Taught course

Social Science Research Methods

Keele University · Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences

Entry requirements

Applicants should be graduates, normally with a good Honours degree (2.1 or above) in a relevant social science subject. However, students from different backgrounds who believe they have the capacity to undertake postgraduate work in the social sciences should contact us to discuss their situation.

Months of entry


Course content

Please note, all course information including entry requirements relates to the 2022/23 academic year.

The MRes Social Science Research Methods is designed to provide a thorough grounding in a range of research skills and methodologies essential to the systematic research practice demanded in many professional environments, or to pave the way to doctoral study in social science disciplines.

Social research enables us to generate knowledge about the social world, including insights into personal experiences, public opinion, and patterns of collective behaviour that might otherwise remain hidden. It is an essential tool in supporting policy makers to recognise and understand social issues and reach decisions about the design and implementation of appropriate responses. On this course you will learn how to plan, conduct and manage social research projects, and develop theoretical models to inform responses to real world social issues.

The taught indicative modules on the programme offer advanced instruction in a range of qualitative and quantitative research methods and methodologies and introduce you to the tools used in the management and analysis of data. Your studies culminate in an original piece of applied research supported by a supervisor in your discipline.


The programme is suitable for those considering doctoral (PhD) study in a social science discipline or who are looking to work in the public, private or third sectors, for example, social or market research; social and health care; local and national government; or charitable and community organisations. It would be equally valuable to people already working in these sectors who wish to update or develop their social research skills.

The programme is recognised as fulfilling the requirements of the Economic and Social Research Council’s (ESRC) postgraduate social science research training and development and as the first year of 1+3 awards made by the ESRC North West Social Sciences Doctoral Training Partnership.
Prospective applicants are encouraged to contact the School of Social, Political and Global Studies in the first instance to discuss their application.

Information for international students

Students for whom English is a second language will need English language proficiency of at least 6.5 in IELTS text scores (or equivalent).

Fees and funding

For information related to fees and funding, please visit the individual course page on the Keele University website.

Qualification, course duration and attendance options

  • MRes
    Up to 60 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification
    part time
    24 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification
    full time
    12 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification

Course contact details