Social and Geographic Data Science MSc

London, Bloomsbury

There is ever-growing national and international demand for qualified professionals and scientists who have expertise in social and geographic data science. UCL's Social and Geographic Data Science MSc provides rigorous scientific and vocational training for the next generation of data scientists, with a unique expertise at the interface of social sciences, machine learning, computing and statistics.

UK students International students
Study mode
UK tuition fees (2023/24)
£14,100
£7,050
Overseas tuition fees (2023/24)
£29,000
£14,500
Duration
1 calendar year
2 calendar years
Programme starts
September 2023
Applications accepted
All applicants: 17 Oct 2022 – 31 Mar 2023

Applications open

Entry requirements

Normally a minimum of an upper second-class Bachelor's degree in a relevant discipline from a UK university or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard.

The English language level for this programme is: Level 4

UCL Pre-Master's and Pre-sessional English courses are for international students who are aiming to study for a postgraduate degree at UCL. The courses will develop your academic English and academic skills required to succeed at postgraduate level. International Preparation Courses

Further information can be found on our English language requirements page.

Equivalent qualifications

Country-specific information, including details of when UCL representatives are visiting your part of the world, can be obtained from the International Students website.

International applicants can find out the equivalent qualification for their country by selecting from the list below. Please note that the equivalency will correspond to the broad UK degree classification stated on this page (e.g. upper second-class). Where a specific overall percentage is required in the UK qualification, the international equivalency will be higher than that stated below. Please contact Graduate Admissions should you require further advice.

About this degree

The programme provides a rigorous introduction to social and geographic data science. Optional modules provide the opportunity to develop expertise in advanced methods for a variety of application domains including data mining, cartography, remote sensing, urban studies and citizen science. There is also the possibility of taking modules in subjects related to data analysis and urban policies.

Who this course is for

The programme is particularly suitable for students with an undergraduate degree that has a quantitative component in social science. Applicants with relevant professional experience in data science, geographic information science, social data science or computing will also be considered.

What this course will give you

The Social and Geographic Data Science MSc is run by UCL Geography, which enjoys an outstanding international reputation for its research and teaching. This is a research-led and innovative degree - the academics involved in the delivery of the modules are active researchers in the respective relevant subjects.

Students enter a vibrant, enthusiastic, and international research environment in which collaboration and free-ranging debate are strongly encouraged. UCL's location, in central London, provides easy access to many key intellectual venues and resources, such as the British Library and the Alan Turing Institute.

The foundation of your career

There is an increasing demand for data scientists and, in particular, for candidates that are able to combine technical understanding and in-depth understanding of socio-economic issues. This degree will provide you with a competitive advantage given its unique inter-disciplinary structure.

Employability

There is a national and international need for scientists with skills in data science-based analysis and decision support complemented by a deep knowledge of domain-specific models and analytical methods. The MSc also provides an ideal foundation for PhD research, or for prospective employment within research organisations, consultancies, government departments and a wide range of industries.

Teaching and learning

Assessment is through independent project work, practical-based and written coursework, and the dissertation.

Each 15 credit module involves 150 learning hours per module. This includes taught time (lectures and seminars), independent study, peer-to-peer learning, tutorial support, and assessment and assessment preparation.

A Postgraduate Diploma (120 credits, full-time nine months, part-time two years) is offered. A Postgraduate Certificate (60 credits, full-time 12 weeks, part-time one year) is offered.

Modules


In the first term you will be introduced to the theoretical underpinning and key concepts in social and geographic data science, and the political and societal implications of data science. In the second part of the programme, you will explore more advanced topics in data science and data mining with a specific focus on geographical and socio-economic problems. You will take four compulsory modules, four optional modules and in term 3 and over the summer you will prepare a dissertation in areas relevant to social and geographic data science.

Teaching takes place during terms one and two. Those who undertake part-time study will discuss their pathway through the degree with the degree coordinator. Typically, students will take most of the compulsory core modules, specifically GEOG0114 Principles of Spatial Analysis and GEOG0115 Introduction to Social Data Science in the first term of the first year, in order to cover the prerequisites for GEOG0125 Advanced Topics in Social and Geographic  Data Science (core module) and a number of optional modules that can be taken in year 1 or subsequently in year 2. The dissertation is discussed in year one and completed in term 3 and over the summer of year two. We endeavour to be flexible to the needs of part-time students in designing their pathway through the degree over two years.

Please note that the list of modules given here is indicative. This information is published a long time in advance of enrolment and module content and availability are subject to change. Modules that are in use for the current academic year are linked for further information. Where no link is present, further information is not yet available.

Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits. Upon successful completion of 180 credits, you will be awarded an MSc in Social and Geographic Data Science. Upon successful completion of 120 credits, you will be awarded a PG Dip in Social and Geographic Data Science. Upon successful completion of 60 credits, you will be awarded a PG Cert in Social and Geographic Data Science.

Accessibility

Details of the accessibility of UCL buildings can be obtained from AccessAble accessable.co.uk. Further information can also be obtained from the UCL Student Support & Wellbeing team.

Online - Open day

Graduate Open Events: UCL Geography

Join us to learn more about the following UCL Geography Master’s programmes: Aquatic Conservation, Ecology and Restoration MSc; Climate Change MSc; Conservation MSc; Remote Sensing and Environmental Mapping MSc; Urban Studies MSc; Social and Geographic Data Science MSc. Discover how our programmes are taught and what it's like to study in the department. This event is a great opportunity to meet some of our Master’s Convenors and ask them your own questions.

Fees and funding

Fees for this course

UK students International students
Fee description Full-time Part-time
Tuition fees (2023/24) £14,100 £7,050
Tuition fees (2023/24) £29,000 £14,500

The tuition fees shown are for the year indicated above. Fees for subsequent years may increase or otherwise vary. Where the programme is offered on a flexible/modular basis, fees are charged pro-rata to the appropriate full-time Master's fee taken in an academic session. Further information on fee status, fee increases and the fee schedule can be viewed on the UCL Students website: ucl.ac.uk/students/fees.

Additional costs

Students produce a poster for the final dissertation presentation. Additional costs: approximately £20.

For more information on additional costs for prospective students please go to our estimated cost of essential expenditure at Accommodation and living costs.

Funding your studies

For a comprehensive list of the funding opportunities available at UCL, including funding relevant to your nationality, please visit the Scholarships and Funding website.

Next steps

There is an application processing fee for this programme of £90 for online applications and £115 for paper applications. Further information can be found at Application fees.

When we assess your application we would like to learn:

  • why you want to study Social and Geographic Data Science
  • why you want to study Social and Geographic Data Science at UCL
  • what particularly attracts you to this programme
  • how your academic and/or professional background meets the demands of a challenging academic environment
  • where you would like to go professionally with your degree

Together with essential academic requirements, the personal statement is your opportunity to illustrate whether your reasons for applying to this programme match what the programme will deliver.

Please note that you may submit applications for a maximum of two graduate programmes (or one application for the Law LLM) in any application cycle.

Choose your programme

Please read the Application Guidance before proceeding with your application.

Year of entry: 2023-2024

Got questions? Get in touch

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