Social & Public Policy

SOCIAL & PUBLIC POLICY

Social & Public Policy focuses on social problems such as poverty, homelessness and ill-health. The programme applies ideas from political science, sociology and economics to explore how governments shape their responses, and to understand the impacts of public policy on society.

‌You’ll have the valuable opportunity of a work placement with a voluntary or public sector organisation.

2014 NSS survey results showed 96% student satisfaction the programme-

  • top of the Russell Group Universities
  • joint top in the UK
  • top in Scotland 

Programme structure

Year 1

You will examine the development of policies and services such as health and social security that were created to eradicate postwar social problems, through a focus on the famous Beveridge Report of 1942, which identified the ‘Five Giants’ of want, disease, squalor, ignorance and idleness. Then using experiences in Glasgow as a lens, you will have the opportunity to study current responses to social problems such as crime, youth gangs, drugs misuse and urban deprivation.

Year 2

You will study influential ideas and major perspectives on welfare and public policy in order to examine assumptions about the aims of policy and the functions of welfare. This includes examining ideological and political agendas in an international context. You will also look into the politics and power dynamics of policy making, considering how social problems, such as teenage pregnancy and welfare reform, are constructed and why some are high on the political agenda whilst others are not.  

You will also study other subjects in years 1 and 2: see Degrees in Arts, Science and Social Sciences.

Years 3 and 4

If you progress to Honours (years 3 and 4) you will choose subjects from a diverse range of topics to suit your interests, including:

  • Work, welfare and the politics of reform
  • Disability and society
  • Health and health inequalities
  • Housing policy, welfare and markets
  • Remaking cities: dilemmas of 21st-century urban policy
  • Education for citizenship
  • Making public policy in the real world
  • Active citizenship (includes a placement in a voluntary or public sector organisation)
  • Ideological concepts and values
  • Utopias: welfare theory and social policies for a ‘good society’
  • Paying for public policy.

Entry requirements

Academic entry requirements
for entry in 2015

LLB

A-levels

  • Standard academic entry requirements: AAA.
  • Minimum academic entry requirements: BBB.
  • Other mandatory requirements: Must include English or GCSE English Literature and Language. LNAT (see below).

Highers

  • Standard academic entry requirements: S5 entry requirement = AAAAA. S6 entry requirements: applicants who achieved between AAAAB and AABBB in S5 will be asked to attain either two Advanced Highers or a mix of Advanced Highers and additional Highers: subject to a satisfactory LNAT score.
  • Minimum academic entry requirements: Conditional offers MAY be made to applicants who achieve a minimum of AABBB in by the end of S5.
  • Other mandatory requirements: Must include English. LNAT (see below). Applicants who are made conditional offers based on S6 results are encouraged, where possible, to study Advanced Highers in arts/social science subjects.

International Baccalaureate

  • Standard academic entry requirements: 39 points.
  • Minimum academic entry requirements: 34 points.
  • Other mandatory requirements: Must include English at HL6. LNAT (see below).

Law National Admissions Test (LNAT)

Applicants to all LLB degrees who do not already hold an undergraduate degree are required to take the LNAT test by 20 January 2015. The LNAT is run by a consortium of UK universities and comprises a two-hour on-screen test made up of multiple choice (80 minutes) and essay questions (40 minutes). It is designed to assess verbal reasoning skills and command of written English. The test can be taken by applicants at centres throughout the UK and overseas. Information on how to sit the test can be found at: www.lnat.ac.uk.

Please note: all A-Level, International Baccalaureate, and other EU entry requirements must be achieved in first sitting.

MA

A-levels

  • Standard academic entry requirements: AAB.
  • Minimum academic entry requirements: BBB.
  • Other mandatory requirements: Must include at least one arts, humanities or language subject.

Highers

  • Standard academic entry requirements: S5 entry requirement = AAAA/AAABB. S6 entry requirement = AAAAAB (S6 entry requirements only apply to applicants who achieved the minimum S5 requirements and have been made a conditional offer).
  • Minimum academic entry requirements: Applicants who achieve less than AAAA or AAABB in S5 but have achieved at least ABBB MAY receive an offer based on S6 results. A decision will be made in March 2015 once all applications have been reviewed.
  • Other mandatory requirements: Must include English and a humanities subject or language at Grades A/B or B/A.

Accepted humanities and languages Highers

Higher applicants to Arts MA degrees must attain, or have attained, grades A/B or B/A at Higher in English Higher AND another humanities/language Higher subject at their first sitting to have their application considered. The accepted humanities/languages Higher subjects are listed below.

  • Art & Design
  • Business Management
  • Chinese Language and Culture
  • Classical Greek
  • Classical studies
  • Drama
  • Economics
  • English
  • English for Speakers of Other Languages
  • French
  • Gaelic
  • Geography
  • German
  • History
  • Italian
  • Latin
  • Media Studies
  • Modern Studies
  • Music
  • Personal and social education
  • Philosophy
  • Politics
  • Psychology
  • Religious Education
  • Religious Moral and Philosophical Studies
  • Russian
  • Sociology
  • Spanish
  • Urdu

International Baccalaureate

  • Standard academic entry requirements: 36 points, with grades 6,6,5 at Higher Level.
  • Minimum academic entry requirements: 34 points.
  • Other mandatory requirements: For any mandatory subject requirements please see the mandatory requirements for ‘Highers’ above.

