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Overview

This programme combines the curiosity of social inquiry with the quantitative skills required to collect and analyse social data. Students receive tuition in a core social science discipline (Sociology) together with advanced skills in quantitative social research. The degree is a key component of the Queen's Q-Step Centre as it helps to address the critical shortage of quantitatively-skilled social science graduates. The need for such graduates is evidenced in the British Academy's position paper 'Society Counts' which argues that "Well-rounded graduates, equipped with core quantitative skills, are vital if the UK is to retain its status as a world leader”.

Sociology with Quantitative Methods Degree highlights

Queen’s is one of only 15 UK universities, and the only one in Ireland, that have been funded* as part of Q-Step initiative to promote a step-change in undergraduate quantitative social science training. * by ESRC, Nuffield Foundation and HEFCE

Global Opportunities

  • Students have the opportunity to spend some time studying in one of our linked universities. For example, this can take the form of a semester’s study in Sweden (Lünd) (for which credits are transferred back to your degree here in Queen’s) or an intensive two week international study school in Spain (Barcelona).

Career Development

  • Sociology graduates with quantitative skills are highly sought after in a broad range of careers - in business, charities, politics, academia and the public sector. Graduates of this degree are also well placed to undertake specialist research in universities and elsewhere, and to develop their skills further at Masters and Doctoral levels.

Student Experience

  • Queen’s is one of only a small group of universities in the UK which, through being part of the Nuffield Foundation/Economic and Social Research Council 'Q-Step Centres' initiative, is offering Sociology combined with Quantitative Methods training. The degree provides unique opportunities to tackle quantitative data analysis in a professional environment through short-term placements provided by a select group of employers. Further information can be found on the Q-Step website.
    http://www.qub.ac.uk/sites/QStep
“My Q-Step internship at Ipsos Mori gave me the opportunity to apply and develop the knowledge I had gained in the first two years of my degree. I then embarked on a quantitative dissertation in third year. My Q-Step experiences were a contributing factor in my selection for a graduate role at [leading professional service company] PwC.”
Amy Abbate BA (Hons) Criminology graduate

Course content

Course Structure

Sociological modules
Rethinking Society
Introducing Social Policy
Sociological Imagination
Social Media and Cyber Lives
Development of Social Theory
Qualitative Research Skills
Social Inequalities and Diversity
Childhood Matters
Contemporary Irish Society
Ageing and the Life Course
Stage 1
Modules emphasise the development of both practical ‘hands on’ data skills and traditional academic learning. Students will receive training in both their substantive discipline (Sociology) and in quantitative research de-sign, methods and analysis.

Modules often draw on international comparisons with a strong Irish (North and South), UK and European emphasis.

Core quantitative methods modules Stage 1
Visualising the Social World
Researching the Social World
Stage 2
Theory Counts
Social Identity: Differences and Inequalities
Stage 3
Quantitative research project and dissertation
Researching Change Across the Life Course
Comparing the Local and the Global

People teaching you

Dr Andrew Percy
Programme Director for BSc Sociology with Quantitative Methods
SSESW
Andrew is a Senior Lecturer in Criminology, and is a Fellow of the Royal Statistical Society.

Contact Teaching Times

Large Group Teaching
5 (hours maximum)
hours of lectures
Medium Group Teaching
2 (hours maximum)
hours of practical classes, workshops or seminars each week
Personal Study
24 (hours maximum)
22–24 hours studying and revising in your own time each week, including some guided study using handouts, online activities, etc
Small Group Teaching/Personal Tutorial
2 (hours maximum)
hours of tutorials (or later, project supervision) each week

Learning and Teaching

At Queen’s, we aim to deliver a high quality learning environment that embeds intellectual curiosity, innovation and best practice in learning, teaching and student support to enable student to achieve their full academic potential. Sociology and Quantitative Methods students at Queen’s are taught in a dynamic academic environment in a School rated as one of the leading departments in the discipline in the United Kingdom.

The BSc (Honours) in Sociology with Quantitative Methods provides a range of learning experiences which enable our students to engage with subject experts, develop attributes, perspectives and practical skills that will equip them for life and work in a global society, and make use of innovative technologies and a world class library that enhances their development as independent, lifelong learners.

