Sociology, Social Policy and Social Work (PhD)

Queen's University Belfast

For more information about Sociology, Social Policy and Social Work at Queen's University Belfast, please visit the webpage using the button above.

The award
PhD

How long you will study
3 years

Domestic course fees
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How you will study
full-time

Course starts
September

International course fees
find out

All study options

About Sociology, Social Policy and Social Work at Queen's University Belfast

The School has a reputation for research which has maximum impact.  This includes comparative studies with international partners, ensuring that research we do has relevance locally, nationally and internationally.

All are pursued through a range of theoretical and empirical approaches that take account of the person in society, social division and intersectoral stratification.  Various methodological approaches are reflected in our research including qualitative, quantitative, cross-cultural, longitudinal, biographical and comparative history.

We approach the fields of social work, sociology, gender studies and criminology from a broad perspective and encourage multidisciplinary approaches to study and analysis of social phenomena.  We see ourselves as social scientists committed to ways of working that interact with and build knowledge and capacities in the communities around us and have a positive impact on human well-being.  Our research is organised into seven themes:

  • Children, Young People and Families
  • Conflict and Social Change
  • Social Inequalities
  • Disability Ageing and Health
  • Criminal Justice
  • Drugs and Alcohol
  • Trauma, Violence and Abuse

Research Strengths

Some of the School's research strengths include:

  • Adoption and fostering
  • Attitude surveys
  • Behavioural analysis
  • Border studies
  • Children in state care/leaving care
  • Cognitive-behavioural approaches
  • Comparative analysis of conflict societies
  • Criminality; Drugs and alcohol use
  • Gender and identity theory
  • Health, illness and disability
  • Historical and contemporary social movements
  • Mental health, social work and social policy
  • Social work and social conflict in Northern Ireland
  • The sociology of religion
  • Theory and measurement of poverty, inequality and social exclusion

"The experience of studying here has been rewarding. Not only does the school provide great academic resources but also a unique, humane environment that motivates me to achieve. Without my school's support, I would never be able to engage in conversations with world-class academics. "Claire Zhao
PGR Doctoral student (final year)

Career Prospects

Queen's postgraduates reap exceptional benefits. Unique initiatives, such as Degree Plus and Researcher Plus bolster our commitment to employability, while innovative leadership and executive programmes alongside sterling integration with business experts helps our students gain key leadership positions both nationally and internationally.

A career in social science can be a satisfying way of putting policy into practice.  Opportunities in his career path include positions that use research and data to understand and improve society at a local and international level.  Careers in in social science are projected to grow faster in the next ten years due to the need for talented individuals to interpret data and trends.

'As well as working in academia, doctoral graduates play a crucial role in contributing to businesses.  There is great value placed on their specialist knowledge, research skills and problem solving ability.  Employers value doctoral graduates' deep specialist subject knowledge, excellent research and analytical skills, their capacity for critical thinking, as well as their ability to bring fresh perspectives to problems to the organisation'.

Queen's postgraduates reap exceptional benefits. Unique initiatives, such as Degree Plus and Researcher Plus bolster our commitment to employability, while innovative leadership and executive programmes alongside sterling integration with business experts helps our students gain key leadership positions both nationally and internationally.

Find out more

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Study options for this course

Notes about fees for this course

Fees & Funding

There is a range of funding and scholarship options available to those considering study at Queen's.

Find out more

For tuition fee information see //www.qub.ac.uk/Study/PostgraduateStudy/TuitionFees/

PhD Funded Studentships
We offer fully funded studentships to outstanding postgraduate researchers across our three faculties and five Doctoral Training Centres.

For fees and funding information please see the University's Graduate School website.

Entry requirements

Entry Requirements

The minimum academic requirement for admission to a research degree programme is normally an Upper Second Class Honours degree from a UK or ROI HE provider, or an equivalent qualification acceptable to the University. Further information can be obtained by contacting the School.

International Qualifications

For information on international qualification equivalents please select Your Country from the list on our International Students website.

Additional Information for International Students

International students wishing to apply to Queen's University Belfast (and for whom English is not their first language), must be able to demonstrate their proficiency in English in order to benefit fully from their course of study or research. Non-EEA nationals must also satisfy UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) immigration requirements for English language for visa purposes.

Evidence of an IELTS* score of 6.5, with not less than 5.5 in any component, or an equivalent qualification acceptable to the University is required.

*Taken within the last 2 years.

For more information on English Language requirements for EEA and non-EEA nationals see: qub.ac.uk/EnglishLanguageReqs

If you need to improve your English language skills before you enter this programme, our partner INTO Queen's University Belfast offers a range of English language courses. These intensive and flexible courses are designed to improve your English ability to entry to this programme.

Postgraduate pathways and pre-masters at other institutions

If you do not meet the entry requirements for this course then consider one of these postgraduate preparation courses from another institution:

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