Social Development Practice MSc
Options: PG Diploma
This MSc offers a critical approach to 'people-centred' development, addressing the challenges for equitable citizenship in the context of social diversity and globalisation. Participants gain a wide range of experience, and develop their understanding of current theoretical debates alongside the skills required to be a reflective social development practitioner.
Mode of study
- Full-time 1 year
- Part-time 2 years
- Flexible 3-5 years
- UK/EU Full-time: £10,800
- Overseas Full-time: £19,050
- All applicants: 5 September 2014
More details in Application section.
What will I learn?
The central focus of the course is the relationship between active citizenship and development, with the recognition that diverse identities and aspirations are critical components of social change. This course offers the opportunity to engage with the theoretical and practical tools for promoting well-being, exploring the role of practitioners in supporting the contestation of rights and working towards social justice.
Why should I study this degree at UCL?
The course is intended to introduce participants to critical, analytical and practical skills that will be of use in their future careers, whether as academics, social development practitioners or advocates for the need to place the 'social' at the centre of development. Accordingly it provides participants with the opportunity to critically examine relevant bodies of knowledge, current debates and experience from the field and invites them to consider how social development concerns can be effectively addressed in the processes of development policy, planning and practice.
Students on this MSc benefit from the strong practical component, which includes fieldwork assignments in London and abroad. An international fieldtrip takes students to a developing country, providing an opportunity to develop practical skills, use tools for participatory action research, and reflect on the roles and responsibilities of social development practitioners.
Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits. The programme consists of three core modules (90 credits), one option (30 credits) and a development and planning report (60 credits).
A Postgraduate Diploma (120 credits, full-time nine months) is offered.
All MSc students submit a 10,000 word report on a topic related to the main themes of the programme. The topic can be chosen to enhance career development or for its inherent interest.
Teaching and Learning
The programme is delivered through a combination of lectures, seminars, practical classroom exercises, and field work within the UK and abroad. Practical work, including the overseas group fieldwork report, will comprise part of the total programme credits. Student performance is assessed through course work, examinations, and a dissertation report.
Further details available on subject website:
Applicants may be eligible for the DFID Shared Scholarship Scheme and the Otto Koenigsberger Scholarship.
Scholarships available for this department
This scholarship is to assist prospective Master's students from developing Commonwealth countries who are of excellent academic calibre but for financial reasons would not otherwise be able to afford to study in the United Kingdom. Students must not have previously studied for one year or more in a developed country and must hold the equivalent of a UK first- or upper second-class undergraduate degree. Students must have applied to study one of the 10 eligible Master's programmes. Students must return to their home country on completion of their degree.
Founded in 1995 by Jenny Rossiter, who graduated from the DPU in 1994, in memory of her husband, David Thomas, a Financial Times journalist who was killed on assignment in Kuwait in April 1991. The Scholarship is awarded to assist a DPU student to travel to a developing country to research on matters directly related to his or her Master's Dissertation or Thesis in the field of housing studies.
The purpose of the OKS is to support overseas candidates of the highest calibre for postgraduate study at MSc level, in the expectation that as graduates, these scholars will make important contributions to urban development by drawing on the strengths of the international perspective and leading position of the DPU in the development field.
These scholarships are based on financial need.
Further information about funding and scholarships can be found on the Scholarships and funding website.
The normal minimum qualifications are a good second-class Bachelor's degree from a UK university or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard.
A second acceptable qualification is a degree of lower than second-class Honours standard, or an equivalent overseas qualification, in a subject appropriate to the programme, plus relevant work experience. Applicants who do not hold a first degree may, in exceptional cases, be admitted to the programme if they are able to demonstrate considerable senior-level professional experience in planning or a related field.
Select your country for equivalent alternative requirements
English language proficiency level: Standard
How to apply
Students are advised to apply as early as possible due to competition for places. Those applying for scholarship funding (particularly overseas applicants) should take note of application deadlines.
The deadline for applications is 5 September 2014.
Who can apply?
This MSc attracts participants from a wide variety of disciplines including sociology, economics, anthropology, international studies, history, communication studies, geography and psychology. It provides the critical, analytical and practical skills necessary for their future careers as academics, social development practitioners or advocates.
What are we looking for?
When we assess your application we would like to learn:
- why you want to study Social Development Practice at graduate level
- why you want to study Social Development Practice at UCL
- what particularly attracts you to the chosen programme
- what do you think you will bring to the course
- how your academic and professional background meets the demands of this challenging programme
- where you would like to go professionally with your degree
Graduates of the programme are now working in a number of professional capacities some of which include: programme officers for an international NGO (Dhaka), national NGO officers in Indonesia and the UK, advisor/ trainer for a women's human rights group (Croatia), project officer with UK academic institution, consultants working in both British and overseas companies and officers in national and local government institutions. Some graduates pursue an academic career, either through doctoral studies or through teaching and research in a number of prestigious universities.
"The students at the DPU come from many international locations and backgrounds, which means we are always hearing about developments in different parts of the world from people who have first experience of them, whether this is in Syria, Indonesia, Congo or Brazil."
Dr Vanesa Castán Broto
Lecturer in Environment and Sustainable Development
"London is the hub of the most interesting things going on in the UK, with governmental organisations, built environment consultancies and some great academic institutions."
Dr Robin Hickman
Senior Lecturer in Transport Planning