Students preparing for their graduation ceremony at Canterbury Cathedral

Two year Master's in Sociology - MA

2018

Aimed at international students, this programme provides an introduction to high-level academic study leading to a recognised postgraduate qualification.

2018

Overview

You gain a clear, confident and advanced understanding of the subject while receiving coaching in academic study and writing. Language and study support are also given in the first year to help you achieve your full potential.

The skills you develop on this programme include critical thinking, data analysis and presentation of key findings as well as transferable skills such as time management, IT and problem solving.

About the School of Social Policy, Sociology and Social Research (SSPSSR)

SSPSSR has a long and distinguished history and is one of the largest and most successful social science research communities in Europe. An impressive 94% of our research-active staff submitted to the Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2014, with 99% of the research submitted judged to be of international quality.

The School supports a large and thriving postgraduate community and in 2010 distributed in excess of £100,000 in Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) quota awards, and in University and SSPSSR bursaries and scholarships to new students.

Academic staff specialise in research of international, comparative and theoretical significance, and we have collective strengths in the following areas: civil society, NGOs and the third sector; cross-national and European social policy; health, social care and health studies; work, employment and economic life; risk, ‘risk society’ and risk management; race, ethnicity and religion; social and public policy; sociology and the body; crime, culture and control; sociological theory and the culture of modernity.

National ratings

In the Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2014, research by the School of Social Policy, Sociology and Social Research was ranked 2nd for research power in the UK. The School was also placed 3rd for research intensity, 5th for research impact and 5th for research quality.

An impressive 94% of our research-active staff submitted to the REF and 99% of our research was judged to be of international quality. The School’s environment was judged to be conducive to supporting the development of world-leading research, gaining the highest possible score of 100%.

In The Times Good University Guide 2016,  Sociology was ranked 1st (out of 93) for research quality and 10th overall.

Course structure

The specialist pathway of Sociology enables you to tailor your degree to your needs and career aspirations. The programme includes core language and study skills components which you will undertake in your first year.

You develop highly transferrable skills including time management, team work, research and analytic methods, problem-solving and IT skills. Teaching is student-centred through a combination of taught classes, lectures, seminars, group work and independent study.

Please contact us for further details.

Modules

The following modules are indicative of those offered on this programme. This list is based on the current curriculum and may change year to year in response to new curriculum developments and innovation.  Most programmes will require you to study a combination of compulsory and optional modules. You may also have the option to take modules from other programmes so that you may customise your programme and explore other subject areas that interest you.

Modules may include Credits

This module will examine the impact of digital technology on our social and cultural lives. It will concentrate on how the Internet in particular has challenged some of our more traditional notions of identity and self, the body, relationships, community, privacy, politics, friendship, war and crime, economics, among others. Lectures will show how some of the basic components of culture such as notions of identity, space, the body, community, and even the very notion of what it is to be human, have been complicated by the rise of virtuality and cyberspace. We will also examine these issues through case study phenomena unique to digital culture, currently including gaming, music, cybersex and social networking.

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This course is designed to provide a guide to the foundations of sociology by exploring the most influential traditions of writing in the discipline and examining how these were forged on the basis of an ongoing dialogue with the legacy of the Enlightenment. After situating sociology in its historical, philosophical and theological contexts, the course analyses how the founders of the discipline developed a series of a competing visions of those processes elementary to social and moral life. Focusing mainly on the French and German traditions of sociology, but also incorporating the British tradition, we progress by examining the tensions that have arisen between collectivist visions of the social whole and competing conceptions of voluntarist inter/action, before focusing on Parsons’s attempt to reconcile these approaches within an overarching conception of ‘the sociological tradition’. The second part of the course moves away from these classical visions of sociology to those post-classical attempts to reconstruct the discipline on the basis of alternative concerns such as conflict, culture and post-modernity. Here we study a number of perspectives that have contributed to a fragmentation of the discipline. Whilst most sessions are concerned with debating the dominant theoretical interests that have defined the discipline, others are devoted to investigating key junctures in the development of methodology and research practice. The course aims to provide students with critical insights into the ways in which sociology has been configured as a discipline in response to key junctures in its history.

