Our subjects Social policy degrees

What is social policy?

Social policy aims to improve our understanding of how different societies organise their resources to meet individual and social needs. It also looks at how societies measure progress in these areas.

It draws on many different areas including history, sociology, anthropology, economics, law, psychology and politics.

Why study social policy?

Social policy addresses some of the major questions of our time:

  • how should social policy adapt to a changing global, digital, connected and information-rich world?
  • how can we adapt social policies to the needs of a more diverse society?
  • how should resources be distributed, not only between generations but also within them?

Why study social policy at Strathclyde?

Studying social policy at Strathclyde, you'll be learning at a multi-award-winning institution. In 2019 we were recognised as Times Higher Education University of the Year 2019 - the only university to win the award twice.

Many social policy graduates go on to have successful careers in the public sector, working in local or central government, analysing and formulating policy or managing key services.

Graduates often take up roles in the private sector, including working for:

  • charities
  • NGOs
  • social enterprises

Some graduates return to further study at Masters and PhD level.

Undergraduate subject combinations

Study social policy at Strathclyde to learn more about the social and economic challenges facing Scottish society and understand how these fit in a broader international and comparative perspective. At Strathclyde, we like to give our students a variety and as much opportunity as possible. That’s why at undergraduate level you study social policy alongside a range of other subjects:

  • Economics
  • English & creative writing
  • Education
  • French
  • History
  • Human resource management
  • Journalism, media & communication
  • Law
  • Politics & international relations
  • Psychology
  • Spanish

Postgraduate support

Access a wealth of support and resources for postgraduate study. Details on the application process, accommodation, fees and other useful information can be found here.    

Postgraduate support

Contact us

Prospective Student Enquiries
Tel: +44 (0) 141 444 8600

Our students

Natasha Hessami Social Policy student

Natasha Hessami, United States

MSc Social Policy (Research Methods)

I have loved the flexibility my courses offer. I thought with a taught masters my coursework would be fairly rigid, but in each class I am able to read papers and write essays that are relevant to my interests. In my ethics class I focused all my essays on the ethics of refugee research. In my welfare class I was able to read and write about healthcare systems.
Dimitar Karadzhov PhD student social work and social policy

Dimitar Karadzhov, Bulgaria

PhD Public Health & Health Policy

Strathclyde is renowned for its research excellence in areas such as social work and social policy, and for being a socially conscious university with long-standing links with governmental and community organisations. This creates exciting opportunities to be part of research in the community that can have real-world impact.
PhD student Penelope

Penelope Laycock

PhD Social Policy

Strathclyde’s Social Policy department is excellent. Everyone at the university has been so helpful and are willing to take time out of their day to give you advice. The community is helpful and supportive and always happy to talk about research!

Our faculties & departments