MAIntermediate award(s): PG Dip
Course overviewThis course offers you the opportunity to enhance and deepen your knowledge of the theoretical and substantive aspects of contemporary sociology as well as develop your expertise in the principles and application of social research methodologies. Its design is informed by the expertise of research-active staff to reflect the most recent developments within the discipline. Staff specialisms include: the impact of social studies of science and technology; the changing nature of contemporary identity, including national identities and diasporas; the nature of agency and risk; surveillance and crime in global contexts.
The full-time teaching programme comprises four taught modules which are taken over one year. The Major Project is completed at the end of the taught part of the course. Teaching runs over two semesters of 12 weeks each from September to December and February to May. Weekly sessions of two hours usually take place on Mondays between 2.00pm and 5.00pm and on Thursdays between 2.00pm and 5.00pm.
Teaching will normally be undertaken in a research-seminar format, but may also include some lectures, guest speakers and debates. Our tutors are available for one-to-one support and advice.
Additional course informationOur staff
Dr Liz Bradbury
Social theory; gender studies; psychoanalysis; the Frankfurt School.
Dr David Skinner
Race and racism, the social and political aspects of scientific and technological innovation; the relationship between the natural and social sciences; forensics, databases and surveillance; the changing management of public services.
Dr Shaun le Boutillier
Social theory; applied ethics; explanations of the relations between individual and society.
Dr Sam Lundrigan
Criminological geographic profiling systems; spatial behaviour of serial rapists; behaviour consistency of serial offenders.
Dr Anna Markovska
Transitional countries; serious crime; corruption; drug abuse.
Violent behaviour; justice and injustice through the courts; human trafficking; comparative criminology.
Public service; learning and education; equality and cultural diversity; barriers to learning.
Learning and teaching in the post-compulsory education sector; police training methods.
This module will provide you with the research skills and techniques needed both to critically evaluate the literature you will be using in your Masters course, and to put into practice in your own Dissertation. It will explore the methodologies and methods applied in contemporary social science research to enable you to select an appropriate range for your own needs.
Here, we focus on two key debates in social theory. First, we examine the structure-agency debate and various attempts to reconcile the different perspectives in this debate, including Giddens' structuration theory, Bourdieu's genetic structuralism, critical realism and neo-pragmatism. Secondly, we consider the debate over the role of modernity and progress and reason, which will include critical examination of the work of Frankfurt School, Habermas and Bauman among others.
This module will enable you to demonstrate your ability to raise and investigate significant questions in relation to your specialist research area, either through empirical research or sustained theoretical investigation. Based on your initial project proposal, you will be expected to negotiate a learning contract with your supervisor which outlines title, research question, assessment weighting and criteria, and the form of the project.
This module will engage with contemporary and enduring theories of crime and deviance that are of primary importance to the concept of late modernity. Starting with the claim that modernity is now characterised by globalization, a heightened sense of risk, and reflexivity, we will focus on two broad themes of contemporary criminology: 'governance, control, and risk' and 'cultural criminology'.
This module explores notions of identity related to belonging, rootedness and mobility. It examines key concepts of nationalism, transnationalism, diaspora and migration and traces changing debates about their meanings over time. Particular attention will be paid to intersections with gender, class and ethnicity. The notion of 'home' will be investigated at national and local levels, and concepts of hybridity will also be examined. The module will draw on detailed case studies in order to ground these concepts and identify their specificities.
This module explores the relationship between social, technical and natural worlds and opens up discussion both of the sociology of the future and of the future of sociology. The module addresses the notion of technological and scientific development as social process, the changing social, economic, political and cultural role of science, and the engagement of public and policy-makers with new forms of scientific and technical practice. The module considers case studies relating to, for example, information and communication technologies; the study of animals; biopower, biocapital and biocitizenship; and issues of global warming and environmental catastrophe.
This module will give you an opportunity to explore in depth a particular issue or topic that is of interest to contemporary sociological scholars and practitioners. This module will take one of two forms. Either the module will offer detailed discussion of an important recent sociological work; or a theme based topic will be featured i.e. focus will be upon an area of sociology which is the subject of recent scholarly debate and development. The text or theme module will be subjected to close critical scrutiny, and you will engage in a detailed study of the arguments presented in the work or topic under consideration, as well as examining responses by others working in the field.
AssessmentAssessment varies from module to module, but typically consists of a 5,000-word essay plus a presentation of approximately 20 minutes, a case study plus presentation, or a portfolio of activities to be submitted at the end of the module.
Our campus libraries offer a wide range of publications and a variety of study facilities, including open-access computers, areas for quiet or group study and bookable rooms. We also have an extensive Digital Library providing on and off-site access to e-books, e-journals and databases.
We endeavour to make our libraries as accessible as possible for all our students. During Semester time, they open 24 hours a day from Monday to Thursday, until midnight on Friday and Saturday and for 12 hours on Sunday.
Our open access computer facilities provide free access to the internet, email, messaging services and the full Microsoft Office suite. A high speed wireless service is also available in all key areas on campus. If you are away from campus or a distant learner, our student desktop and its many applications can be accessed remotely using the internet. Your personal student email account provides free document storage, calendar facilities and social networking opportunities.
Throughout your studies you will have access to our Virtual Learning Environment (VLE), providing course notes, reading materials and multi-media content to support your learning, while our e-vision system gives you instant access to your academic record and your timetable.
Special featuresIn addition to the taught modules, we run a series of research seminars to which staff and postgraduate students are invited.
Course LeaderDr Shaun Le Boutillier
Links with industry and Professional recognitionThrough our research consultancy and community engagement work we have links locally and nationally with various social agencies, public services, charities and businesses.
Associated careersGraduates from this course may pursue careers in many related fields, including human resources, social policy, social work, educational development, community development, counselling, local government, the civil service, public services and charities, and further applied research.
We welcome applications from International and EU students. Please select one of the links below for English language and country-specific entry requirement information.
Cambridge Ruskin International College, an associate college of Anglia Ruskin, which is located on our Cambridge campus.
How to apply
Teaching times*Mon and Thurs
Available startsSeptember, January
Fees & funding
Open DayWednesday 19 March
Postgraduate Open Day
Advice & supportEmployability
FacultyArts, Law & Social Sciences
DepartmentHumanities and Social Sciences
Contact usUK and EU applicants:
- Call 01245 493131
- Complete enquiry form
- Call +44 (0)1223 698609
- Complete enquiry form
* Teaching days are subject to change each academic year. Timings are also dependent on any optional modules you chose and are for guidance, so we advise all applicants to wait until they are in receipt of their timetable before making arrangements around course times.