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Social theory is a nebulous field of inquiry with fuzzy boundaries. Some of the most significant contributions to it in terms of ideas and concepts have historically originated in the work of thinkers diversely identified with a wide range of disciplines - such as psychoanalysis, philosophy, anthropology, literary and aesthetic theory, historical and cultural studies, as well as with sociology. This module approaches contemporary social theory by exploring a set of themes through close readings and analyses of several texts by 20th and 21st century theorists whose work has been to varying degrees appropriated across the social sciences and the humanities, but yet whose contribution to ‘social theory’ per se is still open to question, in any case far from canonical.

In working through these selected primary texts within a seminar group, the aim is to critically investigate and evaluate what they offer to social theory, and to critically assess their usefulness for understanding various social and political phenomena characteristic of contemporary life and society in a globalised world. During the course of such detailed discussions, we will also, no doubt, reflect on the distinction between modern and postmodern social theory; the ‘linguistic turn’, the ‘cultural turn’, the ‘ethical turn’, the shift from narrative to image based culture, and other general parameters of social theorizing in recent times.

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This module investigates and critically examines the ways in which understandings of race, racisms, difference, and belonging have shaped, both historically, and in the contemporary era, multiethnic societies such as Britain and the USA. This topic is especially pressing, given the vast amount of change in many Western societies - greater cultural diversity, globalization and greater mobility, changes in the manifestations of racism, and changing patterns of family and community life. In what ways do notions of race and racial difference, and contestations over belonging, still matter (or not) in societies today? What competing evidence exists in claims about either the continuing (or declining) significance of ‘race’ and notions of difference more generally? Should we attempt to transcend ‘race’ and racial thinking?

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The module will explore the following:

• Sociological analysis of the term ‘parenting’

• The social history of debates about ‘the family’ and the sociology of privacy

• The changing meaning of childhood, motherhood and fatherhood

• The meaning of the term ‘intensive parenthood’ and its relation to expertise and risk culture

• The sociology of identity, as applied in studies of the experience of parenting

• The relationship of policies linking family life to broader social policy

• Critiques of state intervention in family life and of particular contemporary parenting policies

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The module is organised around the general theme of a discussion of current debates in the sociology of health, illness and medicine drawing on both theoretical and empirical research. More specific themes will include: the social construction of health and the changing boundaries between health and illness; medicalisation and the discovering of new mental and physical illnesses ; narratives of illness and identity in the context of chronic illness and disability assessing the value of concepts such as ‘biographical disruption’: the changing structure, nature and regulation of medicine and the explanatory power of the new sociology of professionalism.; the political sociology of medicine which explores the relationship between the state and organised interests such as the pharmaceutical industry; changing approaches of the public /patients to maintaining health and managing illness in the context of a culture of consumption where health and lifestyle might be seen as commodities and maintaining a healthy body keeps control over an uncertain and changing world ; trust, risk and mental health ; consideration of the growth in the use of non orthodox health care and the development of medical pluralism and a discussion of the relationship between structure and agency in the context of social inequalities in health.

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This module focuses on the theory and practice of qualitative research. It explores the various aspects of using and collecting qualitative data. The aim of the module is to illustrate a range of practical techniques while considering related problems of evidence and inference in qualitative analyses.

Students will be versed in a range of techniques and will have the opportunity to practice some of them, this includes:

• the theory and practice of interviewing and different varieties of interview;

• focus groups;

• oral history;

• case study methods;

• ethnographic theory and method;

• action research;

• critical discourse analysis;

• narrative analysis;

• visual methods.

