following grades or higher:

  • SQA National 5 at C
  • SQA Standard Grade at 3
  • SQA Intermediate 1 at A
  • SQA Intermediate 2 at C
  • GCSE/IGSCE at C or 4
  • Level 2 Certificate Grade C
  • IB Standard Level at 5 (English ab initio is not accepted for entry)

English language tests

We accept the following English language qualifications at the grades specified*:

  • IELTS Academic module overall 6.5 with 5.5 in each component.
  • TOEFL-iBT (including Special Home Edition) 92 or above with 20 in each section. We do not accept TOEFL MyBest Score to meet our English language requirements.
  • Cambridge English: Advanced or Proficiency overall 176 with 162 in each component.
  • Trinity ISE: ISE II with a distinction in all four components.

We also accept a wider range of international qualifications and tests.

English language qualifications must be no more than three and a half years old from the start date of the degree you are applying to study, unless you are using IELTS, TOEFL, or Trinity ISE, in which case it must be no more than two years old.

English language requirements

*(Revised 27 April 2020 to include TOEFL-iBT Special Home Edition.)

This information is part of a government initiative to enhance the material that higher education institutions provide about their degree programmes.

It is one of many sources of information which will enable you to make an informed decision on what and where to study.

Please note that some programmes do not have Discover Uni data available.

Tuition Fees

Tuition fees for MA Sociology

Additional costs

None.

Funding

For more information on how much it will cost to study with us and the financial support available see our fees and funding information.

Fees and funding