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Durham University

Social Research Methods (Social Work)

This course provides an introduction to the principles and values of social work and an understanding of the organisation and delivery of social welfare and related services in the UK. It also provides you with a grounding in the social research methods necessary to conduct applied types of research that are a fundamental part of social work practice and evaluation.

Entry requirements

MA: Normally an upper second-class honours degree (2:1) or equivalent.

Course modules

You will take a range of taught modules primarily in the first two terms of the academic year. Starting from the first term, you will undertake a module on research design which enables you to develop a research proposal for your dissertation. Part-time candidates take an equal balance of credits in each year. In previous years, typical modules offered were: Core Modules Perspectives on Social Research (15 credits); Introduction to social scientific research; Establishing cause and interpreting meaning in social sciences; Essentials of quantitative and qualitative research in the social sciences. Statistical Exploration and Reasoning (15 credits); Spreadsheets and data analysis; Populations, sample data and sampling distributions; Point estimates and confidence intervals; Significance tests, cress-tabulations, and Chi-Square tests; Correlation and linear regression. Research Design and Process (15 credits); Formulating research questions; Evaluating and developing a research proposal; Reviewing relevant literature; Experimental vs. observational studies; Sampling and selecting respondents; Measurement. Qualitative Research Methods in Social Science (15 credits); Introduction to theory and research practice in qualitative methods Ethnography and grounded theory; Group discussions; Data analysis and management processes. Quantitative Research Methods in Social Science (15 credits); Sampling and sample design, questionnaire design; Numerical taxonomy and cluster analysis in practice; Methods for representing complex systems. Social Work Context and Practice (30 credits); Contemporary social work and social welfare in a diverse society; Construction of social problems; Ethical frameworks for social practice; Contemporary social work theories and practice. Policy Related and Evaluation Research (15 credits); Relationship between theory and empirical research in evaluation; Defining and measuring outcomes; Case study analysis; Poster presentation and participatory evaluation. Dissertation (60 credits); 15,000 word dissertation based on a supervised research project.

Assessment methods

Modules are usually assessed through essays. Statistics modules may require you to complete specific analyses with more structured instructions. Some module conveners may allow you to submit formative assignments in order for you to obtain a sense of how well you understand the subject. Some modules' assessment may contain a proportion of presentations and group projects.

Qualifications

Qualification Study mode Start month Fee Course duration
MA Full-time October 2019 7,750 per Year 1 (England) 1 Years
MA Full-time October 2019 7,750 per Year 1 (Channel Islands) 1 Years
MA Full-time October 2019 7,750 per Year 1 (Scotland) 1 Years
MA Full-time October 2019 19,000 per Year 1 (International) 1 Years
MA Full-time October 2019 7,750 per Year 1 (EU) 1 Years
MA Full-time October 2019 7,750 per Year 1 (Northern Ireland) 1 Years
MA Full-time October 2019 7,750 per Year 1 (Wales) 1 Years
MA Part-time October 2019 4,300 per Year 1 (Northern Ireland) 2 Years
MA Part-time October 2019 4,300 per Year 1 (England) 2 Years
MA Part-time October 2019 10,100 per Year 1 (International) 2 Years
MA Part-time October 2019 4,300 per Year 1 (Wales) 2 Years
MA Part-time October 2019 4,300 per Year 1 (EU) 2 Years
MA Part-time October 2019 4,300 per Year 1 (Channel Islands) 2 Years
MA Part-time October 2019 4,300 per Year 1 (Scotland) 2 Years

Campus details

Campus name Town Postcode Region Main campus Campus Partner
Durham University DH1 3LG North East

Get in touch

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Key information

Contact: 
Recruitment and Admissions Office
Telephone number: 
01913341000