Social Policy BSc (Hons)
4 years including placement year, starting in September 2018
Develop an interdisciplinary approach to the study of how governments and society address social welfare, social justice and individual wellbeing.
In this course, you'll analyse the transformation of the welfare state and the creation of a more diverse system of welfare. This will enable you to relate these changes to societal, technological and economic changes in Britain and elsewhere.
In the first year, you will study social policy, sociology and research methods. In social policy units, you will undertake advanced analysis of specific policy areas.
In the second year, you'll be able to study the related disciplines of sociology, economics, psychology and politics.
In your final year, you will undertake a dissertation.
You’ll learn from academics with expertise in sociology and social policy. Their international collaborations and research activities feed into undergraduate teaching and contribute to your learning experience.
Those who study our social sciences degrees have excellent career options. Our graduates have worked as social and policy researchers, social carers, journalists, accountants and in a variety of business-related roles.
They have gone on to work for :
- Save the Children
- Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner
- Education Support Partnership
- Virgin Media
- Viiv Healthcare
- Richmond Housing Partnership
Find out more about what our graduates go on to do.
This course lasts 4 years. It starts in September 2018 and ends in 2022. Induction week starts on 24 September 2018.
Occasionally we make changes to our programmes in response to, for example, feedback from students, developments in research and the field of studies, and the requirements of accrediting bodies. You will be advised of any significant changes to the advertised programme, in accordance with our Terms and Conditions.
- Year 1
- Year 2
- Year 4
As part of your course, you will take compulsory units covering key concepts. You may also be able to take optional units which assist you in developing your own interests.
You need to take 60 credits in each year of your course (usually split equally into 30 credits for each semester), so the number of optional units you can take depends on the number of compulsory units in each year of the course.
Six credits are the equivalent of at least 120 hours of study, including contact time with staff and independent study.
Compulsory course units
These compulsory units are currently being studied by our students, or are proposed new units.
- Social problems and social policy
- Understanding society: Britain in global context
- Academic and research skills 1: introduction to qualitative methods
- Social policy, welfare and the state
- Classical sociological theory
- Academic and research skills 2: introduction to quantitative methods
- Plus optional units
- Placement year
The placement year will give you valuable practical experience and is an excellent opportunity to try different careers. It enables you to leave university with a strong CV, setting you apart from other graduates entering the job market. You can take placements in commercial, voluntary or government organisations, or in a research setting. Placements may be paid or unpaid.
Our Department of Social & Policy Sciences has established links and partnerships with many organisations. Social Policy students have recently taken placements at:
- The Health Foundation
- House of Commons
- the Singapore Government
- Carbon Trust
- Body Shop
Placement opportunities may not be guaranteed. See how to apply for a placement and the support we offer or view an overview video.
Learning and assessment
- Laboratory sessions
- Oral assessment
- Practical work
- Written examination
Typical assessment breakdown
This average assessment breakdown is based on a typical choice of optional units. Your specific unit choices will determine the actual breakdown of assessment methods that you will experience.
|Year||Written Exam||Practical Exam||Coursework|
Typical contact time breakdown
This average contact time breakdown is based on a typical choice of optional units. Scheduled learning and teaching may include: lectures, seminars, tutorials and workshops. Your optional unit choices will determine your actual personal contact hours.
“I have thoroughly enjoyed my placement so far, there have been lots of opportunities to get involved.”John Wood
BSc Social Policy with Placement (placement at House of Commons) (2015)
Your application, especially your personal statement, should demonstrate your enthusiasm for your chosen degree. This might include relevant reading, voluntary work or additional study, such as a relevant EPQ. When describing your experiences you should reflect on what you have learnt from them, how they have influenced your development or how they are relevant to your future studies.
We prefer applicants with at least one humanities or social science subject as part of their entry qualifications. This subject might be:
- Religious Studies
If you are taking A levels, we may be unable to consider an A level in your own language (unless it is English or Welsh). We do not accept A levels in General Studies. If you are taking a GCSE A level in a science subject, you will need to pass any separate science practical endorsement.
Select the country where your qualification comes from.
Typical offer A levelAAB
AAB with preference for at least one humanities subject such as History, Religious Studies, Geography, Sociology, Politics, Government and Politics, Philosophy or Psychology.
Alternative offer A levelABB
AAB required grades plus one of the following:
- grade A in an EPQ
- grade B in the Welsh Baccalaureate Skills Challenge Certificate
- grade M1 in Cambridge Pre-U Global Perspectives
Typical offers for other qualifications
35 points overall and 6, 6, 5 in three Higher Level subjects.
Access to HE Diploma
Pass the Access to HE Diploma, with at least 33 credits achieved at Distinction and 6 credits achieved at Merit above. This must include at least 9 credits achieved at Distinction in an essay-based subject.
BTEC and Cambridge Technical
D*DD in a BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma (QCF)/ BTEC Level 3 National Extended Diploma (RQF)/ Cambridge Technical Level 3 Extended Diploma.
If you are studying towards the above Cambridge Technical qualification, we prefer you to have taken optional units in Sociology and Public Health.