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The module will provide an introduction to the use of Statistical Analysis within the Research Process. It will begin by introducing and discussing different types of measurement and the practical problems of data entry in SPSSW. After discussing basic data description and transformation the focus will shift to Exploratory Data Analysis and the need to examine the data carefully. Simple approaches to summarising data and distributions will then be examined. This will then be followed by methods to test research hypotheses through bi-variate and multivariate methods that are used extensively in the Social Sciences. The final part of the module will look at various issues surrounding the practical issues of quantitative data analysis, such as how to find appropriate data and about presenting research outcomes.

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This module will examine the ways in which violence is understood in social science research, and will provide advanced discussion of the major theoretical and research themes involved in the analysis of violence. It will critically examine data on the prevalence, nature and effects of violent crime, and will consider issues of violence, aggression and masculinity. This will be done with particular reference to examples, such as racist crime, homophobic crime and domestic violence. The module will approach violence from both interpersonal and societal perspectives and will include consideration of collective violence and genocide. It will further examine solutions to solutions to violence and conflict resolution, the effects of intervention strategies and non-juridical responses to violence.

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Following the events of September 11 public concerns surrounding the related threats associated with terrorism have inevitably deepened. This course will provide a general introduction to the terrorism and pose a series of questions that rarely feature in mainstream criminological and sociological discourse. A central aspect of the course will be an examination of the actual risk posed by international terrorism and whether or not the threat is enhanced by the fears and anxieties generated by a risk-averse culture.

Lecture list:

1. Introduction: a brief overview of key historical perspectives (KH)

2. Approximating the problem of terrorism: contested definitions (FF)

3. ‘True Lies’: conspiracy and secrecy in an age of uncertainty (KH)

4. Fanaticism 1: fundamentalist cultures (KH)

5. Fanaticism 2: the ‘psychology’ of the terrorist (KH)

6. Reading Week

7. Polarized moralities: culture wars and extremism from Oklahoma City to the ‘Brixton Bomber’ (KH)

8. Uncertainty and risk: terrorism and the revolt against change in a globalized world (FF)

9. Living with the terrorist threat: public perceptions, ‘hyper terrorism’ and the media (FF)

10. Resilience and Vulnerability: How communities respond to terror (FF)

11. Review lecture: Framing fear post 9/11 (FF)

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Module Summary:

This module aims to provide students with the skills to develop a research idea and to turn this into a coherent, achievable – and interesting! – research proposal. The course will be particularly useful for those doing empirical research in their MSc or PhD dissertation, or who will use social research after their studies.

In developing these skills, the course also provides an introduction to research methods and methodological debates. It will cover:

1. Key skills in research design – developing a research question; writing a research proposal; and ‘real-world’ considerations like ethics, cost, and feasibility;

2. Qualitative research design – an overview of different types of qualitative methods and the logic of qualitative design; when to apply qualitative methods; and key design issues such as choosing cases and planning qualitative analysis;

3. Quantitative research design – an introduction to the logic of quantitative research, and key issues such as turning the social world into numbers; when to apply quantitative methods; issues surrounding generalisation; how to interpret quantitative analysis results, and an introduction to the most common form of quantitative analysis;

4. Mixed-methods designs, which combine qualitative and quantitative research.

This course is complementary to the specialist courses in doing qualitative (SO817) and quantitative (SO819) research, and the course ‘Using Social Research – Advanced Critical Skills’ (SO832).

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1. Introduction: The Sociology of Risk

2. The Social Semantics of Risk in Historical Perspective

3. Ulrich Beck and the ‘Risk Society’

4. The ‘Cultural Theory’ of Risk

5. Governmentality and Risk

6. Reading / Essay Writing Week

7. The ‘Perception of Risk’ in Sociological Perspective

8. The ‘Management of Risk’ in Sociological Perspective

9. Risk in Mass Media

10. Risk, Subjectivity and ‘the endangered self’

11. Transnational Risks and Civil Society

12. World Risk Society: Retrospect and Prospect

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The aims of this module are twofold:

First, to provide students with the opportunity to independently carry out an in-depth inquiry to investigate a research question(s) of their choice, producing a coherent review of the relevant literature, a logical discussion and a clearly communicated set of conclusions in the form of a dissertation.

