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Top Universities to Study Sociology in the UK in 2023

Dec 19, 2022Date Published
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UniSearch - Top Universities to Study Sociology in the UK in 2023

Choosing which UK university you want to get your sociology degree in is a big decision. The right degree would be one that fits all your requirements, from work opportunities to your tuition fee budget. So, how do you go about looking for the right option for you? Don't worry - UniSearch is here to give you a running start with our guide on the top universities to study sociology in the UK! 

The Best Universities to Study Sociology in the UK

There are many universities in the UK that offer sociology degrees, but which is the right pick for you? The top universities to study sociology in the UK depends on a variety of factors. Many of these factors depend on you - for example, your study level and your preferences for cost and location.

The best universities offer students a broad range of opportunities and resources. These include the professional opportunities and hands-on experience a degree can provide! To help you make a clear decision, here's our round-up of the best universities for sociology in the UK.

Why Study Sociology in the UK?

Sociology is a popular subject in the UK and a highly respected discipline. The field encompasses the study of human societies and interactions and is among UK universities' top 10 most popular undergraduate degrees.

The field of sociology focuses on how human behaviors' affect society as a whole (for example, gender roles, racial discrimination, family, and marriage functions). If you're interested in exploring these topics further, then studying sociology could be for you!

Career opportunities you can unlock through a sociology degree include social work, welfare services, social research, policy-making and governance, and more! 

Average Cost of Studying Sociology in the UK

In the UK, the cost of studying Sociology is relatively high compared to other European countries. However, if you are an international student who has never been to the UK and wants to learn at one of its top universities, then it's worth looking into.

The tuition fees range from GBP 10,000-30,000 per year, depending on which university you choose (and how much support they offer). This includes books, equipment, and living expenses during your studies.

Several bursaries and scholarships are also available for international students who would like help paying their way through university. So be sure to look into these financial opportunities too!

List of Top Universities to Study Sociology in the UK

Every year, thousands of international students enroll at UK institutions to pursue a wide range of degree programs and disciplines of study. Student satisfaction is exceptionally high and the excellent education provided by UK institutions has international recognition.

We've put together all the top universities to study sociology in the UK to help you figure out the right choice for you.

UniversityQS World Ranking 2022
Guardian Ranking(2022)
University of Oxford
London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE)
University of Cambridge
UCL (University College London)
The University of Manchester
The University of Edinburgh
King's College London (KCL)
Goldsmiths, University of London
University of Essex
The University of Warwick

1. London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE)

As one of the world's leading institutions, the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) offers excellent degrees in Sociology. The Department of Sociology at LSE offers cutting-edge, research-led instruction from renowned specialists in their discipline.

Students enjoy a multicultural experience with an international student body, international faculty, and a global perspective. Sociology graduates from LSE have gone on to work in such diverse fields as economics, law, government administration, education, journalism, and social policy.

Sociology and Social Policy are among the two most important disciplines of study at LSE. They also have an impressive departmental size with over 500 staff members focused on this subject alone!

You'll learn about different cultures through classes that examine how they differ from your own culture. This helps you understand what makes other people tick and develop a global mindset. You'll also explore the impact of social inequality on individuals' lives through lectures discussing class structure, race relations, and gender issues.

Tuition fees vary according to the course of study and the level of education. According to the LSE's academic calendar for 2023-24, master's degree fees are GBP 25,440 and undergraduate course fees are GBP 24,264 (per year).

2. UCL (University College London)

Studying Sociology at UCL will help you to understand more about the world around you. UCL has a long history of excellence in Sociology and is one of the world's top universities.

Today, it has over 11,000 students studying various subjects, including social sciences such as Sociology, Politics, and Gender Studies, at its main campus in central London or elsewhere around England and Wales.

You'll be able to explore different cultures, religions, and social structures through the lens of sociology. Whether you're interested in exploring gender identity or race-based discrimination, sociology can help you get there.

As a student at UCL, you'll have access to a wide range of resources that can help you research topics like the above. You'll also have the chance to meet with professionals who work in various fields within sociology. According to the QS World University Rankings 2022, UCL is the fourth best university to study sociology in the UK.

Tuition fees for social science vary from GBP 24,000 to 26,000 per year (depending on your level of education).

3. The University of Manchester

At the University of Manchester, there are three departments offering Sociology degrees:

  • Social & Historical Sciences
  • Social Policy & Administration
  • Social Work

These faculties provide degrees in sociology, politics, and criminology, sociology with psychology, sociology with social policy and social work, or sociology with health. The courses aim to provide students with an understanding of the sociological perspectives, theories, and processes that underpin our understanding of society.

The University of Manchester offers tuition fees for undergraduate courses starting from £9,000 annually. For full-time courses, tuition fees are GBP 21,000 per year. 

4. The University of Edinburgh

If you're interested in studying sociology in the UK, you should definitely consider the University of Edinburgh. The university’s School of Social Science has been helping students to develop their knowledge in the field since 1873. Today, over 2,000 students study at Edinburgh each year in courses including:

  • BA Hons (Hons) Sociology
  • MSc in Applied Social Science & Human Development
  • Doctoral Research & Education Practice (DRE)
  • MA in International Relations
  • MA in Criminology & Criminal Justice

The Department of Sociology has a strong reputation for its faculty and staff, all experts in their field. The department offers courses at many study levels, from introductory to advanced courses.

