Graduate Diploma in Social Sciences

Prepare for a postgraduate degree at Queen's University Belfast

A programme designed to improve your English language skills, increase your knowledge of academic theory, and develop your understanding of the Social Sciences at a postgraduate level.

Why apply for the Graduate Diploma programme?

  • university placement for all successful students
  • a quality-assured university programme with full university student status
  • additional focus on improving language skills with an intensive English Language module
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What's special about this programme?

  • You are a student of the University from day one.
  • A quality-assured university programme.
  • A tailor-made programme designed and validated in partnership with Queen’s University Belfast.
  • University-style teaching with high contact hours and small class sizes.
  • Qualified and experienced teachers.
  • Guaranteed progression to your chosen postgraduate degree, subject to meeting progression requirements.
  • Professional help and support with your application to university.
  • Intensive English language tuition.

Teaching methods

Throughout your programme you will receive advice and feedback from your teachers during seminars and tutorials. You will also have regular one-to-one meetings with your personal tutor where you will discuss your achievements, progress and plan for e ective future study. They will be able to answer any questions and provide guidance, to ensure your academic success.

Who should apply for the Graduate Diploma programme?

The Graduate Diploma is suitable for international students who gained an undergraduate degree in social sciences or any other relevant social science related subject and need to upgrade qualifications to UK postgraduate standard. The Graduate Diploma is also suitable for those who want to increase or deepen their subject knowledge or those who need to improve their English language study skills within the context of their chosen subject.

What will I study?

You will study the following modules:

English for Academic Purposes

This module enables students to develop the four key areas of competence in English: reading, writing, listening and speaking, with a particular emphasis on high-level academic writing skills. Students will develop the critical writing and oral communications skills appropriate for work at Masters level including skills in problem solving, decision-making, critical thinking, team working and interaction. This includes planning, managing priorities, managing time and negotiating; plus essential skills to critically analyse, evaluate and synthesise information from a wide variety of sources.

Empirical Enquiry and Critical Thought

The aim of the module is to develop students’ skills and abilities to investigate, understand and interpret information as applied in a social scientific context. The module has two specific objectives. Firstly, it introduces students to the philosophical and ethical underpinnings of research (critical thought), as well as to a range of data collection techniques used therein (empirical enquiry). Second, it seeks to help students apply these analysis skills to real-life case problems. This module analyses and evaluates each of the key stages in the research process drawing on an appropriate range of theory. It then critiques this theory as applied to the social sciences.

Exploring Culture

The increasingly complex and global nature of the social sciences brings many challenges, not least in relation to understanding and appreciating the impact of national cultures in an organisational context. This module provides a broader understanding of the significance of cultural identity, diversity and cultural shock within and across national and multinational organisations. It stresses the need to develop cross-cultural competence and introduces a range of academic models to help guide development of this core capability.

Foundations of Social Science

This module develops knowledge, understanding and skills in relation to the foundational ideas of social science. The origins of social scientific thinking are introduced through original texts and more modern syntheses and placed in a historical and contemporary content. Students are encouraged to see theorists and theories as complementary rather than replacements for each other. A key feature of the module is establishing the link between these foundational ideas and contemporary social science.

Research Design

This module will enable social sciences students to apply what they have learnt in the Empirical Enquiry and Critical Thought module and to focus on their proposed area for study at postgraduate level. The module aims to provide students with the skills to identify a research problem, develop a research question and choose an overall strategy that will integrate the different components of their proposed study in a coherent and logical way. An emphasis is placed on the critical choices to be made within the research process.

 

How will I be assessed?

Assessment will be through examinations and coursework including: written assignments, practical exercises, group and individual research projects, presentations and problem-solving exercises.

Academic assessment

Assessment of academic modules will be based on:

  • Written and oral examinations
  • Essays
  • Portfolio work

Research assessment

Assessment of the research component will be based on the final written version of a research project.