Second, to prepare students to become ‘research-minded’ practitioners in order that they have the capacity to undertake research in practice settings and/or take a lead role in supervising others in such work.

The following represents the likely format for curriculum delivery:

In mid-November, there will be a two-hour workshop, which will outline the aims, the structure, the process of the dissertation. During the spring term, the students will finalise their proposal with their chosen supervisor. If the dissertation requires ethical research approval, an application will be submitted to the school research ethics committee by the beginning of the summer term. During the summer term and vacation, students will meet their supervisor every fortnight to discuss the progress of their dissertation. The supervisors will provide feedback on written work and will set monthly work plans and targets for the students. The dissertation topic will relate to a key question, issue and problem within social science.

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Teaching and Assessment

Assessment is by coursework and a dissertation.

Programme aims

This programme aims to:

  • prepare you for the academic challenges of postgraduate study in SSPSSR
  • offer a range of SSPSSR modules which will provide a solid grounding for further study at Master’s level in the UK
  • develop academic and research skills in Social Science degrees taught through Social Sciences
  • increase your proficiency in English for general academic purposes and for study in SSPSSR to a standard which is equivalent to C1 on CEFR or 6.5 in IELTS
  • enable you, on completion, to study successfully alongside others who have completed a full UK Social Sciences degree
  • enable you to develop their independent study and research skills in the context of postgraduate study associated with SSPSSR.

Learning outcomes

Knowledge and understanding

You will gain knowledge and understanding of:

  • key concepts and theoretical approaches within sociology
  • awareness of social context, the nature of social processes and of social diversity and inequality
  • comparative analysis
  • the relationship between individuals, groups and social institutions
  • the role of culture in social life
  • the social processes underpinning social change
  • a range of qualitative and quantitative research methods.

Intellectual skills

You develop intellectual skills in:

  • judging and evaluating evidence
  • appreciating the complexity and diversity of social situations
  • assessing the merits of competing theories and explanations
  • gathering, retrieving, and synthesising information
  • making reasoned arguments.

Subject-specific skills

You gain subject-specific skills in:

  • formulating and investigating sociologically informed questions
  • using major theoretical perspectives and concepts in sociology, and their application to social life
  • analysing, assessing and communicating empirical sociological information
  • identifying a range of qualitative and quantitative research strategies and methods and commenting on their relative advantages and disadvantages
  • understanding and evaluating sociological research
  • understanding the ethical implications of sociological enquiry
  • recognising the relevance of sociological knowledge to social and public policy.

Transferable skills

You will gain the following transferable skills:

  • team and independent working: collaborating effectively as part of a team and in group activity for a common goal; the ability to work with others; independent working and study skills
  • communication skills: presenting material in written and oral form; making effective and appropriate forms of visual presentation; understanding the dynamics of communication
  • critical thinking: critically evaluating and reflecting on your own and others' opinions; analysing and critically examining material as well as identifying and describing problems
  • research: understanding and evaluating research material, including qualitative and quantitative data; processing information (reading) and using libraries
  • IT/ICT: making effective and appropriate use of IT/ICT both for communication and as a means of learning
  • planning and time management: planning effectively, meeting  deadlines and managing your own learning.

Careers

Building on Kent’s success as the region’s leading institution for student employability, we place considerable emphasis on you gaining specialist knowledge in your chosen subject alongside core transferable skills. We ensure that you develop the skills and competences that employers are looking for including: research and analysis; policy development and interpretation; independent thought; writing and presentation, as well as time management and leadership skills. You also become fully involved in the professional research culture of the School. A postgraduate degree in the area of social and public policy is a particularly flexible and valuable qualification that can lead to many exciting opportunities and professions.

Recent graduates have pursued careers in academia, journalism, local and central government, charities and NGOs.

