The total study load for the Master's programme is 60 ECTS. It consists of two components:

  • a coursework component (6 courses amounting to 30 ECTS);
  • a research component (internship and thesis amounting to 30 ECTS).

2021-2022 programme

In the first block, all students participate in a joint programme regardless of their chosen track. Two courses, each worth 5 ECTS, form the core of the first teaching period:

These courses tackle various aspects of policy processes and organisational processes from a theoretical and empirical perspective. You will develop skills in the fields of social-science policy and research.

Academic professional

In the first block, you will also begin the Academic Professional (AP) course. This course covers the entire year and helps you develop your professional identity in preparation for the labour market.

It consists of a practical empirical research project largely concentrated in period 1 and 2 and peer coaching and supervision sessions in period 3 and 4 to help you reflect on your professional development during the internship period and as preparation for the labour market. In this part of the course, alumni and other young professionals provide insights into their own professional practice and other aspects of the professional environment they work in.

Internship preparations

In the first period, students also begin preparations for selecting and being hired for an internship position for periods 3 and 4. A number of group sessions focusing on applying for internships will be held to support you in finding a suitable internship position and, in turn, you will also brainstorm with other students about their prospective internship possibilities.

In period 2 you'll choose between one of the following tracks: Essentials of Care, Criminology and Safety en Internet, Social Media & Networks. See the courses page for more details about the content of each track.

Each track includes three components:

  1. The core sociological track course;
  2. A track elective from another discipline. You may choose between several options provided by the programme or - in consultation with the track coordinator - select a suitable course yourself. (The provided options for each track are indicated in the track descriptions below).
  3. A choice between one of the two other core sociological track courses from the other tracks.

Although you are able to focus on specific content in each track, we believe in the importance of linking theories and tracks to tackle important societal issues. For instance, domestic violence as a topic linking care and crime, or online bullying as a topic linking social networks and crime. We encourage students to seek these links in their sociological track course research papers.

In September you must choose which track you want to follow. The track registration is no later than 30 September. Between Thursday 28 October at 8:00 a.m. and Wednesday 3 November at 11:59 p.m., you will select your elective and second sociological track course.

In the second semester (periods 3 and 4), you will do an internship (15 ECTS) and write a Master’s thesis (15 ECTS) in which you report your findings from an independently conducted research project. 

Internship and thesis are closely related, since you will use data obtained during the internship in the thesis, taking a theoretical-empirical approach. You will conduct (preferably quantitative) policy research on a social and / or societal issue that ideally relates to your selected track.

You may only begin the research component once you have completed the 'Policy Research and Advice' and 'Sociology, Theory and Research' courses and the compulsory courses within your track. (See Article 4.3.5 of the Education and Examination Regulations).