University of Nottingham

University of Nottingham

Research Methods (Public Policy)

This course familiarises students with the range of methods used by researchers in the social sciences, as well as providing an understanding of the theoretical and methodological underpinnings of these methods. By the end of the course students are able to make an informed choice about which methods are appropriate for answering particular questions and should be competent to design and carry out research using a range of different methods of data collection and analysis. Students develop a clear grasp of the ethical and political issues which arise in research in the social sciences and learn to frame research in relation to the theoretical and conceptual issues which are relevant to their particular area of study. They take a series of core modules that concentrate on research skills and methodology, as well as subject-specific modules such as policy analysis concepts and theories, public policy management, and governance. These developments are explored from a multidisciplinary perspective, including sociology, law, politics, public policy and relevant sciences.

Entry requirements

2.1 (or international equivalent) in any subject area; English language requirements: IELTS 6.5 (no less than 6.0 in any element).

Course modules

Core modules: dissertation; foundations in qualitative methods; philosophy of research (social science); policy analysis: concepts and theories; public management and governance; fundamentals of quantitative analysis; research design, practice and ethics. Optional modules: archival methods; doing ethnography; individual and group interviews; researching media, culture and society; researching public policy and management; evaluating interventions, services and health and social care; mixed methods in health research; principles and processes of comprehensive systematic review; children and research; social epidemiology: theories and methods for understanding the social determinants of health; intermediate quantitative analysis; measurement models; structural equation modelling.

Assessment methods

Assessment methods include: critical analysis through essay; report writing; group work; oral presentations; project development and completion; dissertation.


Qualification Study mode Start month Fee Course duration
MA Full-time September 2016 GBP 6,630 per Whole course (England) 1 years
MA Full-time September 2016 GBP 15,140 per Whole course (International) 1 years
MA Full-time September 2016 GBP 6,630 per Whole course (Northern Ireland) 1 years
MA Full-time September 2016 GBP 6,630 per Whole course (Scotland) 1 years
MA Full-time September 2016 GBP 6,630 per Whole course (Wales) 1 years
MA Part-time September 2016 - 2 years

Campus details

Campus name Town Postcode Region Main campus Campus Partner
University Park Campus Nottingham NG7 2RJ East Midlands

Get in touch

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Key information

Postgraduate Enquiries Team
Telephone number: 
0115 951 5559