Study support

Postgraduate resources

The atmosphere in the School is informal and friendly and has at its centre a lively and diverse postgraduate community. The weekly staff/postgraduate seminar series is designed to introduce you to the work of major scholars from the UK and abroad, and there is also a wide range of other seminar and workshop series each academic year.

Our postgraduate students have access to dedicated office space within the department and are able to take advantage of excellent library and computing facilities. Where appropriate, research students are encouraged to expand their experience by teaching part-time in the School.

Dynamic publishing culture

Staff publish regularly and widely in journals, conference proceedings and books. Among others, they have recently contributed to: Journal of Social Policy; Journal of European Social Policy; Voluntas; Social Policy and Administration; and Social Policy and Society.

Global Skills Award

All students registered for a taught Master's programme are eligible to apply for a place on our Global Skills Award Programme. The programme is designed to broaden your understanding of global issues and current affairs as well as to develop personal skills which will enhance your employability.  

Entry requirements

  • Undergraduate study at an overseas University or institution in a relevant social sciences field, or
  • an undergraduate degree from a UK institution where the particular area of intended SSPSSR study has represented a component but not the principal focus of study, or
  • a relevant Foundation degree, ordinary (Bachelors) degree, Diploma of Higher Education or other higher diploma.

All applicants are considered on an individual basis and additional qualifications, and professional qualifications and experience will also be taken into account when considering applications. 

International students

Please see our International Student website for entry requirements by country and other relevant information for your country. 

English language entry requirements

Students will need to meet the SSPSSR linguistic entry requirement by gaining an equivalent grade in LZ605, the Programme’s Advanced English for Postgraduate Academic Study in Social Sciences and Humanities module.

Research areas

Academic staff at Kent share a number of interests, grouped here for your guidance. However, there is often a degree of overlap between groups and your research project does not have to fall neatly within any one of them. The School also has several research centres that bring together experts in the field, co-ordinate research, organise talks and offer opportunities for postgraduate students to get involved in discussions and research projects.

Globalisation

At Kent, research in this area includes the role of global civil society, critical analysis of terrorism and responses to it, globalisation and everyday life, migration, the role of communication technologies, and the global expansion of capitalism and responses to it in social movements.

The Individual and the Social

Within this area, staff have worked on the ‘culture of anxiety’ and the ‘therapy culture’, the impact on individual lives and experiences of masculinity, gender, race and ethnicity, parenthood and nationality. Other interests include the social context in which attributions of mental illness are made and managed, the meaning and construction of pain in late modernity, and the sociology of crime and deviance.

Risk and Society

The critical analysis of risk and perceptions of risk have become central issues in the sociology of the ‘risk society’ and this is a major focus of research activity in the School. Staff research includes work on health risks and their management, the implications of attitudes and behaviour concerning risk for the welfare state, the development of a culture of risk and anxiety, moral panics, risk and crime, risk and the life course, suffering and the perceptions of new communications technology.

Race, Ethnicity and Migration

The School has strong expertise in the area of race and ethnicity, and in the area of migration. Our work includes projects on mixed race, immigrant communities and refugees.
Research at Kent has also addressed diasporas, undocumented migrants and the links between marriage and migration.

The Analysis of Social Movements

Social and political changes have stimulated new forms of political participation and mobilisation, including waves of protest, new social movement organisations focused on old as well as new issues, new political parties and global social movements. Staff interests include environmental movements, humanitarian NGOs, elite networks, and the ‘postmodern’ politics of anti-communist movements in Eastern Europe.

Philanthropy, Humanitarianism and Social Justice

Staff in this research cluster seek to understand the social forces and cultural interests that move people to take moral responsibility for responding to/caring for the needs of others; document and explain the institutional organisation of charitable behaviour and its social impacts; the socio-cultural dynamics of philanthropic behaviour and its effects on society; contemporary humanitarianism and its powers of influence over social policy and political process; and to understand the character of the social ties and cultural values that structure the interrelationships between humanitarian action, charitable endeavour and philanthropic intervention; as well as the bearing of government policies and governmental processes upon the charitable sector and philanthropic activity.