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Computer-based practicals

These provide students with the opportunity to develop technical skills in the handling and analysis of real world social data using SPSS, ArcGIS and other data analysis packages.

E-Learning technologies

Information associated with lectures and assignments is often communicated via a Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) called Queen’s Online. A range of e-learning experiences are also embedded in the degree programme through the use of, for example, online discussion forums, research methods modules involving statistics, additional learning resources, online readings, and opportunities to use IT programmes in project- based work.

Flexible teaching space

The course utilises the flexible teaching space within Queen’s to facilitate computer based practical skills labs. Here students have opportunities to work individually and in groups on practical projects developing hands on experience analysing, visualising and presenting social data. For example, SQM 1001 Visualising the Social Work has weekly workshops on designing and producing data visualisations and infographics.

Lectures

These provide introductory information about new topics as a starting point for further self-directed private study/reading. Lectures also provide opportunities to ask questions, gain some feedback and advice on assessments (normally delivered in large groups to all year group peers).

Peer Mentoring

We offer a peer mentoring scheme for our students, which sees specially- trained second and third year students, under the guidance of staff and the Centre for Educational Development, help first year students settle into life at Queen’s through social events, small group or one-to-one informal support and learning skills workshops.

Personal Tutor

Undergraduates are allocated a Personal Tutor from their first day at the university. The Personal Tutor is available to meet with them and to give advice throughout their time at Queen’s, in support of their academic development and to act as an important point of contact with the School.

Self-directed study

This is an essential part of life as a Queen’s student when important private reading, engagement with e-learning resources, reflection on feedback to date and assignment research and preparation work is carried out.

Seminars/tutorials

A significant amount of teaching is carried out in small groups (typically 10-20 students). These sessions are designed to explore, in more depth, the information that has been presented in the lectures. This provides students with the opportunity to engage closely with academic staff who have specialist knowledge of the topic, to ask questions of them and to assess their own progress and understanding with the support of their peers. You should also expect to make presentations and other contributions to these groups.

Supervised projects

In final year, you will be expected to carry out a significant piece of research on a topic that you have chosen. You will receive support from a supervisor who will guide you in terms of how to carry out your research and will provide feedback to you on a one-to-one basis and via email throughout the two semesters.

Work based placements

We offer a number of work placements over the summer period for our Year 2 students. Students receive a Q-Step bursary for the duration of their 4-6 week placement. Students are able to apply the quantitative skills they have gained over the course of their degree within in a suitable work environment.

Work-Related learning/Field Trips/Study Tours

Study visits and field trips are integrated into several of our option modules. The purpose of these tours is to help students apply their learning to the real-work context and to exercise critical thinking and interpretation. Back in the classroom, students undertake a number of group-based tasks in workshops focused on the field trip and present their findings to classmates.

Assessment

Details of assessments associated with this course are outlined below:

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The way in which you are assessed will vary according to the Learning Objectives of each module. Some modules are assessed solely through project work or written assignments. Others are assessed through a combination of coursework and end of semester examinations. Details of how each module is assessed are shown in the Student Handbook which is provided to all students during their first year induction.

Feedback

As students progress through their course at Queen’s they will receive general and specific feedback about their work from a variety of sources including lecturers, module co-ordinators, placement supervisors, personal tutors, advisers of study and peers. University students are expected to engage with reflective practice and to use this approach to improve the quality of their work. Feedback may be provided in a variety of forms including:

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Feedback provided via formal written comments and marks relating to work that you, as an individual or as part of a group, have submitted.

Face to face comment. This may include occasions when you make use of the lecturers’ advertised “office hours” to help you to address a specific query.

Placement employer comments or references.

Online or emailed comment.

General comments or question and answer opportunities at the end of a lecture, seminar or tutorial.

Pre-submission advice regarding the standards you should aim for and common pitfalls to avoid. In some instances, this may be provided in the form of model answers or exemplars which you can review in your own time.

Feedback and outcomes from practical classes provided by peers, teaching assistants and lecturers.

Comment and guidance provided by staff from specialist support services such as, Careers, Employability and Skills or the Learning Development Service.

Once you have reviewed your feedback, you will be encouraged to identify and implement further improvements to the quality of your work.

Facilities

The School is located within a recently renovated building, with state of the art teaching and learning facilities, together with dedicated student space including a large student common room. The teaching facilities enable an interactive learning environment.

