Current MA Student Profiles
The Sociology Department at Lancaster has seen me through my Undergradtuate degree, now my masters and soon my PhD. I can’t imagine study anywhere else. The seminars are always engaging, the debates insightful and everyone is supportive and genuinely interested in helping you develop. Studying here has made me not just a better academic, but a more confident and open-minded thinker.
-Lizzie Houghton MA Sociological Research student
- Editor of 'The Sociologist' Post Graduate Magazine
I came to Lancaster University as an Undergraduate in 2009 to study psychology as a major subject with sociology as my minor subject. After one year, I came to realise that sociology was where I should be. Four years on I am now studying for a Masters in sociology and hope to proceed to PhD research. My story is not that different to that of many other students, with the exception that I am beyond state pension age. After a career in industry, education, and self employed consultancy spanning fifty years, with a lifetime of developing personal views and stances on the world around me, to say that re-entry to Higher education, particularly in sociology was demanding, academically and intellectually stretching would not be an understatement. My academic and intellectual experience at Lancaster University in the Sociology Department has challenged my personal attitudes and established worldview. At time’s finding myself confusing experience with theory, values with attitudes and always, always feeling challenged to find the sociological “elephant in the room”.
Throughout I have had the benefit of an exceptional level of intellectual standard from the academic staff in both tutorial/seminar and lecturers. I agree with one of my fellow Masters student who has also recognised and put my thoughts into words perfectly that, “despite their status and unquestioned expertise, all members of the teaching staff at Lancaster, are as affable and supportive as I have found the non-academic staff to be, which helps to ensure that postgraduate study at Lancaster is as enjoyable and beneficial as possible”.
Academic excellence is obviously of great importance, however, friendly exchanges and conversation between staff and postgraduate students from around the world, creates an exciting “can do” atmosphere. I would commend the Department of Sociology at Lancaster University to any potential postgraduate student, particularly those people entering the “third age” needing to up-skill for an unexpected extended working life, or change of career.
-Alice Waite MA Sociology
Having studied in Lancaster is one of the happy moments in my life. I found wonderful friends, professors, and experience. There is nothing I regret of being in Lancaster University. Furthermore, I got a lot of insight due to sociology issues. If you want to have new insightful studying experience, I would like to say: put Lancaster University on your first list! :)
-Nur Latifah Umi Satiti MA Media & Cultural Studies
I came to Lancaster to do my MA as a part time student in Sociology and Gender and Womens Studies in Sept 2011. Being able to spread my MA studies over 2 years has enabled me to work and manage my studies. I have quite an eclectic background with some years in the Police and many other years working as an advocate in the community. Passionate about women`s issues I was overjoyed to get a place at a prestigious University department and the opportunity to be taught by leading academics in their fields. Last year I began teaching post at the University of Cumbria in Criminology and Policing and the flexibility of the MA programme has enabled me to take a Criminology module and follow my interest area of gender and crime in other modules. I have made many lovely friends from all over the world and found the experience stimulating, challenging but inspirational.
-Carolyne James MA Sociology and Gender and Womens Studies
Alumni MA Student Profiles
I came to Lancaster University to study for a Masters in Sociological Research Methods, since this ESRC recognised course would provide me with the necessary skills to undertake doctoral research. I was lucky enough to be awarded an ESRC studentship to fund my studies during the next four years. My specialist interest is gender inequalities in the workplace and Professor Sylvia Walby, who is world renowned for her work on gender, and is located at Lancaster University, will be my doctoral supervisor. Sociological Research Methods has been a challenging but extremely enjoyable experience. Probably my greatest achievement was mastering SPSS (the Statistical Package for Social Scientists). The module 'Research Methods in Practice'also provided me with the experience of undertaking empirical research with like minded colleagues and receiving invaluable feedback from my peers and the course convenor. The staff at Lancaster are friendly and easily accessible, and my advice to future students would be 'do not be afraid to ask'!
-Shireen Chilcott MA Sociological Research Methods
I came to study a methodological MA at Lancaster to furnish me with the
necessary skills to conduct doctoral research. I wasn't aware that
I would be conducting a piece of empirical research in the first term.
This approach escapes the restrictive confines of 'text book'
methodology courses. Engaging simultaneously with the reality of how research
actually gets done, as well as the more expected focus on why certain
methodologies are deployed and for what ends. It is a genuinely communal
process of learning with weekly sessions involving several groups reporting
to each other on their research project's development. Lancaster
Sociology is certainly an exciting department to be working in. This much
can be discerned from a few minutes roaming the staff pages and departmental
website. Inevitably the website cannot communicate the feeling of being
part of the department, the openness of the staff (both academic and support)
and the enthusiasm of the MA and PhD students. It is these aspects that
make Lancaster Sociology what it is.
MA Sociological Research
I came to LancasterUniversity in 2004 for the Masters of Environment, Culture and Society program because it offered me everything I was lookingfor in an MA. I loved the program and thoroughly enjoyed the courses and research I undertook during my year there.Upon completion I returned toCanada where I currently work on energy and climate change policy research and analysis. I am now thinking about returning to the academic world to start a PhD or work with research projects which delve into the complexities of our current social issues.
-Kate McDonald MA Environment, Culture and Society
I arrived to Lancaster to do my MA Sociological Research degree with high expectations, but my stay there actually exceeded those expectations! Lancaster Sociology is not just a world class academic department, where you can familiarise yourself with cutting edge theory, but so much more! Novel approaches to research, methdology and theory were not just buzzwords during the time I spent there, but constant inspiration for me. It was hard not to overbook myself with the various open seminars, workshops and reading groups at Sociology and other departments. Lancaster made interdisciplinarity meaningful. There is a great postgraduate community, to which I owe many great friends and insightful conversations. Both students and staff are generally very easily accessible. You can just pop in to the office of virtually any member of staff you would like to talk to, or have a pint with the postgrads after a long day. My stay in Lancaster was one of the best and most productive years of my life. I hope you will have the same experience!
- Marton Fabok MA Sociological Research
I undertook my MA in Environment, Culture and Society between 1998 and 2000, whilst I was working at Cumbria County Council. The diverse landscape and economy of the county ensured that much of the knowledge I gained was immediately useful in public policy-making. I later moved to London where, in addition to employment at the Local Government Association and later at the BBC, I became Deputy Leader of Barnet Council with responsibility for environmental issues. During that time I introduced a compulsory recycling scheme amongst the 300,000 residents (the first in the country), undertook a Carbon Trust scheme to identify and reduce carbon emissions across the borough and oversaw a massive road safety programme that reduced the number of Killed and Seriously Injured people by over 45%.
What am I doing now? In May 2010 I was elected as a Conservative Member of Parliament for the constituency of Hendon in North London. In addition to my constituents’ concerns, I maintain an active interest in environmental issues, particularly hydropolitics, water quality, energy security, rural policy, agriculture, food security, economic development and pharmacology.
In January 2012 I was awarded my PhD at King’s College London entitled Rural Governance and Economic Development: The Changing Landscape of Rural Local Government
-Matthew Offord MA Environment, Culture and Society
If you have any questions or require further information on any of our degree programmes please contact
Sociology PG Admissions
Talk to a current MA Student
Want student perspective on course content, University life, the City of Lancaster or anything else? Email us to arrange a chat with a current student in the Department.