Sociology of the Body

In this research cluster, staff seek to understand the complex relationships between embodied subjects, and the social and cultural forms, relationships, institutions and structures that shape and are shaped by these actors. This includes research on clothing and fashion, the embodiment of age, and the body in health and social care. Thesis topics within this cluster have included female binge drinking, female body builders, tattooing and piercing, and the embodied sociology of private spaces.

Crime, Control and Culture

Members of the crime, control and culture research cluster are primarily involved in projects and research-centred activities connected with cultural criminology, for example in the areas of subcultures, drug use and intoxification, the night-time economy, the surveillance society, the photographic representation of crime, young people and crime, and the carnival of crime. In addition, work of a more traditional nature is also being undertaken, for example in the fields of international drug policy, the history of crime and punishment, and violence.

Sociological Theory and the Culture of Modernity

Staff working in this cluster study issues such as classical social theory, the impact on social theory of the fall of communism, and the theoretical implications of the changing boundaries of social life. This has further entailed work on the integrity of auto/biography as a form of social information and its impact on diverse disciplines of feminist perspectives.

Gender

Research at Kent addresses how gender is constructed and how it operates in a variety of social realms. Some of our recent projects have focused on gender in prisons, on women working as door staff in nightclubs and on how women are addressed in advice on pregnancy. Our research on social policy also includes a focus on gender, examining how men, women and families are affected by legislation and service provision.

Media

Staff share a research interest in the social role of the media, how media are used and how they are changing. Research at Kent has included work on the role of the media in constructing social problems and moral panics, media and crime, new media, media and subcultures, and the role of media in representing space and identity.

Visual Sociology

Staff share an interest in the visual dimension of social life. How is life seen, how are images created, stored and used? In various research projects, we also explore the use of images in innovative forms of research design and in sharing our findings.

Work, Employment and Economic Life

This research cluster represents a long-standing interest within SSPSSR at Kent. Currently, ten members of the School are researching and teaching in this broad field, representing staff in sociology, social policy, criminology and cultural studies. Themes studied include: age, generation and employment; deindustrialisation; gender, ethnicity and class at work; historiography of work sociology; moral economy; organisational sociology; policy effects on formal and informal labour; visual representation of work; work identity and meaning; work/life balance; workplace ethnography and oral histories.

Cross-national and European Social Policy

Cross-national study, both among staff and postgraduate students, is widespread throughout the School and relevant to all research clusters. However, some of our research also takes cross-national comparison as its major focus. This includes analysing policy formation and its impact on individuals, families and social groups within different states and within a global context.

Using the framework of different welfare regimes, academic staff research a wide range of topics, while postgraduate students conduct research projects in every part of the world. Many of these projects involve overseas students comparing their own country and European or UK services. Recent cross-national work has included projects examining home care services for older people, formal and informal social care systems, institutional change and the future of welfare reform, gender and family, globalisation, housing, and community activism.

Research centres

Centre for Health Services Studies (CHSS)

The Centre for Health Services Studies has a strong record in attracting research grants from the National Institute for Health Research, European Union Framework Programme, ESRC, Department of Health, as well as local health authorities and trusts. It is a designated NIHR Research Design Support Service. Particular areas of expertise include pragmatic trials, risk assessment and management, care of vulnerable adults including older people, and public health.

Centre for the Study of Social and Political Movements

The Centre was established in 1992 in order to consolidate Kent’s leading position in the study in Britain of social and political movements. The Centre is actively involved in international networks of social movement researchers through its participation in the Erasmus network on ‘Social movements, conflict and political action’ and through its members’ activity in the relevant research committees of the International Sociological Association, the European Sociological Association, and the European Consortium for Political Research.