European qualifications

Typical entry requirements for European qualifications: Arts European Requirements [pdf]

A-level and IB applicants can expect offers to be between the minimum and standard entry requirements depending on demand for places on the degree.

Please note: all A-Level, International Baccalaureate, and other EU entry requirements must be achieved in first sitting.

MA (SocSci)

A-levels

  • Standard academic entry requirements: AAB.
  • Minimum academic entry requirements: BBB.
  • Other mandatory requirements: Must include English or a humanities subject.

Highers

  • Standard academic entry requirements: S5 entry requirement = AAAAB. S6 entry requirement = AAAAAA. (S6 entry requirements only apply to applicants who achieved the minimum S5 requirements and have been made a conditional offer.)
  • Minimum academic entry requirements: Applicants who achieve less than AAAAB in S5 but have achieved at least AABB MAY receive an offer based on S6 results. A decision will be made in March 2015 once all applications have been reviewed.
  • Other mandatory requirements: Must include English or a humanities subject at Grades A or B.

Accepted humanities and languages Highers

Higher applicants to Social Sciences MA (Soc Sci) degrees must attain, or have attained, EITHER English Higher OR another humanities/language Higher subject to have their application considered. The accepted humanities/languages Higher subjects are listed below.

  • Art & Design
  • Business Management
  • Chinese Language and Culture
  • Classical Greek
  • Classical studies
  • Drama
  • Economics
  • English
  • English for Speakers of Other Languages
  • French
  • Gaelic
  • Geography
  • German
  • History
  • Italian
  • Latin
  • Media Studies
  • Modern Studies
  • Music
  • Personal and social education
  • Philosophy
  • Politics
  • Psychology
  • Religious Education
  • Religious Moral and Philosophical Studies
  • Russian
  • Sociology
  • Spanish
  • Urdu

International Baccalaureate

  • Standard academic entry requirements: 38 points, with grades 6,6,6 at Higher Level.
  • Minimum academic entry requirements: 36 points.
  • Other mandatory requirements: For any mandatory subject requirements please see the mandatory requirements for ‘Highers’ above.

European qualifications

Typical entry requirements for European qualifications: Social Sciences European Requirements [pdf]

Please note: all A-Level, International Baccalaureate, and other EU entry requirements must be achieved in first sitting.

Advanced entry

If you have exceptional A-level or Advanced Higher grades it's possible to gain exemption from Year 1 study and enter directly into Year 2 or follow a faster route advanced entry programme, both of which allow you to complete your degree in one year less than usual. See: Advanced entry

English language requirements

For applicants whose first language is not English, the University sets a minimum English Language proficiency level.

International English Language Testing System (IELTS) Academic module (not General Training):

  • overall score 6.5
  • no sub-test less than 6.0
  • or equivalent scores in another recognised qualification (see below)

Common equivalent English language qualifications:

  • ibTOEFL: 92; no sub-test less than 20*
  • CAE (Cambridge Certificate of Advanced English): 176 overall: no sub-test less than 169
  • CPE (Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English): 176 overall: no sub-test less than 169
  • PTE Academic (Person Test of English, Academic test): 60; no sub-test less than 59
  • IGCSE: English language: B minimum.

Please note that TOEFL has now been removed from the approved list of English tests by the Home Office and TOEFL tests taken on or after 17 April 2014 will no longer normally be accepted for UK visa applications. However, the University as an HEI can still choose to accept TOEFL tests for admission to degree level courses and so TOEFL tests can still be accepted as normal for this programme.

Pre-sessional courses
The University of Glasgow accepts evidence of the required language level from the Language Centre Pre-sessional courses. We also consider other BALEAP accredited pre-sessional courses:

FAQs

What do I do if...

my language qualifications are below the requirements?

The University's Language Centre offers a range of Pre-Sessional Courses to bring you up to entry level. The course is accredited by BALEAP, the UK professional association for academic English teaching; see Links.

my language qualifications are not listed here?

Please contact the Recruitment and International Office: Elaine.Shortt@glasgow.ac.uk

If you require a Tier 4 student visa, your qualification must be one of the secure English language tests accepted by UK Border Agency:

my academic qualifications are below the requirements?

Glasgow International College offers Foundation courses to upgrade your academic qualifications.

Visa requirements and proof of English language level

It is a visa requirement to provide information on your level of English based on an internationally recognised and secure English language test. All test reports must be no more than 2 years old. A list of these can be found on the UK Border Agency website. If you have never taken one of these tests before, you can get an initial idea of your level by using the Common European Framework self-assessment grid which gives you a level for each skill (e.g. listening B1/writing B2 etc.) However, please note that this is not a secure English language test and it is not sufficient evidence of your level of English for visa requirements.

For further information about English language, please contact the Language Centre.

