MSc Quantitative Research Methods (Policy analysis)

Introduction to the MSc

This MSc is aimed at all people interested in policy. Whether working in central, local and devolved government, or the third sector the programme will develop practical and  robust quantitative research skills for anyone involved in policy analysis and evaluation.

The course has been designed to provide students with an understanding of the major quantitative research skills relevant to designing, analysing and evaluating social policy, as well as some of the most relevant qualitative skills.  Participants will be expected to apply their understanding to policy and research questions and communicate their understanding clearly to academic specialists and non-specialists, and in so doing develop their existing skills in critiquing and applying research methods.

This masters degree will:

  • provide a broadly based training in social science research methods, with an emphasis on quantitative methods
  • develop students' knowledge and understanding of research design, research management, evidence-based policy, longitudinal analysis and a range of quantitative, evaluative and qualitative research methods
  • provide students with transferable skills which can be used effectively in different work environments.

This is a modular degree which you can study part-time over two years or full-time in one year. Modules may also be taken on a stand-alone basis, either for credit or as part of continuing professional development.

Expected learning outcomes

On successful completion of the course, students should be able to:

  • formulate researchable problems
  • critically evaluate published research
  • articulate links between policy questions, research design and research methods
  • critically and selectively apply knowledge of research design and methods to research questions
  • understand and apply a range of research methods and tools
  • systematically review and evaluate published research and understand whether it contributes to evidence-based policy making
Compulsory modules

  • Impact evaluation methods
  • Statistical Analysis or Quantitative Analysis 1 and Quantitative Analysis 2
  • 10,000 word report
Optional modules

  • Policy Analysis and Evaluation from a Qualitative Perspective
  • Social Policy: Theory, Practice And Research
Entry requirements

A second class UK honours degree, preferably in a social science subject. Alternative qualifications may be considered.


Kathleen Middleton

Programme Administrator

UCl Institute of Education

University College London

20 Bedford Way

London, WC1H 0AL

Telephone: 020 7612 6654

Email: Kathleen Middleton

Highly recommended modules

  • Systematic Reviews for Policy and Practice
  • Longitudinal Research and Analysis