Bachelor of Science in Social Sciences (Political Sciences)

What?

The Bachelor in Social Sciences is the new joint project of Ghent University and the Vrije Universiteit Brussel. This English taught program throws down the walls between political science, sociology and communication studies - enabling you to build solid bridges between them.
You are about to excel thanks to your analytical approach, methodological strength and of course: your authority on European institutions and issues. As an internationally accredited program, it provides access to Master programs in both of the organising universities as well as abroad.

All courses take place in Brussels, at the campus of the Vrije Universiteit Brussel. The registration also takes place at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel.

For whom?

Course structure

> Political Science
In your first year you spend quite some time coming to terms with fundamental principles and concepts in political science. In your second year, you start applying these for a critical look at timeless issues in political science - you learn about the political deliberation of conflict and contradiction in societies. If you choose the political orientation for your third bachelor year, the focus of your courses shifts to contemporary global and European topics.
> Sociology
In your first year you get to meet the world of thought of godfathers of sociology like Max Weber or Jurgen Habermas. The sociologist is fascinated by all sorts of social conduct, and aims to explain its causes and consequences. This critical thinking takes a central place in your second bachelor year. If you choose the sociological orientation in your third bachelor year, you dive deep into topics like health sociology, social demography and European Welfare State Politics.
> Communication Studies
How did the communication studies come into existence? How did they evolve and what are the ‘big’ research questions? Food for thought, and for your first year. Afterwards, you take a much closer look into these research questions, and you learn how to develop and answer one yourself. If Communication Studies turns out to be really your thing, choose the specialising orientation for your third bachelor year. You’ll focus on European Media Policy, for instance, and on the Political Economy of Communication.
> Methodological core
An indispensable discipline for all scientific research: statistics. You’ll get acquainted with statistics applied to social sciences in your first bachelor year. Another course introduces you to domain specific methodologies for Social, Political and Communication Studies. The year after, you dig deeper for knowledge and skills in the domain of quantitative and qualitative research methods. Current issues courses in all three bachelor years help you translate what you’ve learned into practice.
> European dimension
Throughout the curriculum, several courses are imbued with a European dimension. Located in Brussels, surrounded by European and international political, social and media organisations, this focus on the EU as the natural context in which the program comes to life is intended to strengthen the link between your current studies and your future options. Hence the internship proposed in the third bachelor year, hence the many guest lectures of EU officials and site visits.

Where to?

There is no doubt that Bachelors of Sciences in Social Sciences (BScSS) will stand out on the labour market. However, the biggest added value of the program lies in paving the way for ambitious follow-up trajectories, such as Master programs and internships.
Your third bachelor year is designed to help you prepare for this choice. You ‘major’ in one of the three social sciences composing the program. It allows you to build expertise in this domain, but without losing track of the other two. That way all choices for Master programs remain open, but you’ll have more insight on what you really want to master in.
At the same time, this last bachelor year offers you multiple contacts with professionals from organisations gravitating around the EU institutions through guest lectures, site visits and internships. A great way to start building your network, with an eye on the future.