Career prospects

This degree provides many of the analytical, literary and teamwork skills that employers are looking for in the labour market. Our graduates pursue careers as managers, professionals and policy analysts in the private, voluntary and public sectors, including central and local government, in the UK and internationally. They work in diverse fields including housing, health, social services, advocacy, city planning, education, media and commerce.

Degrees and UCAS codes

When applying you will need to know the UCAS code for the subject or subject-combination that you wish to apply to:

LLB

  • Law/Public Policy: ML14

MA

  • KIS
    Celtic Civilisation/Public Policy: LQK5
  • KIS
    Classics/Public Policy: LQ48
  • KIS
    Digital Media & Information Studies/Public Policy: GL54
  • KIS
    Film & Television Studies/Public Policy: LW46
  • KIS
    Gaelic/Public Policy: QL54
  • KIS
    Greek/Public Policy: LQ47
  • KIS
    History of Art/Public Policy: LVK3
  • KIS
    Latin/Public Policy: LQ46
  • KIS
    Music/Public Policy: LW43
  • KIS
    Public Policy/English Language: QL3L
  • KIS
    Public Policy/English Literature: LQ4H
  • KIS
    Public Policy/Theatre Studies: LW44
  • KIS
    Spanish/Public Policy: RL44
  • KIS
    Theology & Religious Studies/Public Policy: VL64

MA(Soc)

  • KIS
    Public Policy: L430
  • Business & Management/Public Policy: LN42
  • KIS
    Business Economics/Public Policy: LLC4
  • KIS
    Central & East European Studies/Public Policy: RL84
  • KIS
    Classics/Public Policy: LQK8
  • KIS
    Computing Science/Public Policy: IL14
  • KIS
    Economic & Social History/Public Policy: LV43
  • KIS
    Economics/Public Policy: LL14
  • KIS
    Geography/Public Policy: LL47
  • KIS
    Politics/Public Policy: LL42
  • KIS
    Psychology/Public Policy: LC48
  • KIS
    Sociology/Public Policy: LL64

Fees and funding

Tuition fees

How and when you pay tuition fees depends on where you’re from: see Tuition fees for details. If you’re from outside the EU, please see International students for more information.

Scholarships

We offer a wide range of scholarships to our undergraduates, including both home/EU and international students. The University is committed to supporting students and rewarding academic excellence. That’s why we’ve invested more than £1m in additional scholarship funding over the last year.

For a full list of scholarships including eligibility criteria and how to apply, please see:

How to apply

UCAS closing dates for entry in 2015

The UCAS process requires applications to Medicine, Vet Medicine and Dentistry to be submitted by 15 October each year, and applications to all other degree programmes by 15 January each year. The University of Glasgow cannot accept any applications after these UCAS deadlines, nor can it accept changes to applications after these dates. It is the applicants responsibility to ensure the accuracy of their application prior to submission, and requests from applicants to correct erroneous application content, change degree programme or change college of entry, will not be allowed after these UCAS deadlines. This policy is in place to ensure fairness and consistency to all applicants, and no exceptions will be made.

  • 15 October 2014: if including Dentistry, Medicine, Veterinary Medicine or applying to Oxford or Cambridge
  • 15 January 2015: all other UK/EU applicants
  • 30 June 2015: international (non-EU) students.

Apply at www.ucas.com or through your school or college.
Contact UCAS on 0871 468 0468.

UCAS tariff points

The University does not frame its offers in terms of UCAS tariff points.

How soon will I receive a decision?

We will usually respond before the end of March 2015.

If your qualifications meet our requirements and we believe you could benefit from study at Glasgow, you will receive an unconditional offer.

If you haven’t yet gained the necessary passes for entry to your chosen subject(s), we may look at the qualifications you are taking when you apply and make you a conditional offer.

Will I be interviewed?

An interview will be part of the selection process for: Community Development, Dentistry, History of Art & Art-world Practice, Medicine, Music, Nursing, Teaching, and Veterinary Medicine & Surgery. You may also be interviewed if you’re applying for entry into Year 2 in any subject.

Is deferred entry available?

For Dentistry, Nursing and Veterinary Medicine programmes we are unable to consider applications for deferred entry. In other cases deferring may be possible but it’s not granted automatically.

University Transfers

Transfers from another University to the University of Glasgow will only be considered under the following circumstances:

  1. The applicant has a genuine personal circumstance (illness, bereavement or other family situation) which requires the student to move back to their home town to be closer to family; AND
  2. The applicant would have met the University of Glasgow entrance requirements at the time he/she went to the other institution. In exceptional circumstances, a student may be admitted if he/she was marginally below the University of Glasgow entrance requirements, and they have performed above average at the other institution.

Widening participation

We want to help talented applicants from all backgrounds to study at Glasgow. See our range of widening access pre-entry programmes at Widening Participation.

British Sign Language

UCAS has launched seven new videos using British Sign Language, including details on how to apply and a Parents' Guide.  

Apply at www.ucas.com or through your school or college.
Contact UCAS on 0871 468 0468.

urbanstudies@glasgow.ac.uk