Progression

If you successfully complete the relevant Graduate Diploma programme at INTO Queen's University Belfast, and meet the required scores for entry to your selected degree programme, you will be guaranteed entry onto designated postgraduate degree programmes at Queen's University Belfast. You will also be able to apply to other universities in the UK.

How do I qualify?

Academic requirements:

Pass in an undergraduate degree or a diploma (3-5 years) with good grades.
For information about country-specific entry requirements please contact us.

English requirements:

3-term: IELTS 5.5 (with a minimum of 5.5 in all subskills) or equivalent.
4-term: IELTS 5.0 (with a minimum of 5.0 in all subskills) or equivalent.

Please note that in addition to the UKVI IELTS, INTO is able to accept other English language qualifications. For more information on accepted qualifications please see: www.intostudy.com/selt-alternatives
If you have any questions, our experienced team will be able to help you. Email your questions to: [email protected]

If you do not meet the minimum English language level you can apply for our Academic English course.

Age:

18 years and above

When can I start?

 

Start date Term dates Fees

September 2017 start
(3 term)

Term 1: Mon 18 Sep 2017 to Fri 15 Dec 2017

Term 2: Mon 08 Jan 2018 to Fri 23 Mar 2018

Term 3: Mon 09 Apr 2018 to Fri 08 Jun 2018

£15,495

September 2017 start
(4 term)

Term 1: Mon 18 Sep 2017 to Fri 01 Dec 2017

Term 2: Mon 08 Jan 2018 to Fri 23 Mar 2018

Term 3: Mon 26 Mar 2018 to Fri 08 Jun 2018

Term 4: Mon 11 Jun 2018 to Fri 24 Aug 2018

£19,945

January 2018 start
(3 term)

Term 1: Mon 08 Jan 2018 to Fri 23 Mar 2018

Term 2: Mon 26 Mar 2018 to Fri 08 Jun 2018

Term 3: Mon 11 Jun 2018 to Fri 24 Aug 2018

£15,495

Tuition fees do not include:

  • enrolment fee - an additional charge of £150 per academic programme (to be charged upon confirmation)
  • text books - an additional charge in the region of £270-£350 per academic course

 

Is accommodation included in the fees?

Accommodation is not included in the fees. View our accommodation options.

How do I pay?

You can pay by bank transfer or by credit card. Please contact us for bank transfer details.

What's the difference between the 3 and 4 term course?

The 4 term course has Pre-Sessional English at the beginning and will typically have a lower English language entry requirement than the 3 term option.

How do I apply?

You can apply online or by post. Find out more about how to apply.

Where will it take me?

On completion of the Graduate Diploma you will be eligible to progress to the following degrees at Queen’s University Belfast. Other progression degrees may be available, please contact the Centre for further information.

Degree English Grade Overall Grade
Arts, English and Languages
MA Arts Management
MA Interpreting
MA Translation
Grade B overall with no less than Grade D in each test component 60% overall average with no less than 50% in each academic module
Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
MA Film Studies Grade B overall with no less than Grade D in each test component 60% overall average with no less than 50% in each academic module
History, Anthropology, Philosophy and Politics
MA History
MA International Relations
MA Politics
MA Violence Terrorism and Security
Grade B overall with no less than Grade D in each test component 60% overall average with no less than 50% in each academic module
Institute of Theology
MTh Theology Grade B overall with no less than Grade D in each test component 60% overall average with no less than 50% in each academic module
Law
LLM Criminal Justice
Human Rights and Criminal Justice
Human Rights Law
International Business Law
LLM Law
MA Law
Grade B overall with no less than Grade D in each test component 60% overall average with no less than 50% in each academic module
Social Sciences, Education and Social Work
MEd Educational Studies
MEd Inclusion and Special Needs Education
MSc Children's Rights
MRes Social Science Research
MSc Youth Justice
Grade B overall with no less than Grade D in each test component 60% overall average with no less than 50% in each academic module
Senator George J. Mitchell Institute for Global Peace, Security and Justice
MA Conflict Transformation and Social Justice Grade B overall with no less than Grade D in each test component 60% overall average with no less than 50% in each academic module
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