Information about the aims, unique features and content of this Master's programme:
The Master's programme Sociology: Contemporary Social Problems aims at training academic professionals who can contribute to mapping out, analysing and solving topical social problems in various contexts (government, profit and non-profit sectors).
You will learn to carry out practice-based social science research in an independent fashion and to apply academic skills and scientific knowledge to practice. The programme will develop your awareness of the contextual certainty of practical social issues, policy dilemma's and interventions as well as help you build your professional identity.
The programme is comparative in nature and the sociological core is complemented with an elective from another discipline. Potential careers include applied researcher in the corporate world, policy advisor at a ministry or municipality, project coordinator or consultant in the private sector.
The unique features of the programme include:
- An empirical approach to the study of contemporary social problems with strong interplay between theory and practice, using state of the art academic knowledge: primarily from Sociology with additions from neighbouring fields (e.g. Psychology, Urban Geography, Cultural Anthropology).
- A strong focus on three distinguishable tracks to promote in depth domain-specific analysis and concrete application of academic knowledge to particular contemporary social problems (‘Criminology and Safety’, ‘Internet, Social Media & Networks’ and ‘Essentials of Care’).
- An acquisition of professional skills such as cooperative behaviour, integrity and ethical (self)reflection to successfully make the transition from student to academic professional.
- A mandatory internship in the second half of the programme.
- A very strong emphasis on a community-based learning environment.
The programme consists of joint courses in the first quarter, track specific courses in the second quarter and an internship plus thesis research in the third and fourth quarter of the year.
In the joint courses in the first quarter, you will learn how sociological theories and methods can be used in practice. You will analyse complex social problems, evaluate intended or unintended consequences of policy interventions in a scientific manner and conduct research in both profit and non-profit organisations.
In the chosen track of the second quarter you will follow two sociological courses and an additional elective from another discipline, deepening your domain-specific understanding of specific contemporary social problems.
The third and fourth quarter are devoted to your internship and thesis. You'll immerse yourself in a professional environment and also collect or analyse data for the thesis and - possibly - write a separate internship report.
Throughout the year the Academic Professional course will help you build professional skills you'll need in the internship and future work environment.
After obtaining your diploma, you are entitled to use the title Master of Science.