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sociology and social policy

Sociology and Social Policy

Where society matters

  • 100% student satisfaction

    Our students love studying Sociology at UEL, we scored 100% on ‘overall satisfaction’ for our Sociology courses in the 2018 National Student Survey – you can't get much better than that.


    Sociology rose 18 places in the 2018 Guardian League Table and now sits comfortably ahead of other universities in London. We truly are the best place for Sociology in London.


    Our research is outstanding. We were the top-ranked modern university in London and the second modern university in England for sociology research in the 2014 Research Excellence Framework – the national review of higher education research that is conducted every six years.

About us

This is a truly exciting time to study Sociology at UEL. Our goal is to be one of the top institutions in London, and we believe that with our rankings and student satisfaction statistics - we have achieved that goal. We believe we have done this by making Sociology relevant for the world we live in, and relevant for you by focusing on making a real difference in society. You will be able to graduate with the most up-to-date knowledge and relevant experience to start a career that you will love.

We capitalise on our location in east London, one of the most diverse and fastest growing regions in Europe which is also facing an unprecedented increase in inequality. By using east London as a living laboratory for social research, you will 'learn by doing' and be able to get an incredible grasp of the issues facing society that you will not be able to get anywhere else.

See our courses.

Without the support of my lecturers at UEL I would not be where I am now. My confidence and self-esteem were boosted by my lecturers. They gave me the courage to say, ‘I am able, I am clever enough to do it'.

Marina Yacoub , BA (Hons) Sociology, graduate
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Our facilities

Our libraries and learning services are at the very heart of the University. We have a superb range of resources and facilities to help you with your studies and we’re committed to offering you a first-class student experience. Our Stratford library, opened at a cost of £14 million, is a state-of-the-art building which provides an inspirational environment for study and research. Overlooking the Royal Docks, our modern Docklands library is another fantastic space for learning, offering a wide range of resources as well as group and silent study facilities. It’s also home to the UEL Skillzone, where you can get extra help with your academic writing.

Both our libraries are open 24/7 during term time, giving you maximum flexibility about when you choose to study. As well as visiting our libraries in person, you can also take advantage of our growing collection of electronic resources, including e-books, e-journals and databases.

To ensure our students get the best possible support, we’ve opened brand-new Student Support hubs at our Docklands and Stratford campuses - at a cost of £3.1 million. These contain centralised helpdesks as well as comfortable areas to relax and socialise. The helpdesks provide a ‘one-stop shop’ for every possible need, from course-related enquiries to personal issues such as health and money matters. They’re designed to be your first port of call if you have an enquiry or problem. 

To find out more and experience our facilities first-hand, visit us at an Open Day.

Our staff

Find out more about our staff.


We’re involved in wide range of research through numerous research centres and groups – united by a desire to improve social justice and individual wellbeing.

As we’re located in the Olympic borough of Newham, it’s only natural that we’re taking a lead on local issues. Dr Penny Bernstock has recently written a book on the housing legacy of the London 2012 Games. She’s also published extensively on housing and urban regeneration in east London.

Racism is a key research interest at UEL. Dr Helen Kim is researching racism in London nightclubs, while Syd Jeffers has worked on racism and policy for important government bodies such as the Home Office. Professor Gargi Bhattacharyya takes an international perspective, researching racism in relation to the ‘war on terror’.

Dr Tracey Jensen is exploring the current fascination with poverty in reality TV shows, while Dr Eric Taylor Woods is researching nationalism and religion.

Much of our research has attracted international interest, including the work of Professor Maria Tamboukou on feminism and gender and that of Professor Molly Andrews, whose narrative research has included such dramatic events as the fall of the Berlin Wall and the end of South Africa’s apartheid.

More detail on our specific research focuses can be found on the research page.


We have worked incredibly hard to ensure our Sociology courses are relevant, engaging and make you ready for the real world. We want you to step up to a career that you will find satisfying and rewarding.

Our students are encouraged to develop hands-on experience and job-ready specialist skills to work as professionals in a wide variety of fields. In addition to writing essays, you will learn how to give oral presentations, write reports and policy evaluations. In your final year, you can take a placement module, where you will be matched with an employer that best suits your passion and skillset.

Many of our students make a real different in their placements, and have often been offered jobs immediately upon graduation. Some of them even start their own companies and organisations. One of our former students was offered a place on the London Living Wage Campaign, where she now plays a leading role. Another student is working with Thames Water to help communities in east London to save money on heating and water bills. You can make a real difference in society when you study with us.

At UEL, you’ll have access to:

  • Employability skills training such as interview techniques and CV writing.
  • Gradscore, a groundbreaking electronic tool that allows you to complete a mock application and find out if you’d be shortlisted for interview. It has been created exclusively for UEL with help from leading employers and employability experts.
  • UEL Skills Academy, where external professionals deliver sessions on the competencies most prized by graduate employers.
  • Internships, placements and volunteering opportunities from our work placements team.
  • Professional mentoring scheme, matching students with staff from major companies.
  • Networking opportunities and annual careers fair.
  • Support with setting up your own business. 

Our location in one of Europe’s largest regeneration areas and our extensive links to local employers will also give you access to fantastic internships and placements. From heavy industry to high-tech, health and social care to the arts, there are so many opportunities right on our doorstep.

Our online Career Coach shows you the different career paths that your chosen subject area can lead you to. It gives you information on specific careers, job roles, potential wages and available jobs in the sector. You can also take a quick quiz to find a career to match your personality type!

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Postgraduate courses

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