Kent Crime and Justice Centre (KCJC)

KCJC is a collaboration of senior researchers at the University of Kent, based in the School, the Personal Social Services Research Unit and Kent Law School. It works in partnership with Kent Youth Offending Service and other criminal justice and non-governmental organisations. The core members have a multidisciplinary background, which includes sociology, economics, law and statistics, and expertise in sophisticated quantitative techniques, economic modelling and qualitative methods.

Centre for Child Protection

The team at the Centre for Child Protection is leading the way in developing new and innovative ways to deliver training and opportunities for simulated role play for professional development. The serious game concept offers a safe medium to explore and reflect upon child protection assessment. It offers professionals, at all stages of their careers, a unique way to evaluate real-life situations.

The first in the series of games, Rosie 2 promotes the theme of inter-professional practice by exploring the boundaries and challenges of a joint visit to the
family by a health visitor and social worker. Rosie 2 was followed by Visiting Elliot which explores a visit to a sex offender in the community. Zak, the third game in the series, focuses on an aspect of internet grooming.

The Centre for Child Protection’s series of serious game simulations provide research-based case studies and the opportunities to explore the complex dynamics involved in making professional assessments and decisions in these contexts.

Personal Social Services Research Unit

The PSSRU is the largest social services research unit in the UK, and operates at three sites: the University of Kent, the London School of Economics and the University of Manchester. Facilities include the Griffiths Library of Community Care, a reference library of more than 10,000 books, journals and other literature linked to the Unit’s field of study. Research focuses on needs, resources and outcomes in health and social care: major concerns are resourcing, equity and efficiency from the perspective of users, agencies and others. The Unit has developed a distinctive analytical framework called the ‘production of welfare approach’ to illuminate this research.

Tizard Centre

The Tizard Centre runs an annual seminar series where staff or guest lecturers present the results of research or highlight recent developments in the field of social care. The Jim Mansell Memorial Lecture invites public figures or distinguished academics to discuss topics that could interest a wider audience. The Centre also publishes the Tizard Learning Disability Review (in conjunction with Emerald Publishing) to provide a source of
up-to-date information for professionals and carers.

The Tizard Centre provides consultancy to organisations in the statutory and independent sectors, both nationally and internationally, in diversified areas such as service assessment, person-centred approaches, active support and adult protection. The Centre also teaches a range of short courses, often in conjunction with other organisations.

Centre for Philanthropy

Dedicated to an understanding of the social processes and cultural experiences by which people acquire moral dispositions to care for others, the Centre for Philanthropy offers a focal point for much of this work. Research is conducted into the ways in which our capacity for feelings are socially cultivated, corporately structured, politically mediated and economically expressed. The School is also linked to the Third Sector Research Centre (TSRC), collaborating with the University of Birmingham on third sector theory and policy analysis.

Staff research interests

Full details of staff research interests can be found on the School's website.

Dr Ben Baumberg Geiger: Senior Lecturer in Sociology and Social Policy

Disability; the workplace; inequality; the benefits system; addictions policy; Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR); the relationship between evidence and policy; stratification across the lifecourse; new ideas for the welfare state.

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Professor Adam Burgess: Professor of Risk Research

Contemporary understanding of risk in Western societies; the impact of health risks and neuroses upon individuals and society; the spread of generic risk assessment and management to every walk of professional life; precaution and the study of rumours and urban legends.

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Professor Michael Calnan: Professor of Medical Sociology

Diffusion and innovation in health care and technology; trust and health care; dignity and the provision of health and social care for older people. 

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Dr Heejung Chung: Senior Lecturer in Sociology and Social Policy

Employment insecurity perceptions; work-family conflict and gender gaps; flexible working time arrangements; support for child care in Europe; youth in the labour market after the crisis; relative importance of social life and the role of the welfare state; gender norm dimensions.

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Dr Robert de Vries: Lecturer in Quantitative Sociology

Social stratification and social comparisons, cultural consumption, health inequalities, social attitudes and stereotypes (particularly with respect to welfare benefit claimants). 