See the ‘Combinations of qualifications’ section for information about combinations of A level and BTEC qualifications that we can consider.
D3, D3, M1
D3, M1, M1 plus one of the following:
- grade A in an EPQ
- grade B in the Welsh Baccalaureate Skills Challenge
- grade M1 in Cambridge Pre-U Global Perspectives
Students presenting with one of the above project qualifications should receive both the typical offer and the alternative.
Open University Credits
Typically, we would be looking for you to have studied units worth at least 120 credits, including at least 30 credits at Level 2. We would generally be looking for you to have taken relevant units in essay-based subjects, preferably social sciences.
This information is a guide and all students applying with Open University Credits will be considered on a case-by-case basis. We will consider your application carefully and take note of any previous qualifications or relevant work experience. Please contact us to discuss your profile before making an application.
Pass units worth 120 credits, including a minimum of a Pass 2 with 70% in a relevant essay-based Level 2 unit.
Please note that taking OU credits may be counted as degree-level study by the Student Loans Company and therefore may be counted as previous study and have an impact on your ability to access student loans/grants for the entirety of your chosen degree. We recommend that you discuss this in detail with the SLC before following this progression route to the University of Bath.
AB in Advanced Highers plus AAABB in Scottish Highers.
Combinations of qualifications
Your application will be considered individually based on the particular combination of qualifications and subjects that you are taking.
We can consider combinations of accepted qualifications, such as A levels and a BTEC:
- AB in two A level subjects plus D in the BTEC Subsidiary Diploma (QCF) / National Extended Certificate (RQF) OR the Cambridge Technical Introductory Diploma (QCF)/Cambridge Technical Extended Certificate (RQF)
- A in one A level subject plus DD in the BTEC Diploma (QCF) / National Diploma (RQF)
- AB in two A level subjects plus M1 in a Pre-U Principal Subject
- AB in two A level subjects plus 5 in an IB HL Certificate. While we do not consider the IB Careers Programme for entry, we are able to consider the combinations of components that are typically offered by this route, such as BTEC and IB HL Certificate combinations
- ABB in two A level subjects excluding Accounting plus the IFS Diploma in Financial Studies
We can also consider combinations that are not listed and that do not include A levels. You should read the information about essential and preferred subjects and subject combinations. We cannot consider different qualifications in the same subject area.
Advanced Placement Tests
5, 5, 4 in 3 APs.
We accept no more than one Calculus AP as one of these 3 subjects.
You will also need to pass your High School Diploma and achieve an ACT score of 29 or SATR scores of 700 in both Mathematics and Evidence based Reading and Writing.
SAT Subject Tests
We do not accept SAT Subject Tests for direct entry to our degrees.
Higher Secondary School Certificate (12th Standard)
Average of 80% across 4 subjects.
We do not accept Physical Education as one of these 4 subjects.
These requirements are for the CBSE, HSSC and ISC boards. Please contact us if you are taking this qualification with a different board.
79% overall with 8.5 in one subject.
14.5 overall with 15 in either Economics and Social Sciences or History and Geography.
Option Internationale Baccalaureate (OIB)
13.5 overall with 15 in either Economics and Social Sciences or History and Geography.
Hong Kong Diploma of Secondary Education
554 in 3 elective subjects OR 55 in 2 elective subjects plus 5 in any Mathematics extended paper.
Irish Leaving Certificate
H1, H2, H2, H2, H3, H3 in 6 Irish Leaving Certificates.
Titulo de Bachiller
A score of 8.5 overall.
Singapore A levels
AAB in 3 H2 level subjects.
Polytechnic Diploma (3 years)
Lise Bitirme Diplomasi
CGPA of 75% with 80% in an essay based subject from the final year.
19 in the Apolytirion plus AB in two A levels .
We cannot accept the Apolytirion unless it is studied alongside A levels. We do not accept Pan Hellenic examinations in place of an A level.
19 in the Apolytirion plus AB in two A levels .
We cannot accept the Apolytirion unless it is studied alongside A levels.
Fees and funding
You can pay your tuition fees by Direct Debit, debit card, credit card, cheque, bank transfer or cash. You may also be eligible for a student loan to help you pay your fees.Read more about your payment options
Your tuition fees and how you pay them will depend on whether you are a Home, EU, Island or Overseas student.Learn how we decide fee status
Placement fees vary
You will normally pay a reduced tuition fee while on a placement period or studying abroad. Find out more about placement fees and study abroad fees.
You will need to budget at least £100 for the cost of photocopying, printing and binding. You will also need to budget for the cost of text books.
Some courses involve visits away from campus and you may be required to pay some or all of the costs of travel, accommodation and food and drink.
If you’re on a placement, you’re responsible for your own travel, accommodation and living costs. You should also consider the financial implications if you go on an unpaid or overseas placement.
Course titleSocial Policy
Final awardBSc (Hons)
Mode of studyFull-time
UK/EU application deadline15 January 2018
Overseas deadline15 January 2018
Application eligibilityUK and Overseas students are eligible to apply
Apply for this course through UCAS.Apply Now