Students can also take advantage of the university's study abroad program, which allows them to spend up to one semester abroad and earn credits toward their degree.

In addition, there are many opportunities for students to participate in community service projects or research projects with faculty members. The tuition fee for a full four-year course load is around GBP 23,000 - 25,000 per year.

5. King's College London (KCL)

Sociology is one of the most popular subjects at KCL. The Sociology Department is well-known for its excellent research and teaching and its links with other departments in UCL and elsewhere in the university.

KCL offers various courses in the areas of Sociology, Social Work, and Criminology. The courses available include:

  • BA (Hons) Sociology
  • BSc (Hons) Sociology
  • MSc Sociology & Criminology
  • MSc Social Policy & Administration
  • MA (Hons) Sociology

Students can choose from various options depending on their interests and career aspirations. These courses will help you gain a deeper understanding of different social problems societies have encountered throughout history.

When you complete your studies at KCL, you'll be ready to apply what you've learned to real-world situations: on campus or in the community around you! You'll learn how to analyze data to understand complex social issues like poverty or inequality.

The department offers funds for students to travel abroad to conduct research in the field. It also has a wide range of scholarships available for international students. The tuition fee for a Social Science degree is GBP 23,160 per year for full-time students.

6. Goldsmiths, University of London

The Department of Sociology at Goldsmiths, University of London, is one of the UK's top-ranking research, teaching, and learning departments in the field. It is internationally renowned for its work on various topics, including health policy, migration issues, urban studies, and political economy.

For international students, the master's tuition costs range from GBP 15,360 to 24,820 per year, while the bachelor's tuition fee ranges from GBP 17,050 GBP to 23,870 per year.

Goldsmiths has a long history in sociology, dating as far back as 1947. Today, the department offers an excellent range of undergraduate and postgraduate degrees in sociology, including PhD programs. It is among the top 50 universities in the world and the 8th best university in the UK for sociology.

Goldsmiths' research interests span a wide range of topical areas, including:

  • education policy
  • housing
  • mental health
  • health care
  • social exclusion
  • urban lives
  • social change theory
  • poverty
  • crime & delinquency

and more! The department also offers opportunities for students to engage with local communities through volunteering activities and community engagement projects.

7. University of Essex

The University of Essex is the perfect place to study sociology! The Department of Sociology offers undergraduate BSc (Hons) degrees with specialisations in psychology, criminology, and politics/public policy.

Postgraduate programs include MSc degrees with specialisation options such as social epidemiology. Postgraduate certificate courses for employers seeking people with skills related directly or indirectly to their business needs are also among options to consider.

The programs will introduce you to sociology and prepare you for diverse career opportunities in the field. Applying your studies to real-world situations will help you develop a deep understanding of social issues and how to solve them.

These programs are rigorous, with classes that go into depth on topics such as race, gender, style, and power structures. You'll spend time exploring how these things influence people's lives today—and how they might change tomorrow.

The tuition fees for studying sociology at the University of Essex is GBP 12,950 a year for a three-year course. Students must pay an extra GBP 8,000 annually for textbooks and supplies.

8. The University of Warwick

If you're interested in studying sociology at the University of Warwick, you'll be able to get an excellent education from a world-class faculty. Sociology is one of the most popular departments at the university. And it's no surprise when you consider its reputation as being one of the top universities in the field.

The program offers students three tracks: Social Regulation, Social Inequality, and Social Action. Each track focuses on different aspects of sociology relating to social structures and human behaviour.

Students who choose this program will have access to various courses that allow them to study topics such as social mobility, economic inequality and poverty, family life, work-life balance, and organisational culture change.

Tuition fees for international students vary depending on where they plan to study and what program they want to pursue within their chosen field. Average tuition fees for international students are GBP 9,250 -18,000 per annum.

The university offers a scholarship program that supports students from low-income families to make the degree more accessible to all students!

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How do I choose which university I want to study sociology in?

The most effective way of making this choice is doing your research first. Shortlist your universities by the strength of their degrees, as well as other factors like the tuition fees and location. 

Before making a decision, look at the strengths and limits of each university you're considering. You can choose the option that is most suitable for you based on your needs. For instance, if you plan to get relevant work experience in your field, look into programs that offer work placements and internships as part of the curriculum.

Can I get financial support when I study sociology at university?

Yes. Most universities offer financial aid for students who need it. You will need to research your options and understand how to qualify to secure your best shot at a scholarship or grant. 

Our Concluding Thoughts

One of the best things about studying sociology at a university level is that it will help you think and look at the world around you in a broader and more enriching way. We hope our shortlist of the top universities to study sociology in the UK gives you a great start on the way! We spotlight each university's academics, student experience, facilities, and location to give you a well-rounded snapshot of your options. If any of these universities pique your interest, be sure to look into them further! Finding the right university for you and your future career is meaningful, so choose your course and institution wisely.