The Master of Science in Sociology is a new and innovative English-taught programme at Ghent University, centered around three pillars: applied research, internationalisation and an advanced scientific approach to contemporary societal problems. What are the social conditions that constitute the fundamental causes of health and illness? How can higher education institutions become more accessible? Why have so many young Muslims joined Islamic State the past couple of years? How are power and responsibilities formally and informally distributed within organisations?
This programme addresses these and other contemporary social problems. Students gain a strong scientific approach that allows them to critically address such topics. Sociological imagination is the ability to connect the things that happen to people (such as their success in education, their relationship with their parents and their well-being) to social characteristics (the way schools are organised, the divorce rate, the degree of social inequality). To have this sociological imagination, a person must pull away from the situation and think from an alternative point of view.
Within the Major International internship, students are challenged to use their sociological imagination in real life contexts and take their expertise to the next level. During this experience, students confront theoretical learning with hands-on experience, characterised by social engagement. Students who choose the Major Policy and Management immerge themselves in courses on human resources management, public administration, governance, change management and international development. This allows an individually tailored study programme based on personal interests and possible future career paths.In the Major Skills Lab, students explore and develop applied skills to prepare for future careers through courses such as ‘Dare to Venture’, ‘Business Skills’ and ‘Advanced Academic English’.
This one-year master program is highly research based. Students gain a thorough understanding of advanced quantitative research methods and are challenged to apply these skills to answer sociological questions. Students write a master thesis and opt for an international internship or follow advanced policy-oriented applied courses.