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Postgraduate Taught

MA Society and Culture: Meaning, Making, Consuming

Please note: The below is for 2025 entries. Click here for 2024 entries.
UCAS code 1234
Duration 1 year full time
2 years part time
Entry year September 2024
Campus Streatham Campus
Discipline Sociology

Dr Christopher Thorpe
Web: Enquire online 
0300 555 6060 (UK)  
+44 (0)1392 723192 (non-UK)

Typical offer

View full entry requirements

2:2 Honours degree

Contextual offers


  • You will acquire a broad, general knowledge of current debates within both sociology and anthropology at the same time as developing specialist knowledge of the key social and cultural dynamics shaping a range of forms and artefacts, pursuits and practices
  • We will train you to identify and analyse a wide range of social processes and dynamics as they relate to the production, distribution and consumption of ‘mass’, ‘popular’ and ‘high-brow’ cultural forms and artefacts and to think critically about the modes by which they are evaluated and understood
  • You will be equipped with both traditional and cutting-edge research tools used for studying the relationship between culture, society and everyday life
  • Join a truly multicultural and culturally enriching environment, comprising of students from all three disciplines in the department of Sociology, Philosophy and Anthropology
  • You will develop a wide range of key transferrable skills that are highly valued by employers within a range of professions

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Web: Enquire online

Phone: +44 (0)1392 72 72 72

Programme Director: Dr Christopher Thorpe

82% of our research is internationally excellent

Based on research rated 4* + 3* in REF 2021, our research in Sociology, Philosophy, Anthropology and Criminology was returned to this UoA

Top 10 in the UK for Philosophy

8th in The Complete University Guide 2025

Top 10 in the UK for Sociology

9th in the Guardian University Guide 2024

Entry requirements

We will consider applicants with a 2:2 Honours degree with 53% or above in sociology, anthropology, statistics, data or English. While we normally only consider applicants who meet this criterion, if your first degree is in a different discipline, you are coming from a different academic background which is equivalent to degree level, or have relevant work experience, we would welcome your application.

All applicants should provide a personal statement explaining their interest in the programme and how it fits with their earlier studies.

Entry requirements for international students

English language requirements

International students need to show they have the required level of English language to study this course. The required test scores for this course fall under Profile B2. Please visit our English language requirements page to view the required test scores and equivalencies from your country.

Course content

Taking an interdisciplinary perspective on some of the biggest issues and questions related to the study of culture and society, this degree provides training in the analysis of a wide range of cultural forms, practices and artefacts, reflecting critically on the modes by which they are produced, evaluated and consumed. You will examine culture and society and their relationship with power, agency, human senses, and aesthetics.

Our programmes have been planned, organised and delivered in a way oriented towards tapping into and addressing points of overlap and divergence between different disciplinary perspectives. These perspectives are explored, explained and made relevant to the material covered.

The core module in social theory is concerned in the broadest sense with the distinctiveness, or not, of human life and experience in late modern society. More specifically, social theory can be understood as a series of intellectual formulations concerned to respond to a range of questions:

  • How does the structure and organisation of society shape how individuals think and interact with one another and the world around them?
  • What does it mean to say that social order is achieved and how does this occur?
  • How and in what ways are our identities and actions enabled and constrained by a wide range of social and cultural processes and phenomena?

We’ll introduce you to a range of central themes and issues that both classical and contemporary social theorists have addressed in their work equipping you with a broad range of conceptual tools with which to understand and research the social world.

You’ll also chose from a range of optional modules covering fields such as research methods, gender at work, health and wellbeing, data visualisation and philosophy of science.

The modules we outline here provide examples of what you can expect to learn on this degree course based on recent academic teaching. The precise modules available to you in future years may vary depending on staff availability and research interests, new topics of study, timetabling and student demand.

The MA Society and Culture can be studied as a standalone Masters or you can choose to focus your studies by completing the Masters with a pathway in Meaning, Making, Consuming or Science and Technology.

The MA Society & Culture pathway, Meaning, Making, Consuming provides students with the analytical tools and theoretical perspectives necessary for making sense of a wide range of cultural forms and phenomena. Rooted primarily in the intellectual traditions of sociology of culture and cultural sociology respectively, the module covers a broad range of conceptual ideas and perspectives, providing students with a thorough grounding in the most sophisticated social scientific approaches to cultural analysis.

If you choose to follow the Masters with a pathway, that pathway will be named on your degree certificate. The pathways are intended to allow you to follow your specific intellectual interests and focus your course in that field of study.

Teaching and research


The department is home to several leading figures in the subject areas covered by our MA Society and Culture: Meaning, Making, Consuming programme. Giving students the opportunity to be taught by and learn from some of the most esteemed and respected scholars in their respective fields.

Many of the modules offered on the MA Society and Culture: Arts, Meaning, Making, Consuming is taught by staff members who are actively engaged in research within their specialist areas. Very often, this means that students are usually taught using journal articles, monographs and textbooks, written by the course leader. For instance, the module coordinator has written extensively in areas of sociology and is currently the editor for the journal, Cultural Sociology (Sage). Not only does this mean they have direct access to the authors whose work they are reading and engaged with, but the opportunity to discuss the ideas and themes directly both in seminars and a range of more informal settings.

The interdisciplinary nature of the department means that students can pursue their interest in culture and cultural phenomena from a range of disciplinary perspectives not limited to but overlapping with sociological and cultural sociological perspectives.


Teaching takes place over the first two terms, leaving the third for your dissertation. Research-centred teaching is at the heart of the programme. Teaching is done in small seminar groups through face-to-face lectures which allows students the best possible interaction with academic staff, through individual presentations and round table discussions of common readings.

Students can engage in a major piece of research into a topic of their choosing through the dissertation module. You will be assessed through coursework which will vary depending on the modules you choose and the completion of a dissertation.

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2024/25 entry

UK fees per year:

£12,000 full-time; £6,000 part-time

International fees per year:

£24,300 full-time; £12,150 part-time


We invest heavily in scholarships for talented prospective Masters students. This includes over £5 million in scholarships for international students, such as our Global Excellence Scholarships*.

For more information on scholarships, please visit our scholarships and bursaries page.

*Selected programmes only. Please see the Terms and Conditions for each scheme for further details.


Employer-valued skills

In addition to the specialist knowledge, you will gain during your programme, you will also develop transferrable skills valued by employers such as:

  • Researching, analysing and assessing sources of information
  • Written and verbal communication skills
  • Managing and interpreting information
  • Developing ideas and arguments

Graduates can look to work in a diverse range of sectors, including:

  • Journalism
  • Cultural criticism and commentary
  • Academic life
  • Education and teaching
  • Freelance writing

Career support

Our Career Zone service gives you access to a wealth of business contacts, support and training, as well as the opportunity to meet potential employers at our regular Careers Fairs.

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