Entry Requirements

Entrance requirements

A level requirements
BBB including Mathematics
OR
BBC + AS-level Mathematics grade B
OR
ABB + GCSE Mathematics grade B

Irish leaving certificate requirements
H3H3H3H3H4H4/H3H3H3H3H3 including Higher Level H3 in Mathematics
OR
H3H3H3H3H3H3/H2H3H3H3H3 and Ordinary Level grade O3 in Mathematics

Access/Foundation Course
Successful completion of Access Course with an average of 70% + GCSE Mathematics grade B or equivalent in Access Course.

BTEC Extended diploma
Successful completion of BTEC Extended Diploma with 120 credits at Distinction and 60 credits at Merit + GCSE Mathematics grade B.

Selection Criteria

In addition, to the entrance requirements above, it is essential that you read our guidance notes on 'How we choose our students' prior to submitting your UCAS application. The information relates to 2017 entry and will be updated for 2018 entry as soon as possible.

How we choose our students

Applications are dealt with centrally by the Admissions and Access Service rather than by individual University Schools. Once your on-line form has been processed by UCAS and forwarded to Queen's, an acknowledgement is normally sent within two weeks of its receipt at the University.

Selection is on the basis of the information provided on your UCAS form, which is considered by the Selector for that particular subject or degree programme along with a member of administrative staff from the Admissions Service. Decisions are made on an ongoing basis and will be notified to you via UCAS.

Applicants for this BSc programme must have, or be able to achieve, a minimum of 5 GCSE passes at grade C or better (to include English Language). All applicants must have a minimum of GCSE Mathematics at grade B or above. Performance in any AS or A-level examinations already completed would also have been taken into account and the Selector checks that any specific entry requirements in terms of GCSE and/or A-level subjects can be fulfilled.

Offers are normally made on the basis of 3 A-levels. Two subjects at A-level plus two at AS would also be considered where appropriate. The offer for repeat applicants is set in terms of 3 A-levels and may be one grade higher than that asked from first time applicants. Grades may be held from the previous year.

Applicants offering other qualifications, such as BTEC Extended Diplomas, Higher National Certificates and Diplomas, the International Baccalaureate, Irish Leaving Certificate or an Access course, will also be considered.

The same GCSE profile is usually expected of those applicants taking a BTEC Extended Diploma qualification or a Higher National Certificate (HNC).

The current entrance requirements for applicants offering a BTEC Extended Diploma are successful completion of the BTEC Extended Diploma (180 credits at Level 3) with 120 credits at Distinction and 60 credits at Merit.

For applicants offering a HNC, the current requirements are successful completion of the HNC with 2 Distinctions and remainder Merits. In both instances, the GCSE Maths grade B requirement must also be met.

For those offering a Higher National Diploma, some flexibility may be allowed in terms of GCSE profile but, to be eligible for an offer, at least half of the units completed in the first year of the HND must be at Merit level and remainder Passes. Applicants must successfully complete the HND with 2 Distinctions and remainder Merits in all units assessed in the final year. The GCSE Maths grade B requirement must also be satisfied, and any consideration would be for stage 1 entry only.

Applicants offering Access/Certificate in Foundation Studies courses will be considered individually on their own merits and the standard set is an overall average of 70% in Level 3 modules, with 70% in NICATS maths modules.

The information provided in the personal statement section and the academic reference together with predicted grades are noted but, in the case of Sociology with Quantitative Methods, these are not the final deciding factors in whether or not a conditional offer can be made. However, they may be reconsidered in a tie break situation in August.

A-level General Studies and A-level Critical Thinking would not normally be considered as part of a three A-level offer and, although they may be excluded where an applicant is taking 4 A-level subjects, the grade achieved could be taken into account if necessary in August/September.

Applicants are not normally asked to attend for interview, though there are some exceptions and specific information is provided with the relevant subject areas.

If you are made an offer then you may be invited to an Open Day, which is usually held in the second semester. This will allow you the opportunity to visit the University and to find out more about the degree programme of your choice and the facilities on offer. It also gives you a flavour of the academic and social life at Queen's.

If you cannot find the information you need here, please contact the University Admissions Service (admissions@qub.ac.uk), giving full details of your qualifications and educational background.

INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS

For information on international qualification equivalents, please check the specific information for your country.

