Institution / University of Limerick
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Sociology - Research

The Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences is an excellent choice for postgraduate students whose talents and interests lie in subjects such as history; sociology; politics; law; music and languages (English, Irish, French, German, Spanish, Japanese, TESOL). The Faculty offers particular research strengths in the following areas: Criminal Justice; Applied Language Studies; European Studies; Irish German Studies; Peace and Development Studies; International and Commercial Law; International Politics; Social Policy; Gender Studies; Utopian Studies; and Literary or Cultural Studies. Students can choose to do a research degree at Master of Arts/LLM or PhD level in any of these subjects or areas.


If you enjoyed researching and writing your final year project / graduate thesis or your MA dissertation, then you might enjoy carrying out a more in-depth piece of research at MA (by research) or PhD level.

FAHSS research students are part of a lively community; every student has his/her own research space with individual PC and desk;

Funding is available to research students annually to take part in international conferences and carry out fieldwork/archival visits in Ireland and overseas;

Research degrees develop a wide range of skills which are valued by employers (for example, excellent communication skills (written and oral), and critical/analytical skills);

Our PhD and MA graduates are employed in a wide range of sectors: education, media and publishing, research and consultancy, civil and public service, business, non-governmental sector, creative arts and media, and politics and local government.

Entry requirements

Applicants will normally be expected to hold an Honours degree (minimum 2.1) or equivalent in a discipline appropriate to their area of proposed research.

Entry points may differ for applicants with postgraduate qualifications. Please contact the Course Director for further information.

Further enquiries

Helen Kelly-Holmes
Faculty AHSS
Assistant Dean,
Phone No: 353-61-234206

Research areas

Programme Content

In addition to carrying out research, students enrolled on an MA by Research/PhD take part in generic/transferrable skills training, including, for example, research methodologies and statistics, interview skills and career planning, bibliographical management, academic writing and research networking.

MA by Research:

A Master’s degree by thesis involves in-depth research on a topic leading to a thesis of 60,000 words over the course of one to two years.

MA by Research/PhD:

Students may start an MA research thesis, but then apply to transfer to a PhD after their first year if research is expanding; or students may register for a PhD thesis directly.


This involves in-depth research on a topic and an original contribution to knowledge, leading to a thesis of 100,000 words, examined by a viva voce exam. The PhD thesis generally takes 4 years to complete.

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