Taught course

International Social Change and Policy

University of Sheffield · Department of Sociological Studies

Entry requirements

The minimum entry requirement is a 2:1 honours degree, or equivalent, in a relevant or social science discipline, such as sociology, social policy, politics, international relations, or development studies.

Months of entry


Course content

Course description

This innovative course will develop your awareness of the most pressing challenges posed by social change. It will enable you to critically examine dominant policy responses to key aspects of social change at national, cross-national comparative and global levels, and make you aware of agendas on policy alternatives and futures.

Course content

The course team is composed of social policy, sociology and social work academics, leading to a deeper understanding of the causes of, and solutions to, global and international social problems.

Throughout the course, there is a strong emphasis on developing the practical skills required by social policy analysts working internationally.

Core Modules

These include:

  • Introduction to Qualitative Social Research
  • International Social Change and Social Problems
  • International Social Change: Analysing Policy Responses
  • Introduction to Quantitative Research
  • Methods for International Social and Policy Analysis

Examples of Optional Modules

  • International Childhoods - Rights, Policies and Practices
  • Children, Families and Welfare States
  • Key Issues in Global Public Health
  • Theorising the City in the Global South
  • Urban Development in the Global South
  • Ideas and Practice in International Development
  • Cities of 'the South': Planning for Informality
  • Advanced Quantitative Methods for Social Research

Teaching and assessment

Assessment can vary across modules between a combination of essays, oral presentations, posters and portfolio work. You are assessed in a variety of ways in order to test a range of knowledge, skills and capabilities through modes of assessment appropriate to the specific subject.

There is also a dissertation, which provides the opportunity to focus in-depth on a topic of individual choice.

You can choose to do a standard dissertation or a dissertation linked to an internship.

Course duration

Subject to approval - please check with the department.

Information for international students

Overall IELTS grade of 6.5 with a minimum of 6.0 in each component, or equivalent.

Qualification and course duration


full time
12 months

Course contact details

Postgraduate Admissions Tutor
+44 (0)114 222 6402