English Language Requirements

An IELTS score of 6.5 with a minimum of 5.5 in each test component or an equivalent acceptable qualification, details of which are available at: http://go.qub.ac.uk/EnglishLanguageReqs

If you need to improve your English language skills before you enter this degree programme, INTO Queen's University Belfast offers a range of English language courses. These intensive and flexible courses are designed to improve your English ability for admission to this degree.

  • English for University Study: an intensive English language and study skills course for successful university study at degree level
  • Pre-sessional English: a short intensive academic English course for students starting a degree programme at Queen's University Belfast and who need to improve their English.

INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS - FOUNDATION AND INTERNATIONAL YEAR ONE PROGRAMMES

INTO Queen's offers a range of academic and English language programmes to help prepare international students for undergraduate study at Queen's University. You will learn from experienced teachers in a dedicated international study centre on campus, and will have full access to the University's world-class facilities.

These programmes are designed for international students who do not meet the required academic and English language requirements for direct entry.

INTO - English Language Course(QSIS ELEMENT IS EMPTY)

Careers

Career Prospects

Introduction
There is a recognised shortage of social scientists trained in quantitative methods to meet the demand from employers across all sectors – business, government, charities and academia. Studying Sociology with Quantitative Methods at Queen’s will assist you in developing the core skills and employment-related experiences that are valued by employers.

The diversity of topics covered in the discipline, plus the wide range of research and analytical skills it equips you with, means that our students enter a wide range of careers on graduation. The Economic and Social Research Council's useful guide "Social Science by Numbers" outlines career options for social science graduates with quantitative skills and includes short biographies of people working in a variety of jobs and sectors:

“You find quantitative social scientists working almost anywhere – as advisors and analysts for governmental and non-governmental organisations, in the pharmaceutical industry and health services, business, agriculture and lobby groups, and as lecturers and researchers in academia."

The British Academy's "Stand out and be counted" booklet also highlights the value of quantitative skills to undergraduate students, particular in the social sciences and humanities:

"Quantitative skills underpin effective evidence-based planning and procedure in the public, private and other sectors, as well as ‘blue skies’ thinking."

Employment after the Course
The following is a list of the major career sectors (and indicative starting salaries) that have attracted our sociology graduates in recent years:
Fast Stream Civil Service: £25,000
Diversity Manager: £22,800
Public Policy Analyst: £19,000
Public Relations Officer: £16,000-25,000
Volunteer Coordinator: £20,000-£26,500
Social Researcher: £22,000
Social Worker (after relevant graduate track degree): £23,500
Public Administrator: £22,300
Charity Fundraiser: £15,000-£24,000
Police Officer: £22,300
Teacher (after relevant graduate track degree): £21,500

Professional Opportunities
Sociology graduates work in a wide range of occupations, including the media, civil service, research, teaching, business, commerce, marketing and management. Some graduates build on the degree by undertaking postgraduate training in fields such as social work, law, social science research and teaching.

Recent work placement partners keen to host our undergraduates have included Government Departments such as Research and Information Service at the Northern Ireland Assembly (RaISe), Department of Justice, Department of Agriculture, Environment & Rural Affairs (DAERA), Department for Communities. We have also offered placements within statutory agencies (Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency (NISRA), Probation Board for NI, Public Health Agency), national and local charities (NSPCC, Praxis Care), international market research companies Ipsos Mori, Millward Brown and data journalism specialists The Detail.

What employers say

“Ipsos Mori carries out research for a variety of clients and quantitative skills are essential for our business. We need graduates with a good understanding of quantitative research, from data collection to complex analysis. Being able to demonstrate these skills to an employer such as Ipsos MORI makes any graduate very attractive.”
Fiona Rooney, Managing Director, Ipsos Mori NI and Q-Step work placement provider.

Additional Awards Gained(QSIS ELEMENT IS EMPTY)

Prizes and Awards

The highest achieving students in Sociology are awarded the annual Lockheed Prize. We also support our students entering essays to the annual Undergraduate Awards.

Degree plus award for extra-curricular skills

In addition to your degree programme, at Queen's you can have the opportunity to gain wider life, academic and employability skills. For example, placements, voluntary work, clubs, societies, sports and lots more. So not only do you graduate with a degree recognised from a world leading university, you'll have practical national and international experience plus a wider exposure to life overall. We call this Degree Plus. It's what makes studying at Queen's University Belfast special.