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Professor Frank Furedi: Professor of Sociology

The different manifestations of contemporary risk consciousness; the relationship between the diminishing of cultural authority and society’s capacity to manage risk and change; the sociology of rumour and dissident knowledge; the sociology of fear. 

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Dr David Garbin: Senior Lecturer in Sociology

Transnational religion; African and South Asian diasporas; migration; globalisation; diasporic processes; popular culture; the politics of identity and ethnicity in urban settings.

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Dr Dawn Lyon: Senior Lecturer in Sociology

Sociology of work; migration; visual sociology; gender relations; comparative cultural sociology (especially France and Italy).

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Dr Vince Miller: Reader in Sociology and Cultural Studies

Urban sociology; theories of urban social change and fragmentation; social theory of space; the information society; media and new media; digital culture and in particular social media.

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Dr David Nettleingham: Lecturer in Cultural Sociology

The forms and uses of cultural and political memory; how we imagine and experience the past and future; narrative, storytelling, autobiography and oral history; the cultural manifestation of political ideals; deindustrialisation, industrial heritage and working class experience. 

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Dr Carolyn Pedwell: Senior Lecturer in Cultural Studies/ Cultural Sociology

Social and cultural theory; feminist, queer and postcolonial theory;  emotion and affect; embodiment and culture; habit and habituation; digital culture and sociality.

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Professor Larry Ray: Professor of Sociology

Sociological theory; postcommunism, social memory and the emergence of new Jewish cultures in Europe; globalisation; race; ethnicity; violence.

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Professor Christopher Rootes: Professor of Environmental Politics and Political Sociology; Director, Political Sociology MA

Environmental protest, environmental movements, the interactions between environmental campaigners and industry, government and governmental agencies; cross-nationally comparative research on protest, social movements and political participation; the formation and implementation of environmental policy, particularly in respect of climate change.

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Dr Balihar Sanghera: Senior Lecturer in Sociology; Director of Graduate Studies (Taught)

Ethics, moral economy and sentiments; political economy; philanthropy; post-soviet Kyrgyzstan.

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Professor Chris Shilling: Professor of Sociology; Director of Graduate Studies (Research)

The body; embodiment; body pedagogics; religion; social, sociological and cultural theory. 

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Professor Miri Song: Professor of Sociology

Ethnic identity; race; racism; immigrant adaptation; ‘mixed race’.

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Professor Tim Strangleman: Professor of Sociology

Work identity and meaning; nostalgia; heritage; industrial decline; masculinity and age; historical sociology; oral histories; life histories; visual methods and approaches. 

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Professor Julia Twigg: Professor of Social Policy and Sociology

The body, and temporal and spatial ordering; age and ageing; disability; medicine and health care; food, diet and health; home care; public and private space; care work and the care workforce; the sociology of food.

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Professor Sarah Vickerstaff: Professor of Work and Employment

The relationship between paid work and the life course; the employability of older workers; the apprentice model of vocational training and intermediate skills acquisition; and the transition from school to work.

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Dr Iain Wilkinson: Reader in Sociology

Social theory; sociology of risk; sociology of health; sociology of mass media; the ways people experience and respond to their knowledge of risk, crisis and disaster.

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Dr Joy Zhang: Senior Lecturer in Sociology

Transnational governance of scientific uncertainties; cosmopolitanism and cosmopolitanisation; Chinese- European co-operation; Chinese civil societies; art-science interface.

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Fees

The 2018/19 annual tuition fees for this programme are:

Sociology (2 years) - Taught MA at Canterbury:
UK/EU Overseas
Full-time £12010 £12010

For students continuing on this programme fees will increase year on year by no more than RPI + 3% in each academic year of study except where regulated.* If you are uncertain about your fee status please contact information@kent.ac.uk

General additional costs

Find out more about accommodation and living costs, plus general additional costs that you may pay when studying at Kent.

Funding

Search our scholarships finder for possible funding opportunities. You may find it helpful to look at both: