MA Social & Political Thought

Graduate Taught (level 9 nfq, credits 90)

SPT is an inter- and multidisciplinary Master’s degree in which a number of UCD Schools participate (Sociology, Philosophy, Geography, History, Music, and Politics and IR).

Thinking about social and political issues and problems doesn’t stop at disciplinary boundaries. The MA in Social and Political Thought harvests the benefits that come with a more openly structured, interdisciplinary approach that is based on a wider contextual appreciation of political and social ideas. It will provide students with a deeper understanding of how ideas play out in practice and develop the knowledge base and critical skills required to think beyond disciplinary boundaries when addressing contemporary social and political problems. 

Curricular information is subject to change

Full Time option suitable for:

Domestic(EEA) applicants: Yes
International (Non EEA) applicants currently residing outside of the EEA Region. Yes

Part Time option suitable for:

Domestic(EEA) applicants: Yes
International (Non EEA) applicants currently residing outside of the EEA Region. No

The SPT degree puts an emphasis on:

- Improving analytical and interpretative skills through analysing politically and socially relevant meanings in texts and other media, and engaging with critical methodological approaches;

- Developing an awareness and diagnostic skills that allow for addressing the complex relationship between thinking and action;

- Building the resourcefulness and facilitating scholarly/intellectual capacity-building powers to address social and political problems and issues;

- Sharing an awareness and encouraging a more self-reflective approach vis-à-vis a purely practical-oriented political engagement or a propensity towards ideological politics;

- Encouraging political and social engagement by stressing the educational dimensions of citizenship and civic engagement.

- Fostering communication and presentations skills, orally and in writing;

No Modules to display for this Course

N.B. The below list is indicative only and subject to change

Core Modules:

  • SPT: Theories and Concepts
  • SPT: Methods and Approaches
  • Dissertation S&P Thought

Optional Modules:

  • Organised Violence and Society
  • Critical Geographies
  • War, Peace & Globalisation (subject to availability)
  • Global History MA Methods
  • Feminist and Gender Theory
  • Political Theory & the European Union
  • International Political Theory
  • Sociological Thinking in the Digital Age
  • Critical Acting
  • Jonathan Swift and Ireland
  • French Colonial Identities
  • Modern Asia
  • Politics of Human Rights
  • Gender, Identity & Difference
  • Developmental Challenges in the Global South
  • AI and Society
  • Exploring Global Solutions
  • Theory of Human Rights
  • Queering Global Challenges

Modules will be mainly lecture- and seminar based.

MA Social & Political Thought (W544) Full Time
EU          fee per year - € 9100
nonEU    fee per year - € 22600

***Fees are subject to change

Tuition fee information is available on the UCD Fees website. Please note that UCD offers a number of graduate scholarships for full-time, self-funding international students, holding an offer of a place on a UCD graduate degree programme. For further information please see International Scholarships.

The Mary Kelly Bursary comprises an award of €2,000 towards university fees to EU students who have been accepted to one of the School of Sociology’s taught masters programmes as a full-time student. For more informatoin please see Mary Kelly Bursary

Applicants should have an undergraduate degree (NFQ Level 8 or international equivalent) in the Social Sciences or Humanities (or equivalent).  A Second Class Honours Grade One (2:1) or higher is required but Second Class Honours Grade Two (2:2) standard or equivalent may be considered. 

All candidates are expected to be proficient in written and spoken English. Applicants whose primary language is not English must submit evidence of a certificate of proficiency (such as TOEFL, Cambridge or IELTS). Test results must be less than two years old. Details of english language requirements can be found here

Students meeting the programme’s academic entry requirements but not the English language requirements, may enter the programme upon  successful completion of UCD’s Pre-Sessional or International Pre-Master’s Pathway programmes. Please see the following link for further information 

Prof Andreas Hess
Programme Director

Being a good citizen and intellectual openness depend on each other. The Social and Political Thought Masters degree offers a critical perspective on the all-too-often prevailing methodological nationalism and the tendency to form fragmented communities of academic disciplines that all too often follow solely the somewhat limited horizon of the existing division of labour

The following entry routes are available:

MA Social & Political Thought FT (W544)
1 Years
Full Time
MA Social & Political Thought PT (W545)
2 Years
Part Time