Fees and Funding

Tuition Fees

The tuition fee rates for undergraduate students who first enrol at the University in the academic year 2018-19 have not been agreed. Tuition fees for 2018-19 will be based on 2017-18 levels, normally increased by inflation and these are set out below.

Northern Ireland (NI) £4,030
England, Scotland or Wales (GB) £9,250
Other (non-UK) EU £4,030
International £15,100

Tuition fee rates are calculated based on a student’s tuition fee status and generally increase annually by inflation. How tuition fees are determined is set out in the Student Finance Framework.

Additional course costs

All Students

Depending on the programme of study, there may be extra costs which are not covered by tuition fees, which students will need to consider when planning their studies.

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Students can borrow books and access online learning resources from any Queen's library.

If students wish to purchase recommended texts, rather than borrow them from the University Library, prices per text can range from £30 to £100. A programme may have up to 6 modules per year, each with a recommended text.  

Students should also budget between £30 to £75 per year for photocopying, memory sticks and printing charges.  

Students undertaking a period of work placement or study abroad, as either a compulsory or optional part of their programme, should be aware that they will have to fund additional travel and living costs.

If a final year includes a major project or dissertation, there may be costs associated with transport, accommodation and/or materials. The amount will depend on the project chosen. There may also be additional costs for printing and binding.

Students may wish to consider purchasing an electronic device; costs will vary depending on the specification of the model chosen.

There are also additional charges for graduation ceremonies, examination resits and library fines.

Sociology with Quantitative Methods costs

There are no specific additional course costs associated with this programme.

How do I fund my study?

There are different tuition fee and student financial support arrangements for students from Northern Ireland, those from England, Scotland and Wales (Great Britain), and those from the rest of the European Union.

Information on funding options and financial assistance for undergraduate students is available at http://www.qub.ac.uk/Study/Undergraduate/Fees-and-scholarships/.

Scholarships

Each year, we offer a range of scholarships and prizes for new students. Information on scholarships available.

International Scholarships

Information on scholarships for international students, is available at http://www.qub.ac.uk/International/International-students/International-scholarships/.

* information shown is for 2017-18 and should be used as a guide until 2018-19 scholarships are confirmed.

How and When to Apply

How to Apply

Application for admission to full-time undergraduate and sandwich courses at the University should normally be made through the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS).  Full information can be obtained from the UCAS website at: www.ucas.com/apply.

When to Apply
UCAS will start processing applications for entry in autumn 2018 from 1 September 2017.

Advisory closing date: 15 January 2018 (18:00).

Late applications are, in practice, accepted by UCAS throughout the remainder of the application cycle, but you should understand that they are considered by institutions at their discretion, and there can be no guarantee that they will be given the same full level of consideration as applications received by the advisory closing date.

Applicants are encouraged to apply as early as is consistent with having made a careful and considered choice of institutions and courses.

The Institution code for Queen's is QBELF and the institution code is Q75.

Further information on applying to study at Queen's is available at: http://www.qub.ac.uk/Study/Undergraduate/How-to-apply/

Apply via UCAS
After an offer is made this will be notified to applicants through UCAS. Confirmation will be emailed by the Admissions and Access Service and this communication will also include Terms and Conditions (www.qub.ac.uk/Study/TermsandConditions) which applicants should read carefully in advance of replying to their offer(s) on UCAS Track.

Additional Information for International (non-EU) Students

  1. Applying through UCAS
    Most students make their applications through UCAS (Universities and Colleges Admissions Service) for full-time undergraduate degree programmes at Queen's. The UCAS application deadline for international students is 30 June 2018.
  2. Applying direct
    The Direct Entry Application form is to be used by international applicants who wish to apply directly, and only, to Queen's or who have been asked to provide information in advance of submitting a formal UCAS application. Find out more.
  3. Applying through agents and partners
    The University’s in-country representatives can assist you to submit a UCAS application or a direct application. Please consult the Agent List to find an agent in your country who will help you with your application to Queen’s University.

Download a prospectus

Keywords

DATA ANALYSIS

Q-STEP

QUANTITATIVE METHODS

SOCIAL SCIENCE

SOCIOLOGY

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