Sociology - Comparative Social Change

MSc Comparative Social Change
Graduate Taught (level 9 nfq, credits 90)

- The programme uses the recent experience of Irish social change in a comparative European and global context to provide training in substantive topics relating to issues of comparative social change.

- The MSc has a strong international dimension drawing on rich and informative experiences from Ireland, Europe and further afield particularly India, China and Brazil (BRICs).

- The programme provides advanced training in conceptualising, designing and conducting comparative research, across countries, and examines the role that this can play in policy development.

Who should apply?
Full Time option suitable for:
Domestic(EEA) applicants: Yes
International (Non EEA) applicants currently residing outside of the EEA Region. Yes

The MSc Comparative Social Change is suitable for graduates with a primary degree in Sociology or Social Science or a closely related discipline, such as psychology, philosophy, human geography, history, politics, and economics, who want to develop the skills required to critically explore the social, cultural and economic forces that drive social change today.

Course Description
The MSc Comparative Social Change has been developed by the Department of Sociology at Trinity College and the School of Sociology at University College Dublin to critically explore the social, cultural and economic forces that drive social change today.

The programme aims to develop students' knowledge of major social change issues, such as globalisation, the changing roles of women and the interrelated areas of migration, education and employment, and to offer insights into the different forms they take across states.

Vision and Values Statement
This programme is suitable for full-time students who are interested in the study of international comparative social change to further their academic, research or professional careers in the public sector, private sector and civil society organisations. The core values of the programme are intended to encourage active, independent learners, who are critical and reflective about international society, and who ideally seek to participate in social change to improve the lives of all. The learning environment is structured around a select range of core and optional modules at Trinity and UCD that critically examine major societal changes in a number of regions and countries across the world, and assess and apply current theories of social change to specific cross-country, institutional and individual cases, provided in small-group settings that encourage and facilitate in-depth discussions of comparative social change. Teaching, learning and assessment are based on critical engagement with the material and skill enhancement involving students as active participants in seminar discussions, presentations and practice-based examples of comparative social change; critical readers, thinkers and writers in their written assignments; and independent researchers in their individually supervised thesis.

Subjects taught

Students are required to accumulate 90 credits in total. The taught part of the course, worth 60 ECTS, is comprised of three core modules and three optional modules. In addition, students complete a dissertation, not exceeding 20,000 words, which counts for 30 ECTS.

90 Credits:
60 Credits Taught Modules
30 Credits Dissertation

Core Modules:
- Introduction to Comparative Social Change
- Globalisation and Social Change
- Research Methods
- Dissertation

Optional Modules:
- Students must select a minimium of 10 credits and a maximum of 20 credits from each partner University:

- Economic Globalisation and Social Change
- Comparing Healthcare Systems
- Nationalism and Social Change
- Art Knowledge and Social Change
- Migration, Labour and Conflict
- Gender and Social Change
- The Migration Challenge: Comparative Educational Perspectives

Stage 1 - Core
Introduction to Comparative Social Change: Concepts and Cases SOC40810
Research Methods(MSc) SOC40840
Globalisation & Soc Change MSc SOC40850
Dissertation Soc Change MSc SOC40920

Stage 1 - Option
Economic Globalisation and Social Change SOC40230
Nationalism and Social Change SOC40620
Gender and Soc Change MSc SOC40910
Migration: Educational Per MSc (TCD) SOC40960
Migration, Labour, Conflict MS (TCD) SOC40980
SocThinking in the Digital Age SOC41070
Comparing Healthcare Systems SPOL40470

Entry requirements

Applicants should normally have a primary degree in sociology or social science, or a closely related discipline.

A Student Grade Point Average (GPA) Equivalent 3.0 out of 4.0 is required (where the grading scale is 0.0 to 4.0) or equivalent result where other grading scale is presented.

Applicants who do not meet the academic requirements but can confirm professional qualifications and/or experience will be considered. Applicants may be called for an interview.

All candidates are expected to be proficient in written and spoken English. Applicants whose primary language is not English must submit evidence of a certificate of proficiency (such as TOEFL, Cambridge or IELTS). Test results must be less than two years old.

These are the minimum entry requirements – additional criteria may be requested for some programmes.

Application dates

The following entry routes are available:

MSc Comparative Social Change FT (W360)
Duration 1 Years Attend Full Time
Deadline Rolling*

* Courses will remain open until such time as all places have been filled, therefore early application is advised




1 year full-time.


MSc Comparative Social Change (W360) Full Time
EU fee per year - € 8960 dc
nonEU fee per year - € 16705 dc

dcThis is a Joint MSc with Trinity College Dublin (TCD)
***Fees are subject to change

Tuition fee information is available on the UCD Fees website. Please note that UCD offers a number of Masters scholarships for full­time international students, who have been offered a place on a UCD Masters degree programme. For further information please see International Scholarships.

The MSc Comparative Social Change EU sholarships comprise an award of €2,000 towards university fees to students who have been accepted to the MSc Comparative Social Change programme. Up to three scholarships will be awarded (limited to full-time students). For more informatoin please see MSc Comparative Social Change EU Scholarships.

Enrolment dates

Next Intake: 2020/2021 September

Post Course Info

Careers & Employability
The MSc Comparative Social Change is particularly relevant for students who are interested in pursuing careers in the public and private sector, international institutions and civil society organisations. Students receive a solid academic training in social change issues - such as gender, education and the labour market - which can be applied to real-world problems. This training has the potential to open up career opportunities in fields such as research, policy development and advocacy.

More details
  • Qualification letters


  • Qualifications

    Degree - Masters (Level 9 NFQ)

  • Attendance type

    Full time,Daytime

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